Fender Jazzmaster guitar, Roland JD-Xi synthesizer, BOSS RC-300 looper, Shure SM58A mics, Alesis Multimix 8 mixer/interface, Audio-Technica headphones.
“Rockit Writeit” is a female vocal “indie rock” song. Graciela Villa sang lead and played synth. Mark “TangMan” Tang wrote the track and handled the guitar, looper, synth programming, and backing vocals.
Reviewed By Marty Peters
Ah… indie rock! Few forms test the boundaries of recording quite like this one. Why, you ask, would we offer such a claim? Well, in our opinion, the relationship and goals between artists in this genre and the mainstream music business is often quite different than with other styles. Stopping just short of disdain, many of my indie rock friends eye the cookie- cutter formula required for acceptance by the mainstream as stifling to their creative muse.
Okay, so what has that to do with Graciela and TangMan’s submission, you ask? Well, it requires a different mindset from the reviewer, for one thing!
Standard concerns like balance, ambience matching, fluctuations in timing and levels, can’t be measured against the standard homogeneous commercial release, because they were simply not intended to be. That said, there’s some fine stuff here, along with some questionable parts as well.
We absolutely love the sound of Graciela’s lead vocal. Softly sung with a beautiful tone and a ton of presence, it simply fills the stereo field. The electric guitar provides smooth accompaniment throughout the song and TangMan’s backing vocal adds a distant counterpoint to the super- present lead vocal.
As for the other sound sources, the percussion has some definite timing fluctuations and the dry “toy” keyboard jolts its way into the mix… although we suspect that was intended.
“Intent” is the key word here. The duo seem savvy enough to record any way they please—that incredible vocal recording is no accident—and that is precisely what they’ve done!