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Saturday, March 4, 2017

SpinTunes #12 Round 3 Reviews: Corinne Lucy

This year I followed FAWM closer than I have in the past.  I've known about it for years, I know a number of SpinTuners participate, but I've never spent a ton of time there.  This year I tried to log in most days & go through at least a few pages of songs.  It was a lot of fun, and I plan to do it again next year.  I found a lot of cool songs, and one of them I stumbled onto was "Stationary Dancing" by Corinne Lucy.  I really enjoyed the song, and when it came time to look for a round 3 guest judge I remembered that song.  So I messaged her to see if she would judge a round, and here we are.  While you're reading over her reviews you should check out some of her music on SoundCloud.

- Spin




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Ryan M. Brewer
Nice use of sibilance in the first verse
Very strong imagery right from the start and throughout
I like the syncopation of the repeated melodic line in the chorus
Great hook with those harmonies at the end of the chorus
Love the layers of harmonies on “creep”
Great shift to a waltz
Love the Tom Waits-style interlude – adds another dimension and keeps the listener interested
Very catchy – I was singing along by the last chorus on the first listen
My only criticism would be that your singing style might be slightly false, put-on – but then I haven’t heard you speak, so perhaps it’s 100% natural
Great singing ability
Soprano section at the end is wonderful – very soulful

Brian Gray
Proofreading hat on – “Whilst”, not “Whiles”
A battle-cry extremely chantable indeed – fantastic chorus, great hook
Overwrought lyrics but you’ve certainly kept a consistent atmosphere
Harmonies on that hook really add triumph
Strains of Jonathan Coulton? Threads of Shpadoinkle…?
Enjoyed how you linked the two choruses together at the end
You sang and wrote this like a song from a musical and I want to watch that musical

Ominous Ride
I love the call-response harmonies
“EVERY DAY!” shout in the chorus is great
Double-tracking needs to be tighter in timing and pitching – with more than 8 days I’m sure it would be
I like the dramatic delivery of the made-up phrase
Very strong structure

Lucky Witch & The Righteous Ghost
What a fantastic concept!
Your singing sounds so assured and nonchalant – sounds influenced by Liz Phair
The melody in the chorus sits uncomfortably over the second chord – it’s mostly the note at the end of the line, e.g. “can you feed HER”, “can you reach HER” – shift it up a semitone or sing it in more of a growl to avoid the dissonance (unless you were going for dissonance)
Emphasis on “hatebaby” ends up on the “-by” because of the melody; consider making the second syllable (“-ba-”) 1 beat longer to place the emphasis more naturally
Really liked the call and response harmonies at the end

Alex Forger
Really sweet melody but without a strong hook
Lovely singing voice – soft and sweet
Minimalist production could benefit from some harmonies
The topical message is very softly delivered – this is a great way to handle a divisive and potentially bitter issue

Jailhouse Payback
Very pleasing groove – reminded me of They Might Be Giants and The Beatles
I like the fact that it doesn't resolve
Nice guitar solo – simple like Beatles
Very nice melody, nice harmonies
Very accomplished production – the drums are great

Ross Durand
Very sweet concept that drew me in
I like the rhyme scheme with rhymes halfway through each line
Your made-up word has a nice “etymology”
The structure is nice as well – AABABA is kind of unusual and you created a strong refrain so it works very well

Governing Dynamics
I love the lyrics – is this about someone in a coma? Or a Major Tom thing?
The harmonies sound a little uncertain in places and I think that’s making them pitchy – try to go for it with confidence and you’ll get better results
Turn the drums up, especially at the end – the guitar drowns them out almost completely
The whole thing is very evocative – it’s dreamy and slightly uncomfortable, which fits the lyric perfectly

Steve Stearns
Are these chords borrowed from All The Young Dudes at the start? If so, consider changing the electric guitar sound and melody – it’s very similar!
I love the production – the strings and brass, and the way the drums are used, really create a Sgt Pepper feel
It’s a great mash-up of Bowie and Beatles influences
The vocals get lost in the mix sometimes, could they be louder?
I love the sitar and the backwards tambourine!

Shyfox
It sounds as though the harmony an octave lower isn’t quite in your range – consider using a vocoder or similar to achieve the same effect, it’ll match the main vocal perfectly in pitch and timing
I really like the melody, it’s very varied and evocative
Is there any mileage for you in singing with more confidence? If you try to really go for it you’ll probably get better results
Very much like the counterpoint “yurtinflorfum” harmonies over the second verse

Army Defense
Less of a strong melody here
Super fun though
In some lines, emphasis is on the "wrong" (awkward) syllable
Those seventh harmonies in the chorus need to be more assured to sound in tune
Double-tracking is out of time on the chorus
Like the re-coloring in the final chorus
Great counterpoint harmony in the final chorus, love the pad-like one at the end

Zoe Gray
Wonderful imagery – reminded me of Aimee Mann
This could have benefitted from harmonies as well as double-tracking
The double-tracking could be tighter
Catchy chorus but I’m not convinced by the use of “sleep with your eyes open” – it suggests wariness; I think that’s the opposite of your meaning, which is perhaps more like being awake with your eyes shut…
I love the menacing tone and the contrast created by those little music-box bells – perfect prosody with the lyric

Lucky Witch & The Righteous Ghost
The distortion on the verses has a very nice effect
Fantastic imagery – “I try to talk but bird sounds come out” is freaky! You’ve conjured nightmares brilliantly here
Production is great with the churchy organ and whatever that distorted noise is behind it – very creepy indeed
The smeary tube-amp-like distortion on the chorus is very piercing – it’s difficult to listen to. It fits the tone but you could turn the effect down to make the song a bit more palatable while still keeping it very creepy

Adam Sakellarides
It sounds as though you don’t quite know the melody - perhaps more familiarity with the song will solve this
Really reminiscent of They Might Be Giants
The melody is unusual enough to carry this level of repetition, but it might be worth changing it up in the chorus nonetheless

Kyleen Downes
Nice concept; the dreaminess could be brought out more strongly with dreamier production, e.g. turn the guitar down & add a bit more reverb
You’re doing some vocal fry
The emphasis on some of the lines is in an unnatural place – e.g. “But this sun-SET”… “Maybe not having IS”…
“The key to change what your life needs” doesn’t make sense for me
The verse melody is strong
The pre-chorus does a great job of building up expectation but the melody in the chorus could be stronger for a bigger pay-off

Mick Bordet
This made me laugh
It sounds a bit like Blur at the start but quickly morphs into something off the B-side of David Bowie’s Low
The production’s very interesting – this would fit into a David Lynch film
Really like the oboe – this is such an unusual piece!

Bryan Schumann
The magical sound of the chanting at the start is a strange fit for the RATM-style rap that follows
I’d turn the guitars down and the drums up
The siren-like sound is very evocative
The song is somewhat uncomfortable to listen to – given the subject matter, that may have been on purpose, but the whole thing could be brought together with louder drums and bass to counter the piercing guitars and siren
Not sure about your accent on “without human, can earth survive?” It does suit the ungrammatical phrase, and that creates a great rhythm – but it’s still questionable for me

Rob From Amersfoort
I really like the production – the muffled syncopated drumbeat and bass are great
Interesting harmonies on the chorus, it goes somewhere very unexpected – especially the counterpoint “They rule the world now”
Ik wil horen hoe je klinkt als je in het nederlands zingt!

Boffo Yux Dudes
For my liking, the pitch-shifted high voice is overused here – it’s funny but after a while it gets irritating. Consider using different effects for each time it appears?
This reminds me of the Bonzo Dog Band obviously but also early Queen, e.g. Bring Back That Leroy Brown – with tighter harmonies this could really work
The piano is sometimes out of time with the other instruments

1 comment:

  1. Belated but eventual thanks for the review!

    Not to be TOO argumentative, but regarding grammar, that line (and embedded "whiles") is straight out of Henry V's "St. Crispin's Day" speech:

    And gentlemen in England now a-bed
    Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
    And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
    That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

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