5. Brian Gray - Code Red
Brian, Wow. This is a great story and the bluegrass genre was an awesome choice for pulling this off. It has an old-school Dukes of Hazard chase theme vibe to it. I appreciate the narrative approach, because it really shows your strength as a first-class story-teller. There are many delightful details that make your lyrics enjoyable to read as well as listen to.
8. Bryan Schumann - Open Road
Bryan, this song is a sonic daydream. You’ve really captured the feeling of having to go to work everyday which is something nearly everyone can identify with. Nice work, you’ve really crystalized a powerful feeling with this song.
4. Zoe Gray - Drive To California
Zoe, This basically has it all. You have a wonderfully catchy refrain and a charming voice. You’ve showcased some impressive rhymes that really flow and tell a spirited story with a carload of youthful character. Your chorus is poppy albeit slightly robotic, but I love the contrast it provides with the more organically sang bridge that shows some real versatility.
19. Ominous Ride - Colipsis
Bonus points for writing fluid vocal melodies over 7/8. It takes a well developed since of rhythm to be able to write naturally in this time signature. The moody hooks, overlapping vocals, and dark instrumentation paint a trippy picture of someone wandering through a shamanic vision quest. Now that makes for a cool song.
13. Kyleen Downes - Taking Daisy For A Drive
Kyleen, I love what this song is about. This is the 2nd song you’ve shared with us that has a beautiful contrast of emotions that are poetically delivered.
1. Ryan M. Brewer featuring Raven Faith Brewer - Existentialism On Senior Spring Break
Ryan, Nice vocal work. Your vocal range and lyrics are reminiscent of one of my favorite modern songwriters, Will Hoge. The overlapping vocals provide some interest but overall the main hook failed to keep my attention the entire time.
20. Dr. Lindyke - On My Way
Bluegrass is the quintessential genre to write the quintessential road trip song in. Townes Van Zandt and many other troubadour songwriter’s made so many great songs about the highway life. While your song has some great imagery and is an honest effort, I really had to pay attention to appreciate the words since the vocal melody didn't get stuck in my head.
10. Steve Stearns - The Ride
Steve, This is a pretty refreshing take on a pretty tired progression. As someone who was raised on, and played in blues & classic rock bands for years, I know it’s not always easy to breathe new life into old forms but you’ve managed to layer in some elements of pop and funkiness that make this catchy and enjoyable.
15. Governing Dynamics - Three Places (I-80)
This has a really cool Neil Young & Crazy Horse vibe to it. I’m really diggin’ the pre-chorus and bridge of this song. They help break up the the driving rhythm and add an interesting change of pace. Really enjoy this tune!
14. Shyfox - Are We There Yet?
This is a good song with some compelling lyrics and melody. Although the main refrain and pre-chorus have fairly simple lines, verses like “Loving isn’t who we are, just a thing we did today” are definitely penetrating.
3. James Young - Drive-Thru!
James, You’ve got a good foundation here. The song has a decent hook but is difficult to really get into because it’s simply about going to a drive-thru. Not exactly something that is all that aspirational or inspiring for most people to identify with. Aside from this minor critique, you’ve got a good ear for melody and some would say that is the most important thing.
21. Ross Durand - Till I Get There
This is a well-written tune. This phrasing is a little rushed in places and I can’t help but think the lines could be tweaked to be sang a little more fluidly.
16. Jailhouse Payback - Wall
This has a really cool Americana-rock vibe. I enjoy the little vamp sections you’ve added in a couple spots. They help keep the tune from becoming too monotonous. The lyrical phrasing is a little hard to get in to, partially due to the three-quarter-note holes you’ve baked in to the end of the lines. Aside from this minor critique, it has a really good swinging groove and I think it would go over well live, even if it’s not the most widely accessible.
6. Megalodon - Accelerator
This is a decent song with a pretty strong story. The language is a bit elementary which isn’t necessarily always bad but from a songwriters perspective I tend to prefer more poetic ways to say things rather than being so straight-forward.
23. Adam Sakellarides - I Need A Break
Adam, this song has a good melody during the verse, pre-chorus and refrain. The lyrics have some comical moments but are not all-together that captivating.
7. Rob From Amersfoort - Still On The Road
Rob, many artists take years to develop a signature sound. From just the few tunes I’ve heard so far I’m starting to pick up on a unique sound and voice that is all your own. Your sound is pretty unique, but your lyrics could stand to graduate to a higher reading-level.
9. Lucky Witch And The Righteous Ghost - Hey Mister
This song is ok but would benefit from a more solid performance. The instruments and vocals are not playing all that strongly with one another in places which make it kind of wishy-washy. With a tighter production this could be really cool.
2. Sumner Wynn - Singing My Heart Out
Sumner, This song has potential. I love the opening chromatic run and the opening verse melody. It’s a little unfortunate that you spent more than a third of your total track length making odd vocal sounds that at times resembled a mezzo-soprano rehearsing a Tuvan throat singing lesson. (:36-1:08 & 1:48-2:20)
17. Boffo Yux Dudes - The Last Road Trip
I enjoy that you’ve interpreted the prompt in such a conceptual way. I wish there was more going on musically. There’s nothing wrong with sections of two-chord music, but in this case the square pattern-trem notes jackhammer my ears with so many overly-repetitive pulses and beats that it leaves me desperate for more movement.
18. Turtle Fence - Best Man
Your lead guitar reminds me loosely of the something Marc Ribot might have played, which is cool theoretically but you could stand to tighten up your technique more. The vocal range is limited and low, which isn’t bad, but it’s not what I think of when I think “road trip”. Although your lyrics have some of that feeling of excitement, they’re sung in such a nearly emotionless way that it loses some of that intended spirit.
12. Emperor Gum - Singalong
I love that you interpreted “Car-aoke” in the form of a sea shanty. Though it would be hard to identify with for most people, there are some interesting things happening and it’s certainly unique.
11. Mick Bordet - Autobahn Hype
Mick, Unfortunately, you’ve captured that ‘stuck in traffic’ feeling too well. It’s unpleasant and frustrating at times. I do appreciate that you’ve made use of tempo changes to help reinforce your main message (kudos for that), but it’s almost so literal and expected that it makes the song hard to get in to.
22. Army Defense - Autoreise
This is a cool concept, but musically it would not be for most humans. Reciting one-word lines that read like a pre-travel checklist is not exactly easy listening.