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Post #1 · Posted at 2014-10-09 09:54:15pm 9.7 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
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1,464 Posts
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Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"

Last updated: 2014-10-09 10:19pm
This is an idea I've had to review albums I own track-by-track or alternatively singles. If you guys want to do it to, that'd be cool!

I'll start with...:


Don't worry, more official albums are on my chopping block next, including Enrique, 5SOS, NOW, and a couple of BEMANI releases! In any case, let's begin!

IMmortal / BLACKGRYPH0N & Baasik
NOTE: This album review is not yet complete

Track 1: Faster than you Know: This was the track that introduced me to the duo, and what an introduction it was! The beat builds up greatly, the synths are twinkly and add a great background, and the muffle effects on the vocals are effective. The chorus does change around near the end, and the final verse switches things up considerably, so it ends up feeling fresh all around. This was in part what convinced me that the brony fandom was capable of producing pop-quality tracks and what inspired me to start the Brony Music Billboard.

Rime's Rating: 9.5/10

Track 2: Quest (This Can't Be All): The beatwork and synths on this one begins strong, however, the chorus beat itself feels too weak. The call-and-response for the pre-chorus is a nice touch, and the build for the chorus is pumping, but again the beat doesn't feel quite strong enough. Including a higher harmony on the scat's 2nd instance doesn't strike me as the right move, though.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 3: Crusader (Are We There Yet): This is the track that snatched the year-end #1 for 2013, so its overplay may affect my judgement. The strings in the first verse are cool, however they don't last. The chorus is the catchiest, however it's also the easiest to get tired of since it repeats in each instance. The 2 measures before the final chorus are almost euphoric, but they're only for that portion of the song. The final "choir" is trying too hard for emotion in my opinion.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 4: Tell Me: This song has the vibes of "Me and My Broken Heart", and the bass synth punches hard along with the plucking keys. The letting loose of the vocals, especially in the bridge, works well in the song's favor.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 5: Moonlight: The album slows down with this chill track. The intro eases you in, with an eery set of sounds reminiscent of "Don't You Worry Child". The beatwork isn't amazing on this one, but the ambience is beautiful. My only major criticism is that the trademark "samples of the verse/chorus" reoccurs here, and it doesn't especially fit here.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 6: Set in Stone: The album transitions to harder styles at this point, with a heavy beat and a choir akin to "Pompeii". The samples are part of a verse that deciphers itself as the song goes on, and it's a refreshing subversion of the usual style. The piano in this one provides haunting counter-melodies during the chorus. The final chorus enters in a way that evokes a slower, heavier beat, though it doesn't quite deliver on that front.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 7: Academy: This track goes chippier than any of the previous tracks, and keeps up the energy of the previous track before going barer with a simple but effective set of guitar chords and the aforementioned chip synth. The instrumental chorus goes for a minimalist dubstep vibe that may be polarizing to some but I find okay. The new second verse (not in the YouTube version or the single), helps keep the track fresh, and even the pre-chorus gets some tweaks in the second instance. I must give props for the duo for acknowledging criticisms and altering the final product as such. Because of the nature of the beat, it does have a wavy air to it, but it still works relatively well.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

If you didn't read, this is not the album version, which is better!

Track 8: Immortal: The title track is arguably the weakest track on the album. The rap is technical, but not actually that interesting lyric or delivery-wise. The good elements of the song seem like rehashes of "California Girls" and even their own "Tell Me". Not to mention that the boastful tone doesn't work for this duo whose bread and butter thus far has been inspirational tracks. It's supposed to be both a jokey track and more of a "we made it" tone like "Am I Wrong", but the drum'n bass rap beat doesn't help it. Still, the track's elements, pastiched as they are, do make the track listenable.

Rime's Rating: 6.0/10

Track 9: Taking Off: Remember the one part I highlighted of "Crusader"? It comes back full force here. In general, I consider this the worthy successor of "Crusader", with a more energetic, if slower-tempo, guitar base, an engaging bass synth, and an interesting background melody.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 10: Sight Unseen: This is the dark horse track of the album, in my opinion. The track literally feels uplifting alongside the lyrics, and the swooping from "Quest" is used better here. The wave of "Academy" is back, but it complements this track instead. Unlike, "IMmortal", this is an amalgamation that is greater than the sum of its parts!

Rime's Rating: 9.0/10

Track 11: Zero Gravity (feat. Michelle Creber): Michelle had previously collaborated with the duo on a set of Michael Jackson covers, but this is the first original track to come from this, and it's amazing. The beat reminds me of "Let's Go", but more varied. It feels like a mainstream song even more than many of the others, primarily due to the collab.

Rime's Rating: 9.0/10

Track 12: Another End: The chip intro and verse is a bit jarring, but the prechorus brings back the appeal. The instrumental chorus brings back the slightly tepid "Quest" beat, but the synths this time carry the part higher. The anthemic bridge is a great touch, and this is really the final impression and all that matters.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Overall, this album gives me a warm feeling. The uplifting songs work well, the hard hitters are solid and anthemic, and most of the tracks end up feeling like a true pop effort. I recommend this album for pop enthusiasts, bronies, and even non-bronies who just want a fun album (as you can tell, the songs out of visual context don't scream "PONY!").


Post #2 · Posted at 2014-10-09 10:14:40pm 9.7 years ago

Offline -Viper-
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Reg. 2007-10-26

3DS Friend Code: 1091-8797-8693
Here's a review I made when NIN came out with an album last year. Probably nobody here has heard the album or gives a crap about it but here it is for giggles, since the thread was made.

Hesitation Marks - Nine Inch Nails
Rating: 5/5

This was the album I was waiting for ever since I really started getting into music and collecting albums back in 2008. NIN has been possibly my favorite artist for a long time, and has also been infamous for releasing albums between large periods of time, but with rewarding results. So this album had a ton of pressure on it in my mind. I am glad to say, I'm very happy with it.

With Ghosts I-IV, The Slip, and How to Destroy Angels, Trent Reznor seemed to be accepting his role as an independent minimal artist. With this album however, he returned to a major label and released a full length LP. No disrespect to How to Destroy Angels or those other two albums, I did enjoy those but I wouldn't have wanted NIN to stay like that forever. At the same time, Hesitation Marks doesn't sound like a desperate return to an earlier period, it is entirely original sounding and melds a type of minimalism with NIN's classic dense layering.

The album opens with the track The Eater of Dreams, an instrumental prologue containing little more than a dark ambient pulse and distorted lyrics. At the climax it leads directely into Copy of A, a slightly minimal but fast paced song to kick things off. In it Reznor laments being a copy of a copy of a copy, a product of outside forces. The synth that kicks in during the chorus adds a dramatic feel that also reminds me slightly of something that might be found in a Radiohead song. Lindsay Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac makes his first appearance in this song, playing guitar during the connecting segment between the chorus and the second verse.

Next up is Came Back Haunted, the album's lead single. The song is very bouncy as Reznor tells of needing to hide something but being unable to help himself. He experienced something dark and came back haunted to tell the tale. The guitar work both in the second verses and the bridge are very NIN-y and declared to me a return to NIN form back when the song first came out. This song also has a great music video directed by David Lynch to go with it.

Things slow down for a bit with the next song, Find My Way. A very atmospheric and solemn song that accompanies a prayer to God. In it, Reznor laments that he has gone astray and is determined to find his way. A bed of underlying vocals creeps in during the second half and gives the song an almost angelic feel.

Things kick back up with All Time Low. One of my favorites, it has a funky guitar and percussion, carrying a theme of indulging in the dark side of life, being another all time low. The second half switches gears and sounds uplifting with a rising and falling synth as the vocals chant "stretch across the sky". The change seems to either signify a rise out of the all time low and into the sky, or as the lyric "how did we get so high?" suggests, possibly replicating the feeling of being intoxicated and feeling a high.

The next track Disappointed begins with a minimal gallopy beat as layers creep in and out throughout the song. Reznor seems to either be attacking people who are disappointed in him, or is giving a sardonic portrayal of someone who has disappointed many and is mocking them. An unidentifiable stringed instrument plays in the outro in the same melody as the vocals.

Everything is possibly the most controversial song to hit the NIN fanbase. The song sounds uncharacteristically happy and upbeat for something composed by Trent Reznor. With a punk rock sound, Reznor sings "I survived everything". A falling guitar riff reminiscent of The Cure is present in the second verse as he sings "wave goodbye, wish me well". The outro begins to sound far away as Reznor continues "I am home, I am free, I believe". It's hard to tell if this song is meant to be a genuine declaration of triumph or a sort of false redemption.

Satellite is another favorite of mine on the album. A very poppy and dancable track that also sounds uncharacteristic of Nine Inch Nails. As many have pointed out, the song's theme of being spied on by satellites is almost eerie seeing how it came out around the time of the NSA spying controversy. The song is extremely catchy and the second chorus vocal harmonies remind me of a 90s era dance track. In the latter portion, the song grows more sinister, repeating "I know you're up there somewhere". The poppiness of this track and the previous track could perhaps be explained by the fact that they were the first two songs written and were originally planned for an NIN best-of pack that Reznor owed to Interscope. Nonetheless, it is a fantastic song.

Starting with Various Methods of Escape, the album becomes more centered and focused on Trent Reznor as a person in the present. Minimal in the versus and heavy in the chorus, the lyrics reflect on the difficulty of freeing oneself from life's difficult vices. The bridge gets quiet in a style similar to Mr Self Destruct as he repeats "I think I could lose myself in here". It then builds back up and leads into the next track.

The next track, Running, starts with a fast paced but subdued sounding gallop. The protagonist is running from something in their life but is quickly running out of places to hide. The synth plugin from Copy of A rejoins during the chorus. Much of the song rides the line "I'm running out of places I can hide from this". The song is a good standalone track while also serving as a sort of connector between Various Methods of Escape and I Would For You.

I Would For You is an intense track, with a chaotic thumping bass in the verses, and a heavy guitar with shouting in the choruses. The synth from Running and Copy of A rejoins this song during the second verse. I am interested who the "you" is that Reznor is willing to become someone else for. His wife and kids? Even God perhaps? The songs strips down to a piano riff for the outro, leading directly into In Two.

In Two is one of the most violent sounding songs on the album. Very chaotic beats accompany chopped up lyrics of a conversation between two different personalities. One urges the protagonist to shed his skin and save himself. The other urges him to become his disease. Distorted vocals then chant about nature being violent and how that was someone else. Lindsay Buckingham's guitarwork jumps in with a falsetto voice saying "it's getting harder to tell the two of you apart". The bridge once again gets silent and repeats "I just don't know anymore". It builds once more to a climax filled with rapidly changing synths and quickly spills into the final full song.

At the end of the album is the final song split across two tracks. The bulk of the song is While I'm Still Here. This song is mellow but dead serious, as Reznor seems to reflect on his life and confronts the idea that he will die someday, contrasting the earlier chants of "we will never die" in All Time Low. More wonderful guitarwork by Buckingham and a smooth outro saxophone add to the ambiance of the song. The final track is an instrumental outro to the song called Black Noise. The loop from the previous song continues but something sounds different. The baseline has become much more sinister as a wall of horrifying sound creeps in and devours everything. Building to a loud climax, it suddenly cuts out, ending the song and album abruptly.

That is Hesitation Marks, a satisfying Nine Inch Nails album following years of build up. Well done Mr Reznor!

Post #3 · Posted at 2014-10-09 10:20:29pm 9.7 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
DDR Addict Avatar Member
1,464 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"
Just wanted to let you all know that the IMmortal review is updated and done!

Post #4 · Posted at 2014-10-10 02:58:49am 9.7 years ago

Offline rayword45
rayword45 Avatar Member
489 Posts
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Reg. 2011-08-29

Last updated: 2014-10-10 03:01am
I'm currently doing a project where I'm going to try and review 365 albums. http://www.flashflashrevolution.com/vbz/showthread.php?t=137263

Note that these reviews are very, very unprofessional. Here are a few reviews I had the most fun with (be that fun at the time or retrospective fun).

Wow, I wish I had known HOW spoilers worked on this website, otherwise that tragic post would not have happened. Here are links to some reviews.


Also, you guys should recommend me some albums. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1R8k8OanacjwNWV0U2T0xJp_t8pG8Z-qg6etqX3monfk

Post #5 · Posted at 2014-10-17 11:54:01pm 9.6 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
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1,464 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"

Last updated: 2014-10-17 11:54pm

This one's gonna take me a while, so I'll do it piecemeal, or rather discmeal.

Disc 1: The new groovin'!! songs

Track 1: refrain / dj TAKA feat. AiMEE: This one's cut from the same cloth as "True Blue", though it has a new glitch effect that is admittedly a bit distracting. The harmonies do help this track stand out compared to its predecessor.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 2: licca / Qrispy Joybox: The track pumps you up from the beginning with a flurry of twinkly synths that remind you of a slot machine. The strings then inundate you only to be attacked by a harder beat than usual courtesy in particular to an underlayed guitar riff. The piano solo feels a tad too simple, but it is effective in memorability. Overall, this track feels very fresh for Qrispy, despite the same drumset as usual.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 3: Happy Koi Lovely Time / DJ TOTTO feat. anporin: First off, seeing anporin back in the game after Beautiful Dream is very nice, though her chorus does have some seemingly unintentional moments of uncertainty in delivery. The track itself feels like a downtempo "Clumsy Thoughts", which would be a negative. However, the track shows off its own colors with somber twinges in the verse and chorus, and the prechorus is almost euphoric.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 4: LIGHTNING THUNDERBOLT / TAG: TAG's synths end up calling back to the times of Eurobeat and arcade space shooters, with the overall tone of this song feeling like the sort of track that would play in the game depicted in "SABER WING". It's very fresh, especially in comparison to "Another Phase".

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 5: Northern Lights / Hommarju: This could easily be mistaken for a Sota track, and it's definitely better for it. The volume balance is very wobbly though, which begins to cloud the beat.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 6: Get Over! / DJ NAGAI feat. Ayumi Nomiya: All these REDALiCE alumni, yay~ Ayumi has a more mature voice than anporin, and she shows her technical skill in the prechorus here. The harmonies also feel like a Eurobeat track, which is great by me. The music itself reminds me of "Little Star" as well.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 7: Matsuyoigusa / CULTVOICE by S.S.D.PRODUCTS: The vocalist does better with dramatic vocals as shown by previous pieces. She's also drowned out several times by the instrumental. This pacing of the music is nice though.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 8: SCHWARZSCHILD FIELD / L.E.D.: This track feels like something from the DDR Ultramix era, which is pretty cool to see again. The rock twist midway is unlike that though, but is aided well by the beat.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 9: Suna no ame wa yoru ni / Asaki: The airy guitar is back, though the song itself just feels like "Shiawase" rehashed. The acoustic solo is good, though.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 10: Sakura Yozura / Xceon feat. Mayumi Morinaga: The increased pace is pumping, though for once the key change doesn't quite work with the track. The instrumental is sweet though.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 11: I LOVE SAKURA / CHERRY BLOSSOMS: This track is so close to being a decent rock song, with good playing and a decent solo, but the jokey vocals murder it, especially in the chorus. It's not actually funny but mostly-played-straight like "Okome"; instead, it's in a very grating style.

Rime's Rating: 6.5/10

Track 12: Rush!! (Remix!!) / kors k feat. Sunao Yoshikawa: It's nice to see "7 Colors" wasn't a fluke; kors k can really pull off Eurobeat, even with an urgent tone. Listening to the original, with its high tempo ska-rock tone, I would never have pictured it being remixable, so props for that!

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 13: VOLTEXES II / Sota Fujimori: I've always remained fond of Sota's dance tempo tracks since they can sometimes really feel like a classic DDR track (which this song manages about 1/3 of the way through). It does really show its menu music roots though, and the attempt to dispel that with an attack of sound near the end doesn't help.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 14: Avalon no oka / Nekomata Master: This is much more of a jig than most of Nekomata's tribal tracks, and the trills the flute pulls off feel all the more impressive at that speed. I've always loved Nekomata's contributions in past games, and this feels like a staple that will remain a fan favorite in the forseeable future, like "Echoes".

Rime's Rating: 9.0/10

Track 15: Sakura Mirage / Ryu: The samples are a bit more stereotypical than usual, and the melody itself is in a chippier style than previous songs, but it's refreshing in that regard. The part around the minute mark weakens the song, but the key change following ushers in the strongest parts.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 16: Cattleya / Sota Fujimori 2nd Season: Sota's fast stuff has also been interesting to see, and this one doesn't disappoint, with the sound attack feeling less cluttered in comparison to "VOLTEXES II". The conclusion is a little unexpected, however; it feels like the track could've still gone on about 4 bars more.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 17: Poochie / kors k: This track was very surreal. It kind of feels like both a follow-up to "Funny Shuffle" and an attempt to mimic sampling masters MEGA, but it's a lot more random in terms of instrumental backup and consistency. The use of the trap siren does not help.

Rime's Rating: 6.0/10

Track 18: Chronoxia / DJ Totoriott: This track has the air of epicness, especially with the opening very much akin to a waltz (for someone who doesn't know the tempo beforehand, at least). Having an accordion be the anchor of a verse and chorus feels creative, and the snare 16th buildup proves that sometimes normal instruments can be used well in a high-speed dance scenario. My only complaint is that it feels like it's done too soon, but really I'm just asking for more of a good thing.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 19: Fujimori Festival / VENUS: The crowd sounds like a Hindi sample (though it's not), and it helps give this song a definite identity compared to VENUS' other tracks. Once we return to familiar VENUS territory, the background melodies still keep the atmosphere going.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 20: LIGHTNING THUNDERBOLT (Try to Sing Ver.) / TAG rejected by DJ TOTTO: Unlike some of the other songs of this series, this feels really forced. The instrumental is excellent of course, but the vocals almost feel tacked-on to whatever track they were on. Nothing really ties to the song itself in terms of complementing, something that (for example) the "Unlimited Fire" vocal version managed.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 21: Hungarian Dance No. V / RB. Conducter II: This arrangement has a concert hall sound like DM Ashura's classical remixes (i.e. "Allegro con Fuoco). However, this makes it feel even more generic, nice-sounding as it is.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 22: Radetzky March, op. 228 / RB. Conducter III: I suspect 96 had a hand in this one, and the composition is much more interesting for it, with the bass in particular giving a full feeling to the track.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 23: Nigra Ludia / Akhuta: Where "Kage Nui" was the legitimately creepy track for Halloween, this is the carnivalesque one that you'll hear at the parties. The strings segments augment the Halloween aesthetic, while the baseball synths have both difficult parts while reinforcing the jovial atmosphere.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 24: Tenchidou Densetsu / 98: I never really understood songs with multiple time signatures, but the wac-style touches midway helped warm me up to this track. Sadly, this is another track that ends before it reaches its full fruition.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 25: Chirality / Massaya Oya: This feels like an attempt to dubstep-ify Nekomata's fast tracks, but right off that combination doesn't sound too appealing. The original ideas here are decent, but not enough to really overpower that core problem.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 26: Recursive Function / OSTER Project: First off, as a programming beginner, it's nice to see geeky names like these. As for the song itself, its 7/4 signature for the verses does present a hitch into the chill tone. That tone does stick through in the choruses well, though.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 27: Army of Marionette / Rough Sketch: The first half's melody feels like one of those PARANOiA/MAX amateur remixes, and the hard hitting beat doesn't shake that assumption. The "bee" piano and synth melody helps to bring back perception back to positive.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 28: YELLOW SPLASH!! / P*Light: This seems the perfect followup to Risk Junk's songs, with some more vocal samples. For a kawaii-pitch sample, the primary one doesn't wear out its welcome for me, which is pretty interesting to happen.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Disc 2: The Second Wave

Track 1: Kyoukikuramasa / 96 v.s. Kurisu Uketamawanokai: This track needs vocals. Unlike "Dragon Killer", there's no real melody here. Instead it feels like a bunch of guitar solos and the backup to a chorus. For what it is, it's decent though.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 2: Guilty Destruction / DUALLELE: This rock/techno combo is quite unique, and feels like the last track should've been a bit more like. There is a nice combination of pretty moments with the piano and hardcore moments with the guitar. Even the beat gets a bit of a solo. It ends a bit abrubtly, but it still works.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 3: DaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDa / Hige Driver join. Selen: Aside from the chorus phrase at the beginning, the vocals are very solid. While downplayed, Selen has an earthiness to the voice that works effectively in giving the piece an edge. The instrumental sounds very much like an IOSYS track, which complements the vocals as well.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 4: HALOS / SOUND HOLIC feat. Nana Takahashi: This reminds me of a combination of Mr. T and StormWolf's Eurobeat efforts. This track seems made for an OP, in a good way.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 5: Rakurin Paradise / Chapter 3: On the other hand, this reminds me of Mr. T's recent efforts, except more creative. I'm also reminded of "Candy Drop", which seems to be a song only I like and no one else. It also feels like a perfect fit for a Mario Kart game, and when a song manages that, I usually love it.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 6: ulexite / ZUKI: It appears we have a continual one-up going on in this disc. This trumps "Guilty Destruction" in terms of being a great rock/techno combo. This one feels more dynamic with its space-type synths and iconic guitar riffs.

Rime's Rating: 9.0/10

Track 7: City Never Sleeps / Dirty Androids: Despite not having Nekomata instruments, this feels like his style, and it's interesting to see this new take on it. Coffee shop and high pacing are always a fun combination in my opinion.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 8: I LOVE SUNFLOWER / CHERRY BLOSSOMS: This falls for the same pitfalls as I LOVE SAKURA, but it gets closer to tolerable. Having wac do the lead nearly exclusively seems like a bad idea, but he doesn't ham it up nearly as much as I feared.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 9: Super GERO GE-RO / S-C-U: It's nice to see S-C-U stray from his usual structure. Here, the call-response occurs near the beginning after a cute opening. The piano backup hits harder than usual, and the chip lead is more on the low side, which gives this track a bit more freshness, despite the usual beat along with the usual elements.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 10: Snow Eagle / Mutsuhiko Izumi: With a harder beat, and a desperate line of piano, this track ends up with more intensity than "Snow Goose" in my opinion. Some parts are a bit too close to that song, though.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 11: Benita / Troupe Recording: Evoking Hindi and Spain is a great way to get on my good side, and the "RED ZONE" style synths are icing on the cake for me.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 12: Otasa Revolution / ARM feat. miko & Kim: Unfortunately I can't take the embarrassing type of cute, which this track is overloaded with. Looking back, it seems the Hinabitter songs ARM does are the ones that have to face an uphill battle for me to like because of their unhealthy levels of cute. There's decent instrumentals, but it's actively put in the background.

Rime's Rating: 6.5/10

Track 13: Mikeneko Jazz / Hideyuki Ono: Making a low sax have a critical role in the song is quite fresh for this series, and this pace, while about the same tempo as Rock, manages to feel more frenetic and fun.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 14: Cytokinesis / Hommarju: This is like a kors k track made more raw and fused with "WILD RUSH", and I love it! The beat in the final is a bit obnoxious, but it works.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 15: Gale Rider / P*Light: If the good sounds weren't just samples, I'd be happier for this track. However, otherwise, it just feels like a mashup of Sakura Sunrise and Fire Fire.

Rime's Rating: 7.0/10

Track 16: Proluvies / Masaya Oya: This track mixes harsh dubstep with haunting soft synths wonderfully. The beat is fairly standard, but those standouts really elevate the song.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 17: WICKeD CRoSS / OSTER project: This feels a little more straight in its rock elements than "Devil's Staircase" was, but it's still solid.

Rime's Rating: 7.5/10

Track 18: Giant Strength / RoughSketch: The beat is very heavy and strong, and the chanting and vocal sample do help give this track an identity. This feels like a slower tempo followup to "Zed", which is a plus in my book.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 19: Onigami / Usagi: Unlike "Wadatsumi", this feels more like a Nekomata track, but it still keeps a more tribal and TOTTO-esque hard hitting beat.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 20: onslaught / PHQUASE: This feels like boss battle music (fitting since it's essentially the game's final boss). The changing time signatures are a nice touch, along with the stingers midway.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 21: FUJIMORI FESTIVAL (instrumental) / VENUS: The instrumental is one of the strongest elements of this track, so it's nice to see there's an instrumental version available. I could imagine being presented as is under Sota's name in the game; it's that solid on its own merits. My only minor gripe is that a lot of the samples from Sakura Mirage are here and much more noticeable than in the vocal version, but the atmosphere helps save it.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 22: LIGHTNING THUNDERBOLT (instrumental Try to Sing Ver.) / TAG rejected by DJ TOTTO: This was a complete waste of slot. It's a great track, but it's the same as the normal version that's already on this album!

Rime's Rating: 4.0/10 (A half score for a half-effort)

Track 23: Get Over! (extended ver.) / DJ NAGAI feat. Ayumi Nomiya: This was a good choice for a full version, because the energy allows you to more easily forgive its repetition. Ayumi's vocals remain skilled, and I have no qualms with the additions.

Rime's Rating: 8.0/10

Track 24: DaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDa (Long Version) / Hige Driver join. Selen: The new verse shows even more skill from Selen, which is most appreciated. The new prechorus also has a neat muffle that adds a tension that slowly burns in its second half in a relaxing way. Since it takes more risks than "Get Over!", I'd say it deserves a higher rating.

Rime's Rating: 8.5/10

Track 25: Otasa Revolution (Long Version) / ARM feat. miko & Kim: The good extension picks end here. The new verse repeats all the things I hated about the first, and the pre-chorus even adds more annoyance. The new bridge is concentrated cute, which is even worse than the rest of the song. Why they didn't get this out of the way first and end with DaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDaDa is beyond me, because it just leaves a bad final impression.

Rime's Rating: 5.5/10

So, it's been a crazy ride! There have been some duds and the final impression isn't that hot, but there also just as many awesome and even a few golden tracks awaiting, so I'd consider this album worth checking out for any BEMANI player yearning for some new tracks (which should be most considering REFLEC BEAT plus won't be getting to these in months and not much has crossed over to other games yet).

Rime's Final Rating: 8.25/10

If I do discs 3 and 4, they'll be branded as colette vol. 3 in a separate review. Enjoy this for now!

Post #6 · Posted at 2014-11-30 05:08:12pm 9.5 years ago

Offline Cowtao
Cowtao Avatar Member
1,984 Posts
United States
Reg. 2011-05-08

"This hat hurts"

Last updated: 2014-11-30 05:20pm
My first attempt. Don't kill me. :x

So I figured with my massive expedition into IIDX songs in general, I found this along the way and found some pretty neat remixes. For the sake of this review and potential hatred I will not review the live versions of songs because they aren't really that important. If you want a personal onion, Bit Mania and Colors (Live) sound worse then the in-house recordings. So there you go. :/

Track 1: Astral Voyage ~akakage's sweet peaktime samba~ / EeL Remixed by akakage
True to the style of what the title is, it feels like a Samba. I'll give it credit, it tones down the vocals to a tolerable sound because the original overpowered the entire song. It feels bit more crowded with it's sound and while it is good, can be a bit distracting. The Trumpet solo is a pretty nice touch though.
Rating: 7.0/10

Track 2: システムロマンス ~DJ 19 REMIX~ / AKIRA YAMAOKA Remixed by DJ 19
Tbh DJ 19 cut down a lot of the excessive upbeat tones of this song to make it seem more basic. While it accomplishes with that feat, it feels very bland compared to the original. With the original, it has some life into it. Traditional Akira Yamaoka sound can be hit or miss, but the in-house recording sounds very striking to me. I don't get it with this remix as it just feels like it sucks the life out of what the original song was.
Rating: 5.0/10

Track 3: desolation ~dj Remo-con ReMixx~ / Mr. T Remixed by dj Remo-con
First can I say, this track is awesome. Now that we have that out of the way, the reason I like this remix a lot, is because of it's major transition from the original Unlike with the DJ 19 Remix, dj Remo-con changed the tones a lot from a softer piano bliss esque kinda sound to the similar Rave and Upbeat tones from Remo-con. This feels like a song that he could have personal wrote but it's a remix so it's just that much more surprising. c:
Rating: 8.0/10

Track 4: 雪月花 ~DJ TOMO'S NIBURU MIX~ / Ryu☆ Remixed by DJ TOMO
The original wins out. I'm sorry but this remix really wasn't needed. The whole song feels like a mashup of trying to do different elements with the song, but ultimately not getting far in the end. The tones are fine. Track is okay. Compared to what it's based on? Nope. It just doesn't do much to improve it or give it a cutting edge that makes a dramatic leap comparatively.
Rating: 6.0/10

Track 5: Pandora ~DJ WADA Remix~ / dj TAKA feat.Tomomi Remixed by DJ WADA
Everything bad I have said to the other remixes pretty much applies here except this time it's WADA. And it's worse. Much much worse then the original. Please do your ears a favor and skip this one.
Rating: 2.0/10

Track 6: SCORE ~Mars on mix~ / dj Remo-con Remixed by Susumu Yokota
This brings a pretty unique tone onto the song and I like the direction it was heading. Despite being sorta bland, the tones of this song do well enough to distract yourself for how basic the song is.
Rating: 7.0/10

Track 7: Think of me ~ASYLUM Mix~ / good-cool feat, Sana Remixed by AKIRA YAMAOKA
Sana's vocals just ruined it for me. It's upbeat lyrics in a downtone beat. If the lyrics were removed the song could have had much more space to work off of. Instead it just lands here as just Akira Yamaoka's random space of what.
Rating: 3.5/10

Track 8: Back Into The Light ~A DAY IN THE LIGHT Mix~ / Sota Fujimori Remixed by SLAKE
Despite having similar tones with the WADA remix, Slake takes the tones of brightness and the tone of the song's meaning "Back Into The Light" into a retrospective. While this is a cool, it has some tones that might turn some people off. I personally didn't mind them and it just clicked for me.
Rating: 7.5/10

Tracj 9: DoLL ~L.E.D. Style Mix~ / TËЯRA Remixed by L.E.D.
This one has a lot of energy to it that is very true to the original song. This time it's in a different style and L.E.D. does well to let the listener know this is still a TËЯRA remix. It does well to mask this while the song has a very distorted sound towards it.
Rating: 8.5/10

Track 10: Love Is Eternity ~SF SYNTH TRANCE MIX~ / kors k Remixed by Sota Fujimori
Okay so take the base of the song, give it to Sota Fujimori, and let him go crazy with the sound that made him famous among the legions of IIDX and DDR fans. This took the original somewhat upbeat strikes that the original had and gave it a much needed revamp into it's sound. I couldn't say any more good things about it, give this one a listen guys. I'm not crazy.
Rating: 9.0/10

Track 11: Ready To Rockit Blues ~dj TAKA remix~ / SLAKE Remixed by dj TAKA
This feels more like a blend compared to the other tracks in this CD. This remix does wise to remove the unneeded singing and vocals of this song and improves on the base beat that it worked off of. It basically took all the good bits of the original and gave it a much more attractive and appealing beat towards it. This is pretty rad, despite maybe a tone or two being off.
Rating: 7.5/10

With the accumulated results of each song and my own personal enjoyment. The resulting rating of this album is...

7.5 out of 10
Despite having about 3-4 subpar tracks that could have really used work, the bulls eyes that most of the tracks tried to hit, worked out very well. I'm glad I decided to look over this entire album and I hope to see Bemani do something like this in the future.
Thanks toon for the smexy Banner!

Post #7 · Posted at 2014-12-09 06:11:00am 9.5 years ago

Offline SoulEdge5000
SoulEdge5000 Avatar Member
229 Posts
United States
Reg. 2014-01-26


Last updated: 2014-12-09 06:13am
Let's get mainstream up in here. I'm going to be reviewing Ariana Grande's album: 'My Everything: Japanese Deluxe Edition'.

01. Intro (7/10)
The album starts out with Grande's soft vocals. Grande serenades the listener with soft tones and lyrics such as 'I want you with me on this road to the skies'. The intro track does a relatively good job at setting the mood of the album.

02. Problem (feat. Iggy Azalea) [8/10]
Ah Problem, the song that made Ariana Grande famous. The track combines saxophone and brass undertones, dope hip hop beats, and Grande's power vocals, all into one song that was officially declared 'Song of the Summer (2014)'. Big Sean makes a cameo by whispering 'I got one less problem without you' in the beginning of the chorus. Let's not forget Iggy Azalea's rap verse. Azalea raps out her verse smoothly; however, it lacks that aggressive style a rapper should possess. In short, it's everything you need in a pop song: catchy chorus, a toe-tapping beat, and a melody that can drive you insane after you've listened to it for the nth time.

03. One Last Time (9/10)
In this emotional club track, Grande sings about asking for one more chance from her ex-lover. With lyrics such as 'I know that you got everything, but I got nothing here without you', the track is an excellent song for those who have experienced heartbreak.

04. Why Try (10/10)
Personally, this track is the highlight of 'My Everything'. Grande truly lets out all her emotions in the form of strong, empowering vocals. The snare rolls combine with the synth undertones in a deconstructed melody that do an excellent job at highlighting Grande's vocals. 'I'm in love with the pain, I ain't never wanna live without it'. The listener will be hooked with the first line of the chorus. 'We've been living like angels, living like devils'. Truly, a beautifully emotional track.

05. Break Free (feat. Zedd) [7.5/10]
Here, we have Grande take EDM out for a spin. The highlight of this track is Zedd's astonishing production skills. The melody is perfect for a pop song, and not too overwhelming for those who don't find EDM to be their cup of tea. Grande emphasizes the message of 'breaking free from a relationship' throughout the song, which becomes quite repetitive. Grande also lets her voice go, causing her to slur some of the lyrics in the song.

06. Best Mistake (feat. Big Sean) [6.5/10]
Grande collaborates with her current lover Big Sean in this deconstructed, dark, R&B song. The melody consists of a sharp hip-hop beat, mixing with orchestral string undertones. Similar to Azalea, Big Sean recites his verse rather than adding his own style to it. Perhaps it's because of the downplayed vibe in this song, but Big Sean's verse was lackluster. Grande sings in a soft tone throughout the song, so she does not highlight her more powerful side. None the less, the song itself is a good listen. It's just poorly executed.

07. Be My Baby (feat. Cashmere Cat) [7/10]
'If you know how to be my lover, maybe you can be my baby'. In this trap-hop + EDM + pop track, Grande teaches you how to be her baby. The light, bouncy, synth notes combine with the trap-style beats for a bubbly pop track, that tries its best to sound mature. In short, the track shows Grande's transition from the fun, upbeat girl from Yours Truly, to a more mature sound.

08. Break Your Heart Right Back (feat. Childish Gambino) [8.5/10]
'You said he was your best friend, I'm guessing I wasn't your type'. Grande lightens the mood of the album with this fun hip-hop track. In the track, Grande sings about breaking up with her boyfriend who turned out to be gay. The track samples 'I'm Coming Out' by Diana Ross, an excellent song to go with the message of the song. Unlike Azalea or Big Sean, Gambino unleashes his own style, but in a more toned down fashion. With lines such as 'Yes I'm a G from the A and they ask whY', and 'The flow's so gross, my nickname's School Lunch', Gambino livens up the track just a notch higher.

09. Love Me Harder (with The Weekend) [9/10]
Grande shows off her more mature side in this ambient EDM track. In this track, Grande and The Weekend sing about one thing: 'If you want to keep me, you've gotta love me harder'. The ambient vibe of the track combines with lyrics that speak of passionate love. Grande does a fairly good job of defining the term 'good girl, gone bad'.

10. Just A Little Bit of Your Heart (9/10)
Grande tones down the mood of the album with a ballad, written by Harry Styles. In this song, Grande sings about seeking love (even if it's just a little) from someone who already has a lover. 'I'll still be a fool. 'Cuz I'm a fool for you'. The melody only consists of a piano, and orchestral strings.

11. Hands On Me (feat. A$AP Ferg) [8.5/10]
Grande brings back the party vibe with 'Hands On Me'. This catchy club track showcases Grande's mature side once more, but makes sure to keep it appropriate for her younger listeners. Grande wants you to keep your hands on her, because she's not as innocent as you think she is.

12. My Everything (7/10)
Grande sings about a former lover in 'My Everything'. In this emotional track, the overall message is 'I guess you don't know what you got, till it's gone'. Grande sings about feeling the loss of a former lover, and how he was (and still is) her everything.

13. Bang Bang (Jessie J, Ariana Grande & Nicki Minaj)[8/10]
Three femme fatales come together to create one upbeat, pop track. Three bad girls who sing about getting it on in the backseat of a car. Jessie and Grande show off their powerful vocals, and Minaj showcases her 'sick flow'. 'Bang Bang' is the perfect track for a party, or flash mob (if you excuse the sexual innuendo throughout the song).

14. Only 1 (9/10)
Only 1 is the first track recorded for 'My Everything'. The entire song is reminiscent of 2000's R&B tracks by artists such as Aaliyah and Beyoncè. In the song, Grande sings about not being able to be 'your only one'. Perhaps she feels that his love for her is too overwhelming. As a result, she cannot accept it.

15. You Don't Know Me (10/10)
Grande shows off her fierce side in 'You Don't Know Me'. She sings about how hard her life is as an idol (rumors about Grande, her former relationships, etc). The girl you see in the media, is only half of the story. Don't judge her. #leavearialone.

16. Cadillac Song (10/10)
Grande tones it back down with this throwback, R&B track. In the track, Grande takes on the persona of a matured woman who sings about the good ol' days with her former lover. Soft vocals, calm melody, and the soft snaps in the background make it a perfect song for driving around the town, in your Cadillac.

17. Too Close (7/10)
Grande brings back her fun side in this bubblegum pop track. Grande sings about having a crush, but she's too scared to admit it. If she does, her and her crush will get too close. What happens from then on, will be a different story. Catchy, fun to sing along to, and the perfect theme song for any high-schooler who has never been on a date.

18. Baby I (feat. Taro Hakase) [8/10]
Legendary Violinist, Taro Hakase plays his violin to Ariana Grande's hit song 'Baby I'. Hakase fiddles along to the bubblegum pop track, with perfectly timed/perfectly pitched notes. The violin accompaniment makes 'Baby I' sound just a little bit more beautiful.

TOTAL: 149/180 (B)
One part EDM, one part Hip-Hop, mixed with Pop and topped off with some throwback beats - all combined to create a sweet & spicy album.

Post #8 · Posted at 2015-02-17 09:21:46pm 9.3 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
DDR Addict Avatar Member
1,464 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"

Last updated: 2015-02-17 09:21pm
Just got a certain recent soundtrack, so you know what that means!

Fifty Shades of Grey (Soundtrack) / Various Artists

Now this one has quite a bit of buzz. It could sell over 200,000 copies this week, comes right at the same time as the movie launch, and even has 2 hit songs already. I myself was rather excited with the initial singles: "could this be the next hit album that outlives its movie?" I pondered. Now I finally got track-by-track and make the verdict!

Track 1: I Put a Spell on You (Soundtrack Version) / Annie Lennox: Now, this song originates from Nostalgia, Annie Lennox's collection of classic tunes rerecorded. As opposed to the operatic, nigh-comical take the Screamin' Jay Hawkins original uses, Annie gives the song more of a combination of big band and 70's classic rock, which I'm fine with; with my singles experience for the album, this matches the tone I heard from Earned It. My only issue with the track is that it doesn't have quite the weight I would expect, but it's otherwise quite solid.

Rating: 8.0/10

Track 2: Undiscovered / Laura Welsh: Initially, the track screams indie, with a low-fi drum sample. It's the weakest element of the composition, since it lingers for most of the track. The whole track seems like it can't decide whether it's going for indie or pop; Welsh's verses sound like the former, but the prechorus in particular feels like a pop move. The chorus and bridge find a happy medium, but as a whole song it doesn't quite work in my opinion.

Rating: 7.5/10

Track 3: Earned It / The Weeknd: Now this is the weight I Put a Spell on You needed. The prechorus is quite characteristic in its voice, and the piano peppered throughout gives the song quite the charm, especially the set of licks it gets at the end. Also, despite how risky it can be, the brief switch to standard time for the stinger works quite well along with the transition to standard timing for the final chorus. I've been keeping an eye on The Weeknd's pop workings, and songs like these keep me optimistic.

Rating: 9.0/10

Track 4: Meet Me in the Middle / Jessie Ware: Ware's delicate yet calm voice works quite well here, which is good because the verse instrumentation feels like a rehash. The harsh 4 note rhythm guitar riff feels like it's ripping off I Put a Spell on You. Thankfully, the chorus' instrumentation works well with its 80's-esque synth complementing the vocals. The guitar solo-ish along with xylophone after the second chorus is also sweet. The only issue is that the lead guitar, throughout this and the later verse, goes extremely staccato, which sounds less delicate (which I think is what they're going for) and more like the guitar player is unconfident. To end on a confident point, backing the song throughout is this Depeche-esque 80's synth set of chords, which get a little limelight near the end.

Rating: 8.0/10

Track 5: Love Me Like You Do / Ellie Goulding: Like most Ellie songs, the instrumentation is lovely, but it also has an almost arena-like quality with the beat even in the intro. It took me a while to get used to the chorus being relatively repetitive, but I think it works in being very fun to sing along to, plus counter-melodies start coming in to spice things up. Really, this whole thing sums up the Ellie Goulding modes: the verses show her soft but earnest vocals, the prechorus shows off her range, and the chorus shows her more pop side but retains a fair amount of her personality. I'll be rather happy if it can make the top 5, even if it's probably not my favorite song in the album's context.

Rating: 8.5/10

Track 6: Haunted (Remix) / Beyonce: The first minute of this track is buildup, and without instrumentation to start, I thought the song's beat was completely different from what it ended up. Also, the instruments come in small groups, so when the first group came for about 20 seconds, I was completely confused because I thought it was a funky time signature. Pretty bad first impression. In any case, once the song kicks in, it's relatively subdued though entrancing. Some parts feel almost tribally energetic, but considering the overall tone, it doesn't quite work. It also feels rather restrained for a Beyonce song. It begins to get interesting in the final chorus, but not by much.

Rating: 6.5/10

Track 7: Salted Wound / Sia: This feels like a haunting lullaby in the first verse, and the chorus helps provide the glimmer of optimism. Without the bombast like Elastic Heart and Chandelier, Sia can still fill your heart with the almost primal feeling of emotion. Some may say this song doesn't match the rest of the album up to this point or call it almost like a Disney ballad from the 60's, but as we near the halfway point, I'm happy with a light at the end of the tunnel after the collapse into a daze with the last track. In any case, the song begins to build with strings upon the second verse, and here's where staccato works on the mandolin with the harp (which gets the last bridge, gleefully), calling back to Beatles or psychedlic bands of the 60s (I think I'm seeing a pattern). Overall, this song is very beautiful, and I'm hoping it gets a chance in the mainstream public (or who knows, maybe Sia will "take it back" for her next album like she did for Elastic Heart)

Rating: 9.0/10

Track 8: Beast of Burden / The Rolling Stones: I guess Sia's song was meant to transition this 70's hit. It's a nice throwback, but despite the transition, it doesn't quite match anything up to this point. It does have corny elements and is musically much more cheery and poppy in a silly way unlike Love Me Like You Do's seriousness. Still, it's a good song on its own.

Rating: 7.0/10 (as part of the album, 6.0/10)

Track 9: I'm on Fire / Awolnation: Unlike Beast, this takes a more sinister route in its poppiness. The guitar and ambient oohs give the song a catchiness, but the bass synth keeps up the frantic pace of what feels like reality. The song come from the perspective of a ladies' man, and as the listener you can see his rationalization and unhingedness in effect. Now, I know this is a Bruce Springsteen cover, but I can honestly say this version is much better at portraying the mood that appears intended. Very thankful they didn't end up doing another straight reuse. The only other complaint I have is that the song is extremely short, but that was an issue with the original as well, and I imagine more people would be upset if the group ended up writing their own lyrics to add on. With what they were given, they did extremely well!

Rating: 8.5/10

Track 10: Crazy in Love (Remix) / Beyonce: This is what began the hype for the album. However, I can't say it did that for me back when it revealed in the trailer, and this full version isn't living up to others' expectations. Beyonce does her best to retone the lyrics, but the instrumentation feels almost plodding, especially in the intro where Beyonce free-rhythms. Unlike Earned It, it gets too busy in the beat department to its detriment. It begins to get interesting in the last chorus, but it's too little too late. It also gets downplayed by a return to the free-rhythm at the end, though not as bad as the first time. Overall, this left more of an impression than Haunted, but it's still not that amazing. For those of you on digital stores complaining about wanting Beyonce tracks without getting the whole album, know that it's not exactly worth it.

Rating: 7.0/10

Track 11: Witchcraft / Frank Sinatra: Now, this is the song that feels out of place the most. Yes, it's slow jazz, but it's very cheery and I honestly don't know how they'd incorporate it into the movie. I can honestly say it's better song-wise than Beast of Burden, but at this point it now feels like 2 different album visions were conflicting throughout production: dark and sleazy with hope spots, or cheery and cheeky with a lot of throwback. There are plenty of happy mediums, but there are also a disconcerting numbers of songs on the polar ends.

Rating: 8.0/10 (As part of the album, 6.5/10)

Track 12: One Last Night / Vaults: This feels like the uplifting the album needed instead of Witchcraft. Serious, but also very energetic with its strings along with an almost d'nb speed beat. The vocalist has the earthiness of many indie singers, but she doesn't overdo it like many of them. I could honestly see this is a rhythm game, and it feels like one of those aforementioned "happy mediums".

Rating: 8.5/10

Track 13: Where You Belong / The Weeknd: Unlike Earned It, this track feels more like the 80s. It also feels a tad more unfinished, with an intro a good bit longer than it should be and a chorus about twice as long as it should be. It's got some interesting musical ideas, but overall it feels quite half-baked: a trap-like rapid cymbal comes in but plays such long fast streams that it seems like the beatmaker ran out of ideas, and a guitar that comes in near the end feels flat-out in the wrong time. Weeknd is also quite restrained for most of the song, which doesn't give the song much character.

Rating: 6.5/10

Track 14: I Know You / Skylar Grey: Unfortunately, this song just isn't interesting at first. For the most part it's just Skylar singing with the piano and some subdued strings. It feels like it'll build to something like Dream On, but no luck. At least with Bed of Lies, Skylar had some punchy keys, but these are quite boring. A beat comes in for the second verse, but it too feels like a build-up to a better beat. The strings also get more involved, and start to crescendo...to nothing. Once a build-up finally happens for real, the drums that come in feel especially artificial, especially jarring since all the other elements of the song building up to this point have felt organic. Anyway, the piano finally starts getting interesting, but then the false crescendo happens again and kills the momentum. Finally a gradual build-up begins again, but only delivers the same payoff as before, which seems a letdown in proportion. Overall, this track has some moments of promise, but lets down way too many times for me to give it a good rating.

Rating: 5.5/10

Track 15: Ana and Christian (Score) / Danny Elfman: In describing a relationship, this instrumental does a wonderful job. It displays confidence, suaveness contrasted with brashness, the euphoria of the mind, the uncertain times, the constant franticness and uncertainty through it all, and the abrupt end that can kill many relationships. Maybe I just don't have enough experience with instrumentals, but this worked really well for me.

Rating: 8.5/10

Track 16: Did That Hurt? (Score) / Danny Elfman: This also paints a picture, to the extent that I can nail down parts and almost a hint of story, like a classical piece almost. How I interpret the song's story is as follows: the relationship gets physical in an almost methodical manner. An undercurrent of fear and darkness run through the proceedings, and yet there's an eroticism that cannot be denied. Is this right? In response, the atmosphere becomes calmer, almost formal, but with the uncertainty from the prior events. Suddenly, it feels like the lover has an abyss of motivations that has just been slightly peered into, which makes feel murky again. Then, another epiphany strikes: the mysterious is what she desires, though the final little stinger hints this may not be the right choice. Instruments (piano for Ana, violin for Christian and his machinations) and synthesizers (mood) act out these characters and events, and I have to say I was affected well. Whether this matches the book or the movie, I don't care; I saw a story, and a song that manages that without words is quite good in my book.

Rating: 9.0/10

Overall, this album is rather disjointed. It starts off very solid with the big band, dark, and heavy songs, but then it starts veering off-course to cheery classics and setpieces that ultimately underwhelm. There are plenty of standouts, but there are also just as many stinkers, especially close to the end of the "pop portion". Thankfully, the album comes full circle with the score selections, which personally affected me profoundly and will satisfy those looking for a musical experience as opposed to simply sexy songs (which I suppose the Beyonce songs were intended to evoke). In the end, I'd recommend cherry-picking songs; the Beyonce songs in the end aren't worth it, and of course neither are the throwbacks (they work much better as part of their own albums).

Some gold, but only worth a full purchase at a cheaper price
Recommendations: Sia's song, the singles (at the time of writing), and the score songs, *especially* Did That Hurt?
Avoid: Beyonce's songs, Where You Belong, and I Know You

You know, the name of this thread is "Album and Song Reviews", yet I've only done the former so far. Time to change that!

Style / Taylor Swift

Sonically, this is quite soothing. The guitar is staccato and yet smooth, and the drum is heavy and yet sounds calm in its 80s styling. Little piano fringes and chords along with a counter-guitar aid the atmosphere. Once the chorus kicks in, the beat switches to a style highly reminiscent of Love Me Harder. Taylor's voicework does well, with harshness and crooning in the verses that fits. As for the lyrics, they're serviceable. A mini-story is told of an on-and-off relationship that just manages to be alluring enough despite dating other people as well. One relatively minor complaint I have is a little metaphor that it seems Taylor Swift is beginning to use a bit too much: red/cherry lips for sex. Here, she claims "and I've got that red lip classic thing that you like" while in Blank Space she delivered a similar line: "Cherry lips, crystal skies; I can show you incredible things". In any case, it's still a smooth track that is energetic without being an anthem.

My Rating: 8.25/10

Like I Can / Sam Smith

The build-up is wonderful here, starting off with some foreboding acoustic strums, progressing to ambient keys and a bass pedal, then paying off with a letting loose on the drums followed by punchy chords from the keys and hard strums from the guitars. Even returning down for the second verse, things are kept interesting with overarching electric chords and a tambourine (which reminds me that more songs need tambourine). Thanks to the faster tempo, Sam doesn't have the opportunity to do as much "willowy" singing as in I'm Not the Only One, and this allows him to demonstrate his range and staccato notes, which work out well. The lyrics are a salad of metaphors, and they work well, though they come relatively fast to ponder them. Almost every method of seeking someone new is shown ("lawyer on the witness stand" being the one you find as the project to reform and "silence in the mayhem" being the love-at-first-sight type, for example) but the final bridge (which is slower than the others) delivers one stinger of message: relationships aren't perfect, but if you desire someone else because they seem to be the flawless saint-among-sinners, you're only deluding yourself and risking breaking all relations involved. This song is short but effective, and I hope it becomes a single in the US; it breaks the mold that Sam Smith seems to have made with his first 2 singles.

My Rating: 9.0/10

Post #9 · Posted at 2015-03-12 03:29:52pm 9.2 years ago

Offline Sigrev2
Sigrev2 Avatar Member+
4,182 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-10-17

Nintendo Network ID: Sigrev2Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-2884-7660-37993DS Friend Code: 3883-7652-3160
"suffering from success"

Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments pt2 - Aphex Twin

To make a long story short, I was awfully hyped for Syro. As a big fan of Richard's work, the mere thought of a new Aphex Twin album was enough to get me excited. It had been so long since we last saw Mr. James release anything; hell, it almost seemed like we were never going to get anything from him ever again. And then, Syro happened. In September of 2014, after over a decade of waiting, we finally received a new Aphex Twin album.

And it was ~beautiful~.

Then, out of nowhere, we started to see more of Richard around the internet. Releasing unfinished works onto Soundcloud, doing more interviews than ever... As someone who was sure we'd never see the man again, it was a bit overwhelming to be receiving all this material. Overwhelmingly incredible.
And then, out of the blue, this EP was announced. Not more than a quarter of a year after Syro was released. More Aphex Twin? Consider me hype! But, does it live up to the wonder that was Syro?

Well, not exactly.

For starters, if you were expecting an EP of Syro-esque tracks, then you will be quite surprised upon purchasing the EP that this is, in fact, almost nothing like Syro. While Syro was rave, acid, and IDMbraindance influenced, this album reaches well into the experimental genre. Not new territory for Mr. James by any means but certainly an unexpected change of pace after releasing something like Syro. Replacing his analogue synthesizers and drum machines for piano and a drum set while still managing to keep that signature Aphex Twin sound, "Computer Controlled Acoustic Instruments pt2" is quite the beast to behold.

Now, into the songs themselves:

1. diskhat ALL prepared1mixed 13 (5/5)
A haunting piano accompanied by a robotic, yet natural, drum line. Clocking in at 5 minutes, this is the longest track on this release. Keeps the listener interested and doesn't overstay its welcome. Easily my favorite track on this EP. Could've very well fit onto Syro.

2. snar2 (1/5)
As the name somewhat states, this is nothing more than a snare drum. For 20 seconds, the snare drum is played at increasingly fluctuating speeds. From slow and standard to inhumanly fast. At the end of the song, there's the sound of a dog barking? Okay. This doesn't exactly qualify as a song in my book. No reason for it to have been on this or any other release. Nothing more than filler.

3. diskhat1 (4/5)
Some pretty nice drumfunk, in my book. Got a nice groove to it, and the piano being played adds a nice touch to the overall sound.

4. piano un1 arpej (3.5/5)
An interesting little piano piece. Dark and a bit melancholy, but still maintaining a sense of beauty. I wish it could've been longer, but I guess under a minute will do.

5. DISKPREPT4 (2/5)
A mystical little tune that goes absolutely nowhere. Sounds like menu music for a game that's ready to spook ya.

(It's at this point I realize that I have no idea how I'm actually going to review this EP, given the nature of the tracks. But alas, the show must go on.)

6. hat 2b 2012b (4/5)
More drumfunk that comes and goes. Nice atmosphere to the track with some nice sounding drum patterns.

7. disk aud1_12 (0.5/5)
Random fast piano noises that go on for 9 seconds. Again, there was no reason for this to be included on the EP. It's not even a time filler as it doesn't even last for more than 10 damn seconds. Just because you can put something on an EP doesn't mean you should.

8. 0035 1-Audio (2/5)
A drum loop that goes on and adds nothing substantial to the listener. At least the drum loop is pretty nice. Oh, and cuts off abruptly, so that's always nice.
For real, though. I hate it when musicians do that. I can only think of one time where a song cutting off abruptly made any sort of impact other than anger out of me. And I am aware that I have done it many a time in my own musical projects. A hypocrite, yes, but a pet peeve nevertheless.

9. disk prep calrec2 barn dance [slo] (1/5)
Boring, boring, boring. That's all I can really say about this one.

10. DISKPREPT1 (3/5)
A lot more jammy than the last few tracks on this release. Something that I've been sorely missing at this point. A nice addition.

11. diskhat2 (2.5/5)
I honestly don't remember this one. I know it's unprofessional of me, but that's just how things are gonna go. I remember none of this aside from me somewhat liking it when I first heard it. A real shame that something this unmemorable came from Mr. James, someone who could take a soundbite of Evil Knievel during an interview, alter the sound a bit, and make it somewhat enjoyable.

12. piano un10 it happened (3.5/5)
A nice little piano piece, similar in vein to track 4. Nothing substantial, but enjoyable nevertheless.

13. hat5c 0001 rec-4 (2.5/5)
You like listening to the same drum loop for 4+ minutes with a weird, creepy drone in the background and a repetitive piano piece? Look no further. It's alright, but nothing too spectacular. Another song that cuts off abruptly. Hoo boy.

I honestly thought I'd have more than that to say about these songs, but that's the problem; there isn't much to these songs to talk about. That's my main gripe with this EP. There's not much to grasp onto, and the few songs that are actually worth your time are few and far between. The addition of so much filler is inexcusable, in my humble opinion; if you can't scrape together something without throwing in several 9-20 second tracks of nothing, then maybe the release isn't worth the public's time. And it sucks too, cause this could've easily been a 4-5 track EP if you didn't include all that fat. While I shouldn't complain about more Aphex Twin to add to the collection, this is not the Aphex Twin material I wanted. I wanted some more effort. I wanted something with a bit more pizzazz and oomph. As an music fan, I'm scratching my head at such a release. As an Aphex Twin fan, I'm not mad; I'm just disappointed.
Is this release worth $10? Absolutely not. Is it worth a purchase? Yeah. Just to say you've listened to it. Or to say you own something from Aphex Twin if you don't already. But if you have the money to pick this up, you're better off using that money to pick up Syro, a far superior and far more competent release.


Post #10 · Posted at 2015-03-27 09:35:08pm 9.2 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
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Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"

Last updated: 2015-03-27 10:06pm
So I went off a did a live review of Z-mania 1st Mix, the new collaboration album from this very forum on the chat. Here are the excerpts:

Quote: chat
Akumu: 8.0; The melodies feel a tad unintuitive, but the production does feel surprisingly professional, and never is boring

Canon in D (UK Hardcore): 8.0; The beginning feels like a bit too much build up, but once it kicks in, it reminds me of a classic remix DDR would've done; the Sota-esque ending is a bit odd, but does work

CUTIE HONEY (FLASHMIX): 7.5; Admirable attempt, and I like the style, but the mixing is migraine-inducing at times.

Dirty Reeces' Buzz Beat: 6.0; Mixing reaches clipping too many times, and the song is too repetitive despite sounding cool at points

DRUNK MONKY (Extra Wisp Mix): 3.5; the beat actually breaks several times, and only notable additions to the songs are a clap beat, a techno loop and siren at the end, and samples of Lil' Jon. Really now? Also, it doesn't end naturally.

Falls: 6.5; decent enough trance, but with no tangible beginning or end, it just feels like something for a menu loop

FLOWER (Tag Style Remix): 7.5; it's very decent for what it's aiming for, but ultimately it's too close to the original FLOWER for me to be really wowed

Frozen Ray (Delight mix): 7.0; Mixing was once again pretty bad, but at least this had some interesting BPM gimmicks and differentiated itself enough from the original melodically

Goblin Beatz: 7.0; For an intro to a track, this sounds awesome; however, it's not.

Healing Universe: 7.0; Stuck too close to Angelic Mix's structure for my liking, but it sounds very good, if a bit excessively dynamic

I'm Screaming Love (Candy Rave Remix):7.0; I like the mix, if a tiny bit standard; too many things are in the original that I liked, but the idea of making it Rave tempo is a good one

March on Android Moon (Tengoku Mix): 5.5; Mixing is pretty bad on this, with the violin melodies getting overshadowed by the pounding keys that get clipping loud at certain points

MaX Ketsueki: 4.5; I can't even properly critique this

No Koten Nui: 6.5; Mixing as it has been is quite messy, with some of the synths chosen here reaching fart-sound levels of annoyance and the volume mixing being poor. There are some good ideas here though.

PARANOiA OMEGAKAPPA: 5.0; OK, this mastering will be the death of me, especially since it's not just the synths but also the guitar (which does not fit the tempo nor tone of the song) Also, 10 seconds of silence

Paranoia Silence: 5.5; Better-sounding, but tries to go for glitchy style that just comes across as inconsistent. Also, it's basically the original arrangement otherwise; the new beat also clashes at a point with the live BPM of the original

Peace Out (Feel the Beat Mix): 3.5; This is so minimalist that it sounds like it was just done with a soundboard with the original samples.

Pluto III: 7.5; Most of the instrumentation is direct from the original, but making it a constant BPM and changing the arrangement around is cool

Prolificism: 8.0; As the only full-length original, this definitely feels like the star piece. The style may be a bit random in a way that crimps on Sota and Vylet, but at least it's creative; leading melodies and keys are also really good

RED ZONE (MEGAzone Remix): 6.0; Interesting, but it gives up about 45 seconds to be practically the same as the original without vocals; also, the backing synth is off-keyingly annoying

smooooch (UK Hardcore Mix): 6.5; The original is basically Happy Hardcore, so this doesn't too much to stray from the original sound; the mixing is very good for the genre though

Tocatta: 5.5; Far too hazy for any cohesive melodies to come out; there's also this effect that makes the mix even muddier. Some nice elements as the song goes on, but they all in these short little bursts that aren't satisfying; clap beat also gets random

and that was the album! What did I think? Well............... (How do I say this without stepping on too many toes?)
It's obviously a beginner project to many of the artists involved; I have faith that some of them can grow as artists, and some are even already showing noticeable proficiency but there are far too many dud tracks on this compilation for it to work as an album.

Overall, I give it a 6.0/10. I definitely am interested in seeing what Lee Ium does in the future, because his tracks show the most promise, and Prolificism should get picked up as a single by one of this site's steppers. Abaddon's Akumu was also a fun track, and may have set the bar a bit high for what the expect for the rest of the album.

Post #11 · Posted at 2015-03-27 10:03:17pm 9.2 years ago

Offline midone
midone Avatar Member
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Reg. 2014-11-16

Well, thank you! this does infact, help! but what's Proliferation?

Post #12 · Posted at 2015-03-27 10:07:18pm 9.2 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
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Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"
Sorry, I meant to type Prolificism.

Back on topic, next album review should hopefully come soon; probably one of several albums that were on sale recently.

Post #13 · Posted at 2015-04-26 11:33:17am 9.1 years ago

Offline Sigrev2
Sigrev2 Avatar Member+
4,182 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-10-17

Nintendo Network ID: Sigrev2Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-2884-7660-37993DS Friend Code: 3883-7652-3160
"suffering from success"

Last updated: 2015-04-27 02:25pm
Short version: I've got a lot of albums I own that I haven't listened to.
Long version: I own over 300 CDs, and I've noticed that there is a fair amount of them that I have not listened to. Don't know how many albums, but (according to foobar) it's 78+ hours worth of music. Over 3 fucking days. That's just poor on my part. Figured it's time I sat down and actually listened to these records, and why not give my score on them in the process? Makes it fun for all of us.
First album I listened to was The Beatles' "Anthology 3" which I won't be giving a review to given the nature of the content. Which means...

Album Surge #002
Congratulations / MGMT

Note that I'm just gonna give scores for each song - and by proxy, the entire album - and maybe a comment here or there. No in-depth analysis of each song. I've learned my lesson with the CCAI Part 2 review. That's not to say that it won't happen here or there, but don't expect it.

It's Working - 4.5/5
Song For Dan Treacy - 4/5
Someone's Missing - 4.5/5
Flash Delirium - 5/5
I Found A Whistle - 5/5 (This song gives me major Yoshimi-era Flaming Lips vibes, and I'm loving it.)
Siberian Breaks - 4/5 (However, from 6:10 until the end, it's a solid 5/5.)
Brian Eno - 4.5/5
Lady Dada's Nightmare - 3.5/5 (The entire first half really pegs this one down; it'd be a definite 4.5/5 without it.)
Congratulations - 5/5 (This song gives me Beatles vibes, and that just adds to the already beautiful song.)

OVERALL: Strong 8.5
Truly a beautiful psychedelic mindfuck. A wild ride from start to finish. I recommend giving this a listen.

Post #14 · Posted at 2015-04-26 01:03:57pm 9.1 years ago

Offline DDR Addict
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Reg. 2009-09-23

Nintendo Network ID: RimeTM3DS Friend Code: 3454-0657-8756
"Let's Do the Rain Dance"

Last updated: 2015-04-26 01:03pm
So, I'm going through the Hot 100 right now, and I'm seeing which songs I have an feel I should give an opinion on.

Lean On / Major Lazer x DJ Snake feat. MØ
This track seems to be part of Snake's efforts to change his public focus from aggressive trap to more atmospheric types (further supported with his current sales darling You Know You Like It), though I'm not familiar enough with Lazer's content to know how much of that in this track is to Snake's credit. Meu has some rough points to her vocal performance, but it does help convey the wistfulness of lovers and the uncertainty deciding to marry that the lyrics portray. I do appreciate that the prechorus and chorus actually change instrumentally each time, adding both a beat and a subtle trumpet line and some more complex beats. The pitch-shifted bridge also is executed unusually well, with Meu's vocals at first appearing like an exotic 70's Hindi trumpet sample, matching with the style the song has presented thus far. Overall, this song isn't aspiring too far, and it is rather short, but what it does is pretty sweet.

Rime's Rating: 8.25/10

Trouble / Iggy Azalea feat. Jennifer Hudson
I'm admittedly a sucker for both classic beats and piano lines, and this combined with Jennifer's vocals set the mood well. Iggy's rapping is a bit lighter than usual; not in terms of BPM, but subject matter. It's rather standard, being about the good girl-bad guy and winning him over, while Hudson's chorus acts as the counterpoint who calls out the person on his behavior. With the throwback music style, it does fit though. I do take issue with how Iggy doesn't actually have many lines on her own song: half of the second verse is just a pronoun reversal of the first that could've gone through a rewrite, and there are only 3 verses in total that last about 18 seconds each. I do like the ambiguities presented: Hudson's character is still open to being with the person if he "show[s her] where it's at", and Iggy's character gets uncomfortable with the relationship in the third verse, rationalizing it with the idea of social status ("second place never gets the recognition") and
she wasn't always the good girl for the stereotypical dynamic anyway. The beat and Hudson's singing do elevate this song quite a bit, and overall it's rather fun.

Rime's Rating: 7.75/10

Bills / LunchMoney Lewis
Like Trouble, this has a throwback piano style to it, feeling like a soul track, only with a more contemporary beat. The lyrics here are very relatable, depicting both the financial struggle in not knowing whether you can feed the family and pay the seeming flood of bills for the various necessary utilities along with the more everyday struggles that no one seems to mention in music (like bumping your head on waking up or hitting your leg in the morning for it to dully ache for a day or so). Despite the depressing subject matter, the chorus is still rather cheerful and optimistic; it's not a question of if you'll manage, it's doing so and seeing how far you can get with your job. Of course, the track does have its corny moments (some of the similes in the first verse being accentuated with background vocals, the bridge as a whole, and the ending), but for being so accessible, it does provide a good amount of interesting material.

Rime's Rating: 8/10

Get Low / Dillon Francis & DJ Snake
This track is actually over a year old, but is finally getting some mainstream crossover thanks to Fast and Furious 7. Unfortunately, I can't root for this one too much. The beat has some annoying elements in the verses, especially the bird-whistle sounding thing in the background. The pitch-shifted vocals would be more tolerable if it wasn't just 2 words repeated in basically every space except on the rare occasion that the full line "Get low when the whistle blow" is used. There's still a lot of fun in the beat, but after Lean On completely overshadowed it, I can't give this one a full recommendation.

Rime's Rating: 6.25/10


Post #15 · Posted at 2015-04-27 02:35:03pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Sigrev2
Sigrev2 Avatar Member+
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Reg. 2009-10-17

Nintendo Network ID: Sigrev2Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-2884-7660-37993DS Friend Code: 3883-7652-3160
"suffering from success"

Last updated: 2016-01-24 06:10am
Album Surge #003 [2016 RE-EDIT]
John Henry / They Might Be Giants

TMBG's first album with a live band. Fans weren't happy with this change when this album came around, even going as far as refusing to support the band during touring for the album. Did the addition of new people help the Giants' sound, or were the fans rational in their lack of support of the album? Let's find out.

Same as before; not gonna go in deep with each song. Just gonna give scores and give a comment here and there. Cool? Cool.

Subliminal - 4.5/5
Snail Shell - 5/5
Sleeping In The Flowers - 3.5/5 (It's leaning between a 3.5 and 4, really.)
Unrelated Thing - 2.5/5 (A slow, kinda plodding, kinda boring tune. Not bad by any means, but not good.)
AKA Driver - 5/5
I Should Be Allowed To Think - 4.5/5
Extra Savoir-Faire - 4.5/5
Why Must I Be Sad? - 5/5
Spy - 4/5 (Loving the high energy of the track. Ending prevents it from being a 5.)
O, Do Not Forsake Me - 5/5
No One Knows My Plan - 4.5/5 (Wasn't this in one of Plaguefox's SM packs?)
Dirt Bike - 5/5
Destination Moon - 5/5
A Self Called Nowhere - 4/5 (Kinda hard to swallow this one, but once I figured the song out, I realized how solid it is.)
Meet James Ensor - 5/5
Thermostat - 4.5/5
Window - 5/5 (It's a shame this song is only a minute long. I absolutely love it.)
Out Of Jail - 5/5
Stomp Box - 5/5
The End Of The Tour - 5/5

OVERALL: Strong 9
I was pleasantly surprised with this release. I went into it thinking that it would've been, at best, middle-of-the-road. Alas, it ended up being a pretty damn solid album. Sure, the Johns hadn't quite got their groove going with a live backing band at this point, and it definitely shows in certain points here, but the album was certainly a sign of brighter things to come (and given that Factory Showroom came out after this, it proved that the signs were pointing in the right direction).

Album Surge #004
More Adventurous / Rilo Kiley

My lack of experience with this band kinda waned me off of listening to this album. I was only familiar with one song of theirs (which was on this album - go figure) and I bought the album entirely on a whim. Was my sporadic thinking a benefit or a detriment? Let's find out.

It's A Hit - 5/5
Does He Love You - 5/5
Portions For Foxes - 5/5 (This song, by the way, was my first experience with this band. Thanks, Harmonix!)
Ripchord - 5/5
I Never - 5/5
The Absence Of God - 5/5
Accidntel Deth - 5/5 (The only song I somewhat considered giving a lower score to, but it won me over in the end.)
More Adventurous - 5/5
Love And War (11/11/46) - 5/5
A Man/Me/Then Jim - 5/5 (This song kinda gave me "Portions For Foxes" vibes... if that song were fed all of the relaxants.)
It Just Is - 5/5

OVERALL: 10/10

Wow, guys. Just... WOW! I was not expecting this album to be as phenomenal as it ended up being. Every single song on this album is just hit after hit after hit. The vocals are beautiful and expressive, the instrumentation is elaborate and atmospheric, the production is immaculate and immersive... If you haven't heard this album yet, I cannot recommend that you listen to it enough. And don't pirate it or stream it or buy it used at your local record store; you need to buy it full price as soon as possible. You will not regret it.

Post #16 · Posted at 2015-04-27 03:30:19pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Quickman
Quickman Avatar Member+
6,069 Posts
United Kingdom
Reg. 2013-08-17

"five minute white boy challenge"

Last updated: 2015-04-28 03:14pm
Let's review some random albums from my collection.
The song that is highlighted in red is my favourite from each album.


Gorillaz - Demon Days

Intro - N/A (Can't give a review to this, it's a minute of a bassline and weird voice. What is that thing saying?)
Last Living Souls - 5/5
Kids With Guns - 4.5/5
O Green World - 4.5/5
Dirty Harry - 5/5
Feel Good Inc. - 5/5
El Manana - 5/5
Every Planet We Reach Is Dead - 4/5
November Has Come - 4.5/5
All Alone - 4.5/5
White Light - 4/5
Dare - 4.5/5
Fire Coming Out Of The Monkey's Head - 4.5/5
Don't Get Lost In Heaven - 4/5
Demon Days - 3.5/5

Overall - 4.4/5

Fucking LOVE this album, even if it gets a bit weaker towards the end. Last Living Souls is a brilliant opening song, Dirty Harry's rap section gets me every time, the chorus in Feel Good Inc. is chilling, and everything about El Manana is brilliant. And I can't say many things bad about the songs that didn't get 5/5, either. This album is awesome.
Quote: Quick Man
Approximately nobody asked for this song to be included. Least popular decision by the Japanese since Nintendo released the Wii U.

Post #17 · Posted at 2015-04-27 05:28:57pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Sigrev2
Sigrev2 Avatar Member+
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Reg. 2009-10-17

Nintendo Network ID: Sigrev2Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-2884-7660-37993DS Friend Code: 3883-7652-3160
"suffering from success"

Last updated: 2015-04-27 05:39pm
Ah, man~ Demon Days is a fucking classic. Every song on that album is solid, save for November Has Come - primarily because I think MF DOOM is an incompetent and overrated rapper - and even then, that song has one of the best choruses on the album.

Album Surge #005
Hesitant Alien / Gerard Way

After the dissipation of My Chemical Romance, it was only a matter of time before Gerard Way made his first solo album. And in September of 2014, Hesitant Alien was released. Does it live up to the trials of the past, or is it just a flash in the pan? Let's find out.

The Bureau - 4/5
Action Cat - 5/5 (The poor mixing is such a detriment to this wonderful song, but it's still a wonderful song.)
No Shows - 5/5
Brother - 5/5 (The mixing kills this one for me, and I almost gave it a 4.5 purely because of it, but the song itself is too wonderful to dislike.)
Millions - 5/5
Zero Zero - 3/5
Juarez - 1.5/5 (Noisy nonsense saved only by its verses, but just barely.)
Drugstore Perfume - 4.5/5
Get The Gang Together - 4.5/5 (Slinky and sexy verses, and a powerful chorus. Raw and energetic.)
How It's Going To Be - 5/5 (Was originally going to be a 4/5, but the entire second half saved it for me.)
Maya The Psychic - 5/5 (The only song that somewhat sounds like something you'd get from My Chemical Romance.)

Fuck, man. This one was a bit of a chore to sit through, given how poorly mixed this thing is. But I got through it, and I enjoyed it for what it's worth. The songs were mostly well written & well performed, and Gerard's voice is still top-tier. Just a shame that it was, pardon the harsh term, an auditory rape of a mix. If they got someone who knew what they were doing to mix and master this thing (and completely got rid of "Juarez"), this would've easily got a strong 9 outta me.

Album Surge #006
How Bizarre / OMC

On The Run - 4.5/5
How Bizarre - 5/5 (Iconic as iconic gets.)
Never Coming Back - 5/5
Breaking My Heart - 4/5
Angel In Disguise - 4.5/5 (As nice sounding as it is, it doesn't really go anywhere or change anything up.)
Lingo With The Gringo - 3/5 (Really drags on for a while in the second half)
Land Of Plenty - 5/5 (Chorus gives me "The Perfect Life" vibes.)
Right On - 4.5/5 (No reason for it to be almost 5 minutes long. The drags on a bit, and that's what prevented it from being 5/5.)
Pours Out Your Eyes - 5/5
She Loves Italian - 3.5/5

Well, yeah. Not much to say about this album. Got a lot of great tunes, as well as one of my favorite songs of that music era. Thought about giving it an 8.5 (seems to be the leitmotif of this project), but a good bit of songs end up dragging on for much longer than they needed to (especially "Lingo With The Gringo"). Purchased this for a dollar at the flea market, and I feel as though that's kind of a slap in the face. The album is really enjoyable and has a lot of solid material on it. OMC should've been given a lot more love. Sadly, they'll always be just a one-hit wonder.

Post #18 · Posted at 2015-04-27 11:21:51pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Oni-91
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13,507 Posts
United Kingdom
Reg. 2006-10-20

Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-3445-5569-17913DS Friend Code: 008736577880
"Popular bisexual disaster"
Eurovision 2015 Vienna - Official Soundtrack

Right, 2015 then. 2014 was pretty brilliant, so naturally I have high hopes. Let's unwrap and see what's what.
(The OST is naturally going to be different than the performances on the night, so this belongs here instead of in the ESC thread. I reckon.)

01. Albania - I'm Alive / Elhaida Dani: Starts off like one of those Brazilian songs from FIFA that are nice but you wouldn't buy a CD of. There's a really annoying 'heartbeat' right from the start. It seems to be getting more intense as time goes on, presumably to hide the fact they only know four chords. That drum beat gets repetitive pretty fast. It's nice, but...it's not doing much for me. 6/10

02. Armenia - Face the Shadow / Genealogy: Starts with piano and bad singing. Still in the bad singing, weird time signature bits every so often that don't really work. The drums come in pretty weak. I guess the singing gets better at this point, thankfully, but to be honest I can't remember. By the weird 'not quite a key change', it's clear that this is about three or four songs together at once, and I don't like any of them. I used to like you, Armenia. Then you do this, and I remember you're responsible for the Kardashians and Anita Sarkeesian. We can't be friends. 3/10

03. Austria - I Am Yours / The Makemakes: Piano intro to guy singing. I fear this may be a recurring theme in the album. Goes into a bit of a soft-rocky ballad. To win a contest like this you kinda need a memorable song, and this just isn't. But on its own, I'm finding quite a lot to like here. Ooh, I like those chords in the bridge breakdown. Doesn't really have a special ending other than the high note in the final chorus, but it's on the whole solid, if a little unspectacular. 8/10

04. Australia - Tonight Again / Guy Sebastian: Piano with a guy! However, instantly goes into a really good slice of 70s-inspired soul. It's so danceable, there's a build-up before each chorus designed for singing along, it's just...brilliant. I do wonder how much this owes to Uptown Funk, but on its own merits, this makes me really sad that Australia are only here for one contest. I've lost count how many times I've replayed this. 10/10

05. Azerbaijan - Hour of the Wolf / Elnur Huseynov: Piano with a guy! Goes into a pretty by-the-numbers ballad. There's a military snare that probably was inspired by Only Teardrops from 2013. He's hitting the high notes, but even with a key change (take a shot), it's just not striking a chord with me. I just really wish Azerbaijan would stop sending cookie-cutter ballads and actually try to win a contest without bribing. Come on, San Marino doesn't think they're the best every year from just musical quality alone. 5/10

06. Belgium - Rhythm Inside / Loïc Nottet: First properly 'modern' sounding one of the album. Sounds a bit like Royals by Lorde with a marginally less annoying vocal. There's something about his pronunciation that just doesn't quite gel. It's OK, I guess. Nothing I can really write home about. 5.5/10

07. Belarus - Time / Uzari & Maimuna: 'Piano with a guy' is replacing the key change as the go-to Eurovision trope. Goes into some nice synth-stringy dance-pop. I'm liking the violin use, you don't get that very often with this sort of music, and it works rather well. Take a shot whenever you hear 'Time is like thunder', you'll be dead before the end of the song. Otherwise, decent song. 7/10

08. Switzerland - Time to Shine / Mélanie René: Downtempo dark intro. It's good to hear a chorus with an actual bit of meat to it without resorting to wubs. The guitar solo in the middle is nicely understated, there's a temptation to go into full 80s power-ballad-squeadlies. I always like Switzerland's entries, even though they're adamant they're never going to win it, they do send some good songs. 8/10

09. Cyprus - One Thing I Should Have Done / John Karayiannis: Guitar ballad. We get a minute in before some strings, still a bit of a meandering ballad. I guess I like the way that the start of the chorus feels like a fake time-signature change. Then the twinkly bells start and it turns into a Disney ballad. The whole thing is a bit like drinking a bucket of lukewarm wallpaper paste, sadly. 4.5/10

10. Czech Republic - Hope Never Dies / Marta Jandová & Vaclav Noid Barta: Considering in three years they've earned ten points, I'm not holding out much hope here, but here goes. GUY WITH A PIANO! Then woman with a piano. Then we have what I think is a dulcimer? There's something that irritates me about the drums, they sound really artificial, and they chose some really terrible samples. Key change (take a shot), and hearing them go properly all-out just shows what could have been. You can probably guess that the singers were both in rock and metal bands, and so I was looking forward to a Don't Close Your Eyes, but...hmm. Colour me disappointed.5/10

11. Germany - Black Smoke / Ann Sophie: Another song with retro-stylings, it seems to have a little 60s soul influence, combined with modern touches like those wonderfully crunchy drums. After last year's snoozefest (made even worse considering what they had in their national final), this is a notable improvement. Not a show-stopper (I probably won't remember this tomorrow), but it's nice while it lasts. 7.5/10

12. Denmark - The Way You Are / Anti-Social Media: Pop-rock with some pretty obvious autotune to start. Clearly going for the tween girl vote, there. The second verse lyrics reminds me oddly of Killer Queen. I'm liking this, but I feel quite embarrassed for doing so whilst being over 15 and male. However, I'm not sure why a band this twee has gone with a punk name thoug, it's all a bit 'we're so hardcore, we haven't told our parents what time we're getting home! Here's a song about feelings with a ukelele!' 7/10

13. Estonia - Goodbye to Yesterday / Elina Born & Stig Rästa: One of the favourites to win, this. A very good slice of chamber pop, that's rather uptempo for a ballad. It's just hit me that it sounds a lot like something The Divine Comedy would write (Becoming More Like Alfie in particular), which probably explains why I really like it. 8.5/10

14. Spain - Amenecer / Edurne: Spain learnt last year what happens when they actually try. This is a ballad and ticks all the usual boxes, but OOH, an actual drum loop for the second verse? Ambassador, you are spoiling us. Unlike a lot of the ballads this year, it actually has some movement and pace to it. Even has a couple of not-quite-dubstep wubs in the break to give it a modern touch without being overpowering. First song of the CD to give me goose pimples. Great job, Spain. 8.5/10

15. Finland - Aina Mun Pitää / Pertti Kurikan Nimipäivät: I get why they've been selected (every member in the band has Down's Syndrome, and this is to raise awareness), so they get full marks for what they're representing, but as a song, it doesn't do anything after the first 5 seconds. Although, with a 90 second punk song where you won't know the lyrics, what did you expect? 4/10

16. France - N'oubliez Pas / Lisa Angell: It's a ballad, which means I'm going to be instantly comparing it to their 2011 entry, the MIGHTY Sognu. And sadly this doesn't stand a chance. It's a fairly run-of-the-mill ballad that doesn't push many of my buttons, sadly. 5/10

17. Great Britain - Still In Love With You / Electro Velvet: We've sent electro swing! And what's changed here from the original announcement is that the electric saw-wave bass that muddied everything in the original has been held back. Or I've got Stockholm syndrome. Anyway, this is a VERY polarizing song over here, and I'm in the camp that believes it's one of the best songs we've done. For once, it's memorable, it's just that right amount of cheese without being flat-out camp, and it's probably the only entry this year that's bothered to actually have fun. That scat solo is a bit much, but it's not a dealbreaker. I want this to Top 10 so badly. 9/10

18. Georgia - Warrior / Nina Sublatti: Straight out of the blocks we've got some thundering drums, and it goes into a decent bit of dark piano-based pop. Normally Georgia send the boring, forgettable songs, so this is a nice surprise. Unfortunately it doesn't really deviate much in the three minutes, but the base is good enough to give it a pass. 7.5/10

19. Greece - One Last Breath / Maria Kyriakou: What happened, Greece? After doing the brilliant Alcohol Is Free, and then last year having the We No Speak Americano-with-trampolines fun of Rise Up, you've finally sugar crashed, checked your bank account and realised that you're in the shit. Not even the key change (take a shot) can really save this. Will make the final because it's got neighbours, but I don't think it deserves to. 4.5/10

20. Hungary - Wars for Nothing / Boggie: Oh come on, Hungary. You were really good last year, trying to inject some D&B with more mature lyrics, and it should have ushered in some kind of new wave of entries...and then this year, you go "Nope! Woman with a guitar singing a peace ballad!" It's basically Ein bisschen Frieden but more shit. I know that we have no other choice to close this album (bloody alphabetical system), but still, this is not a good ending. Oh, it is not. 4/10

21. Ireland - Playing with Numbers / Molly Sterling: Ballad, doesn't really go anywhere. She can't pronounce 'I' properly. Ending goes full orchestra, but it's not enough to save it from being just...dull. I'm not saying I want Jedward back, but would it kill you guys to not send something that sounds like you're trying to recapture the golden years of the 90s? 5/10

22. Israel - Golden Boy / Nadav Guedj: Starts off as a ballad with some guitar picking, then...goes into Timberland-lite? Erm...OK. Chorus is actual ethno-pop! I can't believe it took 22 songs for this to happen. I'm really missing Turkey. This feels like three songs in one, and as such it's a bit messy, but I guess it could have been handled worse. However, that vocal into the key change (take a shot) is just all kinds of wrong. 6.5/10

23. Iceland - Unbroken / Maria Olafs: It's a bit of downtempo pop that, whilst nothing particularly offends me, there's nothing in there that really makes me want to listen again. 6/10

24. Italy - Grande Amore / Il Volo: One of the favourites to win. I'm surprised it took them 5 years to do popera, to be honest. It's not as good as Sognu, but there's a lot of things it's doing right. The build up of the first verse is how I'd like a ballad done. My only complaints are that I think the drums could be better done, and due to the constraints of the 3-minute rule, it's crying out for a proper big key-change finish, but even so. I wasn't expecting to like this, and I did. 8/10

25. Lithuania - This Time / Monika Linkyte & Vaidas Baumila: Starts off sounding a bit Mumford & Sons, and the chorus just ups it to a LOT Mumford & Sons. By the second verse we've got a banjo in and hoedown clapping. And yet, despite all the things I'd want to do to Mumford & Sons with a wine bottle filled with my own stale piss, I like this one. I think it's down to the voices not being so obviously 'trust-fund Wurzels'. 7.5/10

26. Latvia - Love Injected / Aminata: They're trying to go down the minimal route, methinks. I'm getting irritated by what sounds like the Casio keyboard default guiro scrape through the left channel. Nice percussion break in the middle, but that's about it. It's not got a lot of...well...much at all. 5.5/10

27. Moldova - I Want Your Love / Eduard Romanyuta: Wow, that whistle in the intro and chorus sticks out like a shit in a rice pudding and is about as welcome. This has the feeling of a cover from Hottest Party, and I didn't particularly have time for them either. Also some of the verse lyrics just rub me up the wrong way somehow. 5/10

28. Montenegro - Adio / Knez: They qualified with an ethnic ballad last year, so I guess they'll be lathering, rinsing and repeating for a good few years to come. It's the sort of thing you'd hear in the background of the sort of restaurant that smashes plates, but at the beginning of the night when nobody's turned up and half of the waiters are asleep. Even with the attempt to add percussion at the end, I just don't gel with this sort of thing at all. 4/10

29. F.Y.R. Macedonia - Autumn Leaves / Daniel Kajmakoski: Starts off with piano and a guy again, adds that sort of drum loop I don't like where the snare and hats are all cheap-ass TR-909 and the kick is distorted to the point where it's the deep bassline. It jumps to that drum loop that I've heard slightly too much of on this album, and then goes back to it again. It's not my kind of song, I'm afraid. 4.5/10

30. Malta - Warrior / Amber: Why there are two songs called Warrior this year is beyond me. There's a rather annoying whininess in her vocals in the high register, which is probably going to be asking for flatness come the live performance. Rest is fairly-by-the-numbers. I mean, it's not bad, but I'm not gonna be humming it anytime soon. 6/10

31. Netherlands - Walk Along / Trijntje Oosterhuis: I love that Netherlands got a couple of deserved good results as of late, as they have been long overdue. Unfortunately, this looks to be a non-qualifier. It starts off well enough, but unfortunately by the second verse, it becomes plain to see that you've pretty much seen everything. Cramming four extra syllables into 'why' to get out of having to write extra chorus lyrics isn't a particularly smart move, either. 6.5/10

32. Norway - A Monster Like Me / Mørland & Debrah Scarlett: Norway's last year has the distinction of being only the second Eurovision song to make me cry. So it seems like they're going for the dramatic ballad again. Unfortunately, it isn't pulling at the heartstrings like how Silent Storm did. I don't feel anything from this, I'm afraid. 5.5/10

33. Poland - In the Name of Love / Monika Kuszynska: That piano intro sounds stolen from an 80s intro. It's awkward. It's a fairly sedate, borderline tacky piano/guitar ballad until the drums step up out of nowhere, and it's only then I 'get' it. Those drums probably saved it from a 4.5, I just wish they'd have come in a lot earlier. 6/10

34. Portugal - Há Um Mar Que Nos Separa / Leonor Andrade: Portugal have never really been that good at Eurovision. This one is better than most by them, but it's nothing to write home about. Soft rock with saw wave synths. Key change at the end (take a shot) doesn't do anything but solidify it as 'probably going to be bottom of the semi-final table'. Wait, a vocal fadeout in a Eurovision entry? Are they allowed to do that!? 6/10

35. Romania - De la Capat / Voltaj: Getting bored of these ballad intros by now. Also getting bored of the 'half time reggaeton' drumbeat that half of this year's crop seem to have. It's one of the better ballads, but it's not stand-out by any means. Also, the singer changes from Romanian to English, yet the pronunciation makes the first half of the measure still sound Romanian, oddly. 6.5/10

36. Serbia - Beauty Never Lies / Bojana Stamenov: There's that drumloop again. Also, take note American music industry. This is how you do a song about big being beautiful without condemning 'skinny bitches'. Song is fairly standard...ooh, unexpected change to a dance loop. I like that! It's a very rare occurence that I like a Serbian entry, although that's probably because their fans are rabid, as explained by the immense booing throughout the 2008 contest. 7/10

37. Russia - A Million Voices / Polina Gagarina: I wonder if this will get booed again? Anyway, starts off as a typical ballad. The claps and snare make me think that it's going into an uptempo song, and...nope, ballad drum loop. Oh well. Nice bit with just the vocals and drums in the bridge. I reckon the overwhelming theme is 'nice', but it doesn't really deviate from that. 6.5/10

38. Sweden - Heroes / Måns Zelmerlöw: YES, IT'S CARA MIA GUY. This is the bookies favourite, and when you get to the chorus here, it's very easy to see why. A twangy guitar verse leads to a build up, and the pay-off is a belter of a chorus. The staging really was the performance in Melodifestivalen, but the song itself is a proper dance song, which has disappointingly been so bereft this year. By the final chorus, I'm singing and I've got the greatest smile. This is a Euphoria beater. Stockholm 2016. 10/10

39. Slovenia - Here For You / Maraaya: Talk about a mood whiplash from the intro to the rest of the song! We've jumped from a piano intro to an uptempo track with a bit of a soul feel to it. There's a lot to like here, particularly the violin work (I hope they keep the woman playing air violin in the performance) Maraaya having a bit of an awkward voice hurts it a little, though. 8.5/10

40. San Marino - Chain of Lights / Anita Simoncini & Michele Perniola: It's not Valentina Monetta!? OK, the violins seem a bit overly aggressive for an intro. I'm not a fan of the drum loop when it gets going, it's like they've swung the hi-hat for no reason, and putting a key change (take a shot) there is a bit awkward too. And then it goes into what sounds like a 90s Eurovision chorus, and I'm drowning in the kitsch. Not really a fan. 5.5/10

So, then. Overall I'd give it a 6/10. It's not as good as 2014, in fact it's probably the worst year since 2010, due to how many of the songs this year are similar to each other, it doesn't have the consistent high quality of 2011, or the variety of 2012, or the high quality AND variety of 2014. There's a couple of really good songs in there from particularly Australia and Sweden, but it's too bogged down in middle-of-the-road to be properly good as a whole. Fortunately, this may mean that 2016 will recapture some of the mojo this year lost, who knows?
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Post #19 · Posted at 2015-04-28 12:43:40pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Quickman
Quickman Avatar Member+
6,069 Posts
United Kingdom
Reg. 2013-08-17

"five minute white boy challenge"

Last updated: 2015-04-28 03:21pm
album review #02


Arctic Monkeys - AM

Do I Wanna Know? - 4.5/5
R U Mine? - 5/5
One For the Road - 5/5
Arabella - 4.5/5
No.1 Party Anthem - 4/5
Mad Sounds - 5/5
Fireside - 5/5
Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High - 5/5
Snap Out Of It - 5/5
Knee Socks - 5/5
I Wanna Be Yours - 4.5/5

Overall - 4.6/5

Another ridiculously good album. I'm going to say I enjoyed this more than Gorillaz - Demon Days. Also, I don't enjoy bashing bad ones, so all these reviews are gonna be of awesome albums, or at least good ones. Will any album beat the score of 4.6?

album review #03


Muse - Black Holes and Revelations

Take A Bow - 4.5/5
Starlight - 5/5
Supermassive Black Hole - 5/5
Map Of the Problematique - 5/5
Soilder's Poem - 3.5/5
Invincible - 2.5/5
Assassin - 5/5
Exo-Politics - 5/5
City Of Delusion - 4.5/5
Hoodoo - 5/5
Knights Of Cydonia - 5/5

Overall - 4.2/5

Invincible and Soilder's Poem really brought this one down. Also, I really don't like the fact that this has only eleven songs on it. I'd expect a bit more for an album, really. Never-the-less, there are nine near-perfect songs on it, so that's why it's a 4.2/5.
Quote: Quick Man
Approximately nobody asked for this song to be included. Least popular decision by the Japanese since Nintendo released the Wii U.

Post #20 · Posted at 2015-04-28 09:21:01pm 9.1 years ago

Offline Sigrev2
Sigrev2 Avatar Member+
4,182 Posts
United States
Reg. 2009-10-17

Nintendo Network ID: Sigrev2Nintendo Switch Friend Code: SW-2884-7660-37993DS Friend Code: 3883-7652-3160
"suffering from success"

Last updated: 2015-04-28 10:09pm
Album Surge #007
Incesticide / Nirvana

Dive - 4.5/5
Sliver - 5/5
Stain - 4/5
Been A Son - 5/5
Turnaround - 4.5/5
Molly's Lips - 5/5 (Pop punk perfection.)
Son Of A Gun - 5/5
(New Wave) Polly - 5/5 (Pretty rad take on an already rad tune.)
Beeswax - 4/5
Downer - 5/5
Mexican Seafood - 4/5
Hairspray Queen - 4/5 (Big beautiful noisy mess.)
Aero Zeppelin - 4.5/5
Big Long Now - 5/5 (A real blow-burner, but a real effective one.)
Aneurysm - 5/5

OVERALL: Light 9
Started to lose steam in the second half, but was still an enjoyable ride.
Album Surge #008
Magical Mystery Tour / The Beatles

Magical Mystery Tour - 5/5
The Fool On The Hill - 5/5
Flying - 4.5/5
Blue Jay Way - 5/5
Your Mother Should Know - 4/5
I Am The Walrus - 5/5
Hello Goodbye - 5/5
Strawberry Fields Forever - 5/5
Penny Lane - 5/5
Baby You're A Rich Man - 5/5
All You Need Is Love - 5/5

It's The Beatles. Even at their worst, they're still enjoyable to listen to.
Album Surge #009
The E.N.D. / The Black Eyed Peas

Boom Boom Pow - 4.5/5 (Not normally a fan of minimalist beats, but this song is that next level digital shit.)
Rock That Body - 5/5
Meet Me Halfway - 4.5/5
Imma Be - 4/5
I Gotta Feeling - 5/5 (party every day p-p-p-party every day)
Alive - 5/5
Missing You - 3.5/5
Ring-A-Ling - 3.5/5 (The chorus is so damn annoying, oh my god, but luckily the rest of the song is pretty okay.)
Party All The Time - 5/5
Out Of My Head - 3/5 (Kinda obnoxious. Sounds like they were messing about in the studio for an hour or so. Still decently enjoyable.)
Electric City - 4/5
Showdown - 4.5/5
Now Generation - 4.5/5 (Blues Traveller vibes throwing me for a loop, but it's more than welcome.)
One Tribe - 4.5/5
Rockin To The Beat - 4.5/5 (Debated whether I should give this a 5/5. Decided not to.)

Not really as strong as their previous albums, or the one to follow, but it still manages to be enjoyable. Really starts to lose its luster around the midway point; picks up a bit near the end. I recommend you listen to The Beginning instead if you want your futuristic Peas.
Album Surge #010
Wild Planet / The B-52's

Party Out Of Bounds - 4.5/5
Dirty Back Road - 4.5/5
Runnin' Around - 4/5
Give Me Back My Man - 5/5
Private Idaho - 5/5
Devil In My Car - 4.5/5
Quiche Lorraine - 5/5
Strobe Light - 5/5
53 Miles West Of Venus - 4/5

Still trying to find their footing at this stage, but it's still a solid release.
Album Surge #011
Whammy! / The B-52's

Legal Tender - 5/5
Whammy Kiss - 5/5
Song For A Future Generation - 5/5
Butterbean - 5/5
Trism - 5/5
Queen Of Las Vegas - 4.5/5
Moon 83 - 4.5/5
Big Bird - 2.5/5 (Remember when I said that just because you can put something on a release, it doesn't mean you should? Yeah...)
Work That Skirt - 5/5 (Cute, quirky instrumental that easily washed out the flavor on my tongue from that last song.)

OVERALL: Strong 9
Vast improvement over their previous album. Dunno what the hell happened during the second half, but it's still a solid album nevertheless.
Hopefully someone'll come along and take us to the new page.
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