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Old 10-04-2013, 09:31 AM   #1
CRaul87
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My Entry for Toontrack's Metal Guitar God 2013

Hello UG!

So here is my first attempt at one of these solo contest thingies:P
So far I can't say that I had the most positive feedback so I am eager to know most of all why you guys don't like it
Most of ppl have said that it sounds dissonant and has nothing to do with the backing track.
I am fully aware that the creator"me" is highly inclined to be biased towards his creation, however I don't think that I am THAT biased and personally to me it sound fine and I hope that I'm not crazy but oh well.... tell me what you think...

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Old 10-04-2013, 10:25 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
Hello UG!

So here is my first attempt at one of these solo contest thingies:P
So far I can't say that I had the most positive feedback so I am eager to know most of all why you guys don't like it
Most of ppl have said that it sounds dissonant and has nothing to do with the backing track.
I am fully aware that the creator"me" is highly inclined to be biased towards his creation, however I don't think that I am THAT biased and personally to me it sound fine and I hope that I'm not crazy but oh well.... tell me what you think...




well, keep in mind your asking for constructive criticism....


It doesn't sound like there is a connection between what you are playing, and what you are playing over. The timing and notes sound out of place.


It's obvious you practice often, but it sounds like your thinking your way through, not hearing or feeling it.

Last edited by GuitarMunky : 10-18-2013 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 10-04-2013, 10:43 AM   #3
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idk i guess the only problem i see is that you have that other music playing in the background of your little solo id edit that music out of the video people are going to think you are playing to it.
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Old 10-04-2013, 10:58 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by GuitarMunky
well, keep in mind your asking for constructive criticism....


It doesn't sound like there is a connection between what you are playing, and what you are playing over. The timing and notes sound out of place.



This
it does sound a bit dissonant but to me the biggest problem is that it doesn't seem to fit too well with the beat. it seems like it's random and not really flowing with the song. although i will say your playing is nice and clean for sure

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Old 10-04-2013, 12:09 PM   #5
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A solo is primarily a complementary melody to the song. Vocals stop, let the guitar take the melody over for a while. I don't really like the melody of this solo, it just sounds like a bunch of random guitar tricks without a care for chord tones, or rhythm. You definitely have the chops however.

Analyse some of your favourite solos and ask why the guitarist chose to play certain notes at certain times with reference to the other instruments playing.
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Old 10-05-2013, 06:24 AM   #6
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As a solo in the context of the song you're playing over it simply doesn't work at all. Like everyone else has said there's literally no connection between the backing and what you're playing. It really doesn't sound like you even listened to the backing track, let alone tried to compose something that would fit the song.
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Old 10-05-2013, 08:47 PM   #7
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Some people have got it and some people just don't. It sounds like your just playing random scales nothing about the solo sounds musical man.... Work on your ears seriously... scales aren't musical the solo sounded really generic and bland by the way do you palm mute after you bend? You should mute the string after your done bending. Your chops are great but you also need to work on your rhythm a lot more also your timing I listened to the solo numerous times and it just sounds out of place. I'm not hating i'm just giving you advice work on your rhythm and ears technique isn't everything man.

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Old 10-06-2013, 03:45 AM   #8
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TS, do you think it sounds good over the song? (I don't.) But really, LISTEN to what you are playing. As people have said, you clearly can play. But you just need to start using your ears. Figure out the chords in the song and learn about dissonance and consonance. Also listen to the rhythm of the song and try to make your solo fit it rhythmically. Otherwise it will have no flow.

It's always good to know what you are playing over. First listen to the backing track. Then start playing. And if what you play doesn't sound good, try different things. Good solos aren't necessarily technically advanced. Good solos fit the song perfectly.
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Old 10-07-2013, 02:14 PM   #9
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Ear training man,

you are not hearing the changes at ALL. You aren't highlighting them what so ever, no guide tones, no colour tones, nothing.

Your chops are totally up to the task, so all you need to do is spend some time on a bit of basic theory and a lot of ear training and you will be substantially better.
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Old 10-07-2013, 05:46 PM   #10
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Everything has been said I guess.

You might actually haven't hit a single consonant note anywhere.

Do some ear training practice, and play the C major scale over a C major chord for an hour each day, this might bring back the consonance in your hearing.
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Old 10-08-2013, 06:37 AM   #11
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Your first attempt for the Toontrack's metal guitar God is appreciative but you need to work on C major scale then it will sounds like great one.
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Old 10-18-2013, 01:24 PM   #12
CRaul87
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Ok, so taking all the feedback into consideration I have resubmitted my entry and tried to be more melodic and rhythmic. On my first entry many ppl said it sounded dissonant although to my ears it was fine, however it did have the problem of not being rhythmically spot on so I guess that might have contributed to the overall perception of it being dissonant.

Anyway, this is my second take, if it still sounds dissonant then I guess I'm just quirky like that or I have a brain tumor)



http://www.toontrack.com/metalguitargod2013.asp#!/entry/626676
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Old 10-18-2013, 03:19 PM   #13
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It still sounds kind of random. Rhythmically it was better (still not 100% accurate - listen to the drums) but the melody was kind of random sounding to me. It sounded like you just played some notes on the fretboard. Was this the sound you were after? Did you know what you were doing when you played it (sound wise) or was it just random noodling? Because to me it sounded pretty much like noodling.

So, did you use your ears when you played it (did you know what it was going to sound like)? Did you know the chords you were playing over? Did you know the key of the song? If yes, then you have a really unique style. If not, you should practice more.

Edit: If the song in the background was a bit louder, it would be easier for me to hear what chords you were playing over. The song either had a really cool harmony or what you played was really weird.
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Old 10-18-2013, 05:07 PM   #14
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Rhythmically it was accurate, I didn't always start on the accented beat if that's what you mean but it wouldn't be any fun if I did that tbh.
Note choice wise you say it sounds random even though this time around in contrast to my first entry I tried to keep it more in check but then again just as the rhythm I can't(refuse to) keep it conservatory because playing the correspondent triads over each of the chords sound boring to me, all the respect to the guys that do that but I just can't.
Theory wise: I know all the modes, corresponding arpeggios but in this case...no I didn't know what chords I was playing over, they are your basic prog metal power chords with added extensions I guess.
When composing it I just came up with pleasant sounding phrases(for my ear) for each of the passing chords, chained it all together and that was that.
Thank you for taking the time to tell me your opinion but it's just one more nail in the "I'm weird and it sounds ok to me" coffin
Oh well.... more pls

Last edited by CRaul87 : 10-18-2013 at 05:08 PM.
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Old 10-18-2013, 05:38 PM   #15
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See the problem is in 'i'm weird and it sounds ok to me'. You can keep convincing yourself that that's how it is or you can admit that you have a lot to yet learn to pay attention to.

Your timing is quite harsh. By harsh I mean off on so many occasions throughout the solo. The first few tremolo notes appear all randomly and you don't pay attention to the accented notes in the backing track.

You're playing over 4/4 right? Why not respect the time signature and show some love to it with your timing? Do you know what's the difference between 4/4 and 2/4? 3/4 and 6/8? If you don't then I highly recommend you check out some tutorials on timing. Don't forget, 'Music is organized noise'... organized.

As for modes and arpeggios. hmmm this is not a modal track so I wouldn't even bother using modes here. Play in a key. I get it you, find 'playing the correspondent triads over each of the chords sound boring' to you but it's a great way to improve your ear and a great place to start from. While it sounds 'boring' to you, it would definitely sound better than what you have going in the video.


Again when you're playing keep listening to the actual backing track instead of rumbling around picking random notes with random accentuation.

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Old 10-18-2013, 06:35 PM   #16
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You don't need to only play chord tones over the track. But you need to play notes that sound good. I agree that only playing consonant notes starts sounding boring after a while. But only playing dissonant notes makes it sound like you have no idea about what you are playing.

Also your solo needs to fit the backing track. You many times want to play similar rhythms as the backing track has. And also play over the chords the backing track has. That's why you have a backing track.

Next time you solo over a track, figure out the chords first. It's good to know what you are playing over.

BTW, if you know arpeggios and scales and stuff, how did you pick which ones to use? Did you use your ears or did you just think "I'm going to play in E phrygian and now I'm going to play a diminished arpeggio here"? Remember that music is all about sound. Even if your fingers know all these cool scales and arpeggios, it doesn't mean you can use them musically.

Also turn up the volume of your backing track. It's very important to hear the chords. I couldn't hear them over your guitar so I didn't hear what you were playing over (other than the drums) but I expected it not to have that strange chords. Maybe give us the name of the song?
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:13 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
Rhythmically it was accurate, I didn't always start on the accented beat if that's what you mean but it wouldn't be any fun if I did that tbh.


You went out of time quite often, it was not accurate, sorry to say.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
Note choice wise you say it sounds random even though this time around in contrast to my first entry I tried to keep it more in check but then again just as the rhythm I can't(refuse to) keep it conservatory because playing the correspondent triads over each of the chords sound boring to me, all the respect to the guys that do that but I just can't.


There wasn't a strong melody. A lot of guitarists fall into the trap of playing slowly and hoping it means more melody, the truth is, you need to have a good melody in order to play melodically. A good melody often has to stay within the constraints of music theory so that it can be memorable, it should move in a certain way, and use range to grip the listener, so you will have to follow the chords. There's playing chromatic notes and playing out of key.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
Theory wise: I know all the modes, corresponding arpeggios but in this case...no I didn't know what chords I was playing over, they are your basic prog metal power chords with added extensions I guess.


But what are the chords? I'm entering this competition, and I can tell you, there are key changes. If you fail to hit those changes, you don't have a hope in hell, and learning those changes will give to a chance to explore your weirder side and start playing melodies that move across keys. You can find the guitar pro tab for this song on this site if you need it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
When composing it I just came up with pleasant sounding phrases(for my ear) for each of the passing chords, chained it all together and that was that.
Thank you for taking the time to tell me your opinion but it's just one more nail in the "I'm weird and it sounds ok to me" coffin


Ah, there's your problem. Where is your solo going? What's come before it and what comes after it? In the backing, when are the dynamics at their highest, when is the tension built and released? How is this done? A solo is not a chain of licks, it needs to flow, yours does not, frankly, it sounds like you've turned your webcam on, played the song, improvised to it once and decided that you were going to hand that in. Think of the prize, is that solo worth 2000 pounds? You need to think honestly, you say a lot of things like 'It's weird and I like it', but that doesn't mean anything. In music, you're being judged, by labels, by listeners, by judges, and by making up excuses to not improve, you will never achieve your potential.

I will go in the opposite direction to everyone else, I think your technique needs improving, your fingers are fast, however, I'm not sure that you'd be able to keep a steady semiquaver rhythm at 191bpm (the tempo of this piece) and play a scale run that flows through the chord changes, for example, and musically, you can't compose a coherent solo that goes through all of those changes and really fits the song. You need to sit down and work on your weaknesses, do your own style by any means, but, make it decent. I don't mean to be rude, but I think you really need to step back and hear how you really sound, you have potential, as does any guitar player, and it'd be a shame if you stopped yourself from progressing.

If you like weird stuff, look at the video below, this guy won a competition by taking a backing track that remained in one key and using chromaticism, it sounds like this is the kind of thing you want to do.

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Old 10-18-2013, 11:12 PM   #18
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A good melody often has to stay within the constraints of music theory so that it can be memorable,


Uh oh... Here we goooo
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Old 10-19-2013, 06:37 AM   #19
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Hello all and thank you for all the feedback.

First of all to the people that think that I am using the whole "I'm weird and it sounds good to me" as an excuse to avoid all the criticism and not improve.-> I AM NOT! really...
I can see how it would be perceived that way though.
That's not to say that I don't have anything more to learn on guitar, far from it... but I am having a really hard time trying to hear my solo as any1 else but myself if you know what I mean.

Regarding this -> to me personally I was really surprised this guy won. No disrespect to the guy cuz he has the chops and I know that he is theory savvy but if I was to criticize his playing as we are doing here for my solo, funny enough I would describe his take just as you have described mine, just random notes that don't make much sense.

Anyway, I will keep on trying to better myself with this backing track even after the contest ends and see if I can get even 1 positive feedback.

P.S. the track is Erised by Periphery
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Old 10-19-2013, 01:00 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CRaul87
Hello all and thank you for all the feedback.

First of all to the people that think that I am using the whole "I'm weird and it sounds good to me" as an excuse to avoid all the criticism and not improve.-> I AM NOT! really...
I can see how it would be perceived that way though.
That's not to say that I don't have anything more to learn on guitar, far from it... but I am having a really hard time trying to hear my solo as any1 else but myself if you know what I mean.

Regarding this -> to me personally I was really surprised this guy won. No disrespect to the guy cuz he has the chops and I know that he is theory savvy but if I was to criticize his playing as we are doing here for my solo, funny enough I would describe his take just as you have described mine, just random notes that don't make much sense.

Anyway, I will keep on trying to better myself with this backing track even after the contest ends and see if I can get even 1 positive feedback.

P.S. the track is Erised by Periphery





I could be wrong, but what I perceive in your solos is a lack of experience with using your ears. It sounds like you're thinking your way through.

Can you play very many solos (and songs) all the way through by memory?

If you can did you learn that music by reading tabs? or by ear?


If your answer is no, (or yes but just with tabs), I would suggest that spending a period of time learning music by ear, and then playing that music by memory would greatly benefit your ability to play and improvise music. Just playing to the backing track over and over on it's own, without that fundamental experience will leave you in pretty much the same place.

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