Producers Exposed Part 1

With “Producers Exposed” I’ll try to review music productions in public. Learn from others (mistakes) and find out how to improve tracks. Tweet me your (Soundcloud) productions on Twitter using @sebastienlintz.

#1 EKO — Voices (Free download)

EKO — Voices

I think this track is quiet good. The sounds are original and well produced. 
The theme in the break is cool and something different than you normally hear. Here’s some feedback:

  • This track is a mix between a DJ edit and Radio edit. If this would be a DJ version (original mix/extended mix) I would have changed the intro a bit and make it less musical. It’s never a smart idea to give away too many musical elements in the intro because of: 1. People won’t hear it when they are mixing in. 2. If you track is in a weird key the track might be hard to mix live and/or podcast as because of the musical intro the track might sound out of key with other productions. I always recommend to only stick to a few notes instead of playing a full melody in the intro and outro. There’s already too much happening in your intro, it would have been better to make it a bit more repetitive. If you are aiming for Spotify listeners I would have shorten the intro by 15seconds. This will increase the chances to get playlisted. Spotify (users) don’t like long intro’s, well at least most of them.
  • I don’t have anything to comment on the break, maybe some fills are too loud in the mix.
  • I wouldn’t go for this second drop, it’s exactly the same as the first drop. Especially if you choose to have a fast first drop (with a mini break) you need to switch up drops. I would have go for a different first drop than the second drop. Or otherwise added some other new elements like risers or maybe a slightly different sound (or extra layers). The way you did it is a bit too boring for regular listeners. A good example would be Hardwell — Blackout. or Sick Individuals — Drive as these tracks starts with a mini break (instead intro - break1 — drop 1 — break 2 — drop 2- outro).
  • Overall feedback: Great idea and production but it could have been a bit more interesting. The track deserves more plays though, good luck with your next production!

#2 Josh Goodwill & Caleb Golston — Dragon

Josh Goodwill & Caleb Golston — Dragon
  • If this is a DJ version if would have removed a few layers in the first 15 seconds. There’s too much happening in the intro, see my feedback on the first track for some background on this.
  • First break: there are 2 themes going on here. The vocal chops and the main melody. The track is getting confused when you introduced the main melody in the break after the vocal chops. I would recommend to remove the vocal chops in the first break to keep this track more interesting OR go with a new melody which fits the main melody so it makes a bit more sense.
  • I think the vocal chops are not super special, if you use vocal chops it should be VERY catchy otherwise it wouldn’t add anything to the music. Listen to Martin Garrix’s Forbidden Voices for a good example.
  • For the outro don’t keep the melody in here but try to keep single notes just like the intro. For DJ’s/podcasters it would be hard to make a transitions to the next track. As explained in track #1.
  • Overall feedback: The production/track is okay but I think the main idea/melody could be a bit more stronger / more catchy. Keep it up!

#3 Manuel Alvarez — Shere Khan

I can’t really give feedback on the arrangement as the track is not fully uploaded but here’s my feedback:

  • I think the main sound on the drop is a bit too far away mixed. With this kind of sound I would have picked a more dry-er mix. More in the face and less effects. I think it should have been something like DVBBS — Tsunami . It just sound a bit too far away.
  • The synth in the break at the beginning sounds a bit too much like the Sylenth Synth, it could have made a bit more original. Maybe add some layers or different sound design (instead of the basic detuned saw wave). This sound is used too much in the past.
  • The second lead in the break is all right and the bells are adding something extra. Although the chords are a bit of the same, they all follow the same notes I think so it could have been programmed a bit more interesting.
  • Overall: I don’t think this sound on the drop is very cool, it’s not really my taste but I think the sound is a bit annoying. It’s not catchy enough to get away with it. The variation after the second drop is a good attempt to keep the track interesting but it sounds a bit too random and chaotic, there’s too much happening. I don’t think many dj’s will play it for that reason. Maybe listen to Alvaro — Welcome To The Jungle to find out how he managed to do it. The track is more in balance, less is more!

#4 Dan James — Doors Of Dimension

Not really my field of expertise but let’s try it!

I listen to a lot of chill out tracks so I can see myself listening to this track. I think it could use some changes though:

  • The intro is a bit random, the cymbal and horn (?) melody doesn’t really fit this track. I would have start with the piano and the beat. The snare sounds too basic as well, it’s a bit distracting. That snare could have been processed a bit more or maybe a different kind of snare would fit better. I’m not sure about the closed high hat and the tambourine in the intro. I would have ditched the fx white noise as well, I don’t think it fits the track. I like the different melody , it’s a nice bridge but after this part you should have introduced the break instead going back to the main melody. So you have to take a look at the arrangement.
  • In the break you’re bringing in a new guitar, I think that guitar will make this track a bit too random as you already have a few main elements, I would have focussed on just a few elements instead bringing new synths and guitars in the whole track.
  • Overall: It has a good vibe, the arrangement could use more work and it sounds a bit too random now. I would have ditched the guitar part and maybe introduce a vocal (chop) effect instead in the break. I think this track could be playlisted on some chill out radioshow such as SiriusXm Chill out channel or SomaFM or some chill out playlists on Spotify.

#5 Skylar Spence — I Can’t Be Your Superman (DJ Veaux Remix)

I don’t know the original track so here’s my feedback based on your version

  • There’s a annoying intro perc/synth in the intro. I would have ditched that. It doesn’t add anything extra. Also I think the vocal chops in the intro are not really catchy.
  • The kick in this track could be better I think.
  • I wouldn’t have filtered the vocal in the beginning of the break. If you introduce a vocal don’t filter it down if it’s already started. Maybe it was better to wait with the vocals a couple of bars instead putting it right in the beginning of the break.
  • I like the combination of the vocal and the drop. But the drop was too much unexpected, even if the track was a radio edit. The vocals could be mixed a bit better on the drop, you don’t really hear it clearly, the vocals should stand out more than the instruments if you decide to go for a full vocal mix. It sounds sidechained as well.
  • If you filter vocals keep it filtered instead automate the filter, automating filters don’t really work I think. I like how it’s filtered in the second break but I don’t like the automation.
  • The second build up is a bit weird, not much is happening before the second climax, maybe just start with the build up instead the part between the breakdown and build up.
  • Overall: The idea is okay, but the kick and vocal mix could have been better. I like the melody so it’s just a matter of mixing. If I was you I would focus on a slightly different genre, bring down the BPM a bit more and go more for a Lemaitre vibe. For example “Stepping Stone” Listen how the mix vocals and electro basslines. Good luck!

That’s it guys, I spend an hour and a half writing this so I hope it was useful! Don’t forget to Tweet me @sebastienlintz your Soundcloud link so I can review your track next time! I’m not giving feedback on private demo’s (as nobody will learn from this except you) so if you want to get your track signed just read my other blog post how to do this! Please excuse any grammatical errors.

Seb