Demo Reviews Vol. 41

Welcome to another edition of Demo reviews. The Phatfriend blog equivalent to me filling out spread sheets , if I worked some desk job.
Before anything else, I’d like to announce that , after a week of being open, DEMO SUBMISSIONS ARE NOW CLOSED! So, do not send me any more demos. If I receive them, I won’t even open the emails. I’m sorry, you missed the window. Thanks to all those that sent in. I got a ton of stuff to review so, if you sent me a song, it might be a while before I get to it. I review them in the order they were received.
Anyway, if you don’t know. This is a column where people send me their demo’s to review.
I do a brief write up and then rate them from 1-10 in these four categories:

Trust me when I say these ratings don’t mean much and that, if you get above a 5 in anything, it’s a mitzvah.
After a strong showing last week, it would appear we’ve come back to earth with this batch. But, hey, I’m only one man. Maybe I’m wrong. Vote at the bottom and lemme know which demo you think was the best.

Song: Been through it

This is an enjoyable beat, though not at all original in any way. But a good little blues riff with a vocal sample mixed in is hard to front on. The drums could be a little stronger though. The rapping is somewhat secondary. He’s not bad but he’s not exactly shining. He doesn’t sound 100% comfortable on the mic just yet. Still, the overall product of the song is pretty listenable.
Production:5 out of 10
Vocals:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5.5 out of 10
originality:3 out of 10

Song: Trip Squad

Perhaps this song requires drugs to enjoy? Cause, in my sober ears it sounds like that wobbly synth line and the other samples parts don’t really match tonally. Trippy!
If I was tripping and heard this it would drive me insane (in a bad way) cause I’d just want to hear the music be harmonious. Also, that’s the sample Kanye used on “drive slow”. It’s safe to say that’s off limits at this point.

I don’t dislike the drum sounds used though…so I guess that something.
Production:3.5 out of 10
Listenability:3 out of 10
originality:3.5 out 10

Song:Mechanization of minds

This is a pretty dope track. Lots of changes that keep it interesting and the mood of the track is nice. One problem though. I don’t know if this is sample layering (a bunch of different sample sources) or just one song cut up a bunch of different ways. If it’s the latter (which it kinda sounds like) then it’s far less impressive and creative. Maybe it’s a good first step to working out how songs can progress and be sequenced but just jacking a whole song has never been a good look. Even to my hyper sampling ass.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5.5 out of 10
originality:2 out of 10

Artist: Enoc
Song:The Fit

This is one of those tracks that, within the first 15 seconds, I’m aware I’m about to hear something that is not in my wheelhouse. I was right. It’s a synthy based instrumental jam that sounds like it could be backing music to a demo in the 80’s. It’s not as bad as that sounds though. It’s kinda interesting. The drum kit used is one of the oldest and most used drum kits known to electronic music. Dunno if that’s by choice or lack of other drum kits though. So, yeah, I dunno…this is what it is. I’m not the guy to be reviewing shit like this. Hotel lobby music.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:4 out of 10
originality:4.5 out of 10

Artist: Wrecktight
Song: Fang Rock

Yeah…no. First off, the beat is a mess. Terrible synth sounds, cheap keyboard drums, and just boring. It sounds like it was recorded on garage band.
And the rapping is pretty bad too. Story rhymes are cool and I appreciate the attempt but this dude is simply not ready for prime time. Perhaps this was best left on paper for a high school creative writing class? Perhaps.
Production:2 out of 10
Vocals:2.5 out of 10
Listenability:3 out of 10
originality:4 out of 10

Artist:Gossenboss mit Zett
Song: Schatten

Listen guys…I DON’T SPEAK ANY OTHER LANGUAGES. I don’t know why people send me rap in foreign tongues. Am I crazy in thinking that a huge part of enjoying rap is understanding the words? I can’t do anything with this cause this guy could be saying some complete bullshit or be the german Rakim. I really will never know. What I do know is that the german (I’m assuming that’s what it is) language being rapped sounds terrible to my english speaking ears.
The beat is okay. I’m not mad at it. Nice vibe. But, for real, to all my non-english rapping readers…don’t bother sending me your rap songs. I don’t know what to do with them. It’s nothing personal I just literally can’t understand you.
Production:5 out of 10
originality:3 out of 10

Artist: Zak G
Song: Exit

I’ll give it to this guy on this level: he’s into it. He’s angry and he’s not gonna take it. The hook sounds like some Limp Bizkit shit though. Break somethin’!

His rapping is efficient in a “Rock singer rapping” kind of way. He’s capable but it doesn’t feel particularly natural.
The beat is hectic but I suppose that fits the mood nicely. But, yeah, this is dangerously close to being a rap/rock song. All it’s missing is an epic breakdown here some emo asshole sings about his feelings for 16 bars.
Production:4 out of 10
Vocals:4 out of 10
Listenability:3.5 out of 10
originality:4 out of 10

Artist:Laaars wins
Song: Captain Underpants

This is kinda all over the place. I’d say the artist needs to reign it in a little and focus on a smoother song structure. Not all the parts works with ones another and a lot of the transitions don’t make any sense. It’s lacking in fluidity. Which is unfortunate cause there are some cool parts within it.
Production:4 out of 10
Listenability:4 out of 10
originality:4 out of 1o

Artist: SMRT
Song: No Limit

This beat is dope. Very much on some early ASAP rocky shit. Cloud rap type shit. I like it, even though is pretty simple. The rapping is interesting. It’s like, he’s not particularly good but he’s got something. He falls off beat, says some corny shit here and there but he’s got a good presence. Sometimes that can outweigh a lot of faults.
Production:5.5 out of 10
Vocals:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5.5 out of 10
originality:4 out of 10

Artist: Language Arts (Ft.Soundshroom wes and Nobullshit Shane
Song:Gorgeous Poise

This is one of those “friends having fun together” songs. I can’t be mad at it. Of the three rappers, I think the 3rd guy is my favorite. He doesn’t say shit but he sounds good. The other two are okay but don’t really stand out and both have a tendency to say lame shit. But, like i said, this is clearly some friends who like rapping having fun.
The beat is okay but fits the mood perfectly. Light hearted and bouncy.
Production:4.5 out of 10
Vocals:4.5 out of 10
Listenability:5 out of 10
originality:4 out of 10

So, what do you think?

8 thoughts on “Demo Reviews Vol. 41

  1. Ah, i see that you might get to it later via order it was received. i got all excited like a kid on christmas and didn’t read all the print, just searched for my review. Oh well, shit happs 🙂

  2. That sample Trippyhead used was also used by Atmosphere. I’m only posting that cause I’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out where I heard it before.

  3. It’s interesting what you said about non-english rap…

    About the “Am I crazy in thinking that a huge part of enjoying rap is understanding the words?” thing: no it’s not crazy, it’s actually what the vast majority of listeners would say, but it’s still very arguable.
    Not to be too obvious but, if you think about it, at the very beginning of this ‘rap thing’, a lot of non anglophone countries couldn’t understand shit of what those dudes were saying; It was the sound of the all thing to first capture the attention of that public.
    That being said, of course the way a concept is expressed is part of the skills of a rapper (like for any other form of art that uses words) but it’s still music we’re talking about, and I find quite weird how, if talking with another hip hop listener that’s not from USA or UK, we could easily comment on foreign rappers (not that I know a bunch of it, I admit that!) when, if talking with someone whose first language is english, that is literally impossible; they just say “yeah…I don’t know what they’re saying”.

    This obviously wasn’t related to the song in the post, which was quite boring for me – mostly ’cause of the rapping, but I didn’t like the beat neither – this wasn’t even to criticise you (especially since you’re doing this for fun, on your blog…This was actually just ’cause I get fucking polemic when I’m bored!

    • But I literally don’t wanna hear rapping in language I don’t understand. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in that. It’s not a diss to people rapping in foreign languages. It’s a preference. Personally, to me, the lyrics are as crucial to the rapping as how it sounds. I want to understand what the guys saying. even the most stylish foreign rapper sounds like like gibberish to someone who doesn’t speak the language. It’s not the same as , say, listening to someone singing in a foreign tongue. Cause the tune and music can carry it. The words are less important (at least to me)…but rap? It’s a huge part of the enjoyment.

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