Saturday, February 8, 2020

ST16R1 REVIEW - Mary Ann Randall

To start, I am a newbie judge… I may be a bit, er, conservative in my approach as this is my first time so I must proceed gently.

Also, as a female, I may be succumbing to my maternal side in some reviews so that may explain some of the approach and why it took my so long to finish (besides trying to do them during a week of the flu running through the house, and trying to finish up while playing dance mom at a dance competition all weekend…and I’m OCD AND clinically ADHD.)  So it took me awhile to find a “style” of giving reviews.


  1. Jocko Homomophism – John Goodman’s Crowbar

The song definitely follows the theme,  and there’s inspiration there, I just think it sits on the hook and looses my attention (even the background sounds don’t break it up enough to me.)
Mom answer:  Good job, I’m proud of you, win or lose.

  1.   The Quantifiers – Dining in Dictionopolis

I liked the ever clever poetry of this song, about “eating your words” lol.  Intellectually speaking sounds like an English language lesson you might hear in a classroom.
Mom answer:  I’m sure you will get an A on this assignment!

  1. Ominous Ride – Running

Nice production, I have to admit I’m a sucker for nice easy guitar hooks…  Sounds like nice song you would have at very end of movie credits to set that kind of “closure” to the mood.  Radio ready, no but I could hear this on the alternative rock station. 
I thought it nailed the theme.   
Mom answer:  I’m gonna post this on facebook!!

  1. Caravan Ray – A Soul as Light as a Feather
Kind of groovy, low key, late night bar listening song.  Kind of like that original song a band will work in in-between cover stuff and the local groupies love it.
Mom answer:  Let’s go listen, I’m so excited that tonight they are debuting one of their original songs!!

  1. Steve Stearns – The Doctor has no time to see you now

My favorite application of the theme to a song.   The tune was fun, had a tv sitcom kind of feel to it.   Fun, laid back sound!  Only challenge I had, is I just had a hard time recalling the tune specifically.
Mom answer:  This is so good!  You should put that up on your Spotify!

  1. Outlyer – Take Me Away

I had to fast forward, the beginning just took a little long, my attention span struggled getting to the beginning.  I liked the effort to do the “rap” style interjected, I just couldn’t stick with the song,  it just dragged for me.
Mom answer:  That’s lovely… did you do any other songs?  I’d love to hear those too.

  1. Jordan Carroll -  Wall-E Meets EVA

I wanted to love this.  I did.  I think it’s got a great catchy little tune in there, but somehow the creativity lagged after that.  I’d revisit the tune and see if it can get further off the ground.
Mom answer:  Great start, but I think you need to go back and review your work again, I think you can add a little more to it.

  1. Temnere – Amplified

Late night stoner music.  I think I got caught up in the heavier rock sound of this, and I am a sucker for fantasy lyrics, guitar solos, and a solid inclusion of drumwork.
Mom answer to the neighbors:  I don’t understand this rock music they listen too, I’ll ask them to turn it down  (but secretly really likes the music and doesn’t actually make good on the request.)

  1. The Brewhouse Sessions – The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Kind of Dylan sounding alternative folk rock sound…  this song could be popular with the coffee shop crowd…  I couldn’t find a reason to love it, couldn’t find a reason to dislike it.
                Mom answer:  I’ll never completely understand what’s cool and what’s not these days.

  1. Bobby Matheson – This Aggression Will Not Stand

I got it,  it met the criteria for the theme, .  Not a bad song, I just didn’t get into it…  
Mom answer:  I think you tried, let’s just see what everybody else thinks.

  1. Boffo Yux Dudes – Logan’s Run

I found this song took the theme a bit too dead on…  I did want to run by the end of it.  It was just too repetitive for me, although if you think about it, it did fit the theme. 
Mom answer:  Ok, that’s enough of that for now.  

  1. Rob from Amersfoort – How to Stay Afloat

I struggled to stay afloat, the song didn’t help.  Maybe it was the raspy production, it was uncomfortable to listen to for me, the melody didn’t stick with me.
Mom answer:  Not everyone likes everything everyone else does.

  1. Vowl Sounds – Squid Linguistics

The title of the song gave a completely different impression of what was about to play.  I was expecting something very weird but instead got a nice driving song with a pleasant tune and I felt like there was a flow to the “story” of the lyrics. 
Mom answer:  Let’s all sit and listen to the new song they just wrote, I’m sure you will all enjoy it!

  1. Faster Jackalope – Scoth and Soda

I’m not sure how I ranked this down as much as I did, the kind of slightly “off” tune was a unique change to your basic “catchy” tune…  but I think the sort of “off” sound may have been what contributed to getting pushed down when I was doing relative comparisons to other songs I ended up ranking higher.
Mom answer:  Sometimes that happens, keep trying I think next time will go better.

  1. Mike Lamb – Falling Down

Song about one of my favorite movies.  Annnnd another Dylan-esque sounding style…  Ok, ok, I’m gonna favor a strong guitar interjection, especially with a great chorus to mix it with…  I think what really caught my attention is I could definitely remember the song in my head after listening to it.  Strong production, strong lyrics imo.  
Mom answer:  You should use that for your next audition! 

  1. Timothy Patrick Hinkle – Sorcerer’s Son

A modern minstrel?  Rock minstrel?  A storytelling song that tells a story.  The lyrics kept me listening to finish the story – bad lyrics could have killed this on for me.  Music style and lyrics were a great fit and it worked– that’s what made it!
Mom answer:  Those theater kids are at it again!

  1. Governing Dynamics – Chiba City Blues

This song makes me reminice back to my 2 week goth phase when I bought my first album by The Cure and the soundtrack to The Crow.  Yummy distortion on this one.  This is another song that got snagged in the relative perspective against the other songs based on the contest  for me.
Mom answer:   You look nice in black dear.

  1. Nick Work – All Kinds

I like “driving songs” this has a very commercial sound to me.  I’d toss it up on Spotify and see what happens. 
Mom answer:  “Nods head to the beat and smiles”

  1. Jeb and Iwa – Memory Thief

I can see this song is trying to set a mood, and in context, I can see (er, hear) that.  It just wasn’t listen-able by itself to me.   It could possibly be I don’t recognize true art when I hear it…  my opinion is just one of many.
Mom answer:  Ok – I’ve heard some of it…  Can we listen to the rest later? 

  1. Good Guy Sojabe – Into the Maze

This song sounds like it’s in a maze….  But the tune stuck with me, and I can see this playing on alternative rock radio.  The production is strong, rich guitar and drum work and fits the theme it’s modeled after.
Mom answer:  I used to listen to David Bowie when I was younger and that song reminds me we should rent that movie again sometime

  1. Ross Durand – Back to the Beginning (The Ballad of Inigo Montoya)

Clever tune, clever lyrics, entertaining enough to make me laugh out loud the first time I heard it!  Song style and lyrics were completely in line, and fun to listen to!  Very much catches the spirit of its muse.  Not only that, the melody, the song, stuck with me in the most pleasant way!
Mom answer: Anyone that hasn’t seen The Princess Bride can’t be friends with my kids (just kidding…. Maybe….)

  1. Lichen Throat – Clear Sky and Cool Water

I liked the guitar melody in this one.  I liked the words…  it stuck with me…  I’d rather heard more of a singing melody.  Again, another song where what made it stand out “different” to me is also probably what hurt the ranking too. 
Mom answer:  Maybe we should get several opinions before making a decision

  1. Menage A Tune – Peter and…

This song made me feel sad and kind of got lumped in with the group of songs where the tune being different stood out to me, but gave me conflicted feelings on ranking.   Maybe relax a little, felt like the sadness was more pushed on me rather than let me just feel the emotion of the tune…. Perhaps the heavy enunciation made it sound like theatre teachers presenting a song for the play to their students.  Soften up the singing, more wistful and less over-pronunciation.
                Mom answer:  This is an example of why we get 2nd opinions.

  1. Glen Raphael – Right as Rain

I only put this 2nd because I had to do a 1st and 2nd and not 2 firsts.  I would buy this song, and folksy music isn’t even my thing.  I love the guitar work and the tune… the only thing that pushed it second was comparing the application of the theme with it being just a bit more obscure in application.  Such a lovely little ditty in juxtaposition against a heavy violent movie. 

Mom answer:  “Taps foot, pours glass of wine, puts on headphones”

  1. Mandibles – Rock Beats Paper

Heavy metal folk minstrel….   Trans-siberian type arrangement?  Creative idea – I liked the guitar but the singing and the tune just grated on my ears.   I wish I could be more constructive on this one… 
Mom answer:  Why don’t you try another style and see if that works?

  1. Pig Farmer – They’re here

Half of a 2 minute song with an intro that doesn’t match….  I’ll leave it at that
Mom answer:  Not every idea works, maybe just try again with something else?

  1. Jerkatorium – In the Future

At first I hated this…. Then I couldn’t get the damn song out of my head.  Bravo for establishing a place in my brain.  Catchy and commercial ready!

Mom answer:  The only song I can’t get out of my head aftre the baby shark song is…… 

  1. Micah Sommersmith – Chariot Ride

I liked the piano tune, the song and lyrics – altho the tendon comment made me cringe a little  -  lol the lyrics were quite clever tho.
Mom answer: Why didn’t you enter?

  1.    Brian Gray – A New Story

Beautiful tune and lyrics and zombies!  I love zombies!!!  Easy to listen to, pleasant, interesting, and lyrics sneak up on the listener.
Mom answer:  I’m so disappointed in you for not entering.

  1. Just Ducky – Under the Big W

Refereshing different style!  Very much the style of Puttin on the Ritz! Clever, interesting, fun to listen to….
Mom answer: I’m disappointed in you too for not entering.


1Ross Durand
2Glen Raphael
3Ominous Ride
5The Quantifiers
6Steve Stearns
8Nick Work
9Mike Lamb
10Governing Dynamics
11Jocko Homomorphism
12Vowl Sounds
13Good Guy Sojabe
14The Brewhouse Sessions
15Caravan Ray
17Timothy Patrick Hinkle
18Jordan Carroll
19Lichen Throat
20Faster Jackelope
21Menage a Tune
22“BucketHat” Bobby Matheson
24Rob from Amersfoort
25Jeb and Iwa
26Boffo Yux Dudes
27PigFarmer, Jr

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