#1
a song i wrote for a girl who means a lot to me, but always seems just out of reach
suggestions or help would be greatly appreciated. cheers

SMOKE AND MIRRORS

At the edges of my consciousness
The voices rage and whisper
I stand beneath the silver spotlight
Alone to face the shadows
I'm searching for your face in the clouds
For your music on the wind
But the wheels they keep on turning
And the rain keeps driving down

Im walking down a broken pathway
We're a thousand miles apart
The signposts are all facing backwards
And the compass won't point true
The straight lines on the mocking route-map
Say there's so far still to go
And the river keeps on running
And the road keeps winding on

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light

The prince of all that is forgotten
Of visions swirling in the air
He dances all alone on his stage
In an empty theatre
The mask he wears he makes his prison
And no-one, no-one holds the key
And the willows keep on weeping
And the waves keep crashing in

Fairy lights on a black curtain
Flicker once and then go out
A broken boy looks out before him
Reaches out to grab the air
You're like a mirage, ever-fading
While he stumbles in pursiut
And the world it keeps on spinning
And the clock keeps ticking on

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light

Its still a work in progress, obviously. Any comments welcome. Tell me what you think.
Of course i'll be happy to critique anyone who asks.
Last edited by pianoman13 at Sep 2, 2007,
#2
ohh thats good. when i saw the title and thought you ripped off the audition..because they have a song with the same
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#3
that's a very nice song, very strong emotion... it really shows how you feel
i really don't have anything to suggest
your style is very good
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#4
really good song, I really liked it, I don't have anything to suggest besides keep up the good work
#5
you're getting laid, boy.

i like it a lot, but i'm no pro on songwriting so someone else will help you out i'm sure.
#6
I enjoyed reading this piece and I thought the flow was excellent. I like the topic you used. (I personally have used it quite a lot). Now onto the the crit. I think you should alter to opening line about. Especially the two vverbs used. Swirl reminds me of finger painting and I think fighting is too weak of a verb because it's not descriptive enough. Maybe something like "Voices hurricane in my head". Also the "but the wheels keep turning" line needs to be changed completely. It just doesn't fit. I would stick with the weather metaphors that you used in the other lines. I wasn't a big fan of the second stanza, it just seemed kind of cliche to me. At the very least would drop the "route" from "route-map". I thought the chorus was really well written. The next verse about the 'prince was my favorite and I definitely think you could an entire piece on this. The only thing i would change would be the 6th line to "And no one, no one holds the key". I think it gives the line more force. In the "fairy light" stanza, I think the ending should be altered. The two closing lines jsut seem kind of generic to me. In keeping with the metaphors used i would use something like "The show goes on" to end this stanza. Anyways, nice job, man.

Crit mine please\
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#7
ur gunna get f ucked if u play that at a friends sweet 16 ;]]

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#8
dude....that is gorgeous....long....but gorgeous. The chorus is great, i enjoyed that the most. Not sure if i like the "prince" part....some people might take it as you being vain even though it's the prince of all that is forgotten. But if you wanna use that line, i'd change the following line to something like "His crown means nothing to her".

ohh, and i agree with continued use of the weather metaphors, if you can keep each one fresh without sounding forced, it'd work like a charm.
Overall great stuff, i can tell this is from the heart
#9
thanks for your crit man!

I like that song. unfortunately English is not my native language so it's kind of hard to crit a piece like that, but I'll try my best!
I didn't like the rhyming in the first two lines but I think that's just a matter of taste.
in the first two verses it was like watching a movie while I'm reading, so I could imagine this scene and everything that's happening there! I really liked that ^^
also the chorus is very good, I liked the fact, that you repeated the "Smoke and mirrors, Trick of light"-line!
okay, the next two verses are pretty difficult to me, I guess it would take some time untill I really understand them. so when I did, I'll definately crit them!

but so far, it's a really good song I think!
#11
ok.
-broken_bottles, i guess that's fair. it is a little cliche, i'll put my hands up to that.
-cheers, despa, for the point about the first rhyme - thats actually not intentional and i'll sort that out. also, kudos on being able to critique a song in a second language! if uve got any specific question about those latter verses then i'll be happy to help you out.
-themarsvolta, thanks - you raise some good points. i'm taking on board your suggestion about the prince verse.
thanks to everyone for your comments so far. they are all welcome.

also - im having a little difficulty with the music - so far, the chords for the verses are C,D,G,Am,E,C,Em,Am x3
Dm,G,C,G
the chorus im having some trouble with
any suggestions would be great.
feel free to strum away if you're bored and PM me with any ideas
thanks
Last edited by pianoman13 at Sep 2, 2007,
#12
Your images convey that uselessness, the feeling of everything being out of reach, choatic, and such. And even though there were quite a number of cliches in there, as some one said, I think it works in this context. Its love and thats a pretty cliche topic so why not push the boat out and creatively use cliche images? lol aaaanyway. I didn't feel I could manage a full crit on this one, sorry about that, you don't have to if you don't fel I've earned it enough, but I would be greatful if you could take a look at something for me...

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=663845
#13
That's one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard.... If any of my band members could write a song like that I would worship them til their dying day - I have high expectations and you fulfilled all of them!

BUT!!!

The chords, really don't go, imo - you want to have a really powerful progression. If you don't know already, learn what chords go strongest together. Also, I think you should stick to one key, or try to make the key changes a little less... 'strong', if you like - so that they're not that noticeable, if you like. Def Leppard do it great in 'Bringin' on the Heartbreak'. Also, I think you should pick them, and not strum, though I don't know what you're intending on doing anyway =].

Lyrics-wise - awesome song
Music-wise - still needs work imo
#14
Quote by michal23
That's one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard.... If any of my band members could write a song like that I would worship them til their dying day - I have high expectations and you fulfilled all of them!

BUT!!!

The chords, really don't go, imo - you want to have a really powerful progression. If you don't know already, learn what chords go strongest together. Also, I think you should stick to one key, or try to make the key changes a little less... 'strong', if you like - so that they're not that noticeable, if you like. Def Leppard do it great in 'Bringin' on the Heartbreak'. Also, I think you should pick them, and not strum, though I don't know what you're intending on doing anyway =].

Lyrics-wise - awesome song
Music-wise - still needs work imo


first of all - thankyou very much for such high praise. im glad you liked the lyrics so much. it's really great to be given so big a compliment.

also - i agree with you, the music does need some considerable work. to tell you the truth, i'm much more a lyricist than i am a musician. i'm really not that good.

im thinking that, by posting this on a guitar forum, it might come to the attention of some much more accomplished players - so if you are one, could you please give me some advice on progressions etc.? any ideas at all would be great. that goes for everyone - of course i would be happy to credit you with it when i eventually perform the song. cheers
#15
this song brings up strong and very detailed images when i read it. Effective i would say with a simplistic acoustic song much like Into Dust from Mazzy Starr
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#16
SMOKE AND MIRRORS

At the edges of my consciousness
The voices rage and whisper
I stand beneath the silver spotlight
Alone to face the shadows
I'm searching for your face in the clouds
For your music on the wind
But the wheels they keep on turning
And the rain keeps driving down

Good imagery, i can't find a rhythm in it, but I'm sure you can.

Im walking down a broken pathway
We're a thousand miles apart
The signposts are all facing backwards
And the compass won't point true
The straight lines on the mocking route-map
Say there's so far still to go
And the river keeps on running
And the road keeps winding on

Brilliant first part. You're quite good as describing a scene, yet still alluding the reader as to what's actually happening.

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light

Very good, not as straightforward as the verses, but i like the idea more. The repetition works well.

The prince of all that is forgotten
Of visions swirling in the air
He dances all alone on his stage
In an empty theatre
The mask he wears he makes his prison
And no-one, no-one holds the key
And the willows keep on weeping
And the waves keep crashing in

Some lines are wonderful some are sub-par. "The mask he wears he makes his prison," I'm one to like things that don't make sense, but that doesn't even seem correct. I think.

Fairy lights on a black curtain
Flicker once and then go out
A broken boy looks out before him
Reaches out to grab the air
You're like a mirage, ever-fading
While he stumbles in pursiut
And the world it keeps on spinning
And the clock keeps ticking on

Not as good as the rest, perhaps the intense imagery you present gets old? I did like how this seems to make less sense than the rest. You follow David Byrne's lessons to a T.

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light

I like the ideas and devices used to make this far more than i like the dark feeling that this piece has, even so, it's just a stylistic preference. Nice job, write more.
#17
I usually don't really like songs that don't rhyme much, but this was amazing. This was a truly beautiful peace. Nice job dude. Seriously. 8 or 9/10. I really liked "I stand beneath the silver spotlight / alone to face the shadows" and "A broken boy looks out before him / reaches out to grab the air" Really good peice dude.

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#18
Quote by pianoman13
a song i wrote for a girl who means a lot to me, but always seems just out of reach
suggestions or help would be greatly appreciated. cheers

SMOKE AND MIRRORS

At the edges of my consciousnessBad start for a lyrical crit. I've seen this a million times. If you recognize it for what it is, that's a start, but you should really look to express yourself in a unique way.
The voices rage and whisper
I stand beneath the silver spotlight
Alone to face the shadows
I'm searching for your face in the clouds
For your music on the wind
But the wheels they keep on turning
And the rain keeps driving down
Its cliche...but there's some hope. The last little bit is pretty good, but there's a ton of cliches here...and its really turning me off to be honest. I mean, the girl would love this, and most people would, but when you're asking to get this that's what you're gonna get. Don't feel too bad.


Im walking down a broken pathway
We're a thousand miles apart
The signposts are all facing backwards
And the compass won't point true
The straight lines on the mocking route-map
Say there's so far still to go
And the river keeps on running
And the road keeps winding on
Again...Boulevard of Broken dreams cliche... last two lines are pretty good, they don't ooze of cliche. I just think you should go and try to write something a little more personal and a little less pop.

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
Alright! There we go. Still stuff I've seen before, but you put your own spin on this. This is something you can build off of. I can appreciate this.
The prince of all that is forgotten
Of visions swirling in the air
He dances all alone on his stage
In an empty theatre
The mask he wears he makes his prison
And no-one, no-one holds the key
And the willows keep on weeping
And the waves keep crashing in
Oooh a grammatical crit...sweet. The air/theatre rhyme doesn't work, I imagine you know this...i know you wanted it to, but it didn't. Well they don't have to rhyme so I would rephrase the second line...take out air, change it around....then it won't have that failed rhyme. No rhyme is better than a sucky one. Explain to me how this verse adds to the piece? It doesn't, as far as I see. Flowery filler that's full of nothing. I would delete it.
Fairy lights on a black curtain
Flicker once and then go out
A broken boy looks out before him
Reaches out to grab the air
You're like a mirage, ever-fading
While he stumbles in pursiut
And the world it keeps on spinning
And the clock keeps ticking on

But every time i close my eyes i can't help smiling
At the way you shimmer into sight
I know its only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
But still i have to force my eyes to open
To give up the angel in my night
Even though it's only an illusion
Smoke and mirrors
Trick of light
Yeah. Like I said this is pretty good.

Its still a work in progress, obviously. Any comments welcome. Tell me what you think.
Of course i'll be happy to critique anyone who asks.



It is what it is, and I know you understand that. Going on this forum, its going to be loved by some, and ripped by others. I tried to give you the best criticism that I can to help you build a great piece. I think you took alot of cliches and tried to build something that was really impressive, and alot of people love that kind of music. I think you could do alot better if you thought up your own unique ways to exhibit your emotions in a simpler and more direct way, while maintaining a sense of indivualism, and personality to your piece. What I feel its lacking now is personality.

Sorry for tearing your piece up, I'm sure it'll impress the girl, but you'll like it more if you write it in your own way. Good luck.

If you want to crit something of mine, I'd appreciate a crit on Guitar and Handcuffs or I don't Love You Anymore...they're in my sig.

Peace dude.
#20
It's good, i think the repetition of "Smoke and mirrors, trick of light" in the chorus was a little much, it's a great line when used the first time but then it becomes... overused, but apart from that, well done, I think that it sounds slightly bright eyes-ish at times, but your lack of rhyming in the verses annoyed me slightly, not neccessarily because it was bad but because you had such a set rhythm the rhyme should've been there, or so it seemed.

Anywya, well done
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#21
Quote by pianoman13
first of all - thankyou very much for such high praise. im glad you liked the lyrics so much. it's really great to be given so big a compliment.

also - i agree with you, the music does need some considerable work. to tell you the truth, i'm much more a lyricist than i am a musician. i'm really not that good.

im thinking that, by posting this on a guitar forum, it might come to the attention of some much more accomplished players - so if you are one, could you please give me some advice on progressions etc.? any ideas at all would be great. that goes for everyone - of course i would be happy to credit you with it when i eventually perform the song. cheers


I personally would do a IV - ii - V - I progression, and kind of add little details like maj7s, sus4s, sus2s, add9s where they sound good. GUns N Roses do this in November rain, and it is the strongest sounding progression I've heard by far. If you check out the acoustic tab for November Rain (it's somewhere on this site) you will get a good idea of what you might want to try and recreate, but not necessarily copy =].