Saturday, May 26, 2018

ST14R4 Reviews - Dave Leigh

This was haaaaaard....

I changed my mind a lot. Naturally, I had my own preconceptions coming into the round (full disclosure: I've already written a theme), and this challenge has been bouncing around in our suggestion box since before I took over. But the judges like the challenge, and after much thought, so do I. Cons of the challenge include replayability... but that's exactly what we're looking for! It has to be played at the start of each show, so it better hold up to repeated listens. Another con is that it could be perceived as self-serving. Well... sure it could. But presumably we're all playing this game because we like it. Besides... we didn't float the challenge until I already wrote a theme (so it's not because we need it, but to open it up for group participation).

But the challenge isn't what made this hard. It's the entries. Every single one of them deserves to be played in future listening parties, and I'm happy to say that after SpinTunes 15, they will.

Well done, all!


Micah Sommersmith - The Tunes are Spinning
This was the hardest for me to get behind. And then it just kept being an earworm. And when juggling these songs around repeatedly, it just kept moving upward. The lyrics are clever, with a great deal of specificity, and also just the right amount of ambiguity (in case Tom needs to move the listening party to another time or day). Plus the fact that it's just a really nice, catchy, quirky theme that seems to capture the eclectic mix of our participants. So... number one it is.

Bubba and the No Longer Amiable Kraken - Listening Party Theme
This one is my hands-down favorite when Micah's isn't. Seriously, there's about zero-point-zero-zero-one percent difference in ranking between this and Micah's entry for me. It's catchy, it's got specificity, and I absolutely love the "Get to the point, Tom!" line. It's also short and sweet after the instrumental break... just a repeat of the chorus and the show starts. When all was said and done, the separator here for me was that it's slightly too specific as to the time and day of the show, and that could limit it in the future.

Megalodon - STLIP-15
Things that I like about this most... you get to the point right up front. You're introducing a show, so it's nice to know when the pre-show ends and the show begins. I think you've got a good intuitive handle on that. It's not as lyrically dense as the higher entries, but this is still really impressive.

Temnere - Saturday Morning SpinTunes
I've been most impressed with the solid consistency of your entries this whole contest. We know your style, we know where you're going to go, and you go there. Bam! The reason that this lands behind the entries for me has to do with the feedback I gave Megalodon. You're introducing a show, so it's important to solidly break from whatever was previously playing. And here it takes right at a minute into a 2-minute song before you introduce us to the contest. That's not horrible... there's no criticism I could give that wouldn't overstate the difference in quality between these entries. Fantastic job!


SHADOWS

Glen Raphael - SpinTunes Listening Party
Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! You Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! did Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! this Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! to Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! me! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! You Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! made Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! me Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! hear Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! this Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! even Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! in Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! my Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! sleep! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! Darn Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! you Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! to Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! heck! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum! Ba-duh-pah-te-bum!...

Menage a Tune - SpinTunes
Nice and bouncy. I'd say that the second verse needs to be moved down a bit closer to the instrumental break. It's a good intro, so you should just hand it off to Tom for his voiceover without the "write a shadow" portion in the way. IOW, I'd reverse those. Musically, really commit to the shouting. If you're going to shout, SHOUT! And both of you do it, and layer it. Nice shadow! 

Menage a Tune - TailSpinTunes
It's a filk, and the tune's unoriginal, but you already know that. But it's a nice way of showing the same lyrics set to a completely different tune.