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NWOAHM666
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Fri Sep 17, 2010 5:22 am
Posts: 9
Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 12:12 pm 
 

Hello to everyone, I've been reviewing albums for some time (currently groove thrash even if I have others in the making) and I'd like to know how I can improve my writing/reviewing style. I will leave here the link to my reviews:

http://www.metal-archives.com/user-reviews/NWOAHM666

If anyone has an opinion/suggestion I'd appreciate.

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kgerych1995
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:07 pm
Posts: 280
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 1:08 pm 
 

This is for Human by Death and it keeps getting rejected. I don't really see too many problems myself, and it's personally a joke.


Now, I am not a major fan of the metal sub-genre of death metal, but the one band that is a notable exception to this thought is the mighty "Death" from Florida (Wow, think of it, Florida's given us so many great bands like Savatage and Crimson Glory as well as Death). I actually discovered Death about 4 years after the passing of guitarist and front man Chuck "Evil Chuck" Schuldiner, with my introduction being the 1990 masterpiece "Spiritual Healing". I soon began to find the other Death albums from the back catalog, but the one that really struck a chord with me was 1991's "Human", which I consider to be the band's crowning achievement, along with the two albums that came after this. "Human" finds the once morbid band in a transition of musical elements. Gone are the lyrics that tackled social issues, like those on the "Spiritual Healing" disc, and the lyrics about disease and overall morbidity found on the bands earlier work. Presented here are lyrics that actually mean something. The music presented is shifting as well. Schuldiner's vocals are still the raspy, low vocals that were featured on the band's previous output, but the playing has changed a lot from, say, an album like the 1987 debut, "Scream Bloody Gore".

The music featured on "Human" is more along the lines of Progressive Death Metal, with odd time shifts and pieces that build and progress, much like the "Spiritual Healing" album began to push forward. The album features some musical elements that are generally not found in death metal, such as strange, bizarre time changes, and other elements that are reminiscent of bands like Rush and Yes, with a unique death metal flavor. I would almost describe it as if you took the strangeness of a band like Yes and paired it with the "Spiritual Healing" album, that is where Death's 1990's output is at. While the first half of the album (tracks 1-4) may seem like your conventional death metal tracks, track 5 begins this weird, almost psychedelic trip in the sense that tracks like "Lack Of Comprehension" or "Cosmic Sea" feature these fluid, clean guitars and trippy lyrics, much in the vein of a band like Yes or King Crimson. If you ask me, Chuck must have been either A) hitting the grass a bit too much or B) cranking some weird stuff like King Crimson or Yes to produce such a unique, yet trippy, progressive death metal juggernaut like "Human". On the tracks like "Flattening Of Emotions", they really pick up where "Spiritual Healing" left off, with fast chugging riffs, slamming double bass blasts, and a thumping bass that is there to be the foundation of the songs. It is also worth mentioning that the drum intro on "Flattening Of Emotions" sounds like a more kick-ass version of the intro for Van Halen's "Hot For Teacher". Personally, there is not a single bad track on this album, its a full on assault from start to finish.


Overall, if a kid ever asked me what death metal was, I would hand him/her a copy of "Human" and send them on their way. This is probably the best death metal album of all time, no bull about it. Just straightforward, punchy, heavy death metal that is extremely enjoyable for even people who are not fans of death metal. Overall, highly recommended for anyone looking for some aggressive metal.

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Metantoine
The XVI, dominar to over 258714 subjects

Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 5:00 pm
Posts: 8485
Location: Québec
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 1:22 pm 
 

Maybe because Human already has 22 reviews and yours doesn't bring anything new to the table and your musical description is quite wrong and lacking (comparaisons to Van Halen and Yes...). I haven't touched your review though, perhaps it would be better if the mods who did would talk about it here as well.
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kgerych1995
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:07 pm
Posts: 280
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 1:41 pm 
 

Well the only comparison to VH I made was the intro to Flattening Of Emotions...which sounds somewhat similar to myself. And im not comparing the MUSIC to Yes, but rather the complex and progressive song structure to that of Yes and King Crimson...whereas the sound is straightforward death metal that Death helped to pioneer! That is all...

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kgerych1995
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:07 pm
Posts: 280
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 1:42 pm 
 

kgerych1995 wrote:
Well the only comparison to VH I made was the intro to Flattening Of Emotions...which sounds somewhat similar to myself. And im not comparing the MUSIC to Yes, but rather the complex and progressive song structure to that of Yes and King Crimson...whereas the sound is straightforward death metal that Death helped to pioneer! That is all...


also on a side note, I can delete the VH reference if its that inflamatory...

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droneriot
RETIRED

Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 1:17 pm
Posts: 5237
Location: Germany
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2012 5:10 am 
 

http://www.metal-archives.com/reviews/U ... /droneriot

My first review in over 1 1/2 years. I'd like to hear some thoughts. I'm definitely a bit rusty, but I want to get into it again.
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CrimsonFloyd
Metal newbie

Joined: Sun Feb 29, 2004 7:19 am
Posts: 381
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat Jun 30, 2012 5:25 pm 
 

kgerych1995, here's some constructive criticism of the Human review.

Quote:
Now, I am not a major fan of the metal sub-genre of death metal, but the one band that is a notable exception to this thought is the mighty "Death" from Florida (Wow, think of it, Florida's given us so many great bands like Savatage and Crimson Glory as well as Death).


Band name doesn't need quotes.

Quote:
I actually discovered Death about 4 years after the passing of guitarist and front man Chuck "Evil Chuck" Schuldiner, with my introduction being the 1990 masterpiece "Spiritual Healing". I soon began to find the other Death albums from the back catalog, but the one that really struck a chord with me was 1991's "Human", which I consider to be the band's crowning achievement, along with the two albums that came after this.


Personally I find this sort of "I got into band X on July 14th 1996" intro dull. Unless involved meeting the band, saving you from suicide or something equally notable, why is it worth mentioning? Don't take it personally, but nobody but you probably cares how you got into Death. Thousands of people listen to this band and we don't need to know how each and every one of them got into the band.

Quote:
"Human" finds the once morbid band in a transition of musical elements.


Awkward phrasing. I don't think this sentence is grammatically correct. How do you "transitionof musical elements"? I think you mean something along the lines of "...integrating new musical elements."

Quote:
Gone are the lyrics that tackled social issues, like those on the "Spiritual Healing" disc, and the lyrics about disease and overall morbidity found on the bands earlier work. Presented here are lyrics that actually mean something.


You say the lyrics "mean something" but then never discuss what they're about. If the lyrics are so meaningful you should at least take a sentence or two to say what they talk about.

Quote:
The music featured on "Human" is more along the lines of Progressive Death Metal, with odd time shifts and pieces that build and progress, much like the "Spiritual Healing" album began to push forward.


"progressive death metal" should not be capitalized. Think about using a different word then "progress" in the second sentence. Obviously we know it "progresses" since that's the name of the genre. Give us something more.

Quote:
The album features some musical elements that are generally not found in death metal, such as strange, bizarre time changes, and other elements that are reminiscent of bands like Rush and Yes, with a unique death metal flavor.


Describe what those "other elements" are. Because as it stands, I have no idea what aspect of Yes and Rush's sound you're talking about.

Quote:
Overall, if a kid ever asked me what death metal was, I would hand him/her a copy of "Human" and send them on their way. This is probably the best death metal album of all time, no bull about it. Just straightforward, punchy, heavy death metal that is extremely enjoyable for even people who are not fans of death metal. Overall, highly recommended for anyone looking for some aggressive metal.


This ending makes no sense to me. The whole review has tried to explain how Human is more than just a regular death metal album and involves all these complex elements and then at the end you describe it as "straightforward." Either you need to explain what you mean by straightforward (and how it fits in with the rest of your assessment) or consider using a different word.

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Subrick
Metal freak

Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 7:27 pm
Posts: 5724
Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:13 am 
 

http://www.metal-archives.com/reviews/N ... hu/339959/

The first proper review I've written in almost a year, and it's of me bashing on a band that most people around here like.

Also, here's the version from the blog I run for band money.

http://prometheusbsubrick.blogspot.com/ ... eview.html

Lemme know what ya think of it.
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BastardHead
Magic Mike

Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:53 pm
Posts: 5103
Location: Oswego, Illinois
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:46 am 
 

I wouldn't necessarily call a 55% review that mainly says the album is dull and old ground for the band "bashing", but there wasn't anything wrong with it. I agree on the sentiment too though, this is one of the least interesting Nile albums out there.

Also Slayer never changed musical style? Mind blown.
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TheEvilSocky
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:34 pm
Posts: 590
Location: In your basement
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2012 10:44 pm 
 

I'd like some constructive criticism on my current reveiw of Enmity Illuminations of Vile Engorgement
Spoiler: show
In the world there are basically two types of people,
the first kind see something extreme and think "yeah thats about
as far as it can go with out being ridiculous"
meanwhile the second kind generally prefer "WOOOOOT GETOUTTA
THE WAY BITCH THIS DEAD HORSE AND ME ARE GOINTA
CHINA!!!!!"

Enmity belong firmly in the second camp, on their release
"Illuminations of Vile Engorgement" they display their ability
to take BDM to its most absolute extreme, very little brutality
is spared in favor of song writing or anything else for that matter,
with enough blast-beats to power a third world nation and guitars
drop-tuned enough to achieve an octave below the "brown note",
the gut-blasting extraviganza doesn't slow down long enough to do
anything OTHER than "MAXIMUM BRUTALITY", one could say
then, that this is a bad album, however there is in fact another
side to this coin.

I'm not going to lie or even attempt to sugar coat it, if you are
seeking something that will take you on a journey, keep your bed
warm or pick you up when your feelong blue, this IS NOT the album for
you, Enmity would far sooner stain your good shirt, clog your toilet
and then rip out your jugular (just for good measure)
the heaviness exhibited within its contents are not a means to an end
but an end unto itself. Throughout the album there are two plans of
attack, 1(slow chugs and 2(helicopter grinding through concrete.
They stick to this until the last track "Severe Lacerations" where
they pull out classical guitars and proceed to kick ass with them.

Even I, a person who can in fact tell the difference between
"Braindrill" songs with minimum effort, have problems telling one
song from the other here (other than the aforementioned finale),
still this album does something quite remarkable in my eyes (er... Ears?),
many may ask "What could this possibly offer?" well it's extreme in total excess
and devoid of most anything musical, it's just fucking brutal incarnate,
and it's rare but sometimes thats all you want to hear.
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MalignantThrone
Vanished in the Cosmic Futility

Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 1:24 am
Posts: 2785
Location: A step closer to home
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2012 4:09 am 
 

TheEvilSocky wrote:
I'd like some constructive criticism on my current reveiw of Enmity Illuminations of Vile Engorgement
Spoiler: show
In the world there are basically two types of people,
the first kind see something extreme and think "yeah thats about
as far as it can go with out being ridiculous"
meanwhile the second kind generally prefer "WOOOOOT GETOUTTA
THE WAY BITCH THIS DEAD HORSE AND ME ARE GOINTA
CHINA!!!!!"

Enmity belong firmly in the second camp, on their release
"Illuminations of Vile Engorgement" they display their ability
to take BDM to its most absolute extreme, very little brutality
is spared in favor of song writing or anything else for that matter,
with enough blast-beats to power a third world nation and guitars
drop-tuned enough to achieve an octave below the "brown note",
the gut-blasting extraviganza doesn't slow down long enough to do
anything OTHER than "MAXIMUM BRUTALITY", one could say
then, that this is a bad album, however there is in fact another
side to this coin.

I'm not going to lie or even attempt to sugar coat it, if you are
seeking something that will take you on a journey, keep your bed
warm or pick you up when your feelong blue, this IS NOT the album for
you, Enmity would far sooner stain your good shirt, clog your toilet
and then rip out your jugular (just for good measure)
the heaviness exhibited within its contents are not a means to an end
but an end unto itself. Throughout the album there are two plans of
attack, 1(slow chugs and 2(helicopter grinding through concrete.
They stick to this until the last track "Severe Lacerations" where
they pull out classical guitars and proceed to kick ass with them.

Even I, a person who can in fact tell the difference between
"Braindrill" songs with minimum effort, have problems telling one
song from the other here (other than the aforementioned finale),
still this album does something quite remarkable in my eyes (er... Ears?),
many may ask "What could this possibly offer?" well it's extreme in total excess
and devoid of most anything musical, it's just fucking brutal incarnate,
and it's rare but sometimes thats all you want to hear.

For one, I don't know if you did it intentionally, but that formatting is really annoying. The first and second paragraphs could easily be merged into one, as the second one builds directly off the concept of the first and there's no dramatic emphasis to be gained in this situation by separating them like that.

It'd also be nice to know a bit more about how the music sounds aside from its composition. You don't mention the vocals at all - what do they sound like, and what does that sound bring to the album? Is the guitar tone crunchy, deep, loud, thin or massive? What do the individual drums and cymbals sound like? If you're not going to give the album a 100%, what do you not like about it? You spend quite a bit of the review making metaphorical statements about Enmity's brutality in a humorous way, and while there's a time and place for those, it's always best if you can equal it out with good ol'-fashioned musical description.

Aside from that, there are a few punctuation errors and other stylization goof-ups (the album title should be in italics, not quotes; band names don't need quotes), but you have potential in that you stick to your point and you don't meander off with it. I greatly prefer sprawling essays to fun-size reviews, but yours wasn't terrible by any means considering that (according to MA) you haven't submitted any reviews yet.
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TheEvilSocky
Metalhead

Joined: Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:34 pm
Posts: 590
Location: In your basement
PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2012 3:10 pm 
 

Ok a new overhaul, some stuff added in and a few mistakes corrected
Enmity Illuminations of Vile Engorgement
A benchmark of brutality 78%
Spoiler: show
In the world there are basically two types of people,
the first kind see something extreme and think "yeah thats about as far as it can go with out being ridiculous"
meanwhile the second kind generally prefer "WOOOOOT GETOUTTA THE WAY BITCH THIS DEAD HORSE AND ME ARE
GOINTA CHINA!!!!!", Enmity belong firmly in the second camp. on their first LP Illuminations of Vile Engorgement
they display their ability to take BDM to its most absolute extreme, very little brutality is spared in favor
of song writing, or anything else for that matter, with enough blast-beats to power a third world nation and
guitars drop-tuned enough to achieve an octave below the "brown note" the gut-blasting extraviganza doesn't
slow down long enough to do anything OTHER than "MAXIMUM BRUTALITY", one could say then that this is a bad album,
however their is in fact another side to this coin

I'm not going to lie or even attempt to sugar coat it, if you are seeking something that will take you on a
journey, keep your bed warm or pick you up when your feelong blue, this IS NOT the album for you.
Enmity would far sooner stain your good shirt, clog your toilet and then rip out your jugular (just for good measure),
the heaviness exhibited within its contents are not a means to an end but an end unto itself.

Throughout the album the guitars have two plans of attack, 1(slow chugs and 2(helicopter grinding through concrete,
That is until track 11.Severe Lacerations where the guitarists bust classical guitars and proceed to kick ass with them.
The guitar tone has a very polarized feel for me, for the bulk of album it sounds great,
very thick and raw, however there is something wrong with it that I can't quite place, during the passage's that
provide a little stylistic flair (as found on 8.Rotted Divinity for example) the tone just goes to utter paper-thin-shit and
I'm not sure if it's just me but it sounds like the tone of a cheap practice amp, thankfully though those passages
are few and far between and about a third of the time the tone doesn't ruin them.

While the guitars go about their buisiness the drums sit politely behind them and, as mentioned before, blast-beat the
hell out of the album which sadly the producer thought was their only purpose as the snare sits above the whole rest of the set,
which even though I'm not a big drum aficionado, is a little irritating, every now and then some cymbals accompany the snare
but it's when the snare is temporaraly forgotten that the drums shine, no they don't do anything outside the box
however it does serve mix things up a bit.

I am not normaly all that impressed with BDM vocals mainly because of a tendancy they have for sounding less aggressive,
due to their focus on sounding as deep and monstorous as possible, while the vocals presented here are in fact deep and monstorous on the biblical level,
they also a dash of aggression making them sound very akin to screaming thats been pitch-shifted down.
the only real down side to them is that while the guitars and drums have ways of mixing things up the vocals do not, meaning if you get tired of them
thats tough luck bucky cause they aren't changing.

The overall run time also kicks this album in the knees, at 33 minutes the relentless slab of BDM starts wearing, even if you enjoy it,
trimming one or two songs would have helped, alternatively they could have placed Severe lacerations in the middle somewhere.
Even with the few flaws this album still does something quite remarkable in my eyes (er... Ears?),
many may ask "What could this possibly offer?" well it's extreme in total excess and devoid of most anything musical
it's just fucking brutal incarnate, and really it's rare but sometimes thats all you want to hear.
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MalignantThrone
Vanished in the Cosmic Futility

Joined: Tue May 31, 2011 1:24 am
Posts: 2785
Location: A step closer to home
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2012 6:42 am 
 

See, I like that review a lot more in terms of actual content, good work. It still needs a bit of work grammatically, though; put it into a word processor like Microsoft Word and have that program proofread it. That, and the formatting still needs work - I don't know if it's you or the program you're using to type your review, but your words should be going to the very end of each line and then automatically going down to the next - there's no reason to hit the enter key every single time you use a period or a comma.

Spoiler: show
So basically, take this:
Quote:
While the guitars go about their buisiness the drums sit politely behind them and, as mentioned before, blast-beat the
hell out of the album which sadly the producer thought was their only purpose as the snare sits above the whole rest of the set,
which even though I'm not a big drum aficionado, is a little irritating, every now and then some cymbals accompany the snare
but it's when the snare is temporaraly forgotten that the drums shine, no they don't do anything outside the box
however it does serve mix things up a bit.


And turn it into something like this:
Quote:
While the guitars go about their buisiness, the drums sit politely behind them and, as mentioned before, blast-beat the hell out of the album which sadly the producer thought was their only purpose as the snare sits above the whole rest of the set, which even though I'm not a big drum aficionado, is a little irritating, every now and then some cymbals accompany the snare but it's when the snare is temporaraly forgotten that the drums shine, no they don't do anything outside the box however it does serve mix things up a bit.


This brings me to another point - there are quite a few run-on sentences in your review (that one paragraph I just quoted is only one sentence!) that could stand to be chopped up a bit. Don't be afraid to reset your thoughts every now and then (or you can cheat, like I do, and litter semicolons, parentheses and dashes over everything you type); starting a new sentence will hardly kill you.

...Okay, looking back, those weren't the best two sentences I could've used to prove my point, but you get the picture. :P And I apologize if I'm giving off SS Grämmar vibes.
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Carpathianchrist
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:34 pm
Posts: 387
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 7:51 am 
 

Thank you to Zero_Nowhere for the Murustrictus review, all your points will be taken into consideration for our next release.

Cheers!

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Pale_Pilgrim
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:01 pm
Posts: 881
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 3:34 pm 
 

droneriot wrote:
http://www.metal-archives.com/reviews/Until_Death_Overtakes_Me/Symphony_I_-_Deep_Dark_Red/8866/droneriot

My first review in over 1 1/2 years. I'd like to hear some thoughts. I'm definitely a bit rusty, but I want to get into it again.


Heh, I remember your reviews. You used to be something of a regular. Good one, too. Anyway, this was a solid review. Detailed but not tedious, described what I was hearing quite well, and showed an understanding of the songwriting process (or lack thereof in this album's case). Much less importantly, I couldn't agree more about Pantheist - just grating, that band.

I too have just been getting back into reviewing, a few here and there this year. Noticed an odd pattern - I tend to do a review near year-end, and then come back in March. Been doing reviews since 2009, and EVERY year's first review is in March. Odd. Anyway, I'm trying to become a more regular reviewer and would appreciate some feedback. Literature and poetry have been with me since age 3, and I've been a poet for a long time, but reviewing of course is a very different pursuit. Did some negative reviews back in the day, those were fun. Easier to bring out some humor - I find it hard to do this consistently. I always have a habit of being rather verbose.

http://www.metal-archives.com/users/Pale_Pilgrim#Written_reviews
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Space_alligator
Metal newbie

Joined: Mon Jan 05, 2009 3:43 am
Posts: 44
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2012 8:43 pm 
 

I'll appriciate any help with this.


Do i need more elaboration?
Improve format?

Quote:
My first introduction to Astriaal was through there "key to the gate" cover, from the latter Somnum Infinitus EP.

A quick search on the World wide Web landed me at their website, and there song "As Mist Befell..."


That song sold me.

With only 3 true songs, the others being a noisy storm of nonsense, and the other a beautiful acoustic piece, its a short Ep, but aren't they all? In effect, being short harnesses the power of the songs, these 3 that were never re-recorded for later releases, meaning that this is a must have.

Astriaal do a version of melodic riff based black metal, that combines the ferociousness of Immortal, with the gigantic icy feeling of Emperor, without the use of keyboards. The most impressive track is "as mist befell..." it combines all the elements of Astriaal, searing guitar, blasting, yet intricate drums, juxtaposed with Acoustic interludes. Its Clear that the persons behind the collective instruments are quite talented, and this is no hack band.

The vocals are a bit buried, but the insturments are quite clear, with crisp cymbals, watery guitars and prominent bass. The Subtle echo on the snare adds to the the floaty atmosphere,
As far as Ep's go, this is quite focused and well thought out. Unlike some grim black metal, you will no doubt want to bang your head and sing along, this is due to the more memorable and exciting songs that appear on this EP compared to "Renascent" or "Anatomy's..."

In the end, there is something lacking on this album compared to the what followed, however, that could just be me, perhaps because it was how i discovered this band. Overall, i rate this highly, but im not sure if anyone who caught them on the 2 full albums will appreciate this as much.

It must be said that this was also one of my first forays into the Black Metal genre, over ten years ago, and i have yet to find anything that comes close to capturing the feeling on this disc.

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TadakatsuH0nda
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2010 3:37 am
Posts: 113
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2012 5:03 pm 
 

This review was previously rejected, I assumed it was because of grammar errors so I tried to fix them, but it was rejected again, the moderator said the contents are good, he just gave me a list of things that could "possibly" be the problem, I took a look at them all and tried revising it a bit. What do you guys think? be as brutal as necessary, I'd like to fix it.


You won't see me give out 100% very often at all, but once in a blue moon there's that one release that you just can't point out a single flaw in, this is one of those releases. Now a little history behind Art Of Life; X Japan's 4th studio album, and though it's considered to be a full length release, it's more of a mini album as it's only 29 minutes, but those 29 minutes are all a single song. Anyhow, the 29 minute symphonic power/progressive metal epic was the first highly successful metal song spanning over 20 minutes in length, released shortly before the successful Dream Theater song "A Change Of Seasons", also a successful yet very long song, Art Of Life however sold half a million copies and topped Japan's music charts. The lone track on the album covers every aspect of what X Japan is about from slow ballad like moments to blazing fast metal, skillful instrumentals, and incredibly strong lyricism, especially from a band like X Japan who in this case are writing and singing outside of their native language and doing it extremely well, which is a huge part of what makes this song what it is.

The song opens with a slow piano bit for the first couple minutes, the usual you would find in one of X Japan's many ballads, slowly building into Toshi's singing of the first verse, which after continuing the X Japan ballad style for another couple minutes suddenly kicks into the metal side of their music, fast drums, perhaps some of the more powerful vocals you will hear from the band as well as competent guitar and bass to go with it, this builds ultimately to the first of Hide and Pata's guitar solos, this one very melodic and with more of a power metal feeling to it, leading to the end of the first verse, which spans over 6 minutes.

The second verse begins much the same just minus the ballad part, but again it's the lyrics that makes this song special, the fragility of human emotions, the struggles of life, lines like "I'm making the wall inside my heart - I don't wanna let my emotions get out - It scares me to look at the world" or other lines such as "Drive into the raging current of time - Swing your murderous weapon into the belly - "the earth" - Shout and start creating confusion - Shed your blood for pleasure - And what? For love?" these keep the song beautiful, but it still manages to uphold itself as very good metal. This verse also has a relatively long instrumental bit in it, consistently fast and dramatic, yet beautiful power metal which leads into the second solo; this time it's a much longer solo, more staccato than the first, but just as skilled, and more dramatic than the first as well, this leads the song back into the orchestral sound, with Toshi's vocals kicking in again, and then fading to a fitting and beautiful violin solo which shifts to spoken words. The song again picks up to full speed, much like in the first verse, but quickly fades to a piano solo.

This isn't an ordinary piano solo either, it's outright ridiculous, it spans over 9 minutes in length and builds from beautiful and slow to fast, and then slow again a few times, and eventually Yoshiki starts hitting random keys amidst the main piano riff; first listen this sounds stupid, why did he do that? He just ruined a wicked epic song! But upon another couple listens, it begins to show how incredible it actually is, it's big, it's hideous, it has flaws, it's imperfect. Just as human nature is, it's the art of life. It's also even more dramatic if you're fortunate enough to see a live performance of this song (I've only watched one online and it was still incredible). But eventually, the piano fades back into violin with prominent cello in the background, and then launches the song back into full speed with the third and final verse. The last verse comes off as faster paced, and more dramatic because of this huge build up to it being the piano solo and violin. And with the third and final guitar solo the orchestra keeps going in the background making it probably the most epic of the 3 guitar solos, and then it ends with the final line of the song fading silent signaling the end.

A quick summary of highs and lows of the song:
The Good: The lyricism is some of the deepest I've seen from any band, let alone one from Japan where you usually get the language barrier messing up how a dramatic line is intended to sound, and turning out very Engrish more often than not. The piano solo is very skilled and beautiful even though it's very chaotic. All instruments are played to perfection, having an orchestra there is also a nice feature.
The Bad: The only thing I would even consider changing is the talking bits, they're just a little bit too quiet to hear exactly what the speaker is saying all the time, other than that I have no flaws to point out.

X Japan care about the music they make to an extent most metal bands wouldn't, one example is them hiring an orchestra for this album, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; one of London's most famous, this extra step to make sure the music turns out right is what X Japan is about. The extra steps X Japan take to make their albums stand out are a major factor in what makes Art Of Life what it is and I would recommend this to absolutely any fan of X Japan, or people who like music with meaning, or songs that are extremely deep, dramatic and long as well as most fans of power and progressive metal. I give this album 100% as it's virtually unmatchable by most bands in terms of the effort and absolutely brilliant musicianship present in this song.

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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4722
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Jul 15, 2012 6:27 pm 
 

Space_alligator: Your writing is very fragmented, there's a lot of errant capitalization and some misspellings (i.e. "instruments"). The first three lines could be one paragraph, or they could be eliminated completely. None of your thoughts seem to finish, and the descriptions of the music are very minimal - only two paragraphs even describe the music, and there still isn't much description. Here is the core of your review:

Quote:
Astriaal do a version of melodic riff based black metal, that combines the ferociousness of Immortal, with the gigantic icy feeling of Emperor, without the use of keyboards. The most impressive track is "as mist befell..." it combines all the elements of Astriaal, searing guitar, blasting, yet intricate drums, juxtaposed with Acoustic interludes. Its Clear that the persons behind the collective instruments are quite talented, and this is no hack band.

The vocals are a bit buried, but the insturments are quite clear, with crisp cymbals, watery guitars and prominent bass. The Subtle echo on the snare adds to the the floaty atmosphere,


"Astriaal do" is not a conventional way to refer to their style, rather "Astriaal make" or "Astriaal play" would be better. "melodic riff based black metal" doesn't say much, as any type except some atmospheric black metal would be riff-based. There's an extra space before "ferociousness", and modern English generally uses the word "ferocity" in its place. Brief descriptions to Immortal and Emperor don't say a lot about the music either, and I'm sure you could find a better comparison than "Emperor without keyboards". You should capitalize the names of tracks such as "As Mist Befell..." and there should be some punctuation between that and the text that follows it. The descriptions of the elements of the band need more elaboration, you could write a sentence or two about each of those and describe them, rather than listening them. "Acoustic" and "clear" shouldn't be capitalized, and "it's" needs an apostrophe, as it is a conjunction of "it is", and the rest of that sentence is poorly structured.

You spelled "instruments" wrong, "subtle" shouldn't be capitalized in the middle of the sentence, and you should conclude the paragraph with a period, not a comma. Once again, you should elaborate on each of those descriptions, since adjectives such as "watery" are fairly abstract when describing guitars.




TadakatsuH0nda wrote:
This review was previously rejected, I assumed it was because of grammar errors so I tried to fix them, but it was rejected again, the moderator said the contents are good, he just gave me a list of things that could "possibly" be the problem, I took a look at them all and tried revising it a bit. What do you guys think? be as brutal as necessary, I'd like to fix it.


It feels like a walkthrough of the song, you talk about a lot of things that happen but provide little commentary and critique or specific praise of qualities of the music. Rather than going through the song piece-by-piece, describe it as a whole and reference specific parts when part of your description refers to them. Don't simply tell us about the music, tell us what you think about it, why it is brilliant. Describe specific qualities of the music - saying that all of the instruments are played to perfection is pretty much generic praise that could be applied to any album - tell us what sets it apart.

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BastardHead
Magic Mike

Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:53 pm
Posts: 5103
Location: Oswego, Illinois
PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2012 6:18 pm 
 

Alrighty, since being modded my reviews don't actually go through the queue anymore, so I'd like to run this by the mods and userbase simultaneously to see if y'all think it should be accepted. Normally I'd know, obviously, if a review was acceptable or not, but considering I spend the first third of it not talking about the album at hand at all, coupled with the long length (it's a little over 2500 words), I figure some peer review might be a decent precautionary step before getting it nuked later. It's on my blog anyway, but I like to cross-post.

Also, this is just a copy and paste job, so the formatting isn't identical (no italics and whatnot)

Quote:
Hands up, who's favorite Overkill album falls between 1993 and 2007? What's that? Zero of you? You mean to tell me that between Horrorscope in 1991 and Ironbound in 2010, Overkill released fuck all in terms of worthwhile releases? They're regarded as thrash legends and one of the only bands to fly the flag of thrash throughout the dark ages of the 90s and early 00s despite not actually releasing anything of quality for nearly two decades, none of which during that period even being a fully thrash release in the first place? Well how does that make sense?

I've alluded to this a few times and I've ranted about it outside of my reviews before, but despite considering myself an Overkill fan, placing Ironbound on my year end list in 2010, and claiming Feel the Fire to be the most perfect thrash album ever written and in my personal top five albums of all time, Overkill does not deserve the legacy they have. At all. Now I realize that Iron Maiden had a streak of albums most fans seem to dismiss (I personally believe they haven't made a full worthwhile album since Fear of the Dark, and even then that album half sucks) and Black Sabbath has a lot of forgotten albums and Running Wild tapered off tragically at the end of their career, but these bands all blazed paths and become gods of their respective genres through marvelous consistency and stellar songwriting. They were originals that took their respective fields by storm. Overkill on the other hand is a product of the times. Overkill blazed about as many trails as Warhammer.

"But Bastard! “Sonic Reducer” was in their setlist back in 1979! That was on Feel the Fire, and you just called that the best thrash album ever!"

Suck out farts, you idiot Borisite. Claiming Overkill as the first thrash band because they were playing a punk cover of a punk song that they tacked on to the end of their first album six years later makes as much sense as claiming Judas Priest used to play doom metal because Sad Wings of Destiny isn’t as fast as Defenders of the Faith. Overkill gets the same revisionist apologies that Exodus get, with fans claiming they would be as famous as the Big Four if their respective debut albums had shipped just a bit sooner. Maybe they had these songs written earlier than 1985, sure, of course they did, but using that same logic, do you really think Metallica wrote “Metal Militia” or Slayer wrote “The Antichrist” the morning before they entered their studios in 1983? I get it, Overkill was one of the first, and I’m not denying that, but I am denying that thrash was great because of Overkill. Overkill was great because of thrash.

"But Bastard! They released tons of great albums all throughout their career! Look at The Years of Decay and even new stuff like The Electric Age!"

Hey Forced Naysayer, we agree on something here. Overkill has plenty of classics, any thrash fan who doesn’t love the first five albums should have their opinion immediately invalidated. But think about it, all of their good albums were released during the period when the thrash scene was at its peak worldwide. Thrash fell out of favor, Overkill start playing shitty groove metal. Thrash gets cool again, Overkill shits out a legitimately great album in Ironbound. Was that really an accident? You expect me to believe that they played the kind of music that was the most popular all throughout the 90s and 00s while thrashing during the 80s and 10s because that’s just what they were naturally writing? Having Randy Blythe guest on Immortalis shortly after Lamb of God released the very popular Sacrament had nothing to do with trying desperately to stay relevant despite running out of ideas over a decade ago? I’m not buying it. It was safe and financially intelligent to release thrash again, so they shifted their way of thinking and writing back to a thrashier mindset as opposed to the dumb stomping groovy crap they’d been doing.

Now, I clearly have a deep seeded frustration for Overkill being given a free pass on writing 9 lame albums in a row, but surely they’re not all that bad. Every band has a stinker or two or at the very least a slight dip in quality over a long career, hell I mentioned earlier that Running Wild, my favorite band, really went out with a whimper, so why do I still consider them legends? Here, and I hate to admit this, it has almost everything to do with the fans and the hype around the band. Not one single Running Wild fan considers The Brotherhood or Rogues en Vogue to be proof of the band’s supremacy, whereas Overkill fans readily fly the flag of “THEY WERE ALWAYS AWESOME”.

"But Bastard! You have to take those albums for what they are! You can’t hold them against the classics because they’re a different entity! Look at those albums in their own respective microcosms!"

Can it, you butthole.

Actually, I think I’ll do that, it’ll probably help prove my point. Hell, I’ll even pick my favorite of this era, just to show that even the best they had to offer during this streak wasn’t even really worth that much. So ladies and gentlemen, if you’ve waded through the previous 900 words without wanting to stab me in the gullet, I present to you, the third (and best) album in the bum streak, 1996’s The Killing Kind.

I’ll give this album props for cleaning up that horrawfully terribad production from W.F.O., and it even starts off on a somewhat promising note, with “Battle” being a highlight for many fans of the album. Me personally, I think the track is overrated and silly. I mean, the dorky BUGGADUGGADUGGADUN *boondoon* YEEEEH is just goddamn irritating. The song also suffers from a problem that many of these songs suffer from, and that’s that they just don’t really go anywhere, there’s no climax. They mainly follow a fairly simple structure but they don’t feel like they lead to anything worthwhile. By the time you realize the song is over, you’re already a minute or two into the next track. The riffing is also focused more on hard chugging as opposed to nuts-first thrashing that the band was so good at doing in the 80s. I realize I can’t expect the band to do the same thing throughout their entire career, but the fact remains that they just aren’t nearly as good at this groovy, Pantera-y style they go for during this era. They keep it heavy, no doubt about it (tracks like “Let Me Shut That for You” and “God-Like” prove that in spades), but the style they go for is just damn boring.

I suppose I’ll deviate from my normal reviewing style and be amateurish for a second, and blatantly split up some time to point out the good and bad songs on the album. As previously hinted, “Let Me Shut That for You” is a fun, high energy track with a catchy main riff and chorus, though there is a long noodly section in the middle that I’m none too fond of, it still stands as a clear highlight of the album, melding the newer groove material perfectly with their ever prevalent punk attitude. “God-Like”, while not quite as memorable, is another rip roaring thrasher that keeps the pace up and tries adding a fresh, mid-nineties flavor to the sound they were championing on Horrorscope. “Feeding Frenzy” is by far the best track here, starting with a bluesy, Sabbath style bass jam before transitioning into insanely fun, high-octane thrash metal. This is what Overkill is good at and needs to focus on more. This is also the only instrumental track on the album, which raises the question that maybe Blitz himself could be to blame. Honestly, no, he isn’t the problem. His snarl, while distinctive and charismatic, reminds me of Zetro in the sense that he’s actually quite annoying when you sit and think about. On its own, his voice can be headache inducing, but in the context of the band, it fits perfectly and I could neither imagine another frontman in Overkill nor him fronting any other band. He’s crazy and unrestrained, and I can only imagine blood squirting out of his eyes during any given song. His over-the-top and completely balls out style is one of the defining characteristics of Overkill’s sound (next to D.D. Verni’s “look at me I’m loud and important!” bass). And here, Blitz once again proves why he’s one of the biggest draws of the band. “Certifiable”, despite being one of the lame songs on the album, has some truly raw vocals from him, with his classic crescendo in the bridge culminating with one of my most heartfelt “MOTHERFUCKER”s I’ve heard outside of Samuel L. Jackson or Joe Pesci.

So with Blitz in top form as always and the production cleaned up considerably from the nearly unlistenable pangy bassy mess that was W.F.O., that leaves the instrumental performances and the songwriting, and oh lord are these ever the culprits with why this album and era in Overkill’s career so damn dull. I’ve used the word “dorky” to describe the verse of “Battle”, and I think it fits well with the verses in “Bold Faced Pagan Stomp” as well. Allow me to elaborate on that, because I realize it’s an odd choice of word. It reminds me of the little ditties I used to write when I had been playing bass for nary a few months. And let me tell ya, there is nothing dorkier than a twelve year old version of me. It’s just amateurish and reeks of veterans not trying very hard. The vocal patterns in the latter track are weepingly hilarious to me. I hate to continually quote sections of lyrics in the reviews I’ve been doing lately, and I realize this is probably a few lines too many to make my point, but you just have to see this to understand:

Come a kick kick in the dick kick,
Gonna make ya sick kick, suffer you that!
Come the blood spills, get ya kick thrills,
On a will kill?
Suffer you pain.

In a pac wac, got a two on one track,
On a hit n' run smack, suffer you that!
Not tho be the romp or the kick kick whap stomp
Stomp stomp stomp
Suffer you that!

What in the living hell did I just witness? I understand Overkill were never bursting at the seams with poetic genius but Christ on a cracker that’s on the Five Finger Death Punch sub-level of lyrical ineptitude. Reading those lines don’t do them justice, you have to hear the bouncy stop-start pattern in which they’re delivered over the slow, churning groove riff to get the full effect of how nonsensically dumb the whole thing is. If “Bold Faced Pagan Stomp” wasn’t bookended by two of the only three tracks I like, I’d skip it every time and claim it was never written. And you know the worst part about all this? “Bold Faced Pagan Stomp” is, along with “Battle”, probably the least terrible of all the bad songs on the album.

A few of the songs are bad in the sense that they just don’t do anything. “Cold Hard Fact” and “Certifiable” (despite having that memorable moment in the bridge) just go by with little consequence. Even worse yet is “The Cleansing”, which I will go on record as saying sounds like a precursor to Godsmack. Listen to that slow, brooding riff that the entire song rides on, listen to that droning, lame chorus, listen to just how uninspired and lazy that song is. That outro with the low “Jesus, cleanse me…” feels like it goes on for three solid minutes. That right there is another problem that plagues this album, the songs, despite sometimes just blurring by, all seem longer than they really are, if you can believe it. The worst offenders of this phenomenon are the aforementioned “The Cleansing” and “Bold Faced Pagan Stomp”, the latter of which I could swear is eight minutes long. And rounding out the album are the two “doomy” tracks, “Burn You Down/To Ashes” and “The Mourning After/Private Bleeding”, which continue the trademark of being dull lowlights while also being grating on the nerves. Both of these tracks spend a majority of their running time focusing on gloomy and droning passages while suddenly picking up near the end before collapsing back in on themselves. Why they chose to put two similarly structured yet out of the ordinary for the band tracks on the same album is beyond me. Maybe it’s just me, but they have always bored the shit out of me when the band tries these slower songs because they’re an energetic band, these slow and gloomy numbers have always just been entirely too dry for any semblance of entertainment. It’s always baffled me that some fans actually prefer this side of Overkill. I dunno guys, the angrier and punkier the better, this slower style just doesn’t work for a band with the kind of attitude that Overkill exudes.

And that is the one thing I’ll concede willingly about The Killing Kind, and that is that the attitude of the band is still here in spades. That’s always been one of the main draws of the band in the first place and another one of those defining characteristics that make them stand out in the crowded thrash scene. Their New Jersey origins really shine through in their “We don’t care what you say, FUCK YOU” attitude, and even on these dumb and lazy songs that populate the album, that swagger is still there, and it still helps the album stand up and identify itself as an Overkill album. It’s the only constant throughout this entire tragic 9 album streak that keeps the albums from being 100% worthless. While there is a split during this era, with the band focusing on primarily low and groovy stuff for the first five albums and then picking up the pace and getting slightly thrashier (while retaining the heavy groove element) for the next four albums, they keep that perfect marriage of punk and metal in spirit. Most crossover bands wish they could have the attitude as nailed down and concise as Overkill have it, and it’s that attitude that helps keep The Killing Kind at least mildly entertaining throughout its duration.

But even with that swagger and amount of fucks not given, the album ends up dull on the whole, with only one standout “great” track and a couple other decent ones bogged down in this boring, slimy mire. Overkill is best when they’re at their most pissed off and aggressive, and it shines through with fast, angry, aggressive metal with a punk edge. This slow, Pantera style, does not wreck my neck in any way, and that’s what Overkill does best.



EDIT: It's been brought to my attention that there's a typo in the third word. DURRRR I SUCK
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TitaniumNK
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:33 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Montenegro
PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:53 am 
 

Hey guys, I'd really like to hear from more experienced members what are my reviews like (I know they're no good, just want to hear second opinion). So, in order to improve myself in the future, could you tell me what are the writing issues I should pay attention to, and since I know that my writing is formulaic, how can I run away from generic patterns in writing?

All critics apart from malicious ones are more than welcome. Thanks in advance.

http://www.metal-archives.com/user-reviews/TitaniumNK

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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4722
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2012 9:14 pm 
 

TitaniumNK wrote:
Hey guys, I'd really like to hear from more experienced members what are my reviews like (I know they're no good, just want to hear second opinion). So, in order to improve myself in the future, could you tell me what are the writing issues I should pay attention to, and since I know that my writing is formulaic, how can I run away from generic patterns in writing?

All critics apart from malicious ones are more than welcome. Thanks in advance.

http://www.metal-archives.com/user-reviews/TitaniumNK


Some notes on your most recent review, Nemesis's "Forever In Metal":

-Don't start out a really positive review of a random listen by saying something negative. You could write the same thing with a typical "diamond in the rough" description, but I'd keep the mention of it being a random find to one positive mention in the first paragraph, and include any more directly before your conclusion.
-Almost the entire paragraph about the production is fluff and nonsense. You could say exactly the same thing in one sentence (i.e. "Despite self-producing in a remote location, the production is on par with the best heavy metal albums of the year.")
-You spend a lot of time framing and posturing minimal musical descriptions. Take your second-to-last paragraph and elaborate on that, that should be the majority of your review. Until that section, all I know is that it sounds like NWOBHM 30 years ago with an exceptional vocalist.

I also noticed several grammatical errors, often an extra word that sounds like you wrote a sentence, then re-wrote half of it and left an extra word in. Once you finish a review, read it the next day and look for mistakes. Other times, it just appears that English isn't your first language and an odd/extra word is included - nothing major, but it's something you can learn to notice if you have an experienced writer point it out to you.

Two examples:
"There are certain moments when I deeply regret for exploring the music of unknown metal bands." - One of those words should be removed, it flows better when you remove "for".
"God knows how many third rate, generic, bland music I've listened to so far." - "many" should be replaced by "much" when referring to a singular object like "music", but the sentence would be correct if you replaced the singular "music" with the plural "bands". No meaning is lost here, it's just that English is confusing at times.

I think the best way to learn to make your writing flow better is the emulate people who do it professionally, since I think some imitation of style is essential to proficient writing. Take cues from others, remember what was effective about descriptions, and borrow phrasings a bit if you need to. I don't think I can explain this well without being really confusing, but you can learn from reading stuff written by good writers.

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TitaniumNK
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:33 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Montenegro
PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2012 9:03 am 
 

Oh, now I know what I should consider while writing. Besides, what I really don't want is to write tedious, boring reviews, I guess the only way to avoid that is to read the pros. Thanks, Zodijackyl, you've been very helpful!

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Wet Pussy
Waterlogged

Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2008 12:13 pm
Posts: 4323
Location: Pakistan
PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:53 pm 
 

My first review in a year. Feedback/comments/criticism appreciated.

http://www.metal-archives.com/reviews/A ... MegaHassan
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The Animator
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Dec 24, 2011 5:41 am
Posts: 279
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 3:14 am 
 

I submitted this review here but it got rejected, here is a link to it on my blog can someone read it and tell me what to fix?

http://bensketchingblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/pandaemonium-last-prayer-2012-album.html

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droneriot
RETIRED

Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2004 1:17 pm
Posts: 5237
Location: Germany
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 3:35 am 
 

Didn't you get an email notification telling you what was wrong with the review?
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The Animator
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Dec 24, 2011 5:41 am
Posts: 279
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 3:58 am 
 

droneriot wrote:
Didn't you get an email notification telling you what was wrong with the review?


No, I didn't have the box checked under settings for email notifications. I thought they would just send me a PM if something was wrong.

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androdion
Metal freak

Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 10:34 am
Posts: 4591
Location: Portugal
PostPosted: Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:06 am 
 

The Animator wrote:
I submitted this review here but it got rejected, here is a link to it on my blog can someone read it and tell me what to fix?

http://bensketchingblog.blogspot.com/2012/07/pandaemonium-last-prayer-2012-album.html

Your review has barely any musical description at all and it needs some proof-reading because it has some basic English errors and some nonsensical sentences. But if I had to guess I'd say it was rejected on the basis of lack of musical description.
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SadisticOrgasm
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 6:01 am
Posts: 180
Location: Nepal
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:34 am 
 

I would be very grateful if somone could provide some comments on my below review. I'm always seeking ways to improve. Thank you :)

Review of Kalodin's 2012 EP "SARV"

SARV is Kalodin’s second offering after their debut “The Bestial Ritualism of Harlotry” two years ago, and as Davin Shakya, the band’s guitarist has put it, the band’s first real debut after their experimental full-length. And it sounds. Kalodin have been more straightforward this time, stretching their affiliations with the assigned black metal moniker, while experimenting with Hindu themes in superficial levels. Their sound has turned pretty darker and colder now, consequently.

There are plenty of black metal standard tremolo riffs that are neatly crafted, alongside the groovy interruptions, which in alliance have created decent transitions providing a smooth flow of music. While Kalodin’s past compositions had rather centered on symphonic components than brutality, the two facets are in harmony here. Moreover, guitars have the ability to stand on their own creating an ambience without the aid of the keys. Davin’s Alexi Laiho influenced lead solos add additional flavors to it. And while the Dimmu Borgir orchestral influences are still imminent, the keyboard has also been utilized to penetrate the style of Emperor in brutal segments. The significance of keys seems to be lesser than in their last record though. In general, Kalodin have dealt with a more straightforward black metal sound with these formulae, demonstrating an amalgam of old-school and modern ingredients, while the production has helped it incline towards a primitive black metal approach.

I was expecting the EP to embrace Hinduism theme exclusively, because of the album title, the cover art and the pre-release news of addition of sitar in the EP. But contrary to what I was anticipating, Hinduism marks its entrance in the latter half of the final track “Trishula” alone, with the inclusion of the harmonious sitar and a ritualistic hymn. This is where the eastern scales are introduced, with the ending part sounding as a symphonic black metal equivalent of Singaporean Rudra. And since I took it as just experimentation on what the band’s newer sound could be like, I welcome this step in their upcoming releases as well.

There are three vocalists in the record. The lead vocals is done by the man Davin himself, displaying his chaotic and hateful high-pitched screams, which sound akin to that of Shagrath of Dimmu Borgir. Similarly, Sanjay Maharjan and Pranav Panthi have provided additional punches and growls. The drumming by Gobinda Sen is quite solid as well. I like how the drums sound in the mix.

All in all, this is a commendable record – fast, furious, melodic and dark. The tracks seem to have been ordered in accordance to increasing splendor, the opener track “Fallen Empire” being quite weaker compared to what it is followed by, while the ending track “Trishula” being the one standing out, perhaps because of its differing theme and songwriting method. The EP runs nearly 20 minutes, and if they persist on what they’ve done in “Trishula”, they got plenty of new and interesting sounds to bestow the listeners.

I, for one, am pleased for now.

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thisisnotme
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:48 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:18 pm 
 

Hi, everybody. Yes, I'm a newbie at reviewing, and I got an e-mail saying my review was rejected. No Big deal, because I used the track-by-track formula, considered difficult to reading and stuff. Yet, the guy said I did a good job at describing the music. Well I thought i could use the tbt formula 'cause the album had few tracks (Six), but ok.

Just a (dumb) question, if i rework the review (being more concise) I can send it again?

Thanks.

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Derigin
Anthropophagus

Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 6:25 am
Posts: 2437
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2012 3:58 pm 
 

Rewrite it to be more concise. Make sure to avoid doing it track-by-track. Make sure you describe the music of the album above all; plenty of users deviate from that and start to review the band, or focus solely on an artist or some single feature of the album or its cover art - or something ridiculous like that - and forget that their duty is to review the album's music in its entirety. That's all that users really want to know... what does the album sound like and why do you think that's good or bad?

We encourage users to avoid track-by-track for two main reasons:

1. It makes the writing really disjointed (and becomes difficult to read when every sentence or paragraph is its own "mini-review" of a song... so people loose the common theme of what you're trying to say in your review). This is why you may get a rejection along the lines of "it's difficult to read" because your review is all over the place and not concise and to the point.

2. It is also a writer's 'crutch'. By this, I mean, relying on a track-by-track style of writing becomes the easy way of writing a review; all you have to do for a track-by-track is listen to each song individually and write what each song is like. The problem with this approach is that albums are very rarely a compilation of individual tracks, in most cases the songs form a structure, that may or may not be intentional by the band, which when taken together form a theme. In most cases listeners want to know what they're getting into before they look into buying an album, and part of that is knowing whether all these songs together make for an enjoyable and worthwhile album. Learning to avoid track-by-track, and understanding how songs relate or fit together tend to make better and more informed reviews.

That said, sometimes track-by-track is acceptable. When the album that is being reviewed is a single, or is an EP that contains only a few songs at most then it is reasonable to focus on the songs as individually reviewable items.

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thisisnotme
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:48 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 12:46 pm 
 

Thank you very much, Derigin. I'm gonna post the reworked version later. Also I have another review, i will post it too later, ok? ;)

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thisisnotme
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2011 5:48 pm
Posts: 3
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 3:37 pm 
 

Well, I've redone some parts of it, if it's possible I would like to know if it's better now. Thank you very much.

Spoiler: show
Best portuguese metal band ever Period (97%).

I don't remember exactly how I came across A Dream of Poe's music, but since the first listen I was amazed by their sound. The Best word I can use for describing their sound is Magic. Yes, magic. These portuguese guys (actually it's most an one-man project with Miguel Santos handling all the instruments with some guests) simply make a extremely powerful album. Their mellow, atmospheric, almost lullaby-esque sound is simply unique, offering a dark dream-like, mesmerizing atmosphere, comparable with Tiamat's Wildhoney (yet, the swedes' sound has a more exoteric tinge). Despite being relatively unknown, these guys hold the spot (in my honest opinion, of course) as the best portuguese band ever (Fernando Ribeiro, Eat your Heart Out!).

As I briefly described ADOP above, their unique Doom/Death makes a soothing, yet very dark atmosphere, giving the listeners a extremely contemplative experience. While the closest comparision of their sound may be My Dying Bride (heavy, slow, powerful and emotional), ADOP manage to take a noticiable amount of inspiration of them, but yet having a extremely original twist, never losing their strength and never being boring. The record has six relatively long tracks (the shortest lasts less than six minutes), which all can be considered highlights.

Neophyte, the album opener, is a showcase of everything these guys can do. Beautiful slow riffs, slow-paced drumming with excelent fills, amazing solos and their stand-out feature in my opinion: their vocals. The vocal work of this album can be compared to Solstice's Lamentation: delicate, soothing, calm vocals over doomy guitar riffs. And here they're even better, and we also have death growls. Guest João Melo is an expectacular vocalist, going without any difficulty between his mellow lullaby-esque singing and extremely powerful growls. While being a relatively long song (7 minutes), It feels like a endless second that when it goes away you can't help but want to go back again. This song is my favorite from the album, the first one i've ever listened and the song that made me fall in love with ADOP. Along with "Whatever that Hurts" from Tiamat's masterpiece Wildhoney is the best Death/Doom Song ever.

But the album has a lot more to offer. The album may not be the most varied around, but it has an impressive focus on textures and atmosphere, while retaining relatively simple song extrutures. The following, 10 minute crushing ambiance (this may be a paradox, but it's true) of Os Vultos comes after with one of the most original pieces that I've heard. We're presented with simple clean guitars, very slow rythms, along with spoken vocals in portuguese. With myself being brazilian, I had no troubles with focusing on the lyrics. Listening to such a powerful song in it's mother tongue it's a extremely incredible experience. These dark desolate lyrics simply mesmerize me. And when João changes the speech for death growls and everything turns heavier I couldn't help but shiver. And actually growls in portuguese sound really cool. The song floats out for more five minutes in an almost Floydian-esque way: bluesy guitar soloing and atmospheric “cradle-rocking”.

While all of the songs are really good, the first two pieces are the ones that stand out the most. Yet, all the following songs has lot of things to offer. Lady of Shallot and Liber XIX are mesmerizing nightmare-trips, with crushing guitars, slow rythms and João Melo impressive vocal work. He switches between clean voices, deep growls (the death growling on the later is simply impressive), an unision of the two, spoken words and even some delicate falsetto during Lady of Shallot. Liber XIX, in fact was a bit hard to me to get into, but after some listenings I could enjoy it better. The Lost King of the Lyre, the shortest song here, has some of the fastest riffing through the album, and has a lot of pretty leads.

Chrysopoeia, the longest song of the album, is overall a very good song, yet was the weakest one. It has good vocals, nice riffs, and some interesting dark-as-hell atmospheres, but the song is a bit overlong in some parts, such an almost industrial outro with crashing low-pitched drums. Being it the weakest track on the record, I had to reduce de final score a bit.

A Mirror of Deliverance is a 6-track gem that MUST be in every Doom fan collection. This 6-track record is a 52 minute trip into the deepest of our inner self, a contemplative view of a desolate landscape, a dark dream that you don't want to wake up because its cold embrace strangely is so comforting.

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Carpathianchrist
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Sep 25, 2008 12:34 pm
Posts: 387
Location: United Kingdom
PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:57 am 
 

Thanks Zodijackyl for your honest review of Murustrictus' demo. We will certainly use this review as another basis on improving and creating something better!

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Manolete
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 12:54 am
Posts: 58
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:49 pm 
 

About this review I submitted and was rejected: It wasn't written by me, but since the author doesn't have an account nor speaks english I just forgot to add the source.
I was wondering, can I re-submit it and add the propper credits to the author at the end or does the author have to submit it by himself?
Thanks in advance

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Metantoine
The XVI, dominar to over 258714 subjects

Joined: Sat Jun 21, 2008 5:00 pm
Posts: 8485
Location: Québec
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:13 pm 
 

He has to submit it himself, if not it's plagiarism and you'll get banned and anyway, if the review is not in English (or badly written) it will be rejected.
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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4722
Location: United States
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:36 pm 
 

Carpathianchrist wrote:
Thanks Zodijackyl for your honest review of Murustrictus' demo. We will certainly use this review as another basis on improving and creating something better!


Glad to offer some feedback. I also suggest that you check out the musicians forum, if you're willing to look past newbie questions and unrelated stuff, there's a wealth of knowledge that has been shared in the forum and many of the people who offered it are still around.

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Manolete
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2004 12:54 am
Posts: 58
PostPosted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 9:21 pm 
 

Metantoine wrote:
He has to submit it himself, if not it's plagiarism and you'll get banned and anyway, if the review is not in English (or badly written) it will be rejected.


Ok. He's a personal friend of mine who writes for a local magazine, so I guess it isn't really plagiarism since we both agree on this. And yeah the review was written in proper english (I made the translation) so I'll just ask him to create an account and submit it himself.

Thanks for your answer

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Rasc
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 9:19 am
Posts: 179
Location: Brazil
PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2012 3:18 pm 
 

What do you think of this Filosofem review?

When one creates a masterpiece, it doesn't mean it will be seen by everyone as such, but it will be realised by anyone that listens to it as something different, far from everything the artist has already done. This is clearly the case of Filosofem, since the feeling passed by this particular album is something elsewhere still unfelt.

While Varg Vikernes would, in his previous releases, try to the utmost to provoke darkness and fear with very heavy songs, Filosofem would have a rather enlightening and astonishing sound made over minimalism, living up to the album title, "Filosofem", a Norwegian word meaning "philosopheme", a succinct philosophic argument, emphasising Burzum's philosophic style. This specific album is about the duality between the Sun and the Moon, light and darkness, day and night, illustrated by the wonderful Nordic mythology, that sees the Sun (the goddess Sol) and the Moon (the god Mani) as brother and sister.

As soon as you have the album on your hands and you see such a cold and desolate cover, you can start having a feeling of what you will be listening to. This impression is strengthened after you open it and see the amazing art, both on the CD and on the inside. If you get the album phisically, I highly recommend you to open the booklet, take a look at the amazing art inside, beholding it while you listen to the album. If you understand Norwegian (or have spare time enough to translate it), you should take a look at the texts as well, and you'll understand more easily the concepts behind the music.

In the opening song Burzum, the oldest one ever recorded to the project but previously unreleased, to cause such a feeling, Varg would use some heavy distortion and many chaotic sound effects on beautiful and interesting melodies led by clear guitars and keyboards. This contrast involves the listener in such a way that it's impossible not to feel mesmerised by the result. Since "Burzum" is, in the Lord of the Rings series, a Black Speech word for the Mordor evil and the lyrics quite resemble the concept on the books, our first thought is that it's the sole meaning of this song. However, we can see Varg creating a parallel. Here, the night that falls would be the Dark Ages, while the darkness would be the horror the Catholic Church installed, or maybe even the "darkness" Varg sees religion to causes in a religious mind.

In the later recorded songs Jesu Død and Beholding the Daughters of the Firmament, Varg creates another kind of atmosphere, making a much heavier and more serious sound, without stopping from being thought inducing as the first track though. Both songs use ice cold melodies all along the structure. Jesu Død is played with a destructive riff, with lyrics that contrast the sacred and the unholy antithetically, at the same time drawing a parallel to Nietzsche's famous sentence "God is dead", while the song's title means "Jesus's death". That could be because of the criticism of direction and rationalism used by both Varg and Nietzsche. "Beholding the Daughters of Firmament", though, are the thoughts of a dying man beholding the duality between the night and the sun, the main concept of the album (as we can see on the chart).

The long instrumental tracks "Decrepitude II" and "Rundtgåing Av Den Transcendentale Egenhetens Støtte" are around the minimalist essence of the album, are both well written and, despite being big, are not tiring at all, letting one just trip on their distorted raucously played power chords. "Decrepitude I" presents "Decrepitude II" with an interesting English-language small text by Varg being spoken, clarifying the means of the melody, since, as we could see in Dauði Baldrs and Hliðskjálf, every single note played in Burzum is deeply thought.

Summarising my text, it's a simply amazing thing to see how everything fits in this album.

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Zodijackyl
Lazy Wizard

Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2008 5:39 pm
Posts: 4722
Location: United States
PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2012 6:39 pm 
 

Rasc wrote:
What do you think of this Filosofem review?

When one creates a masterpiece, it doesn't mean it will be seen by everyone as such, but it will be realised by anyone that listens to it as something different, far from everything the artist has already done. This is clearly the case of Filosofem, since the feeling passed by this particular album is something elsewhere still unfelt.

While Varg Vikernes would, in his previous releases, try to the utmost to provoke darkness and fear with very heavy songs, Filosofem would have a rather enlightening and astonishing sound made over minimalism, living up to the album title, "Filosofem", a Norwegian word meaning "philosopheme", a succinct philosophic argument, emphasising Burzum's philosophic style. This specific album is about the duality between the Sun and the Moon, light and darkness, day and night, illustrated by the wonderful Nordic mythology, that sees the Sun (the goddess Sol) and the Moon (the god Mani) as brother and sister.

As soon as you have the album on your hands and you see such a cold and desolate cover, you can start having a feeling of what you will be listening to. This impression is strengthened after you open it and see the amazing art, both on the CD and on the inside. If you get the album phisically, I highly recommend you to open the booklet, take a look at the amazing art inside, beholding it while you listen to the album. If you understand Norwegian (or have spare time enough to translate it), you should take a look at the texts as well, and you'll understand more easily the concepts behind the music.

In the opening song Burzum, the oldest one ever recorded to the project but previously unreleased, to cause such a feeling, Varg would use some heavy distortion and many chaotic sound effects on beautiful and interesting melodies led by clear guitars and keyboards. This contrast involves the listener in such a way that it's impossible not to feel mesmerised by the result. Since "Burzum" is, in the Lord of the Rings series, a Black Speech word for the Mordor evil and the lyrics quite resemble the concept on the books, our first thought is that it's the sole meaning of this song. However, we can see Varg creating a parallel. Here, the night that falls would be the Dark Ages, while the darkness would be the horror the Catholic Church installed, or maybe even the "darkness" Varg sees religion to causes in a religious mind.

In the later recorded songs Jesu Død and Beholding the Daughters of the Firmament, Varg creates another kind of atmosphere, making a much heavier and more serious sound, without stopping from being thought inducing as the first track though. Both songs use ice cold melodies all along the structure. Jesu Død is played with a destructive riff, with lyrics that contrast the sacred and the unholy antithetically, at the same time drawing a parallel to Nietzsche's famous sentence "God is dead", while the song's title means "Jesus's death". That could be because of the criticism of direction and rationalism used by both Varg and Nietzsche. "Beholding the Daughters of Firmament", though, are the thoughts of a dying man beholding the duality between the night and the sun, the main concept of the album (as we can see on the chart).

The long instrumental tracks "Decrepitude II" and "Rundtgåing Av Den Transcendentale Egenhetens Støtte" are around the minimalist essence of the album, are both well written and, despite being big, are not tiring at all, letting one just trip on their distorted raucously played power chords. "Decrepitude I" presents "Decrepitude II" with an interesting English-language small text by Varg being spoken, clarifying the means of the melody, since, as we could see in Dauði Baldrs and Hliðskjálf, every single note played in Burzum is deeply thought.

Summarising my text, it's a simply amazing thing to see how everything fits in this album.


You say very little about the music, your interpretations don't do much to supplement the music, and the commentary is pretty unpalatable. The descriptions of the music are very vague and not really descriptive, rather evaluative.

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Pr0nogo
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 12:20 am
Posts: 85
Location: United States
PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2012 4:30 pm 
 

http://www.metal-archives.com/reviews/H ... 34/Pr0nogo

My first review in a month? Maybe? Why am I questioning my own statements?

Have at it. It's a long fucker, and I swear a lot.
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