I’m going to do the write-up for this one a bit differently, since I received a decent number of submissions more than the previous entries. This challenge was a bit different than the previous two because this one involved an actual cash prize!
Firstly the winner!
1st place – UKDaza – https://soundcloud.com/ukdaza/destiny-composition
I really like how far UKDaza’s come from his first entry; his mastering has improved, his orchestrating of other instruments has improved, his tracking of the drums and the smoothness of his playing have all improved as well. This particular piece highlights all of those improvements! The intro sets the piece up nicely, with enough interest generated by the synth and drums before the lead guitar comes in. I LOVE the staccato that starts in the guitar at 1:54, highlighting the difference between the AM7-Gm7 part and the Cm part. And the Phantom of the Opera quote at 2:27? Such an awesome way to incorporate that into the piece, along with some more awesome guitar playing over the top.
All in all, I really really love the tone UKDaza sets with his style of play/improvisation. I hope he can continue with his composition/arrangement skills as well!
2nd place – cparsons – https://soundcloud.com/cparsons/january-composition-challenge
Picking 2nd place was really, really hard. There were easily 4-5 different songs that could have taken 2nd, but I ultimately decided on giving it to cparsons. The atmosphere of the pieces he’s sent in have exceeded all others. There’s just not matching how laid back and chill his songs sound. The ostinato pattern works really well to maintain the mood throughout the entire song. The guitar playing, as always, is sublime, perfectly matching the tone of the piece and playing well off of the vibraphone in the and the drumset in the background.
I love everyone that submitted anything to this! I’m constantly adding some of these to my playlists and I’ll be doing my best to promote any work that ends up playing on stream. I’ll be announcing the next challenge hopefully next weekend with the same price breakdown – $150 for 1st, $75 for second!