This is my first attempt at writing a song. Please bear with me as it's pretty awful. I am interested in general comments but also any ideas on how to make the intro and ending better because I am not satisfied with that.

Also I am wondering if the drums are too loud.

Edit: File was compressed incorrectly
Finding the Answer.zip
Last edited by Disgruntled Gnu at Jul 14, 2009,
The intro is nice, really reminds me of The Allman Brothers... And I like the Drum stuff. Altogether really nice. Crit mine? Can't be arsed to give a link sorry...
I'm going to post bit by bit and edit the post so that you can read what I've already written as I'm writing.


Problem 1: The lead guitar melody is... well... not that melodic.
Problem 1a: The intro seems very random.
Advice: Try a simpler approach, it's an intro after all. You don't need to have notes everywhere. You can insert longer notes here and there. Plus, there don't always have to be 2 notes at a time. You can try humming or whistling something improvised over the bass and rhythm tracks and then finding the notes for that.

Problem 1b: The lead guitar doesn't go that well with the bass and the rhythm guitar.
Advice: Think of the chord you're in. Look at bar 9, for instance. The bass and the rhythm guitar are playing an F major chord but the lead is playing a G power chord. It sounds awfully dissonant. Try to base yourself in the notes of the chord that's being played. Plus, although there's nothing wrong with what you're doing in the bass, you might have to stick to the root notes sometimes. For instance, in bar 2, it might work better if you play F instead of A.

Problem 2: The fact that it has 9 bars makes it weird for the listener, who doesn't really understand what the hell is going on when verse 1 kicks in.
Advice: Stuff in music tends to come in 4-packs, as I'm pretty sure you know, judging by the rest of the song. Simply eliminate one bar (I suggest bar 9) and you'll get 8 bars.

General appreciation: It's the worst part of the song and it doesn't really match the rest.
General advice: It was the first thing you did, wasn't it? When you've finished the song or have a pretty solid part, you might want to rearrange the intro. Starting it over, bearing in mind the advice I gave you, is also a good option.


Good stuff about it: The hammer-on/pull-off parts were a great idea. The bass does a good job supporting the lead. The bar that leads to the bridge type thing is ok.

Problem 1: It seems to come out from nowhere.
Advice: Notice that the note before each bar in the verse leads onto the bar. So just change the last note in the intro to be the same as the first note in the first bar of the verse. (NOTE: THIS MIGHT NOT WORK. I haven't actually tried it, it's just an idea. If it doesn't work, leave it as it was.)

Problem 2: The rhythm guitar, despite not sounding bad, is going kind of crazy there.
Advice: You seem to be seeing the rhythm guitar and the bass as totally independent things. On the contrary, they have to "agree" with each other. I'd suggest playing the power chords that correspond to the notes being played on the bass.

Problem 3: The last bend doesn't sound good.
Advice: Well... replace it by something else.

Other stuff: If you're thinking of ever putting vocals in there, don't sing during the hammer-on/pull-off parts. By the way, some advice for the future: you should start thinking about the voice WHILE you make the song, not AFTER. (this actually took me some years to realize)
Last edited by sickman411 at Jul 14, 2009,
Thanks for all the advice sickman411. I went over the intro and changed it a bit rhythmically from measures 1-4 and then redid measures 5-9 to create more of a sense of progression. I think the transition into the verse has gotten better but I had to keep the ninth measure in to make the transition worse.

I have changed a few parts so that the chords make more sense. Though I will try keeping the bass in the root in the future, for this song I think I will keep it since I had an established pattern for how the pitch of the bass changed throughout the song (going to the note 2 steps higher on the scale) and I would have to change a lot of it in order for it to make sense.

All together I think I have improved the intro quite a bit even though I didn't make that many changes to it. I will consider more of that advice in future songs.

Edit: I also just changed a part of the solo which was tabbed in a way that was horrendously inefficient to play.
Last edited by Disgruntled Gnu at Jul 14, 2009,
Hey, read the new stuff I've edited into the other post.
I really have to go to bed now (2:30 a.m. over here and I have stuff to do tomorrow morning) but I promise I'll look into the bridge type thing, the solo and the ending tomorrow. Stay tuned!
I'm glad I helped and I hope to keep helping!
In response to some of the stuff you added I changed the intro a bit again. Measure nine now has a chord for only one beat and then the beginning of the verse (the F-G-F part) at quarter notes.

The rhythm guitar follows a chord progression mimicking the bass. It still goes by eights to it is technically slightly out of time with the bass, but the notes the bass changes to are diatonic (correct term?) to the notes the rhythm guitar is playing anyway.

Please pay no mind to my butchering of the word "rhythm" either...

The second bend is now a "pre-bend and release" style bend instead of a "really exaggerated vibrato" kind of bend.

After you finish with your critique and I have finished editing I will post another version. For now I won't as I think some major changes will have to be made to the "bridge-type thing" which is quite a mess.
Quote by Disgruntled Gnu
The rhythm guitar follows a chord progression mimicking the bass. It still goes by eights to it is technically slightly out of time with the bass, but the notes the bass changes to are diatonic (correct term?) to the notes the rhythm guitar is playing anyway.

That's not the correct term actually. You just say "it's the same note". Simple, huh? I guess you could say that "it's consonant" but for something to be consonant it doesn't need to be playing the same root.



Good stuff: The bass is great. All the instuments work really good together in bars 23 and 24. I like the change in dynamics in those two bars as well. As both guitars are playing chords, vocals could easily fit in if you want to

Problem: There's a kind of crappy repetitive melody going on there.
Advice: The rhythm and lead guitar are, once again, playing different chords. Look into that, not forgetting to take the bass into consideration. If you're considering vocals, it'll get less repetitive. Look for a different drum rhythm (except for bars 23 and 24, in which the drums actually turned out great!), the one in there kind of accentuates the repetitiveness.


If you're into shred, it's ok. If not...

The first bar is good for a start but then you just keep shooting notes and it gets kind of boring. Remember the advice I gave you for the intro regarding melodies? It's pretty much the same thing. System Of A Down/Scars On Broadway guitarist Daron Malakian once said: "I like to write solos that I can hum." Personally, I think that's pretty much it. A solo is, after all, a melody, just like vocals are. I have, many times, written solos by humming them and vocal lines by soloing.

As for the ending, it's perfectly acceptable.

In general:

The drums are great, overall. The bass was well written too. Most of the problems are related to the interaction between the instruments. You can't think about each of them alone (except when you're starting, of course). You might as well look into the transitions between parts.

Hope I helped.
Last edited by sickman411 at Jul 15, 2009,
Update: I have made major changes to the bridge and it is much improved. There are a few sections of the solo that I agree I should change to something more subtle and mellow. I may extend the solo a bit as a result. I will post the "finished" version of the song in an edit of the this post when I finish it later tonight.

Edit: Final Version Attached
Finding the Answer_1.zip
Last edited by Disgruntled Gnu at Jul 16, 2009,