1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  

Criticize my demos?

Discussion in 'Recordings [BG]' started by Tommygunn, Jan 21, 2013.

  1. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I recently co-founded a indie surf/garage rock band. Now we have 4 demos (no drum track and no vocals). 3 were recorded with a field recorder and "track 1" was recorded with actual recording software.


    Now I also realize that my bass was out of tune for "you can call me Dave" and I started 'noodling' about 3/4th in, which was supposed to signify that we needed to start over but we decided to go with that cut so...

    Even if they are just rough demos, I'd love some tough criticism. All instruments, construction, effects, etc. They're also best when head with headphones.

    Edit: I played bass on all tracks except "A is for @$$hole" on which I played lead. I also wrote every part for that song :D

    Thanks guys, it means a lot.
  2. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    The very first step might be investing in a tuner you guys can use.

    Playing in tune is always a big plus.
  3. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    We have one :p I just figured didn't take the time to tune before we recorded that song.
  4. Tune, rerecord, come back
  5. youre not the only one playing out of tune.

    I think you guys should just hit the wood shed for a while. It would help if some or all of you could get out and play with people of a higher ability than yourselves, it will only help.

    The slap outro in the first tune was pretty awful, im sorry. Try to walk before you run.
  6. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I wasn't event slapping. I was banging on my bass to signal that we should restart the song.

    Maybe the first song is a bad example...?
  7. Biggbass


    Dec 14, 2011
    Planet Earth
    If you don't take the time to tune before you play, especially before you start recording then you are just wasting everyones time, including and especially your own.

    Start over. And next time be sure to tune first.
  8. dbd1963


    May 18, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    He's not wasting his time. Crickets on a biscuit, people - you can hear the idea and come close in your own head for what they were trying to do. These are not the completed tracks, but ideas.

    That said, as you can see, if you are looking for constructive criticism, your best bet is to make the demo the best you can, which includes tuning everyone to the same pitch from the beginning.

    #1 - best thing about it is the echoing lead guitar. But I don't see where it's going. Needs a lot more work before it's even a song idea.
    #2 - I like what I'm hearing. The interplay between the guitars works for me. Are you going to be adding vocals to the mix in your band? I recommend it, because the structure and parts seem to be asking for vocals. Otherwise, there's not much going on to carry the theme.
    #3 - Interesting changes, but kind of difficult to tell where we are in the song at times without a rhythmic reference. I guess bass should be louder for that.
    #4 - Probably the most interesting so far -- the thing here is that you guys don't know enough yet that you realize you are doing the "wrong" thing. But sometimes the wrong thing sounds good! With more knowledge, it gets harder to come up with these interesting mismatched chords, so definitely keep these recordings and refer back to them as you go forward.

    That's all I have time to listen to at the moment. The advice that you guys need to woodshed is proper -- of course you do; we all do. But try to hang on to the kind of willingness to experiment that you showed here while you sharpen your chops up..

    Also, if at all possible, play with a good drummer.
  9. golltoppr


    Nov 28, 2011
    T is for tuner. P is for practice..

    In all seriousness I don't understand how you could be fine being that out of tune.
  10. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I appreciate the comments man. We do have vocals we're working on and we also have a drummer but the recording session was thrown together in an instant with just a $90 field recorder.

    More refined "songs" are to come, I just thought it was a good idea to get some criticism on what to change so we can do it all at once.
  11. geddeeee


    Jun 30, 2006
    Sorry to be brutal, BUT.... It's not good. Try and learn to play first. Then try actually writing some tunes, not just ideas. Not really 'demos'.

    Keep learning... it WILL come eventually.
  12. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    I was told by a top professional, "If your demo requires that the listener use their imagination, do not play it to anyone. Record a better demo."

    I refuse to imagine in-tune instruments.
  13. Rumbledom

    Rumbledom Inactive

    Jan 19, 2013

    Agree completely. What's the point of putting something out there if it's coupled by excuses?

    I actually think there are a few moments that are interesting. I like surf music and think it can feature the bass -- such as this. (Ignore the promotional stuff).

    But sloppy out of tune playing not only shows unprofessionalism, it's an insult to the listener. Make a few improvements and the overall effect goes from distain to favorable. It isn't that hard. If you can't make that effort you shouldn't be making music. (Unless it's just for a personal hobby -- in which case keep it to yourself).
  14. VeganThump


    Jun 29, 2012
    South Jersey
    Honestly I was only able to get through about 20 seconds for the first song, out of tune instruments are like nails on a chalkboard to me.
  15. dbd1963


    May 18, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    Yeah, that's demo as in what you would send an agent or a music rep. These are kids asking for advice about songwriting. If you don't see a difference there, I think that's on you.
  16. dbd1963


    May 18, 2010
    Northern Virginia
    See above; also, I think you might take yourself a wee bit too seriously.

    And it's "disdain" -- spelling wrong is an insult to the reader. :meh:

    Oh hey, except I could imagine what you really meant and extend you the benefit of the doubt..
  17. king_biscuit

    king_biscuit Supporting Member

    May 21, 2006
    They don't really sound like songs -- more like the guitar player just kind of noodling. Maybe combine some of that stuff together?
  18. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I see what you're saying. I guess it wasn't correct on my part to call them demos. It'd be more like blueprints or rough drafts of ideas.

    The simplicity is also supposed to be there. The music we draw from is very simple and has maybe 5-6 chords the whole song. Those bands being: jay reatard, wavves, and ty segall, just for anybody who is familiar with that stuff.
  19. Tommygunn


    Nov 8, 2008
    Houston, Tx
    I appreciate the criticism but I think the first reply nailed it with the tuner idea. I get it and I actually addressed it in the first post. There were 4 demos and y'all seem to just be listening to the very first one.

    If I can't get any other help other than another redundant post about being in tune, I'd like the thread to be closed.
  20. ddnidd1

    ddnidd1 Supporting Member

    Sorry, but the tuning issue applies to more than just the first tune. The fact that you can't hear the problem, which is very pronounced, is all the more reason to get a tuner and have EVERYONE use it. The guitars are way out of tune also.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Mar 5, 2021

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.