VPC5 Round 4: Sell Out

(VPC 4 Round 4)

Previous Submissions

Challenge Description:

Overall Theme:
Sell Out
Finally, the time has come…
You got the call.
You heard the voice mail.
You’ve made it, and all that hard work is about to pay off.
For this round, your team has been approached by Suge Beaks and he is ready to sign you and cut an album – BUT – he has conditions.
...There’s always conditions.
In order to invest in you, you have to provide a return on that investment. Touring, merch – all that comes later… Right now we need a radio ready single and a product endorsement to get us in the door. Think you have what it takes to market yourself to the big leagues? Are you ready to do whatever it takes to make it and claim your spot on the main stage? ...are you ready to sell out?

Dangergrove

Silverbulletsundown

Adam - 10

Jingle is v rusty. I like it. The drop feels stylistically anchored to their round 3 submission, which I appreciate. Welp. I definitely heavily relate to this song. I don't think anyone would be surprised that I'm really into songs that are honest about depression. The jingle is concise and effective and the BO!s are masterfully used to anchor it in the single. Sonically the single feels like something I could expect to hear at Red Rocks. The chorus feels rusty in a way that anchors it further to the jingle.

Most bang bang. 10/10

Emmanuel - 9.83

Vocalist: 9.5

Prod: 10

Challenge: 10

Overall: 9.83

Beaker - 8

vox: 8

beats: 7

jingle: 8

package: 8

EDGY - LIGHTEN UP JEEEEZ.

Navi - 9.5/10

The jingle (.5/1)

Dark subject matter, and I appreciate the disclaimer. This almost works for me. It’s simple, short, and dangerously catchy, BUT the autotune is laid on way too thick. A commercial needs to sell a product first and foremost, and without the words in front of me, I had next to idea what was being said/sold. I didn’t need the vocals to be dry, just a notch more intelligible, or be bookended by actual sales pitch.

The spot (1/1)

Yup. Love the performance of the spot here.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

Yup. Radio ready.

Is the single an earworm? (2/2)

Yeah. It’s a depressing but ultra relatable subject matter in a radio palatable way.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yeah. As always, this team is very creative with interpretations of the challenge. Using the actual lines from the jingle in a contextually appropriate way in the song was a nice touch.

Did Navi like the Production? (2/2)

Loved the production. Loved the minimalism of the instrumentation. Great balance. Everything is clear and enjoyable to listen to. The mastering is very nice too. Kudos.

Did Navi like the vocals? (2/2)

Totally. The writing is simple and to the point, while still being ultra-effective and relatable. I enjoy the intelligible autotune hook here way more, and the “don’t sleep” chant is something I could hear crowds chanting along with. I’ll be honest, JD, I didn’t know much of your material prior to this competition, but you’ve definitely made a fan. I dig your writing aesthetic.

Public Vote - 7.02

Round Overall Score: 44.35/50

Round Standing – 2

Competition Overall – 198.10/230

Overall Standing - 1

I Have No Idea

It's a Hit in the Meta

Adam - 8

This jingle had me laughing so fucking hard. This is a song about Mario. The spot is fun as fuck, too. I dig the lay out the format as the joke format of songwriting. The verses feel unpolished, but some awkward auto-tune use aside the production is really great. The hook is flawless, probably the most effective this round, even. I dig the bonus spot ending a lot.

Most meta. 8/10

Emmanuel - 8.83

Vocalist: 8

Prod: 8.5

Challenge: 10

Overall: 8.83

Beaker - 7

vox: 6.5

beats: 7

jingle: 9

package: 7

I FELL ASLEEP BUT THE DREAMS WERE SWEET

Navi - 10/10


The jingle (1/1)

There’s other jingles in this round that I docked points for going +30 seconds. There’s other jingles in this round that I docked points for being inside jokey. This jingle – however - have the coveted honor of being my favorite jingle in this round, so I’m giving it a pass. It’s cheesy, a bit long, and inside jokey, but also really fucking funny. The music and the vocals mix well together, and the singing is top notch.

The spot (1/1)

This is a silly spot, and also a bit long, but I like it a lot. That’s a slick melody in the background. This submission has a lot of personality, so I’m letting it slide.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

All the words were not spoken, not even a “whore”.

Is the single an earworm? (2/2)

This entry reminds me of NOFX’s “Please Play This Song On The Radio”, or – more importantly - a Lonely Island song. And here’s the thing: Lonely Island songs are earworms. They’re goofy and tongue in cheek, but they get plays. And in that vein, I think this song succeeds. There’s specific moments where lyrics don’t really land well, but the overall package is solid enough for me to forgive small fumbles.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Ch-yup.

Did Navi like the Production? (/2)

Yes. The beat was varied and interesting. There was a lot of personality to the production, and I had fun listening to it!

Did Navi like the vocals? (2/2)

Yes! Some specific parts didn’t land, but this song made me laugh a ton. The performance was on point (mostly) and I LOVED how the Autotune was used (the upward trills at the end of certain phrases kill me). I was tempted to ask where the product was, BUT the close proximity of “interviewios” and “breakfast club” gave me belief of intention. Take the ten this round, gang.

Public Vote – 5.53

Round Overall Score: 39.36/50

Round Standing – 6

Competition Overall – 159.11/230

Overall Standing - 9

LexicOhm

Store Brand Lube

Adam - 8

The jingle isn't actually a jingle, though the drop is pretty damn perfect. This is a very silly and very fun song. Again very clean production from Ohm-I. The jelly/jelly line stuck out as probably the only line of Lex's that completely misses but the rest of the song is the same quality she's consistently known for. The hook is also very solid and catchy.

Most ennui. 8/10

Emmanuel - 10

Vocalist: 10

Prod: 10

Challenge: 10

Overall: 10

Beaker - 7

vox: 9

beats: 9

jingle: 10

package: 7

SMOOTH, ALMOST SLIPPERY. WE SAID 'RADIO READY' NOT SKINEMAX SOUNDTRACK.

Navi - 9/10


The jingle (1/1)

I wish the vocals were a bit more prominent in the mix…BUT, other than that, this is a solidly executed jingle. Ultra catchy chipmoodz + witty & well delivered pitch = profit.

The spot (1/1)

My favorite spot of the round. Great use of minimal instrumentation and interesting vocals to create a short, sweet, unique radio spot.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

Nooooooooooo! Whyyyyyyyyyyy? This was so close to being a perfect score…

Is the single an earworm? (2/2)

Totally. It takes a hilarious subject matter and pairs it with a very catchy hook and beat. I know so many people I’m going to show this song to.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Abso-loot-ly.

Did Navi like the Production? (2/2)

So much. Just, so much. Clean, fun, bouncy, balanced, goofy, etc. OhmI has been a powerhouse this competition. So, why’d you not bleepz out that “fuck”?!? Argh. I am saddened.

Did Navi like the vocals? (2/2)

Lex’s writing and performances get better and tighter as this competition progresses. The lyrics are so good! Why’d you ignore the swearing rool?!? Argh. I am saddened.

Public Vote – 6.94

Round Overall Score: 40.94/50

Round Standing – 4

Competition Overall – 192.19/230

Overall Standing - 2

Maybe Next Week

Most Of My Love

Adam - 6

Another commercial instead of Jingle but the backup vocals were pretty awesome. I dig how the drop sounded phoned in. Finally I dig the snares, though the beat isn't terribly engaging and the main synth is a bit annoying after a few bars. The bass drop is dope. The autotune isn't terribly effective here. This feels more like old "thanks for trying" Jollimus as far as the content and delivery goes. It's not bad so much that I'm just not interested in anything happening while I've been digging his work in earlier rounds this year much more. The Spalding line was cool.

Most Jollimus. 6/10

Emmanuel - 8.33

Vocalist: 8

Prod: 7.5

Challenge: 10

Overall: 8.33

Beaker - 8

vox: 8

beats: 7

jingle: 8

package: 8

GOOD JOB.

Navi - 6.5/10


The jingle (0.5/1)

My point docking isn’t for failing to meet the challenge, but for general mix/performance issues. The instrumental is distractingly louder than the sales pitch, and the vocals get swallowed/mumbled (Especially at the end) to the point where the jokes fall flat because I struggled to understand what was being said.

The spot (1/1)

Yup, eventually.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

Clean is relative.

Is the single an earworm? (1/2)

In general, it’s all right, but the mud really hurts earwormed’ness (more on that below). The hook isn’t very catchy, but it is very Jolli.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yeah, it’s a cool interpretation of it.

Did Navi like the Production? (1/2)

The vocal mix is muddy, and the beat doesn’t really keep my interest for the length of the song. It’s a strain to understand the vocals without the lyrics in front of me. There’s some cool melodies - and the instrumental is pretty balanced and thick - but I wish there was more going on in the song.

Did Navi like the vocals? (1/2)

The second verse saved this one a bit. There’s some choice lines, but in general the delivery is too static and there’s too many verses of it. The chorus is way too wordy to really get stuck in my head. I dig the processing on the vocals, though, and wish it’d been used a bit more effectively.

Public Vote – 6.67

Round Overall Score: 36/50

Round Standing – 7

Competition Overall - 167/230

Overall Standing - 6

Pencil Automatons

Ricochet

Adam - 8

Again not a jingle, but rather a commercial for the team? Sort of? Sampling other teams submissions? It's cute and fun but not really what the challenge asked for. Works for the drop, though. And the more interesting element of it starts the song off. What's with the 90's video background sounds? This song sounds great. I don't see any reason this couldn't do well in radio or a playlist. The hook is very effective. The curses are very artfully smoothed out.

Most gnikcuf presidential. 8/10

Emmanuel - 10

Vocalist: 10

Prod: 10

Challenge: HAHAHHAAH 10

Overall: 10

Beaker - 10

vox: 9

beats: 10

jingle: 6

package: 8

BARELY. WE CAN WORK THE TEEN MARKET WITH THE SHITTY ENDING. LUCKY THIS IS CATCH AF.

Navi - 8.5/10


The jingle (0.5/1)

Interesting idea, but it ran too long and works more as an inside joke than a radio commercial for a product.

The spot (1/1)

I like it! I’m a little wary of the radio spots with music under because there’s a tendency to mix the vocals like song vocals and not ducked-af radio vocals, but this one ain’t bad.

Is the single clean? (0.5/1)

There’s two ways to approach this challenge: Write a clean song; or write a dirty song and censor it well. This one takes Approach B, but doesn’t really land it. Half of the censored words are still CLEARLY recognizable – which is something that could have easily been fixed.

Is the single an earworm? (2/2)

Yeah, this song is very catchy. The beat is solid enough that I didn’t get bored after 5 minutes, and the hook works well and is v witty in an earnest way.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yup. Nice work!

Did Navi like the Production? (2/2)

Yeah, I thought the production was solid! Well mixed, lots of cool sections, etc.

Did Navi like the vocals? (1.5/2)

Good performance, but I’m a bit wishy on how the commercial product was incorporated/referenced into the track. In my heart of hearts, I want it to be that this song itself is WRITTEN by a Pencil Automaton – in which case, I wish that subtlety was thrown out the window, and it sounded more like a robot stringing together earpleasingly uncanny valley verses.

Public Vote – 8.84

Round Overall Score: 45.34/50

Round Standing – 1

Competition Overall – 185.84/230

Overall Standing – 4

Penzel Washington & Danny DeBeato

Shades On

Adam - 7

Another commercial instead of a jingle. Literally no chiptune elements. Radio drop wasn't separated from the track, but the intro felt good. Piano sample got a little grating before the end of the first verse. Drums are nice. The vocals seem to be fighting for attention with that damn piano sample. I like the hook a lot but I don't if I'd consider this a radio hit. I could see this being a good song for a live set in an dive bar. The pauses are great in the second verse and the arrogance drop in is very well done. Be sure to mention the fade.

Most of that one piano sample. 7/10

Emmanuel - 8.83

Vocalist: 9

Prod: 10

Challenge: 7.5 - no retro bits

Overall: 8.83

Beaker - 8

vox: 7

beats: 10

jingle: 6

package: 8

I LIKE DRINKING TOO THIS IS A GOOD JOB.

Navi - 8.5/10


The jingle (1/1)

Yup! Very slinky, smoky liquor ad.

The spot (1/1)

It’s there! I’m not gonna dock points but the vocals are getting buried by the instrumentation here, and that’s not really beneficial to the spot itself.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

No swears.

Is the single an earworm? (1/2)

Ish. Neither the instrumental nor the lyrics are super-catchy, but they work pretty well together. The hook is boilerplate as far as choruses go. I think it’s decent, but lacking a certain je ne sais quoi that truly makes something a radio earworm.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yup. Love the “Arrogance” whisper.

Did Navi like the Production? (2/2)

Yeah. It’s full and sonically thick. Everything is very well balanced (save for that spot mix), and IT HAS A FADE OUT.

Did Navi like the vocals? (1.5/2)

Yeah, I thought the lyrics were cool, but the hook struck me as a really lackluster way of phoning in a “sell-out” radio opportunity. I wish a bit more thought had been put into making it a touch more witty/original.

Public Vote – 7.45

Round Overall Score: 39.78/50

Round Standing - 5

Competition Overall – 182.03/230

Overall Standing - 5

Pretty, Good

Bear Mace

Adam - 8

Again not a jingle but holy shit this is hilarious. The drop works fine. Fuck I need a video for this with plenty of wide angle shots. I don't know if I'd call this a radio ready single but I bet it'd be fun as fuck live, especially the chaotic hook. This kind of suffers from the same problem as the last song where the excessive vamping of a loud sample makes the listen a bit tiring. The outro is great.

Most button mashing. 8/10

Emmanuel - 9.66

Vocalist: 9.5

Prod: 9.5

Challenge: 10

Overall: 9.66

Beaker - 9

vox: 9

beats: 10

jingle: 8

package: 9

ALMOST PERFECT BUT WE COULDNT MAKE IT FIT THE SPOT. TIGHTEN IT UP.

Navi - 8.5/10


The jingle (0.5/1)

Amazing tune and I love the overall atmosphere/characterization of the jingle, HOWEVER it ambles along way too loosely (and goes over double the maximum length for the challenge).

The spot (1/1)

It’s there!

Is the single clean? (1/1)

Yes~!

Is the single an earworm? (1.5/2)

Yeah, kinda. The hook has its moments, and the beat is very enjoyable to listen to. However: I feel like the hook has a bit too much going on all piled up on itself - and the combination of “lotsa words + lotsa beat on top” really detracts from giving it earworm status as a radio single.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yup. Nice work!

Did Navi like the Production? (1.5/2)

As noted earlier, the hook buries the vocals, which – in this round – really hurts the challenge requirements. As usual, Klop’s drums and arrangements are dawp. Love the bouncy rhythm of this song. It works really well as a conceptual complement to the vocals.

Did Navi like the vocals? (2/2)

Great work from Shubz! I loved the songwriting, and the performance matches the tone of the track really well!

Public Vote - 7

Round Overall Score: 42.16/50

Round Standing - 3

Competition Overall – 189.91/230

Overall Standing - 3

The CamoKrunkulator

Budget

Adam - 9

Okay this is the best jingle, right? Like it's not just me? I laughed so fucking hard. There wasn't a drop in there, unless the bit that sounded like a producer tag was supposed to be it? The vocals come in a bit dry for my taste until the FLEX ON EM then I'm 10000% on board. Then it just gets better and better. I kind of wanted the verse to build a little more so the bridge was more effective but this is objectively a rad song. There's a lot of great stuff going on in this beat. I like this song.

Most flexing. 9/10

Emmanuel - 8.66

Vocalist: 10

Prod: 8.5

Challenge: 7.5 (Couldn't find the sample of the jingle)

Overall: 8.66

Beaker - tight. much like my anus

vox: OMG MY ANUS

beats: MY ANUS AGAIN

jingle: is that blood?!

package: tight. much like my anus

KAY DASH FLAW STOP IT WITH MY ANUS

Navi - 9.5/10 aka 0/10


The jingle (1/1)

So anew begins the nihilistic exercise that is scoring Desh in this competition. The jingle is as catchy as the song, which is true commercial gold. Nice use of chip-ish sounds.

The spot (0.5/1)

It’s kinda there? It’s less a radio spot and more a tag to the commercial.

Is the single clean? (1/1)

Yes.

Is the single an earworm? (2/2)

Royal flush. I love the teamname drop at the top of the song too. Full commit.

Does it sample the jingle? (1/1)

Yes. It’s a nice rearrangement/play with the melodies of the jingle (or vice versa). Plus there’s a very cohesive thru-line for the product being subliminally sold.

Did Navi like the Production? (2/2)

Yes. It’s clean, clear, and thick. The vocals sound a bit sharp/up-front in the mix, but it’s nothing too grating. Solid work!

Did Navi like the vocals? (2/2)

Yez. Witty writing, fully living up to Code of Desh Standards and Practices. It’s not the most groundbreaking topic, but it works well with the jingle, and is ultra-relatable, which is all the kids really want these days.

Public Vote – 7.41

Round Overall Score: 43.57/60

Round Standing - DQ

Competition Overall – 43.57/230

Overall Standing - DQ