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July 3, 2019

Angels - NSAI feedback

Next song to be critiqued was Angels. Remember that this was not originally my song - it's my re-write of Ann Leung's song. Here's the version I submitted, as distribute to YouTube by CDBaby:

I enterd this in the "Gospel" category and asked for assessment of it as a commercial song. Here's the feedback:

Song Title - Angels

Evaluators Comments -

EVALUATORS OPENING: Hello, its Evaluator #XXXXX and thank you for having NSAI
and myself be a small part of your writing career. Please understand that
what I am about to lay out are merely suggestions to help improve your
writing and make your song and your future songs as strong as they can
possibly be to compete in todays competitive market. Lets get started!!

FORM/STRUCTURE: While the chorus quite short, the verses are quite long.
Even with having a short chorus, you might still want to rethink the length
of your verses. Overall the song is quite long. Even if you limited the end
to just the one chorus you are still over the 4 minute mark. Quite a long

TITLE/HOOK: The title is pretty average as far as titles go but overall its
missing a strong main point. While you have your title all over the verses,
its not quite prominently displayed or set up with a clear decisive main
point line preceding it.

LYRIC: Overall Im not sure who the singer is really singing to or about.
There is some confusion with the point of view that needs to be addressed
first. Second, and as I stated earlier, there needs to be some main point
relative to your idea. Not seeing that as of yet. Lastly, try and be more
clear with your lines. Right now Lines 1 & 2 say something completely
different that get me lost right from the start.
I was feeling I could cry when the angels came
Awkward small and shy then the angels came
SO your first line says the ANGELS CAME but then the second line says that
they came AFTER something else. Thats not all that logical. Try and lead the
listener down a clear and logical path literally line by line. A to B to C
etc etc.

MELODY/METER: Its an average melody as far as melodies go. You do a nice job
of making the chorus special and memorable but I think the length of your
verses hurts your melody overall.

OVERALL THEME/IDEA: I think the idea needs further developing.

CLOSING COMMENTS: I hope you find this helpful and wish you the best with
your writing.


Well, this is both helpful and disheartening. Great feedback, nonetheless.

Perhaps this one is best simply not considered a commercial song. I want to respect it for what it is. I hear the criticism of its length and structure, but I don't want to change that. A more constructive critique was the one I got from Hillsong Publishing at the Australian Songwriting Conference a few years ago: the last two lines of the verse need to be a pre-chorus with a shift in melody and rhythm. Since I want to make this song a builder into a massive Gospel coda, I think that's more likely to get what I want.

I hear the confusion about the lyric and especially its target. I have agonised over this one and this critque helps give direction a lot. Will definitely re-write on that basis.

In summary: Very helpful critique that I will use to re-write this one, but I thin it's off my list of songs to sell or try to commercialise. I'm gonna make this one into something special to me and the other people behind it. THANK YOU NSAI!

What do you think? How would you feel about this feedback and what would you do about it?

Posted by Hughie at July 3, 2019 3:05 PM

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