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View Full Version : Critic Vs. Asshat....



Ignotus
03-07-2012, 08:00 AM
you ever feel like a complete asshat for trying to judge someones mixing/productions? I have a few people ask me here and there how this and THAT sounds...

but, when it just sounds like complete garbage, how do you tell them?

I feel as if when someone asks ME for advice, and i give them an IN detail of MY OPINIONATED desire, they give me the response of "K THNX thats not what all my friends say" (well ofc not... why would your friends tell you it sucks?)

i guess what im asking, is how to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like said asshat...

(keep in mind im open minded and am not anal about a lot of things, and i use the term garbage.... as its ment to)

Windows 95
03-07-2012, 08:47 AM
and i use the term garbage.... as its ment to)"Garbage" is a word that does not belong in constructive criticism. It automatically makes your view point not one of advice, but one of insult & condemnation.

moyo wilde
03-07-2012, 08:49 AM
"Garbage" is a word that does not belong in constructive criticism. It automatically makes your view point not one of advice, but one of insult & condemnation.

i actually lol'd

MeowMix
03-07-2012, 08:56 AM
Id go with..."I see you were going for #1 but what you have here is closer to #2 so id recommend you spend some time on #3.

http://www.adventuredad.com/images/feat080706thong.jpg

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_IKMqJN3izxk/TJY3I37APKI/AAAAAAAAADs/jepIHRIzpUU/s400/gym+with+escalator.jpg

Id say thats pretty fucking diplomatic.

Ignotus
03-07-2012, 09:03 AM
Id go with..."I see you were going for #1 but what you have here is closer to #2 so id recommend you spend some time on #3.

http://www.adventuredad.com/images/feat080706thong.jpg

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_IKMqJN3izxk/TJY3I37APKI/AAAAAAAAADs/jepIHRIzpUU/s400/gym+with+escalator.jpg


i amuse your point... but, how would you tell this to said person who thinks nothing is wrong with what they are doing...

i guess my biggest point is, when someone train wrecks and thinks its acceptable in a mixtape, what do you tell them...

"there is a short messup at 5 min, 16min and 34 min, but besides that its a killer mix!!!!"
Comments: DUDE YOU NEED TO PLAY THE CLUBS OUT HERE, OMG MAN, THIS IS THE BEST SHIT IVE EVER HEARD!!!!.....ETC

NickyNines
03-07-2012, 09:05 AM
It's like tattoo's, you just say cool and leave it at that. Some people put a lot of time into their productions... It isn't my place to tell them that it sucks and smash their dreams. Plus some people will never have it, so I just let them keep enjoy what they are doing because they enjoy doing it, and get excited about it. Rule of thumb is always keep it positive in my book when it comes to other people's work.

Ignotus
03-07-2012, 09:08 AM
It's like tattoo's, you just say cool and leave it at that. Some people put a lot of time into their productions... It isn't my place to tell them that it sucks and smash their dreams. Plus some people will never have it, so I just let them keep enjoy what they are doing because they enjoy doing it, and get excited about it. Rule of thumb is always keep it positive in my book when it comes to other people's work.



thats kinda shitty man, cuz when i ask for advice i dont want just a "yes man"

and i guess it wrong for me to figure thats all they want?

NickyNines
03-07-2012, 09:11 AM
Well then do it this way if you must 1:1. Pick out a good part and complement it, then pick out a bad part and tell em what went wrong. If there are no good parts I still say don't say anything. I woul definitely only say one bad thing each time. Then you can feel better about helping without tearing him/her apart.

NickyNines
03-07-2012, 09:12 AM
And not everyone actually wants advice. Some people just wanna know "how good" they did or are. Saying it sucks will crush them. Especially if they respect you.

Ignotus
03-07-2012, 09:15 AM
And not everyone actually wants advice. Some people just wanna know "how good" they did or are. Saying it sucks will crush them. Especially if they respect you.

Touche' man... i guess i need to figure out the difference between someone sharing a track and someone "SHARING" a track (if that makes sense)

MeowMix
03-07-2012, 09:21 AM
i amuse your point... but, how would you tell this to said person who thinks nothing is wrong with what they are doing...

i guess my biggest point is, when someone train wrecks and thinks its acceptable in a mixtape, what do you tell them...

"there is a short messup at 5 min, 16min and 34 min, but besides that its a killer mix!!!!"
Comments: DUDE YOU NEED TO PLAY THE CLUBS OUT HERE, OMG MAN, THIS IS THE BEST SHIT IVE EVER HEARD!!!!.....ETC

Well if they think nothing is wrong why would they bother asking your opinion. They are obviously looking for feedback.
As the pictures illustrate, you tell them the good parts, then you tell em the bad parts and finally you tell em how they think you can improve.

There will always be people who are just to dumb to realize how bad they are at it. If they just cant figure it out even after all the advice all you can do is shrug and move on.

mrkleen
03-07-2012, 09:31 AM
you ever feel like a complete asshat for trying to judge someones mixing/productions? I have a few people ask me here and there how this and THAT sounds...

but, when it just sounds like complete garbage, how do you tell them?

I feel as if when someone asks ME for advice, and i give them an IN detail of MY OPINIONATED desire, they give me the response of "K THNX thats not what all my friends say" (well ofc not... why would your friends tell you it sucks?)

i guess what im asking, is how to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like said asshat...

(keep in mind im open minded and am not anal about a lot of things, and i use the term garbage.... as its ment to)

Totally agree. You get there here - even in the battle section where the sole purpose of people participating is TO HAVE THEIR MIX REVIEWED.

Most people dont want constructive criticism, they just want you to tell them how great they are....even when they are terrible.

Personally I call it like I see it. I suppose if they dont like what I say, they dont ask for my advice any longer...but sugar coating things doesnt help anyone.

Marc S
03-07-2012, 10:05 AM
agreed, if nobody tells you you suck, you have no reason to improve.

Daniel S
03-07-2012, 10:24 AM
I looked at the title and thought this would be dubstep battle, then I saw it was not posted in the battle section...

;)

Rek_Aviles
03-07-2012, 10:28 AM
Try to keep personal opinion out of it, but if you have to, let them know you're talking out of your own experience or what you would do differently.

asides from that, be honest and give some detail as to why you think something is shit and you can't look like an asshat. If after all that, they still feel you're being a douche, then they never really wanted any feedback.

Sigma
03-07-2012, 10:34 AM
If you're not honest, there's little point in critiquing a mix IMO.

If I think something is awful, I'll say it's awful, but I will also say what I think the DJ could work on to improve. The majority of the time, based on my experience on here and on other sites, people seem to appreciate honesty over just being told "that sounds great mate!" regardless of what it really sounds like, so I don't believe that people just want to hear positive comments no matter what.

I can only think of 1 occasion where I've posted a comment on a mix and the guy took it badly. He said something like "I wasn't posting it to get your advice", but the mix really wasn't very good at all and my advice was to focus on the things that would make it better, so if someone can't take it on the chin then that's their problem.


If there are no good parts I still say don't say anything.
If I think that there are no good parts, I would say so. A critique is a mix of opinion and fact. I may not like the music - that's my opinion - but if the beatmatching is off, the phrase matching is out, the levels are all over the place etc. - those are facts and the person who made the mix should pay attention to the advice given. What I would not do is post something like "That sucks! Sell your gear now!", cos things like that are no help to anyone and it's basically trolling.

c-hawk
03-07-2012, 11:28 AM
Honest feedback without sounding like a complete tool is totally doable.

mostapha
03-07-2012, 12:25 PM
Maybe they were just looking for someone to book them and thought you were that someone…so, getting criticism wasn't what they wanted…they just wanted to hear "you're spinning with me tonight." Whatever. I'm ignoring that.

So…you're in a situation where someone asked for your advice, for some reason…maybe they respect you.
Their mix sucked.
You told them.
And now they're all butt-hurt and falling back on what their friends said.

Too damn bad. If they get defensive because someone they asked for criticism basically said "this is bad…there's nothing to compliment," that means 2 things: you might not have looked hard enough for something to compliment, and they don't have what it takes to DJ anywhere but their bedroom…and not because he sucks.

I would rather someone call me a talentless loser to my face than dance around saying a mix had problems. Why? I'm not going to go cry in a corner because I recorded a bad mix or because someone I respect doesn't like it…I'll either learn from what they say (if they give specifics), give up, or ignore their advice and move on…and none of those requires them to pussy-foot around anything.

Dj_4-$hure
03-07-2012, 01:09 PM
If you can't take some criticism, might as well not even post your mixes up in the first place. Getting your mix reviewed is great, even if the person has good or bad things to say, as long as it's constructive, especially if it's someone you respect and knows what their talking about.

dlove
03-07-2012, 01:27 PM
yep, I want people to tell me what they really think, even if it smarts, because chances are, I'm thinking the same thing. When people tell me it's all good, I don't believe them anyway. Getting an honest opinion makes me step up my game for next time, no doubt, as it makes me really remember my mistakes, and not get complacent believing the hype.

however, I always feel paranoid giving my opinion on other people's mixes, because I'm not normally publicly negative. Yet, giving an honest critique is a learning curve in itself, so I don't just give platitudes, I try to break it down into points, good & bad.

dlove
03-07-2012, 01:36 PM
I'll either learn from what they say (if they give specifics), give up, or ignore their advice and move on…and none of those requires them to pussy-foot around anything.

when I first started playing out, I had other residents standing round me with their arms crossed, shaking their heads & 'conferring' every time I made a mistake :lol: Baptism Of Fiyah. I knew I was getting better when they nodded their heads more than shook them :D

Dj_4-$hure
03-07-2012, 02:05 PM
when I first started playing out, I had other residents standing round me with their arms crossed, shaking their heads & 'conferring' every time I made a mistake :lol: Baptism Of Fiyah. I knew I was getting better when they nodded their heads more than shook them :D

Fucking hilarious, straight classic shit right herreee.

dlove
03-07-2012, 02:20 PM
Fucking hilarious, straight classic shit right herreee.

Yeh. If You Can't Take The Heat, Get Out The Kitchen :lol:

mostapha
03-07-2012, 02:40 PM
when I first started playing out, I had other residents standing round me with their arms crossed, shaking their heads & 'conferring' every time I made a mistake :lol: Baptism Of Fiyah. I knew I was getting better when they nodded their heads more than shook them :D

That's what I'm talking about.

Dj_4-$hure
03-07-2012, 02:46 PM
Yeh. If You Can't Take The Heat, Get Out The Kitchen :lol:

You gotta have balls to take that kind of heat...Uh oh, never mind.;) :lol::D

imallama
03-07-2012, 03:20 PM
Well, in my opinion, if you want to be diplomatic about something that sucked you can say "Well [insert part of mixtape here] was interesting. It isn't the way I'd mix/scratch/whatever though."

But yeah, just echoing what everyone else said, if people don't want to take your criticism they won't. If you're close with them, they should be able to handle the truth and not be all butt hurt because they need to remember it's not a personal thing and you aren't attacking them for who they are as a person. You're just providing insight/opinion into something that they originally asked for. If they do get butt hurt, meh, whatever. Just don't talk to them about DJing anymore, lol. You figure it's better to let a friend know if you did something wrong rather than a complete stranger.

Divercity
03-07-2012, 05:08 PM
People should be able to take criticism especially with their music. There is a difference between a producer listening to a song compared to a normal person. Criticism is to be taken seriously and should be used to improve.


Obviously there is a difference between constructive criticism and just being retarded. For instance, If someone says "this sucks" with no reason why then don't bother. But you should take into consideration someone's opinion when they actually have something worthwhile to say. For instance if someone says, "this sucks. This part is out of key with the rest of the progression etc and you should change XYZ because the frequencies are muddying everything up etc"

As a producer I treasure people's feedback and if I'm doing something wrong and someone point's it out it can be a lifesaver. Trust those that you know and understand people's point of view, Producer or listener.

Hygro
03-07-2012, 05:20 PM
It's like tattoo's, you just say cool and leave it at that. Some people put a lot of time into their productions... It isn't my place to tell them that it sucks and smash their dreams. Plus some people will never have it, so I just let them keep enjoy what they are doing because they enjoy doing it, and get excited about it. Rule of thumb is always keep it positive in my book when it comes to other people's work.

Yeah but tattoos can't be improved once made, productions can. Productions can be forgotten and replaced, tattoos stay a long time.

People need more and less positive feedback depending on where they are in their quest. I needed more positive feedback early on, and I want more harsh criticism now. A big reason is that harsh detailed criticism wouldn't have meant anything to me before I even knew how to understand it, so I'd just feel bad and want to quit. But now I know how to take in confidently in context because I know what they mean and why they might say it.

Edit: a lot of people, and I've been guilty of this, want criticism. But being human, they act a little hurt when the criticism is mostly negative and about how your stuff sucked. So it seems you shouldn't have given it nor asked for it. But in fact a few days later they don't feel so bad and are as thankful for it as they hoped to be when they originally asked for it. Pain for gain.

andypandy
03-07-2012, 06:17 PM
Pick out the bits that are good and tell them, tell them the stuff that might need work but always leave it down to your own person opinion. ''I really like those synth sounds, they are great, I'm not a fan of the drums but that could just be me'' is normally my kind of response to such questions. It depends how much I like the person tho actually. It's funny, if I really like them I'll tell them what I like and dislike, if I don't care much for them, I'll simply say it's cool or whatever. I think this maybe something to do with the people that I don't care to much for asking me to listen to their stuff; are normally people who would just take it personally or think not even take it onboard.

DJ Elroy
03-07-2012, 08:45 PM
If somebody sucks at mixing, just be straight with them and tell them they suck. They tell them why. They need to work on beatmatching/blending/EQing etc. If they are really that bad it's better they hear it from somebody rather than think they are good because nobody will say anything. Sure it'll hurt their feelings, but that's part of the fun!

I criticize a lot of stuff. Most of it's constructive but sometimes the music is just so bad you need to say something a bit stronger.

Alert
03-08-2012, 11:48 PM
agreed, if nobody tells you you suck, you have no reason to improve.

http://www.rounderspalace.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/bingobingoggg.jpg

the people who ask you for "feedback" who are really just wanting their ego stroked

vs

the people who actually want constructive criticism in order to grow as an artist/musician


Tracks: Critique how to make the music shine/sound the best that it can, through EQing, song structure and instrument/sound choices that match the mood or idea of the song. Playing to the strengths of the song will help the person being critiqued be more receptive to improving the "base materials" that they are currently working with in order to learn how to turn them into "gold".

Mixes: Critique flow, energy and track selection. Point out the strengths of good track combinations and energy flow.

My two cents...

:)

peterwo2e
03-09-2012, 08:55 AM
what makes you an expert on this issue that people would flock to you for your professional advice ?. what type of music genre are you a pro on? what are some of your mixes and were does it get play at? what I'm trying to get at is if you no pro or well known professional producer etc. them you really should not call anybody's work garbage. is ok to give constructive advice is cool and all but whats garbage to you might not be to somebody else. you have to keep in mind that you also had probably suck in the past or maybe still do. no insult intended. how would you like people to tell you?

Windows 95
03-09-2012, 08:57 AM
http://www.rounderspalace.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/bingobingoggg.jpg

the people who ask you for "feedback" who are really just wanting their ego stroked

vs

the people who actually want constructive criticism in order to grow as an artist/musicianExcept that's not what this thread is about.

It's insults like "that sucks", or "your mix is garbage" versus constructive criticism.
One is just to belittling someone who knows less than you, the other sharing your knowledge to help someone improve.

de.j.l
03-09-2012, 09:12 AM
as a new producer, I wouldn't prefer straight up honest feedback rather than pissing around the bush. I guess this all entails to how well you know the person and what they are looking for, harsh is reality.. if you're producing crap , you better be set straight a.s.a.p and learn the proper way to do things in order to improve.

thehadgi
03-09-2012, 10:06 AM
Personally, I recommend not asking for feedback after a while has passed since you started out

Alert
03-09-2012, 10:24 PM
Except that's not what this thread is about.

It's insults like "that sucks", or "your mix is garbage" versus constructive criticism.
One is just to belittling someone who knows less than you, the other sharing your knowledge to help someone improve.


you ever feel like a complete asshat for trying to judge someones mixing/productions? I have a few people ask me here and there how this and THAT sounds...

but, when it just sounds like complete garbage, how do you tell them?

I feel as if when someone asks ME for advice, and i give them an IN detail of MY OPINIONATED desire, they give me the response of "K THNX thats not what all my friends say" (well ofc not... why would your friends tell you it sucks?)

i guess what im asking, is how to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like said asshat...

(keep in mind im open minded and am not anal about a lot of things, and i use the term garbage.... as its ment to)

Guess I read the OP's post wrong?

Windows 95
03-10-2012, 09:16 AM
Guess I read the OP's post wrong?The OP wants advice on how to give constructive criticism, but the OP obviously does not know the difference between constructiveness toward someone & just throwing out insults at them.


you ever feel like a complete asshat for trying to judge someones mixing/productions? I have a few people ask me here and there how this and THAT sounds...

but, when it just sounds like complete garbage, how do you tell them?

I feel as if when someone asks ME for advice, and i give them an IN detail of MY OPINIONATED desire, they give me the response of "K THNX thats not what all my friends say" (well ofc not... why would your friends tell you it sucks?)

i guess what im asking, is how to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like said asshat...

(keep in mind im open minded and am not anal about a lot of things, and i use the term garbage.... as its ment to)

Ignotus
03-10-2012, 10:39 PM
The OP wants advice on how to give constructive criticism, but the OP obviously does not know the difference between constructiveness toward someone & just throwing out insults at them.


im pretty sure i can look the meaning of those in the dictionary and figure out the difference.... your missing the MAIN question

"I guess what im asking is how to give constructive criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like an ass hat"

er go, when i say "it just doesnt sounds good man, the EQing is off, the lack of limiters makes everything sound muddy... etc"

i get told "K THNX thats not what all my friends say"

so THEREFOR! im asking how to better take approach said situation, because to me, i feel like an asshat for not just giving him the said ego boost



EDIT------------------------------

Thank you for all the CONSTRUCTIVE replys so far (no pun intended), it has helped me gauge a more "appropriate" response, if im even going to give one

Windows 95
03-11-2012, 08:54 AM
"I guess what im asking is how to give constructive criticism on someone elses work, without seeming like an ass hat"

er go, when i say "it just doesnt sounds good man, the EQing is off, the lack of limiters makes everything sound muddy... etc"That is exactly how you give someone constructive criticism without sounding like an ass hat. Telling someone it "sucks" or it's "garbage" is being an ass hat.