hey guys, this is my final and title track from my debut solo album. the song is called "Community Supervision" and its on my UG profile. i played all the bass (my main instrument), guitar, and keyboard tracks and programed the drums. for those of you who have heard my earlier songs ive posted, i addressed some of the problems i was having and i think this one showcases my strongest writing and performances to date.

i would greatly appreciate any kind of feedback so i could work on it for the next song. as always, ill gladly return the C4C, preferably rock or metal recordings
My first thoughts were "is this going to warrant it's almost 8 minute length"

The intro was kinda wasted really. I thought there could of been some cool transition instead of the acoustic just stopping.

First thing that struck me when the rest of the band came in was the mix. It starts off sounding like you're trying to go for a proper old style prog sound, like King Crimson or similar with a big round bass sound and to a degree you pulled it off. However then what appeared to be a hardcore style breakdown appeared and I got confused?

Either way the mix is far TOO bass heavy. In your attempts to have an audible bass, which this songs NEEDS by the way because the bass lines in this are awesome, the mix has become muddy. There are ways to have a loud bass without it over powering the mix (though then again these headphones are a little bass heavy, so it could just be me).

My (personal) initial problem with the intro reoccurs at certain points through out the song. At times it feels like a random collection of riffs without any real cohesion. I guess this is the issue with instrumentals and is something that everyone struggles with. I would say more re-occurring themes would be cool (though they might still appear I'm typing as I listen), but at the same time that might remove the whole point of the progressiveness (while I'm a big prog fan the stuff I listen to normally has vocals, King Crimson, Tool, BTBAM, etc)

The aforementioned mixing issue really becomes an issue at around the 6 minute mark, lots of really cool stuff going on, but I just can't hear the complexities because of that over powering bass!

As for the running time? Did it need to be around 8 minutes? Well yes and no. The over powering bass robs some of the subtleties that could of kept it interesting for that time, but I can't tell because I can't hear them, if you see what I mean. Also instrumentals are the hardest thing in music (in my opinion) to keep interesting. It can very easily turn in to a big block of stuff happening that you can't latch on to, don't for one minute think I'm saying you need to turn your prog epic into a catchy pop song, because that's not what I mean. Maybe fixing the bass mix would help add some transparency to the mix?

Despite all my critiques (I try and be as in-depth as possible but it is still all just my opinion) I do like this. Whilst I feel it drags on a little bit I can see the good song writing, especially in the bass parts. I think a remix could work wonders for this track.

C4C? https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1533162
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Last edited by ChemicalFire at Apr 16, 2012,
song starts off really well and I love the chord progressions you've used but it could've done with a better transition into the next heavy part.
After you get used to the drum sound it's ok but then you notice that the kick drum is so low and recorded so loud, that it distorts.
The distorted guitar sound needs a lot of work. Because of how much gain/distortion it has, it loses clarity, but who ever is playing it has a lot of talent and a good it for what sounds good.
My favorite part by far is around 3 minutes on wards when it all breaks down. The clean guitar is amazing and reminds me a lot of Devin Townsend (a genius) and again when the acoustic comes in it adds even more depth to the song, but it's just a shame when the heavy guitar comes in around 6 minutes.
Overall the song has a lot of potential and you'll all have LOADS of talent and obviously no what you're doing (the bass guitar parts are spotless throughout by the way!)
thanks for the comments everyone! to address some points:

archdukeoftops: yes im a bass player (switched from guitar). i really only play the guitar when i record my songs (i record as i write), thats why the playing is subpar compared to the bass.

chemical fire: the acoustic part was the first riff i wrote for the song, and it was the basis for some of the melodies later in the song. in retrospect, i kinda agree its a bit misplaced in the song. the breakdown stuff was used as an easy transition fix. i mixed the bass louder cause i'm always told by non-musician people that they cant hear the bass lines, so i had to fix that. also, i wanted to show off my bass playing more on this song. im not too familiar with EQing so i still got some learning to do with that, especially how to do it with several instruments.

as for the writing, i wasnt really planning on it going the prog rock route since thats my bread and butter and i wanted to experiment more. i wanted it to go more into the tech-death metal direction since thats my 2nd favorite style, but for some reason my writing never goes the direction i planned, so i just go with it. also, i suck at writing death metal for guitar, and it comes out more groove oriented. this song had the most reoccurring themes but it gets hard to tell because theyre somewhat modified everytime and theyre played on different instruments. i write as i record, so thats why my songs tend to sound like a collection of riffs, and its something im always trying to improve

hobguk: the guitar tone is kinda shitty since im recording through the line6 toneport and gearbox software. also, i dont play guitar very often so part of the problem is my playing. i'm gonna do a complete tone overhaul on the guitar and bass tones next song.

thanks again guys, i'll leave some crits on your songs as well.
Thanks for the crit on mine, overall I was impressed by your song. The best aspects (mostly previously said) were the creative bass lines and the synth ambience that was added in the slower parts which gave them a smoother feel which was nice to listen to. The overall mix could use some work as I felt the bass swamped the mix unnecessarily at times, and it seemed like all the other tracks were sidelined by it. The clean guitar tone was fine though the dirty one did sound a bit thin - I would recommend backing off the gain and dual- or quad-tracking the guitar parts.
Overall, a pretty good composition!

If you have the time feel free to crit another of my songs:
Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Blackstar HT-20 Studio Combo
Digitech RP500, Dunlop Crybaby, Korg Pitchblack

Check out the Soundcloud of my band CENTURION - based in South London and currently looking for a singer + bassist!
Last edited by heresben at Apr 17, 2012,