About the review

Title: Strand
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Artist: hukka
Genre: Electronica: Other
Reviewed by: VOiD on September 05, 2007 (All reviews by VOiD)

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1Overall Description
Overall a very nice slice of ambience. Some synthetic marimba (?) work and a couple of elegant details makes this track stand out a little bit from your average ambient track. A couple of arrangement and variation issues are really the only drawbacks to this track, but they add up to make the track sound slightly unfinished to my ears. With a little tweaking we might be looking at a higher score. Tthe arrangement and feel of the track sound more like Steve Reich than Klaus Schulze to me, but I guess that's a matter of opinion - I love them both, so it's really a moot point. ;)
 
2Creativity Description
Here we run across one of the two issues mentioned above. There is not, in my opinion, enough variation throughout in this track. I can hear that a great deal of effort must have gone into the marimba part - it sounds carefully constructed and detailed to me, and although there is a lot of repetition, it is done with a level of skill that it doesn't ever become boring. The drums, however, are another story altogether. Although the beat itself is nice, it starts to wear a bit thin after over 6 minutes with minimal variation. A lot could be gained from varying the beat more.
 
3Arrangement Description
And here is the other: there is not a lot of development in the track, neither melodically nor dynamically. It starts out at what turns out to be full intensity, and doesn't undergo much change along the way before it tones down towards the very end. Holding a single chord for a long duration of time is a nice touch to play around with, as it tends to intensify the impact when the chord finally DOES change, but proceed with caution, as you risk losing a large part of your potential audience because they grow tired of the waiting. Also, there is some disharmony that sounds unintentional to my ears around the 1:20 and 5:35 marks - and that's never an attractive feature.
 
4Sound Quality Description
There is little to put the finger on here. The instruments, although not of sensational quality, are clean and crisp, and the overall soundscape is very pleasant to listen to. The drums sound a little too synthetic to my ears, and I'd also like to have heard more effective use of stereo width; the music offers plenty of opportunity to play around with panning effects, for instance.
 
5Does it work as a piece of music Description
I think it does, but then I'm accustomed to long, soft tracks like this one. If you're a fan of the ambient genre, you're sure to find this an enjoyable piece of music.
 
Comments
Sep 08 2007 6:39 pm
by hukka

Thank you very much for your constructive feedback! I largely agree with your review on all but one point - despite repeated listenings I can't hear the disharmony you mention. I haven't spent a lot of time working on this, and perhaps shouldn't have uploaded it at such an unfinished state. I will try to 'fix' the issues raised in the review - thanks for pointing them out.