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Snow Waltz Snow Waltz

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

Good melody

You have a good ear for melody. I do agree with skyood, however, that the left hand isn't as good as it could be. However, I don't think you need to get rid of the standard 'oom-pah-pah' figure in the bass that is so common to waltzes. You simply need to re-harmonize the piece so that in the left hand, the first note of every measure forms a clear melody. Use inverted chords and change the harmony where you have to in order to make a memorable *and singable* bass line. Try to make this melody go in the opposite direction of your right hand as often as possible.

If you do this your music will sound very interesting and 'full' (not to mention impressive). You will have a good melody in your right hand, a countermelody in the bassline (beat 1 of every measure) and a chordal accompaniment (beats two and three of every measure).

Good luck.


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Piano Trio in C# Minor Piano Trio in C# Minor

Rated 5 / 5 stars

The Newgrounds community is petty.

If you are wondering why you have been 0'd it is because you are a perceived 'threat' to the talentless hacks who spam this section with their super amateur, prefabricated music (most of which sounds exactly the same)/rant

This is wonderfully creative and fun to listen to. You have real talent for this, I think. If we were making unfair comparisons to 'greats' like Shostakovich (random example) I'd give you perhaps a 6. But compared to most of the music on newgrounds (and much of it is fantastic) and really, most music in general, I have no choice but to give you a 10. Great job.

If you want criticism, the fact that you spent just three days on this is a little disheartening. If you spent time editing this it may be possible to improve it. I always write/edit music with the philosophy that 'Perfection is not achieved when there is nothing left to add but when there is nothing left to take away'. If you agree with this, consider revising this. I cannot find anything I do not like about it, however.

Again, fantastic job. Keep writing music and don't let the petty 0 voters get you down!


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NickPerrin responds:

Thanks for the review. I'm glad you enjoyed it.
It was on a deadline (now added this fact to the description box!), thus the limited time spent making it. Otherwise it would absolutely have been a longer and more thought-out process. I definitely agree that taking more time would improve the final product, and having more time would have been great! Of course, now, I can edit it if I like, and may just do so (and add additional movements).
Cheers!


Minimal music (piano & violin) Minimal music (piano & violin)

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Pretty good but it doesn't feel finished.

Your "ending" sounds more like the beginning of a new section rather than the ending of a song. At least, thats how I felt when I heard it.



Blank Stare (RD2010)- Japillow Blank Stare (RD2010)- Japillow

Rated 3.5 / 5 stars

Good job capturing the emotion of lifeless objects

First of all, you did a fantastic job at capturing those subtle emotions one might feel if they find something intricate/interesting/beautiful stored away, alone in the dark.

*After* reading the description, when the music starts I envision the following:
The cello/synth string notes with the bass drum at the very beginning represents light flooding a dark room after a nameless individual opens the door. The jubilant, springy character of the strings at this point suggests not only light, but a personification of the once lifeless objects metaphorically revived by the light. The objects in this room are happy to be seen.

The music progresses by repeating this repetitive melody while 'layering' new instruments/rhythms/and melodies on top of it. This helps to elaborate the initial musical idea. To me, all of the things you add to your initial motif suggest that this is a room full of many miscellaneous things. Perhaps it is a storage shed, a workshop or a garage. As the texture grows by layering, it's like the listener is walking deeper into the room and seeing more random items.

The repetitive element of this music works for me because of these images. It might be possible to add more variation, especially harmonic variation. But beware too much variation. Music that is not repetitive at all is confusing.

What you do at... 1:34 is great. That change finally gets us away from that repetitive beat from the beginning. To me, there is a sense of sadness, as if the listener is considering leaving the room and the 'stuff' inside will have to disapear into darkness once more, which they don't want.
The listener however, is not especially excited to be in this room (this room is closer to a normal garage full of personal belongings than some thing fascinating/colorful like an ornate tomb. )

However, curiosity prevails and the listener stays in the room for a while longer to snoop around and see what random stuff is contained therein.
Because the listener is not in an ornate or fantastical room, it is okay to have the music repeat with the exact same character as the beginning, so I don't suggest changing the ending much.

**********

My biggest criticism is the repetition in this music. The same motif drones for a minute and a half in the beginning before anything changes. However, you did manage to make good use of your ensemble and make that repetition very colorful.
But when you finally do change out that repetition for new ideas (at 1:34), you don't develop the idea long enough. My basic instinct says it should be at least twice as long, and build into the repeat more gradually than it does. You need to determine the exact length yourself to get the right balance in your piece, but I definitely think that 'section' is too short.

Also, this was fantastic ending with a fadeout! It works perfectly. The listener leaves the room at a slow, walking pace, closing the door and leaving everything in darkness. The reality of all of the 'stuff' in the room fades into a memory and is soon forgotten.

...But instead you chose to fade into an actual ending. Not only that, the ending you did fade into was incredibly unsatisfying. Irritating, even. I suggest you ditch that ending and make the music just fade into silence.


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Japillow responds:

Wow, thanks for leaving such a detailed review! I love that my music was able to create such vivid scenery for you! And yes, I know that it's very repetitive...but the problem is that any new melodies I've thought of for this just seem...too complex for the atmosphere of this song. Your review has definitely inspired me to try to perfect this song. Your idea for the ending is definitely going to be used.

What you said about the listener being amused at first, then getting bored, and then being drawn back is sort of exactly what I was going for. Once again, I thank you for this excellent review.


Virtual Fugue Virtual Fugue

Rated 1.5 / 5 stars

How is this a fugue?

I am not hearing fugal form in this piece at all. I do not hear a subject entering in all of the voices in succession. I don't even hear anything that could be recognized as a definite subject. This sounds like you just through-composed a melody with some harmony. Forgive me if this is just going over my head or something (Bachs fugues often do, but I can at least recognize them as a fugue), but it seems like you do not know what you are doing.

Fugues work like this: A main melody (called the subject) begins the piece. After this, the subject is stated again in another voice, but transposed to the dominant key, while the other voice continues to play a contrapuntal line that accompanies the melody. After this, the subject enters yet again, in another voice, often in the tonic key. This continues until every voice has stated the subject one time. This is called the 'exposition' (it is called that because it 'exposes' the material that makes up the fugue). At this point, a new section called the 'development' begins. This section is a free-for-all. You can do whatever you want, so long as you are playing with the subject (the main melody of the fugue). You can play the subject backwards, you can play it upside down, you can play it in other keys, you can make it longer, shorter, you can remove notes or add them, or any combination that you want! The only 'rules' in the development are the rules of good taste (and that the subject constantly reoccurs in one way or another). When thi section finishes, you can add a new exposition, a new development, or you can simply finish the piece. It's up to your imagination at this point. Just don't stop playing the subject. That's the only rule. If you break that rule it is not a fugue. It might be a good piece of music, but it is not a fugue.

It should be noted that the 'goal' of a fugue is to repeat a melody as many times as possible without ever repeating it exactly the same way. Fugues are incredible because they are both strict and free at the same time. If you want to learn more about fugues, you can study all 48 of Bachs fugues from the well tempered clavier at the following website:
http://janus.ucc.nau.edu/tas3/wtc.htm l

That website is an incredible resource. If you are interested in fugues you will be doing yourself a disservice if you do not make use of this resource. I hope you enjoy that website and learn something too.

One final suggestion. Even though fugues are awesome, they are extremely advanced. I suggest you write simpler pieces for many years and study harmony and counterpoint thoroughly before you try writing a fugue. It is nigh impossible to write a quality fugue without studying these things first unless you are a genius.

Good luck and keep composing!


BCC-LW responds:

thanks. i'm a big fan of a lot of classical music, Bach in paticular. But i don't have much legitimate training in the style, or jargon for that matter. i'll keep working at it. thanks for tips.


&amp;gt;==Moonlight Sonata==&amp;lt; >==Moonlight Sonata==<

Rated 2 / 5 stars

Loud; static; crude

I apologize for the extremely negative review that is about to follow, but nobody seems to have given you any constructive criticism at all. And before I start, I must congratulate you on attempting one of the hardest pieces there is to play.

I consider this performance to be one of the worst I have ever heard. Beethoven used the marking 'una corda' in the original score, which for all intensive purposes means to play VERY softly. However, every one of your notes is loud and crashing. Furthermore, there is almost no variation in volume. From start to finish, almost every note is the exact same volume. It's almost as if this were played by a computer with midi, but your rendition is even worse than that because your rhythm is imperfect. Sometimes you speed up slightly, sometimes you slow down slightly.
I understand that music should not necessarily be played with exact, metronome-like rhythm. That tempo should vary is obvious. But that variance should be deliberately planned, and carefully executed. This is called 'Rubato'. Your variations in rhythm, however, are done accidentally. They are mistakes. It would be better to play it like a metronome than it is to play it with accidental fluctuations in rhythm.

My biggest criticism, however, is the way you play those triplets that definee moonlight sonata. The last note of the triplets is almost always louder than the other two. If i can illustrate what I mean with text, your playing looks like this: "Dun dun DUN! Dun dun DUN!' and so on. Instead, consider making the first note of every triplet the loudest, the second note should decrease in volume, and the final note of the triplet should be EXTREMELY quiet. However, what I am asking is much more difficult than it sounds (it's why I said this is one of the hardest pieces to play).

From listening, I doubt your 'practicing style' is good enough to execute what I have suggested. Pardon me if I am mistaken, but I think your process for learning this piece is as follows: You learned the first few bars, practiced them for a bit, and then you learned the next few bars. You put them together and played from start to finish many times until you could play it decently. Then you learned the next part, played from start to finish until you could play without mistakes, and so on until you finished the piece.
That is not how classical musicians practice. I suggest you take each measure individually, splice those measures into sections, and practice the hell out of those sections. 2 hours for one measure should be the minimum if you want to play well. 4+ hours is probably more realistic. When you practice, you should go over every single nuance until you can play it perfectly and comfortably. Also, you need to be able to play any fragment of any measure with musicality. Don't just play the notes, put feeling into them, even if you are only playing a half of a measure at a time. If a five year old were listening to you practice just half of a measure, that child should immediately recognize what you are doing as music. That half measure should make anyone who listens want more. And so it should be with EVERY half measure you play.

In short, if you have respect for Beethoven you will put honest hard work into ironing out every tiny mistake and brining out the most subtle aspects of the music. If you are unwilling to do this, which I sympathize with given the mammoth amount of effort required, I suggest you play pieces that are loud and fast. While still difficult, MOST of these pieces do not require the same amount of labor and/or talent that moonlight sonata does.

I hope I have been helpful and not hurtful. I do not mean offense, but receiving a bunch of tens with comments like 'WOW AWESOME!!1!' will not help you improve. Anyhow, good luck in the future and whatever you do, don't stop playing!



Fantasy for piano &amp;amp; orchestra Fantasy for piano & orchestra

Rated 5 / 5 stars

Stellar.

There is not much to say about this other than that it is excellent.


Strimlarn87 responds:

This really isn't that great. First of all it's too short. This is like a mixup between Mozart, Chopin and some form of game music. But i tried to make it sound like something big. The story is a bit unclear and sudden in this.


Lullaby in Eb Lullaby in Eb

Rated 4 / 5 stars

Fantastic

This is quite good. I'ts a bit intense in some places for a lullaby and I would not call it one, personally. The melodies are great, though, and I love your cadences. Good work. Keep composing!


Nemo responds:

Thanks a bunch! I do agree with your comment - now that I think about it, it probably should have been toned down in some places. Whatever it's classified as, I still think it turned out well. Thanks for your words! I greatly appreciate them!

~Matt


Bouree in Am for Solo Guitar Bouree in Am for Solo Guitar

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

Good melody

You write good melodies. This strikes me as only a section of a larger musical composition, though. You might consider lengthening this. Including this as part of a suite is a fantastic idea, although I would still lengthen this movement considerably. Contrasting musical sections would make this all the better.


Darkmaster603 responds:

Yea, I have started re-recording my pieces and I realized these need a little bit of length added in order to really make them good.

Glad you liked it, thanks for the review.


Waltz No. 7 in Am Solo Guitar Waltz No. 7 in Am Solo Guitar

Rated 4.5 / 5 stars

Fantastic

This is a lovely waltz. The performance and recording could be a little better, but one should be careful not to judge a composition by the performance. If you wanted to expand on this you could write a new section in a different key, and then transition back to the first part, but with more elaboration. It's fine as is, though. I gave you a 5.


Darkmaster603 responds:

Thanks, glad you liked it. I agree, I probably can add more...but I like it how it is.

Thanks for the review