I was only writing instrumental the past months and I finally decided to write a normal song again with vocals.

It has only 1 solo section and is very riff oriented with a lot of groove.
I started and finished this piece today ('cept for the intro) so its strucutre is a bit rough,
If you see any flaws there, point it out.

I plan to record this song when I have some time to spare, if anybody it interested in recording bass or vocals (no lyrics yet), that would be cool.

C4C and all.

it also is mixed for RSE, midi will mess everything up so I put an mp3 on my profile, as usual.


edit: I'll also try to use my wah pedal and put some melodies and licks in there as soon as I have a structure for the vocals.
I'll also overdub some things wth octaves and stuff later on in the song.
Mr Five RSE.gp5
Mr Five RSE.gp4
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Last edited by thorbor at May 26, 2010,
Dude, I literally wish my band could sound like this but, slightly more aggressive.

Sorry it took so long. I'm an EPIC procrastinator.

I'm not sure if you were looking for this but I got kinda a Old School Hard Rock/Metal vibe from it, but with a Protest the Hero (at a slower tempo + jazzier phrasing) input.

Pretty unique riff style, no complaints, cant pin it to a genre which is great. Then again, i wouldve liked it to be more "in your face" so to speak. Maybe a rhythm guitar would fit. If it was a specific choice to leave it out thats fine too. I'm just nitpicking

Break + Pre Verse
One thing I've noticed about your songs is that youre REALLY good at writing drum tracks really driving and groovy. Reminds me of Chad Smith on a metal binge. It didnt overpower the riff tho. Fit in really nicely

To be honest, didnt really like it. It sounds anthemic, but for some reason it just didnt register with me. I dont know why (probably cuz im not too bright).

Break 2:
DRUMS. Sounds like a trivium drum break. Loved it haha

LOVED the presolo. You obviously know how to use dissonance correctly (unlike me haha) Kinda reminds me of a Cynic solo. The solo was like a demon groove haha. I dont really know how to describe it, but its just phrased perfectly. Nice Work.

Sounds like a Protest the Hero riff. Love protest the hero. And it proves that you dont need a big bang to finish a song off sucessfully.

Overall Id give it an 9/10 just cuz i didnt particularly enjoy the chorus, but it was still a really good listen. Thanks for the crit on my piece (I'll try to work on finishing it up. I took your advice and cut out everything after bar 52).
Hey champ! Sorry for the long delay, but I'm finally able to get onto the PM you sent me As always, I'll try to give as much input as I can, but if there's anything at all you're personally concerned about with this one, please feel free to let me know, and I'll lock-in and pass on a more detailed crit for those particulars.

Without further ado!...

Intro Riff A - Solid starter to the piece, and totally in your groovy-rock style - another thorbor classic! My only concern is staccato notes in bars 3 and 5, (the E and D on the A string), which recur in a few other parts. I've tried extending them to full eighths, and adding more percussive muted notes to imply a slightly different feel. I'll put a GP at the bottom of this post.

Intro Riff B - Nice variation! It reminds me a lot of Mr Bungle's earlier work, particularly with the bass fills and chromatic guitar chords. For tension's sake, I've put a 2/4 bar that repeat the second half of bar 15 (it's very rough, but the idea's there - hopefully!).
Overall, this intro section is a solid start to the piece, and gives an indicator of what's to follow, whilst allowing the rest of the piece to progress accordingly...

Break 1 - ... which it definitely does! The good ol' fashioned crescendo works to great effect here, but I feel that the proceeding bar could have a little more tension to it, which would make the next riff more powerful and musically dynamic.

Pre Verse - And as for the riff itself; it tricked me! Very clever - not to mention effective - use of syncopation, and I'm loving the mutes in between notes.

Verse 1 - The dynamic contrast here serves the whole piece well, and the drumming - very well done, as always! Just as a suggestion, I changed the timing of the last two notes in bar 29 to maintain to syncopated feel, and that's just a suggestion - the grooves are great here.
Also, maybe the crescendo to the chorus could be exaggerated just a inch? The cymbal in the background could be brought up just that little bit to make the transition smoother.

Chorus - No complaints here - the groove's solid, and there's room for the song to breathe (in case of vocals or additional melodies). Regardless, it's contrasts like this that serve pieces very well. Maybe one of the guitar's - or the bass - could stray from the other though, and play in another register, or added some more texture in another way (mid register palm-mutes based on arpeggios and chord tones, unison bends, or even a higher register bass melody).
Of course, these ideas could be implemented later, but to me personally - and this is very subjective - the doubled guitars and the bass following along may start to lose its effectiveness. If you do go along with an idea like this, it could very well allow for the proceeding verse/pre chorus sections to have more of a contrasted sound - going back to doubling after the more textured chorus. Just suggestions, though!

Intro Riff - No complaints here, so let's get right on to...

Verse 2 - It's here again that I could see some textural contrasts happening, if it's something you'd be interested in. While one guitar plays the rhythm along with the bass, the other could have its volume rolled down a little (really, as a faint background effect), and provide some more ethereal, gradual bends and legato effects (not necessarily trills or flashy playing, but just smoother, undertone sounds).
''The Girls of Porn'' by Mr Bungle uses similar ideas at the 2:26 mark - and actually, that whole album uses funky grooves and brass in some really cool ways - check it out!

Break 2 - WOW at the bass line! It's really cool that the bass is having more of a chance to shine, and the Pre-Solo sections grooves are killer; those chromatic tones just add so much colour, and bring in a great tonal contrast. It's almost sounding like something by Testament

Pre Solo - As for the leads happening here, I really have to commend you on how realistically you write out your bends and phrasing; there's such a human quality there. The harmonies are great too, and really bring a whole new level of life into this piece - great contrast!

Solo - The mixing's spot-on here, and your phrasing is brilliant. I'll be honest in saying I'm usually not one to enjoy this sort of solo work - or even solos in general! - so it was a great surprise to hear something so effective, and with such a ''jam-like'' quality. the accidentals in bar 75 sound brilliant and act as great colours, and the bending further on is great - I'm loving how they overlap bars. Finally, the lead at bar 85 is awesome

Intro Riff build-up - The lead into here reminds me so much of the jam-section in ''Swim To The Moon'' by Between The Buried And Me. There's such a great feel here with the simplistic drums and gradual addition of instruments. Definitely one of my favourite sections.

M-23 and Pre Verse - By this point, all of the grooves have really settled in, and the piece is just genuinely something really fun and enjoyable to listen to.

Verse 3 - Again, the grooves are solid by the point, but (and I'm probably just being really picky after listening o too much prog lately ) I could really imagine a more independent bass line here; nothing extravagant, but something that doesn't follow the guitar perfectly, and extends and expands on the rhythm by implying new chords and voicings.

Chorus 2 - Now THIS is where I could really imagine those subtle guitar effects I mentioned in the earlier chorus section; something to really climax and continue with the harmonic ideas you brought about earlier.
Unison bends seem the best bet if you go down this route, as they can really bring a lot to texture (not to mention that the dissonance and gradual relief of that with this technique can create some wicked textural effects), but even having two lead guitar tracks playing counter melodies could be something worth considering.

Outro - So Mr Bungle it's not funny I really recommend listening to them some time! It's a great way to end the piece; the riff just sounds somewhat quirky and different from the rest of the song, whilst still summing up the song and acting as a sort of cumulation of all the riffs; very cool!

Overall, the piece is solid, and my only concerns are really the doubling of guitars for a lot of the piece, and maybe adding a little more subtle texture and melodies in some repeated sections. Again, if there's anything in particular you'd like me to have a crack at, please feel free to let me know, and sorry again for the late crit I hope this helps!

Mr Five RSEj.gp5
Mr Five RSEj.gp4
Last edited by juckfush at May 26, 2010,
i really like the bass in the intro, gives it the kind of funky feel, the guitar also harmonizes well with it which makes it sound awesome.
the crescendo at the break sounds awesome, you shoulda made it last slighty longer i thought.
i aint to keen on the 1st verse because its slightly to heavy, i liked the chorus though, and then going back into the intro riff.
i really like the bass at the verse 2, as its became the main instrument.
at the solo i thought there was to much going on, as in bass and drums wise and not enough emphasis on the guitar, although it did still sound cooooool.
then back to the intro riff again, not much to comment on it, sounds awesome
you should of put a little more variety although it does work and sounds cool, i really like the chorus also very catchy, the outro works very well and finishes the song very nice, overall 8/10, was a really nice song and would like to hear moreee

C4C if you dont mind -- https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1316847
Here's my thoughts listening to the song.

Intro Riff
The very first thing that jumps out at me is the seemingly out of place C# in measure 2. With the addition of the C# that puts you in B minor, but then in measure 7 you have a Bb, acting like a b5, which says E minor to me.

That being said, I do like the sound of the C#, in this case the 2nd of the key, and I think that harmonic motion should be utilized a little bit more in the song, rather than modulating to the usual old E minor that all the funk-rock songs use. Consider substituting some C#'s for C's later in the song, or reworking riffs to fit into the key of Bm, just because it's more interesting and would set your song apart from hundreds of others I've heard in a similar vein, including my own songs.

Through this section, I did enjoy some of the bass fills. The one in measure 16, however, feels odd towards the end. I would say keep the first half of the measure and go for regular rhythm in the second half, climbing down the scale to the chord at bar 17.


Liked the riff. I especially liked the use of accents on the not-so-obvious beats, like the chord stab on the up of beat 1 and the start of the single-note run on the up of beat 2.

I do have one suggestion, however. In measure 22, the second measure of the riff, try changing the B, C, B at the beginning of the single note run to A#, B, A#, one half step down. It stays within the key and adds a certain movement to the riff that keeps it fresh. But, that may just be me.


Ok, here's the meat of the song. This, to me, is one of the strongest riffs in the song, as it captures what funk-rock should really focus on. The style is permeated by simple harmonies and lots and lots of power chords. So to make it interesting, complex and interesting rhythms have to be used. This riff does just that.

The first measure of the riff is excellent, and the stuttering drum line really makes it groove.

One minor suggestion again, in measure 26, second measure of the riff, I would move the note E on the down of beat 2 forward one 16th note, so it ends on the upbeat.


Ah, the chorus. Yours does pretty much what is expected of a chorus, but without vocals leaves me a little underwhelmed. I think here would be a great time to use some bigger chords. 3rds give the section some more melodic motion, and minor and dominant 7ths give a funkier, bluesy tinge.

And now the issue I saw coming. Because the chorus is in A minor, and the intro riff is in B minor the leap between the two of them isn't really believable. Had you not used the F chord in the chorus it might have worked, since E and B are consecutive in the circle of fifths, but the jump seems a little jarring. I would work on a transition riff, run, or something to announce the melodic change before returning to the intro.

Break 2

The first four measures here (57-60) seem noodley. By that I mean that the part lacks clear focus or direction, and feels throwaway. I would axe those 4 measures and get to the meat of the section, which starts at measure 61.

Now, this next section of Break 2 is more like it. It makes me think of what Tool might sound like in 4/4. I would actually draw out the build a little bit more, maybe have one of the electric guitars play along with the bass part eventually. Here's why.

Your solo section, although wandering a bit here and there, looks primarily to be in E minor once again. Your bass riff has D#, E, and F in it, all back to back. Only one of these is in E minor, the other two clash pretty severely. Here's my suggestion, build the riff up until you're satisfied its run its course, then drop into the straight chord progression under that bass riff. The pre-solo will clash a lot less and likely sound much better.


Your solo is a pretty standard E minor/pentatonic solo. It does its job well. However, I am going to gripe about the notes over beat 3 of measure 74. Again, we have D#, E, and F over an E minor chord progression. Two notes don't belong. Everything else works.

Intro Riff Buildup

I'm going to reiterate what I said before. Part at measure 81 feels throwaway, so I would axe it and go right to the buildup section.

What I do like about the buildup is that it is an appropriate length. Too many composer makes buildups far too short, or far too long and either cheapen a riff or smother a riff. Yours feels like the perfect length.

One minor gripe, when the riff is finished building up and comes back in, it should explode a little bit more. Try the open hi hat or crash on the drums, instead of the ride. The ride feels a little weak.

I stand by the same statement for the outro. The drums feel like they don't do the energy of the section justice. I would say definitely use the crash here, so you can end the song with a bang, instead of just fizzling.

Well, there's my critique. It sounds a little harsh, but I'm being so picky because I genuinely like the song and think it has a lot of potential. To me the standout section is still that first intro riff. I say reuse that idea within the rest of the song, use that C# and use a key so often neglected in this style. Be a maverick!

Mind giving my new piece a look? It's actually, I believe, a good example of what I mean when I say use the key of B minor in this style.
The Commonwealth