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Old 12-31-2009, 12:19 AM   #1
DiminishedFifth
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Ethereal Reality (Take II) (Progressive Symphonic Power Metal) TBC, C4C

It's been a loooonnnggg time T&C! Ever since my last song (which is still C4C, by the way) and I've brought back an old song. I have just recently finished it (1/26/10). I wanna know what you think about it :]
C4C, of course.

NOTE: I don't care if MIDI or RSE... as long as the drums are MIDI, it's good.

I feel I rush through parts a bit too fast... but unsure. I'd really like to know about the catchyness and whether things transition smoothly. I'd also like to know how the solo's are (Specifically the Solo II section... I dislike Solo I).

Overall, I'm pretty proud though :]

C4C, of course!

If you can tell me the influence for the Solo II section, I'll give you a free internet cookie :] (HINT: It's someone on this forum... and it's one of their "older" songs... The person's Username ends with an k and the song starts with an A)... that's a lot of hints!

EDIT: There are some mixing issues when Verse I comes back in towards the end of the song, especially with the strings in the back and the loudness of the keys. I apologize for that xD I'm currently unable to fix it!
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File Type: zip Ethereal Reality (Take II) (Version III).zip (36.3 KB, 320 views)
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Old 12-31-2009, 04:08 PM   #2
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I'm liking the intro, really... suspenseful. The keys in "Tension!" remind me of something I would hear in a Sega game. Verse I and Bridge? were very dissonant, fast and progressive, nice job. One of my favorite parts throughout was Verse II. That's symphonic genius! Anyway, nice job. I'm loving the drum track you made there.
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Old 12-31-2009, 04:38 PM   #3
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Not really a fan of how you changed this one. The beginning is fine, but I found it weird on the piano. The sweeps sound better on the guitar. But then they just sorta... cut out. The change from the sweeping into that first riff @ 7 just needs work. It kinda failed as is. When it comes back in its alright though.

Wasn't particularly a fan of Tension either. I can't put my finger on it, it was just a bit weird.

Verse 1, Bridge, Verse again, was all great though. Not too random, everything flowed, etc. Just really, really great.

The chorus was also really nicely done. But then the post chorus was a weird change of moods/riffs. It didn't quite fit. But yet, it got into Verse 2 fine. Verse 2 itself was ok. If not for the keyboard lead, it wouldnt have been any good at all, but the keys were very good.

The build up is... I dunno. I need more. It seems like it could go both ways... down a bad road, and down a good one, it just depends how you flesh it out. I'd like to see it get faster/higher in harmony, with the drums building in intensity, and then maybe get into a solo/Verse 1. But that's just me.

C4C in my sig, dont really care which one.
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Old 12-31-2009, 05:09 PM   #4
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Honestly, I didn't change anything in the beginning xD Except the held out note during "Tension!"

I'm still trying to think of ways to smoothen the transition from the sweeping to bar 7. It kinda bothers me too.

I've already changed the Post-Chorus. The thing making it sound weird is the Choir. If you take it out it's A LOT smoother, and it works better.

Believe it or not, that's the same key melody that you complained about earlier in "Tension!" It's just slowed down a bit and more atmospheric.

that's what I was going ot try and go for after the Build-Up. I've gotta play around with it today/tomorrow and get something. I want it to climax at a solo, and then slow don for maybe a clean interlude, and then back to chorus or a faster verse.

Thakn you :] I'll get back to you later!
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Old 12-31-2009, 05:23 PM   #5
Burning_Angel
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As a suggestion for the getting out of the sweeps at 7... maybe instead of alternating strings up, on the last part of the arpeggio go straight down the chord for like... the last four notes of the measure...? If that makes any sense?

And yeah without the choir the post chorus is better.
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Old 01-03-2010, 10:05 PM   #6
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Hey champ. Thanks for taking the time to crit and give recommendations to my piece

Intro 1 - The accompanying progression in the piano intro caught me off guard at first - it seemed a bit discordant at first - but I think its mostly because of the more unusual second and fourth harmonies between the two parts. When the half step modulation came in, it all made a lot more sense. Very Nevermore sounding progression.

Intro 2 - I wasn't so sure about the stacked m2 intervals in the chord you used to support the distorted guitar's arpeggios, leading from the piano. As an individual idea, it sounded fine, and had a lot of tension to it, but initially it seemed to interrupt the theme.

After a couple listens, it made more sense, but I feel like the overall flow was interrupted in this short interlude, which is really disappointing to hear at the beginning of a piece. Maybe after the two bars of the guitar's arpeggios, a descending diminished arpeggio leading into a dominant 7th could lead into the double-picking section more effectively? That way, the full diminished 7th can merge into the sound of the major interval (of the major 7th arpeggios used in bar 7) while retaining the tritone in the dominant 7th. Just a suggestion.

The double-picking section itself a nice interlude and build-up to the revisitation of the arpeggios, which was a lot more effective this time around. The backing chords really reinforced and accented the melodic tones this time, and overall came across really well. And the rhythm itself provided a bit of tension while still holding pace. Well done!

Tension - I'm impressed! The 5/4 feel doesn't seem forced at all, and there's a lot of tension just in the time signature itself (I find that 5/4 often has that ''unfinished'' feel), lt alone in the rhythmic phrasing and the atmosphere established by the keys.

Verse 1 - Immense! Really clever use of flat 9ths and flat 5ths, and I like that the rhythm has relevance to Intro-1. The atmosphere with the synth pad is great, and the lower-mixed arpeggios have a great note selection, and really add to the tension and chaos. The 9/8 bars don't really seem off at all, which is difficult to achieve, and the transition into the chorus was flawless - I like how the 6/8 leads into the chorus a little sooner than the listener would anticipate. Very nice!

Chorus - Very nice use of a chromatic progression and simple diad voicings. I really like that the overall sound is a little more stripped down (par the widdly bass, which kicks ass), which is a welcome contrast to the chaos before...

and after! The Post-Chorus was another welcome contrast with the guitar harmonies, but I can't help but imagine the phrases in 7/8; cutting off the last note of each bar which is repeated again as the first in the next bar. The last bar works perfectly as 4/4, because it leads into the next section, but the 7/8 idea is what I'm seeing (maybe starting in 4/4, but a repeat in 7/8?). On this note, I really love the sub-modulation in bar 57 to a diminished voicing - really well done!

Nice build up on the drums, and the sparser sound is a great break from all the dense layers beforehand - but wait!

More layers than ever! The addition of the sitar was great, and I like the contrasting feels between rhythm and melody - the rhythm has more of a straight 5/4 pulse, while the melody seems to have more of a 4/4, 4/4, 2/4 pulse. I really like overlapping rhythmic ideas like this, and it was the perfect place to bring one in. The minor third key change was ridiculously spooky too, and the atmosphere was brilliant. Speaking of minor third key changes...

Wow. The riff itself is pretty immense, but what I really like is the sort of reversed key change - this one moving up a minor third instead of down like the one beforehand. If you're continuing with this, it would be a great time to bring back an earlier theme after a bit more added intensity, seeing as the key signature is switching to a dominant one.

Overall, most of the piece flows brilliantly, par some untidiness in the intro. But apart from that, the rhythms and melodic counterpoints were written tremendously, there's consistency in the piece's quality, and the structure, atmosphere and variations throughout are composed ridiculously effectively.
If there's anything I can be more specific on, or anything you'd like to me to take more of a look at, feel free to ask. Keep up the great work, and best of wishes with adding on to this one.



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Old 01-03-2010, 10:54 PM   #7
DiminishedFifth
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Thank you for the suggestions juckfush.. I always love your crits :]

The 7/8 idea as the post-chorus is amazing. I used it and it sounds A LOT better this way. Kind of rushed, yet it still has that same... smoothness with it, y'know what i mean?

And I'll take your intro thingy into consideration. I changed the first chord (changed the high D and A to A and E, respectively... seventh fret) and I'll play around with your diminished to dominant idea for a little while and see what happens.
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Old 01-04-2010, 03:04 PM   #8
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!UPDATE!
Added the newest version, changed the beginning slightly (stilll a bit wonky, so any help will be appreciated), added a part after build-up, changed some signatures, and other things.

I think it sounds better, how about you guys? :]

(Credits to juckfush and Burning_Angel for giving me good ideas on things to change)
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Old 01-04-2010, 04:00 PM   #9
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I loved the intro man. Sounds really great and classical. I didn't really like the tension and the switch to verse just seemed way to weird. The verse itself wasn't that great. Riffs just seemed to jump out of nowhere and they were pretty unnecessary. The second verse was unnecessary too but there's no harm in that.

I liked the chorus and the post-chorus up until the last two notes, they were weird

I like the second verse. Sounds alot like an old Mario game. The build up was pretty boring. Repetitive riffs up until bar 79.

It would've been nice if you had actually done a solo. And what's with the 16 bar gap? Is that where you added stuff on?

Overall, I don't really look at this as a song, more of a soundtrack. And for that purpose it sounds pretty cool. If this was intended to be a song with vocals and stuff then I'd call it unusual. Maybe not my taste.

It's pretty cool and the intro is pretty technical. Overall I'd give it maybe a 6/10
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Old 01-04-2010, 04:04 PM   #10
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Haha thank you. The 16 bar gap is to separate the ideas. It's not a completed song, and the thing after the gap is another idea that I don't know what to do with.

I'm not sure what it's intended for... just fun? xD I haven't written a solo yet, I just wanted to get something down underneath it first.

I understand it's not your type of music (and I can tell it's not).

Thank you for the crit :]
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Old 01-04-2010, 04:12 PM   #11
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Sorry if I seemed to be being harsh or jerkish there dude. I think it has potential
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Old 01-04-2010, 05:13 PM   #12
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Hey man, thanks for the crit on my newest one

The intro sounded kinda weird, sorta reminded me of banjo tooie on n64 haha. But I like how it sounds, the move down a half step was a good move. I prefer the sweeps on guitar though. I think it would have been cool if the guitar faded in with the sweeps and then the rest of the of the instruments just came in all at once like at measure 5. The transfer into the cynic-ish riff was fine though, I really liked the chords you used starting at measure 11.

The transition into the tension part was good, I liked how you held the notes so it was semi-dissonant. I really liked the melody at measure 21, it hada blotted science sort of feel to it. Good usage of 5/4 as well.

The transfer into the verse was ok, but I think it could be better. Instead of holding the notes on the guitar and then just going straight into the verse, try maybe doing a run down(diminished perhaps?) and then hold a dissonant chord or harmony, then throw in a longer drum fill and then come in with the tempo change to the verse. Just a thought. That being said the verse was excellent, I really liked the subtle sweep melody from the intro on the guitar.

Bridge was good, I liked the usage of 7/8 and the chords you used there as well. The bridge flowed nicely into the verse again. The variations you usedwere also good, the keyboard added a nice touch, and I just noticed the sexy bassline too haha.

Flow into the chorus was good, but there was one problem I had; it didn't really feel like a chorus to me. I think you should slow it down a little bit, but you should do it after measure 53, like use the same chord progressions but just slow down the drum beat and just strum some of those chords as 8th notes. I really liked the bass wankery in the chorus though haha.

The post-chorus was awesome, 7/8 never sounded so natural! Amen...was a nice transfer into verse II (awesome usseof 5/4 here too!). The melody was very odd, but I like my music weird too, so it was awesome haha. Cool key changes too from F to D. Kinda reminded me of banjo tooie here too

The build-up was pure brilliance, I really liked the key changes here, going up a minor 3rd each time, it really builds the tension well, and then flows perfectly into the solo riff.

As for where to take the song after measure 101, I'd say keep the riff going but switch keys again the same way as you did in the build-up by minor 3rds then build-up more with some diminished goodies too, then hit and hold a dissonant harmony or chord then bring back a melody or theme from earlier in the song and keep going from there, but that's where one of my main problem was with this one. There were a lot of cool ideas and riffs throughout, but there really wasn't any one strong melody or theme that stuck with me after it all. The sweep thing in the intro was cool but I didn't feel like it was strong enough to be a recurring theme throughout the song. It could be I guess, but I tend to like more catchy melodies as themes instead of more odd stuff so that's just a matter of opinion.

Anyways, great work so far man, I can't wait to here the final product
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Old 01-04-2010, 09:22 PM   #13
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I THOUGHT the song name was familiar... Turns out I have the older version from who knows how long ago.

Intro-1 was alright. The 15 note in Intro-2 was kind of weird, but it added a sort of awkward feel to the riff. I suppose it wouldn't be as interesting without it. I also love bar 7... Very... Ethereal

The three parts after (verse 1, bridge?, verse again) are pretty awesome. At first I didn't know what juckfush was talking about (with the relevance to intro-1 and all), but then I noticed some the sweeps, and that one awkward note.

Post-chorus reminds me of some new BTBAM (Colors and The Great Misdirect), which I'm not sure is a good thing or a bad thing.

Verse two is amazing.

I'm loving the china in Build-up. After the chinas, nothing really catches my interest until bar 82, and the ****ing terrifying transition into 'Begin Solo 1.'

Keep working on this.
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:24 PM   #14
DiminishedFifth
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Thank you guys for the crit :]

RedDeath9 - Should I change the syncopated high-hats during build-ups to chinas? If I only listened to BTBAM

zakattack - I tried that fade in the guitar doing the arpeggios... it does sound very nice. You always manage to make my songs better xD I'm gonna play around with your idea for a transition to the verse (the extended drum fill). I think I know what I wanna do there, so we'll see. the melody in Verse II is the same melody from Tension! xD It shouldn't be THAT weird, it's just the implied tonality underneath that is :3
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Old 01-08-2010, 08:14 PM   #15
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I don't know. If it sounds good to you, do it - if not, well... In the end, it's really only your opinion that matters...

If I was writing it, I would start with high-hats first, then build up to chinas. But that's just if I was writing it.
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Old 01-26-2010, 11:48 PM   #16
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I took a lot of your ideas into account (thank you Zakattack, RedDeath, and others) and made the finished product! At least as of right now... I don't want to add more to it, but I might go back and change some things. Maybe Solo I. Unsure right now though.

TELL ME!

C4C :]
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Old 01-29-2010, 12:00 AM   #17
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Like wow...


I don't know what to actually critique on because everything is so... overwhelming and awesome at the same time. I don't know if it was the fact that there was so much going on or everything just fit and that is why I can't find anything wrong with this piece. Sorry if this isn't much of a critique but there really isn't anything to point out wrong with the piece IMHO. Everything seems to be nicely put together. I would really like to hear this piece recorded.


BTW, I'm still waiting for the Cynic piece.
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Old 01-29-2010, 12:35 AM   #18
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Like wow...


I don't know what to actually critique on because everything is so... overwhelming and awesome at the same time. I don't know if it was the fact that there was so much going on or everything just fit and that is why I can't find anything wrong with this piece. Sorry if this isn't much of a critique but there really isn't anything to point out wrong with the piece IMHO. Everything seems to be nicely put together. I would really like to hear this piece recorded.


BTW, I'm still waiting for the Cynic piece.

Haha thank you for the kind words! I'm trying to get a good MIDI to MP3 cause I have no recording equipment :/ But if one of my friends on here REALLY likes it, he might... we shall see.

And, about the Cynic piece... as am I. I keep going back to it, and I know where I want it to go (a chorus), I just can't seem to get a good one going for that song. I'll work on that one next ;] Cause this was an old piece that I wrote, as well.
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Old 01-30-2010, 02:53 PM   #19
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Cheers for the detailed crit on mine.

Intro:
I liked how the lead faded in, nicely done. Drums are pretty sick as well

Tension:
I definitely feel the tension, I just dunno if I really like the sound of it. Might be just my personal preference but it's still good. I think the verse comes in a bit too suddenly though

Verse I
Nice riff, nothing wrong with this I think, it's sick. Dunno about the bridge though, it just seems a bit odd. When the verse plays again, I think you could make something slightly different about it, just for variation. Love the transition into the chorus.

Chorus
This is real catchy, I love the sound of it, nice chords and rhythm. And the bass fills are sick

Post-Chorus
Still good, but I think it could be a bit more epic

Amen
It's alright, but I think it needs more drum fills instead of being just a beat if you get

Verse II
Pretty creepy, I just don't like the sound of it but it's still good, maybe on the repeat something should change

Build-Up
I dunno, I jus don't really like this bit but the last few bars are nice.

Solo I
Yeahh not a fan of the solo, just sounds a bit odd and not very melodic

Solo II
Much better, I like the harmony, but it's not the best transition into the bridge. But the bridge goes into the verse fine. Then into the modulation is good

Modulation
I dunno, I like it, nothing wrong I think apart from the transition into the chorus. I think you need another section maybe to link it better.

Final Chorus
Nice variation, but I think it needs a bit more of an epic build up to end on

Overall, well put together, a few things need to be changed but it's still sick. Nice one
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Old 03-27-2010, 11:09 AM   #20
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Wonderful piece man, very impressive. Overall I think it's a very very solid piece - there are a few things I think could use improvement but very little, really.

Here's a section by section.

Intro sweeps are pretty sweet, nice fade-in, punches on the keys - I especially liked the drumming though, interesting choice of accentuations, but it works really well. Nice job.

I think on Bar 6, though, you could have put some sort of backing chord to really keep a full atmosphere there, it would have made the transition from the sweeps to what I'll call cynic riffing from here on, a bit less rough around the edges.

I like the Tension riff, it's got an interesting rhythm and melody to it, I especially liked the instument choice for the keyboards, it gives it a really interesting color.

Bar 25 - again I think you could have held out let's say the last note on your lead harmony and your keys and whammy/pitch shifted downwards - it's the first thing that comes to mind but just something that transitions the feeling into the next section. Use your imagination! .

Verse 1, bridge, Verse again - This entire section is amazing, I love this type of stuff =D.
Being a drummer I will point out especially the drum section at 28 - This is pure genius and I hope you know it, the way you inserted those triplets into that 9/8 bar give a rhythmic illusion of the tempo actually slowing down and it does so in the most tasteful way, it really turns me on hahaha. This in relation to the keyboard and lead guitar doing the triplet run at the end make it a really rhythmically unique and interesting section.

Transition into the chorus is lovely, and the chorus itself works rather well - considering I would see vocals go on top of this I consider it a suitable chorus, although it does have a bit less oomph than the previous sections .

And uhm, the post chorus, this kind of sounds jumbled up, like the drums bass and guitars do not properly accentuate each other - it sounds kind of like a maiden interlude, but it's a bit muddy all around. Can't say what would make it better except perhaps better accentuation, and that one chord holding out could be worked into something more interesting.

Amen starts a new section and that's fairly well done and Verse 2 properly sets a new mood for the song direction - nice and eerie, another section I would see heavily vocal driven.

I think your buildup, could have started packing a bit more punch at bar 77 with a keys and then added the sweeps on top of that, would have sounded really cool I think - although I must say it does the trick at the moment, and in a way having all the keys punch in at once gives for a different, more abrupt kind of buildup, so this works too. Either way, once the keys kick in the complementation of all the instruments really kicks me in the balls, it's awesome =D.

Said person above me says he doesn't like the solo, sounds a bit odd and not very melodic - well, although I think he's right, I think you pulled off the odd and not so melodic excellently and I really love this kind of stuff, and the way you pull out a really melodic solo afterwards really gives the piece a nice sense of contrast - I think it's wonderful.

Plus the transition into solo 1 is damn awesome. The first solo reminds me a bit of Martyr, considering the backing track and the lead style - if you haven't heard the band I'd suggest listening, you might enjoy it .

The delay- modulation section was also really interesting, I thoroughly enjoyed that little piece of soloing .

Nice drum/bass tradeoff as you fade back in the keys, another transition really well pulled off, I found it really cool.

Your next modulation section is what I call genius use of modulation, smooth, gives another tonal texture to the piece and really brings out an interesting color. I'll agree with the former that the transition back into the chorus could have been a bit more interesting, perhaps you could even insert a melody line into your chorus continuing previous ideas, giving your final chorus an added twist and more punch; The ending, although suitable, really felt a bit lazy when I look at the size of the piece and the large sound it has, to just finish it fading on a chord doesn't seem to fit the power the rest of the piece conveyed.

I'm nitpicking of course, since nothing's perfect and there's always room for improvement, but all things considered it's still one of the best pieces I've heard around here, so hat off to you; chapeau!

I'll shoot ya a 9/10 for this one.

Oh and for the C4C, if you could just crit the piece I submitted for the T&C competition, Withdrawing the Substance - I'll probably post it separate from the competition, I'll let you know. Thanks!

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