Thursday, July 28, 2011

Taco Tornado

Sunday became the submission deadline of the Grand Robot Master Remix Battle’s climactic face-off following a 24-hour extension. The final battle pitted Mega Man against Proto Man; both remixers covered the Spring Man and Elec Man themes in their attempt to claim the tourney top spot. Despite the competitive nature of GRMRB, DarkeSword playfully admitted that “This is not actually a competition. I just made this thread to trick all of you into making Mega Man mixes. In total, the tournament brought about 57 arrangements. prophetik’s track made use of tribal drums offset with glitched synths, carried by Spring Man and then cooled down with Elec Man in a minor mode. WillRock also took Elec Man into minor territory, putting in a bass growl as the arps continue to the left of the stereo field; the melding of both themes is aided by this panning separation, particularly as the beat drops and the remix goes for an extended solo.

Monday Night Madness took off after a false start, since the previous round jumped forward one week due to lack of entrants. The theme for the night was “Amnesia” providing an excuse for my spoken-word “Intro Reminder”. zorg’s track involves a man who “forgot how to use his DAW” along with a drummer who suffered brain trauma; the result is expectedly disjointed digital tunage. Xarnax42’s “Wisps of Remembrance” starts with a flourish of piano and follows up sparsely on the keys for its duration. Akogare Zephyr made another rare appearance, serving up arpeggio and filtered drum loops under her echoed pop vocal. coda experienced “GameNesia”, which apparently involves a four-note vibraphone motif, continuous buzzing bass, strings and crushed percussion. MisfitBYTE raced across varying and frenetic riffs, the effect of inputting "Amnesia: Lost My Mind" as notes in binary. swordofdestiny submitted possibly the thinnest waveform ever seen in SolidComposer, consisting of sporadic hand drum strikes.

Soundevotion Competition round 59 reached its deadline for entries on Monday. A samplepack served as the basis for the tracking compo, including a wide palette of instruments. Despite SDCompo being a month-long competition, andyray decided to restrict himself to a few hours; his entry carries gated chords with an industrial sound that gives way to funky drums. Chotoro’s pads swoop in for an atmospheric jaunt supported by a repeated melody line and several stylistic change-ups. chunter used the singing speech synthesizer UTAU for his electro pop tune garnished with guitar licks and a diverse collection of textures. cralias’s “Reaching for Stars” begins with gentle, rhythmic ambience and assembles layers of harmonic elements, peaking in density halfway through. fladd’s flattened synth riff bows under sustained bass notes, clearing the way for trip-hop.

hseiken preceded his entry with a spoken notice protesting the option to record voice in a samplepack-based compo; he goes on to sample his own speech, creating a quirky groove without the pack to help bolster his point. CAG strummed a heartfelt song on guitar, strings and percussion before dropping everything in favor of a more active mood and unrestrained yelling. juolac discovered a effect when using synchronization on sample drum loops, and went on to layer multiple loops across the stereo spectrum. OneTrackMind did “Indeed” submit a dance entry nailed down by unrelenting kick drum. At the end of the artist name alphabet, waterhead served up electronic minimalism, human beatbox and elements of “Rapper's Delight” complemented by narration spoken by his younger brother.

JHCompo on Tuesday had its largest turnout yet, and with it a large set of site bugs. The “Deal with the Devil” theme was met with a positive response and an eclectic set of entries. After my emphatic “go to hell” intro, americanwarewolf guitared a track in five minutes; he put out his blues rock quickly because he was preoccupied with real-life duties. OverCoat agreed to a deal, but insisted that he see “the cake egg-man” and uploaded the ebb and fade of a string section. Brandon Strader had acquired a saxophone and practiced it over the course of a day, then used the compo to riff on the values for a minute. MisfitBYTE attempted to blend blues with glitch-drums, but ultimately felt that “I need a new deal.” Tomapella managed his time wisely during the round, having time to compose a Rhodes-centric jazz section, a segment of country music, and a thorough description.

zorg posited his thoughts on religion and showed off anthemic pads at the same time; he set down drums to keep the vibe going and took a left turn to moody bass at the end. Xarnax42 tossed in an incomplete work of keyboard synths, apparently deciding to go lounging with the devil. mv once again failed to disappoint, bringing along his mixture of violins and trip-hop filled with e-soloing and filtered vocals. chunter chose to be the master of his own destiny by layering piano, bells and glockenspiel for a dense lead melody backed by drum funk. coda advertised a crash course in slap bass, piano-pads and organ provided by the devil himself. MandraSigma seemingly found the escape clause by signing his contract in ketchup rather than blood; his entry similarly reverses its way through the situation with a fair amount of glitch.

Newcomer shojin sang his Adele-inspired entry with bass accompaniment, gradually adding guitar chords, wordless harmony and a rolling beat. americanwarewolf’s brother trenthian suffered technical issues, but worked out some jangly strumming backed with percussion and a horn section. Rexy made her first JHCompo appearance, inspired by a scene in The Little Mermaid; the initial harp and orchestral elements step to the side as drums and harpsichord move in, trading turns as the tune progresses. Jarski seemed to be going through a rebellious phase for the title of his dance entry containing a count up among other quirky aspects. MVM offered an affecting musical cue while irrelevnt rounded out the entries with his electric and acoustic guitars.

OHC on Thursday featured a "Distant and foreign" theme, and so I recorded my vocal intro with an app I had scarcely used before. Acuity was unable to make it to the round, but created a trippy piano-and-strings-centric entry ahead of time that was submitted by DDRKirby(ISO). Making his return from two weeks ago, Trollgate produced in a similar guitar style than before with the addition of sampling. siebensus4 professed to being "rusty" and submitted high-gain bass and pads with an undercurrent of choir. B-Type appeared after a long compo hiatus, delivering effect-laden flows with such rhymes as "poop chute" with "does not compute!" RAMPKORV met the "Benis Brothers" playing swiftly on the keys and swooping in and out of discordance.

Tomapella also performed on piano, in his case bluesy riffing inspired by his recent travels. Usabell's spacey chords and industrial percussion meet a prominent bassline and a go around the ivories with bongos. MandraSigma chose his forthcoming gaming convention trip as his foreign experience, submitting a "tone poem" that ultimately implodes. Arcana's lo-bit lead is accompanied a pulsing pad at first, then by high strings and a set of dance patterns. CJthemusicdude made use of the half hour he had available to work the pentatonic scale and a laid-back beat. mv put up his usual thought-provoking entry description for his lush ambient bed of sound. DDRKirby(ISQ) uploaded his actual entry for the night, a noise-filled build up that leads to a bevy of chips and glitch.

sci showed his offbeat approach to voice sampling using a start-and-stop electro backing. Forty-Two was surprised his song came together as effectively as it did, harmonizing chimes and woodwinds with pizzicato strings. Bren admitted to having a lack of time, but pulled through using his signature synth lead and chord structure. Appearing in the chatroom in the guise of ThomasTryst, ProjektZero made his compo comeback mixing together acoustic rhythms, electronic bass and his lyrical stylings. jarski appeared to be "lost in sewers" and found his way along with noise filter sweeps and funky snare. Suzumebachi may have to mail his tunes via the postal service to send them in on time, but he nevertheless submitted a densely layered production ending with a gentle 3-4-5-1-8.

I guess I’ve gained some visibility as a result of participating in so many competitions. Gradually I went from being an unknown member of the community to being "that guy who does compos a lot." It makes me well suited to chronicle the gatherings that happen every week from such varied communities.

*Title of blog post selected by LuketheXjesse.

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