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December 12, 2017, 10:17:54 AM
Anthony Lane - Look what weve become | New album out now
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http://www.songwriterforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=13541.0
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Read August 08, 2017, 01:07:34 PM #15
Buc McMaster

Re: Silver & Gold

Spooky.  Quite vague lyrically.....can't get a handle on what it is you're trying to convey here.....but I suspect that might be your intent.
 
Read August 08, 2017, 01:34:07 PM #16
Jamie

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi, enjoyed your usual evocative lyrics! Some nice sounds along the way with imaginative arrangements. I did feel that because of the length of the song the build could have been more delicate and maybe held back some of the instruments and lines till later, it all came in too quick. I liked the idea of the harmonica that always works well with your stuff, but some of the notes were, to put it delicately ,out of the key.
Nicely sung as ever!
Cheers
Jamie
 
Read August 10, 2017, 06:02:08 AM #17
TheButcher

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi Alan;

To be honest; I don't think it s your best song. It s still pretty good; but you ve set the standards high Smiley

The phrasing of the lyrics are very repetitive; i m waiting for the development.

Same with instrumentation; once the drums kick in, it pretty much stays that way; plus, the drums sound really weak here.

I somehow like the parts best, when it s just guitar and vocal;

as i said; you always make great music; but many of your other songs are stronger; to me Smiley

hope it s ok to say that. I know how we love our songs, so....

all the best

B.
 
Read August 11, 2017, 01:45:35 PM #18
montydog

Re: Silver & Gold


Thank you to everyone who provided me with feedback on this. Some very useful advice with respect to arrangement, instrumentation and song length. I recorded this quite a while ago and there are several things I would change if I recorded it now - the wisdom of perspective.

Nice tone on the acoustic, and the bass sounds good too, some interesting lines in the lyrics, I thought it was a bit too long though, it may have worked better if it was shorter, good track though

Mikey

Thanks - I think you're right about the length. Pleased that you liked the bass - I find it difficult to mix that properly and I'm very much a novice player.

I like the message in this a lot! I'm taken by several of the phrases..."Sun is on the whiskered wheat", Dark ashes on the wind", "Running on the wrong track", "Caught in the chromium shine"...there's more. On different journeys through the song, different parts stand out.

There are a few bits I might do differently, but I'm not sure it would make them better...one is "There's a devil chasing you", where I might make do with "A devil's chasing you". A couple things like that. And I would probably use "cleaner" diction (eg, a clear "that you" instead of "thatchew").

This is great as poetry, in my opinion. Setting it to music adds to the ambiance. I enjoyed the production, also.

Vicki


Thanks Vicki. I'm pleased that you liked the lyrics; it's what I work hardest at the whole process of writing and recording.

Hi Alan and welcome back. I always read the lyrics before listening to the music and can empathise with you. Lovely acoustic sound and vocals sounding very good. Of course a song of over six minutes  is going to get some crit. I enjoyed it but maybe the vocal breakdown section could have been shorter / enhanced by solo instrument. Overall a very good song


Thanks for the positive comments. It's good to be back!
Yo Alan,mighty good to see you back.  Smiley

Captivating and powerful lyrics on this one.

It has a desolate,melancholy feel which compliments the dark prose perfectly.

I'm seeing some of the desert scenes in Breaking Bad with Walt and Jessie brewing meth in their camper van. That's the kind of places the song takes me. I found it wears it's long black,dusty coat of 6 minutes very well.

Love the guitar in the closing stages. Mood music For sure.  Cool


Thanks Skub. It's gratifying that you tapped into the intended feel of the song and that it brought up those images for you. That's what it's all about.
I always write these as I listen
I'm digging the intro on acoustic guitar. And the bass is giving me John Paul Jones Vibes. The singings got that 70s vibe and I'm digging it. The layering is very very good. I'm just seein this as a 6 minute song and we already have harmonica, drums electric, acoustic guitar, and organ and bass a minute and a half in . Maybe slow with the layering. Let it build.
Your singing is giving me Johnny Cash vibes and I'm digging it. However the harmonica solo seems a bit out of key at times. Is that on purpose?
I like the lyrics and the lines like "Finding shelter from the shade really stick out." And when you sing and the instruments drop out, it's very powerful, would you consider having your voice get a bit more gruff there. Sing a bit louder.
The guitar solo is very minimalist and I dig it. It fits the song. Is that done on a dobro? I feel like you should have kept acoustic guitar through the fade out.

Good song man
It has all the right vibes, just some minor things in composition could be improved on a bit for the next song you write but thats always the case.
Good work

Thanks for that detailed and useful review - some very good points particularly about the length and arrangement. The harmonica is deliberately out - I kept the note into the next chord as it just sounded right for the mood of the song. The guitar solo at the end is actually played on a lap steel with plenty of delay.

Great to have you back, Monty.

I love the lyrics and the theme, there's some lovely poetic imagery. The melody and chords are nicely done, a few nice little choices of chord and melody in there. A fine song.

I didn't really enjoy the arrangement, if I'm honest. The guitar sounded a little harsh to me and there was way too much going on for me a lot of the time. The lyrics suggest a much more melancholy and stripped down feel to me. But that's all arrangement stuff, not song stuff. There's a cracking song here.

Cheers
Derek


Thanks Derek - I'm pleased you liked the song and you definately have a point about the arrangement.

This was a game of two halves for me...

I read the lyrics yesterday and thought they were really great...but I didn't think the music took them anywhere. It just seemed to be meandering really, without any direction.

Very nicely done, though...and everything sounds great, it just kind of washed over me, I'm afraid.

No problem.Paul. Some songs just don't sit well with the listener. Can't win them all.

Alan,
Great to have you back. Heard this quiet a few times from your LP so heard to be too objective.
I too heard a juxtaposition of sharp lyrical imagery set against a wistful musical background but thats fine by me. It ebbs and flows between the verses which feel more observational and the choruses where the vocals sound more personal.
Nice one.
 Smiley
Neil


Hi Neil, I'm pleased you liked the song and the blend of the lyrics with the music. This is one of your greatest strengths.

I loved this. Excellent and interesting arrangement and lyrics. And the vocal only section was indeed powerful. Could be a bit more gruff or extra reverb or harmonies or something there to make it stand out even more. And more contrast in the drums throughout maybe, but that's just me.
 A really fabulous listen. Going for another... Smiley

Thanks for the review - and you liked the arrangement which means it worked for someone!

Hi Alan

Nice to hear sth from you - it's been too long man!
Evocative lyrics - good job there.
Cool chord progressions - unexpected melodic twists esp on the harp work.
Of course you can predict I'm going to mention length, so I won't  Grin

Think you could delay the bass until the drums come in and really get epic at the end with strings et al, oh and you need a greek chorus too while you're at it  Grin

Good song!
Paul


Hi Paul and thanks for the kind words. You are right about the arrangement and length as others have mentioned.
Nice work monty.

I was nearly scared of by seeing 6:24 but although it did feel long it didn't feel that long.

I love the overall feel of this and there were lots of little twists and chromatiscisms to keep things interesting.

The blend of instruments was well thought out,,particularly liked the harmonica and organ.

One thing I have to mention that didn't quite work for me was the quite staccato nature of some of the instruments, particularly the bass and at times the organ. It felt like it was being played by someone who was learning to play this instrument and needed to cut notes short in order to get to the next one in time. if this is the case I apologise for mentioning it but I had to as I think a more legato feel would fit the song better.

Just my thoughts but overall a very nice track.

Yodasdad

Thanks for the kind words - pleased that you liked the song. I'm a novice on the bass and keyboards so that explains the staccato issue you mentioned - busted!

Hi Monty

I like the song. Great lyric.
It isn't too long. I let my songs dictate their own length and feel that you've done the same here. I like the structure; each part has its place and plays its role. How could it be different?

The E to Em gives character to the chorus - I like the whole chorus progression in fact.

Then there's the arrangement or more specifically the sounds. It's quite ambitious.
I think the guitars are ok. The harmonica is the perfect sound for the song but the key not being quite right jars for me a bit. More reverb on that would be good too.
Not keen on the drums.
The organ is OK but, as YD says, the part could be better - I understand it isn't your instrument. It's also not sitting in there nicely i don't think.

The verse before the dropout - the last verse in fact, the poignant death one - is where you could begin to come down I think in preparation for the dropout. This is where a better drum track might have helped to create some dynamic changes.

As PJ says I wouldn't drop everything out but the vocal. The contrast is too harsh I think...maybe keep your acoustic going there.

Atmosphere is at its best during the final section with the reverby dobro/guitar whatever it is and the mournful harp coming in.

Somehow I was getting the Doors....maybe some of the feel and those changes to minor. Has the feel of some of their stuff - no, not just because of the organ - and other 60s bands of the era...don't know who.

Anyway I like the song. I'd love to be able to arrange something for this as I hear it. If that covers competition ever comes off I'd have a crack at this...with your permission of course!

Please don't forget to vote in the July song of the month competition.

http://www.songwriterforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=13576.0

That goes for anybody who might be reading this. Your votes are needed!


I'd be very happy for you to cover the song - I'm flattered. Thank you so much for the detailed review. This is incredibly helpful to me and you make some very valid comments.

Spooky.  Quite vague lyrically.....can't get a handle on what it is you're trying to convey here.....but I suspect that might be your intent.

The song starts with someone who is financially self made and ambitious returning home after the death of a loved one and reflecting on what is important at the end of the day - people or money.

Hi, enjoyed your usual evocative lyrics! Some nice sounds along the way with imaginative arrangements. I did feel that because of the length of the song the build could have been more delicate and maybe held back some of the instruments and lines till later, it all came in too quick. I liked the idea of the harmonica that always works well with your stuff, but some of the notes were, to put it delicately ,out of the key.
Nicely sung as ever!
Cheers
Jamie

Thanks Jamie - you reinforce what others have said about the arrangement. The harmonica was deliberately left like that as I thought it lent something to the song.

Hi Alan;

To be honest; I don't think it s your best song. It s still pretty good; but you ve set the standards high Smiley

The phrasing of the lyrics are very repetitive; i m waiting for the development.

Same with instrumentation; once the drums kick in, it pretty much stays that way; plus, the drums sound really weak here.

I somehow like the parts best, when it s just guitar and vocal;

as i said; you always make great music; but many of your other songs are stronger; to me Smiley

hope it s ok to say that. I know how we love our songs, so....

all the best

B.

Hi Butcher. It's absolutely fine to not think the song is my best and to tell me. I'd much rather that that someone not commenting for fear of causing offence. You make some fair points - the drums could be a lot better but they are way down my list of priorities when arranging a song. I'm generally sick to death of the song by the time I get round to sorting them out!

Thanks once again to everyone who commented. it is very much appreciated.

All the best

Alan
 
Read August 12, 2017, 09:26:14 PM #19
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi Alan

Hope you don't mine my honesty here but for your wonderful vocal style you need lyrics that flows easily to get the attention of audience not songwriters, remember one thing all singer songwriters starts of in a bar but this for me just doesn't flow well together, i could say more but if i may suggest check out Charlie Landsborough what colour is the wind and forget about the cheesy and cliche, next song go with the vocal flow of lyrics.   Cool

 
Read August 12, 2017, 10:29:21 PM #20
montydog

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi Alan

Hope you don't mine my honesty here but for your wonderful vocal style you need lyrics that flows easily to get the attention of audience not songwriters, remember one thing all singer songwriters starts of in a bar but this for me just doesn't flow well together, i could say more but if i may suggest check out Charlie Landsborough what colour is the wind and forget about the cheesy and cliche, next song go with the vocal flow of lyrics.   Cool



OK, I've listened to Mr Lansborough.......

To be frank, this is so far off what I'm aiming at that it's not true. If this is what you're comparing me to I am very disappointed Cliche city Arizona. Daniel O'Donnell anyone?

M
 
Read August 12, 2017, 11:06:00 PM #21
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi Alan

Hope you don't mine my honesty here but for your wonderful vocal style you need lyrics that flows easily to get the attention of audience not songwriters, remember one thing all singer songwriters starts of in a bar but this for me just doesn't flow well together, i could say more but if i may suggest check out Charlie Landsborough what colour is the wind and forget about the cheesy and cliche, next song go with the vocal flow of lyrics.   Cool



OK, I've listened to Mr Lansborough.......

To be frank, this is so far off what I'm aiming at that it's not true. If this is what you're comparing me to I am very disappointed Cliche city Arizona. Daniel O'Donnell anyone?

M

Interesting M

Mr Lansborough and Daniel O'Donnell came up through the grass roots as for the Cliche city Arizona, all your words.

As I said "Hope you don't mine my honesty here" but give it a few days maybe a few weeks   Cool

 
Read August 13, 2017, 12:46:38 AM #22
montydog

Re: Silver & Gold

I'm going to have to disagree with you. You are entitled to your opinion, obviously but maybe you should read what others on here have said about the lyrics of this song. I don't think your opinion chimes with the majority. That doesn't make you wrong but maybe you should listen a little more carefully. I've been on this forum for 5 years and I've posted over 50 songs. Nobody has ever described my lyrics as cliched.

I take a great deal of time and trouble to write good lyrics and if you look back over the comments on my songwriting over the years you will see that one of the over riding features is praise for the quality of my lyrics.

I'm passionate about this as you may have gathered.

All the best to you.

M
 
Read August 13, 2017, 01:18:11 AM #23
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

I'm going to have to disagree with you. You are entitled to your opinion, obviously but maybe you should read what others on here have said about the lyrics of this song. I don't think your opinion chimes with the majority. That doesn't make you wrong but maybe you should listen a little more carefully.

All the best to you.

M

What kind of honesty are you looking for  Huh
 
Read August 13, 2017, 01:20:40 AM #24
montydog

Re: Silver & Gold

I'm going to have to disagree with you. You are entitled to your opinion, obviously but maybe you should read what others on here have said about the lyrics of this song. I don't think your opinion chimes with the majority. That doesn't make you wrong but maybe you should listen a little more carefully.

All the best to you.

M

What kind of honesty are you looking for  Huh

See above.
 
Read August 13, 2017, 01:29:27 AM #25
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

I'm going to have to disagree with you. You are entitled to your opinion, obviously but maybe you should read what others on here have said about the lyrics of this song. I don't think your opinion chimes with the majority. That doesn't make you wrong but maybe you should listen a little more carefully.

All the best to you.

M

What kind of honesty are you looking for  Huh

See above.

Hey you old friend you still looking above   Grin   Grin
 
Read August 13, 2017, 02:11:48 AM #26
montydog

Re: Silver & Gold

Well argued.  :-)
 
Read August 13, 2017, 02:30:56 AM #27
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

Well argued.  :-)

Hopefully with honesty   Cool
 
Read August 13, 2017, 08:10:47 AM #28
Oldbutyet

Re: Silver & Gold

Hi Alan

Hope you don't mine my honesty here but for your wonderful vocal style you need lyrics that flows easily to get the attention of audience not songwriters, remember one thing all singer songwriters starts of in a bar but this for me just doesn't flow well together, i could say more but if i may suggest check out Charlie Landsborough what colour is the wind and forget about the cheesy and cliche, next song go with the vocal flow of lyrics.   Cool



Haha  Grin  i can see now why the cheesy and cliche part rattle your cage as they say, i wasn't on about your lyrics in fact its the other way round just like audience and songwriters, theres nothing wrong with singing cheesy and cliche lyrics once the vocals are right and as i said in this song from what im hearing (i know im alone) nothing flows right together, ill leave the rest for you and your vocals to figure out for yourselves, few days maybe a few weeks or never  Grin   Grin
 
Read August 13, 2017, 08:37:47 AM #29
TheButcher

Re: Silver & Gold

Quote
the drums could be a lot better but they are way down my list of priorities when arranging a song. I'm generally sick to death of the song by the time I get round to sorting them out!


i had and have the same problems Smiley

But the audience hears the song and all it s elements.
People encouraged me to improve on my weaknesses, cause they re part of the song too, and we should try to make the best song possible.

Your music NEEDS a live feel. it needs a real drummer; you make great music; maybe you find some folks online or in real life who can do that for you.

It s what i do with my latest song (which you reviewed so nicely Smiley).

I handed the mix over to another guy, and he knew a guy who plays drums, and he knew a guy who plays bass and so; one thing came to another...and i hope it serves the song (i can now concentrate on vocals) Blabla....don t wanna bother with my stories.

Your songwriting is great and it deserves better production Smiley

B
 
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