- Rob Dugdale
Played in London based covers band Strange Brew. Achieved Grade 8 level guitar proficiency. Writing songs since aged 7.
Hey Rob, thanks for sharing, enjoyed this. Its definitely a grower for me, i wasnt convinced at first but as the track moved on I found myself really getting into it. On the second go around i picked up some cool little nuances. Its one of those tracks that you find on the back end of a NME compilation, a little treat after all the mainstream stuff. In regards to promotional / coverage advice, there are a few things you can do yourself that should assist to move everything on a bit. Firstly for you i think its best to be clear on what success is for you, what are your realistic goals? To start with, an easy fix is your profile. Listening to this track on soundcloud is great but what are your listeners getting from you. We know your name, we hear your music but thats about it. Who is Rob Dugdale, what is he all about? If my first impression of you is on your soundcloud and i'm into your stuff, i cant reach out to you, i have no other platforms i can link into etc. The spotify link is broken and we have no other information, as a first impression, a listener could be put off by that. Be more interesting, let people find out more about you while they listen to your tunes. As a listener, i am looking to connect with an artist, the more i have in common with them, the more time i will spend engaging in their work. Give them that opportunity to connect with you on a level other than the track they landed on. The same goes for all your online platforms, we all choose our preferred source, spotify, vimeo, bandcamp, itunes etc, i'm sure you've dabbled on those. You widen your reach if you are available on those, different demographics use different platforms. Doing some more research i can see that you have been in plenty of bands before so collaborating with others should be quite easy for you. Some previous artists i've worked with have found value in offering to be a support slot for artists who are a level or two further along the journey. This again is quite a simple one but requires some research of your own. As you are London based, the live opportunities are massive. Pinpoint some smaller venues known for having a good reputation and see who is playing there. It takes 2 minutes to reach out to the promoter / venue / artist and offer to play on the same bill. You then open yourself up to a whole new batch of ears who can choose to then go back and check your out after your live performance or not. Dont ask dont get. Make it easy for the organiser and be proactive rather them having another job of finding a support act. They can then add you to their list of recommended and reliable acts and who knows, maybe they'll call on you again when they put together another night. Are you writing for anyone else or just yourself? Writing for others opens doors so that may be an avenue to explore. Blogs / Radio are decent paths to getting more coverage, there are so many blogs out there that would write about your track and your history, you have a good story to tell so why not offer it out? Look at submithub and identify any blogs on there that fit your sound. Submit your work to them and i'm sure some of them would be able to include it. That then gives you another platform to point people to and you can share that on your socials. Radio is another one, who wouldnt like to be played on the radio. The global availability we have now, im surprised people dont make more use of it. I find tunein as a great source, you can filter down genres and identify stations that fit your sound. A lot of them have submission processes so just a little more research into their website should give you that in. Fingers crossed you'll then get some more plays and alogrhythms like on Spotify will show you where people are listening from. You could do all sorts with that data! While you are doing all this work behind the scenes, its important to also save time to create. This admin work can be a little draining and repetitive but its vital, you could be the greatest guitar player in the world, but if you're not available for people to find, we will never experience it. Hope those few avenues help, you should find some success with them that will take you on to the next thing, whatever that is. Keep rocking! Chris
This is good. The vocal style makes me think of some material that comes out of the US in the late in the 90s. Another analogue would be a Canadian artist named Art Bergman who was big with the alt-rock crowd in the 80s. With the way music is going today, you might be on the right track to ride some kind of 90s revival. No notes for me on songwriting, performance or production. Now some questions. 1. Is there money in the budget to stick something up on YouTube? That's still the biggest source of music discovery out there. Even a lyric video would be fine. 2. What's your social media strategy? It probably goes without saying that you need to be on all the platforms so you can communicate directly with your new fans. Turn them into evangelists for what you do. 3. If you're looking to break into radio, you'll need a radio plugger. They can help your stuff in front of music directors. 4. Play live as often as you can (but I suspect you know that). There's nothing like a bunch of strangers telling you the truth about your music in real time. Good luck with everything. I'll share this on my social networks,. That'll be good for about 100,000 or so people.
You get right down to business! The recording feels a little rough, especially the drums. They are sitting pretty far back in the mix, but maybe that's okay. The snare, and to a greater degree the toms, are muddy. The arrangement leaves little room for the vocal, and in fact I have a hard time making out some of the words, despite the fact that the level is clearly high enough. The alternate sections (like 1:25) are a breath of fresh air. The hard panned guitars leave room for the vocals and everything is so much clearer! Unfortunately they jump up in perceived volume due to too much compression in mastering, which isn't ideal. They should feel smaller so there's a bump into the chorus. I'm not sure how I feel about the strings at 2:09. They feel out of scale, way louder than they would be in a room with the other performers. On the other hand, I can hear it. 😜 The backing vocals don't sound consistently in tune, but there's not much room for them anyway. Fwiw even if the mix were incredible, this isn't a great fit for my Depeche Mode loving following, so I likely wouldn't share it on Twitter. A couple suggestions for future Fluence submissions: 1. Include the lyrics so we can follow along. 2. Include a short, catchy description of the song or act that's easy to copy/paste for social media sharing. That way we don't have to strain our brain coming up with something clever, and you get to choose how you're presented to the world. Hope that kinda sorta helps! Brian.
Hi Rob, love that you are still releasing rock tunes and nice to hear from you! I've done lots of work with indie artists since we last connected, and am now running an artist development and label services company called DPG Worldwide www.dpgworldwide.com. I like the easy driving rock rhythm of this track, although wondering if it has been mixed and mastered yet, it sounds a bit murky in my headphones and I yearn to hear the vocals more prominently in the mix. I might suggest working to tighten up the vocals a bit as well, they sound a bit wobbly at times in the track. The track is nice! but doesn't quite motivate me to listen further. I don't see you up on Spotify as an artist, are you just releasing new material to start now under your own name? If so, much work to be done to establish your presence on the streaming platforms. Thanks again for getting back in touch, hope all is well, and good luck with your music!
Solid song, that sounds a bit like a more upbeat, pop/rock version of latter day Tom Petty. Well-written with a good hook and fun vibe. I think the artwork comes off as looking like a weird myspace profile image and artwork is how people judge your music before even hearing it, so you def want to have a striking image to match the music. I would suggest including lyrics, a brief bio and links to your social media and more music with your Fluence submission so that listeners can easily find out more about your project instead of having to search on google. If you're trying to get more visibility as an artist, you should focus on releasing compelling content (music video, social media content, merch, anything visual) that sets you apart from the pack and to package with your music. If you want coverage from press, etc. you need a compelling narrative to give people a reason to cover your music so consider talking to a pro publicist for your next album, video, single, etc. release. Since you're playing rock music, there's nothing like playing out live and developing a fanbase from the groundup too. Good luck!
Hey Rob, nice to hear from you and love the storytelling in this track. The track and arrangement isn't quite our style or taste, and we don't have a place for it, but we appreciate everything being really professionally done (recording, mixing, performance), it was easy on the ears! (not always the case). Rock music is still not getting the resurgence I think it is due quite yet as well. Would have been nice to read the lyrics to hear more of the story. Hope that's helpful somehow, thanks for the submission!
Hey Rob! You've def evolved your style since we were working together a few years back. This is much more contemporary sounding, although the strumming guitars do not hold the contemporary elements that are so popular right now in the States in music that is on the radio Listen to Ed Sheeran, Harry Styles, The Fontaines, Common Deer as examples. That can change of course! Love the vocals. Love the Beatlesesque ending ;) Its not quite our style, prob mostly due to the production values we've mentioned, and it isn't as compelling as we'd want it to be. Hope that's helpful. Thanks for submitting! Hope all is well!
Nice troubador vibes - simple and direct lyrics marry with the barebones production very well. I can see this being used in a variety of ways in sync, but mostly all of them are as background music - which isn't a bad thing at all. If there's any constructive advice I can leave you with, it'd be to experiment more with different types of vocal production and add complementary vocal harmonies in apex moments, such as the last chorus. All in all, I did really like this song. Keep on writing stuff like this, you're definitely on the right track.
Nicely recorded, and I like the chord progressions - very cool harmonic structure. Something about it still sounds like a demo form to me. Suggest you add some layers - maybe some train atmospheric noises even? Also it could sound better with a more organic compression / more Beatles-esque EQ etc.
This track is well put together, all the different components work really well and have their own influence, the bridge is nice and all in all holds the usual format of a 4 min plus track. Fan of the concluding 40 odd instrumental seconds to play us out. From my experience of how others perceive covers bands, is that they have had no luck or don't have the contacts to make a relative success writing / performing their own material. A lot of people who have played at our shows say they offer their services to emerging artists who need guitarists to join them on open mics and smaller gigs they have been booked for. These artists have usually had reasonably good production but haven't considered what their live set up is, this is where you could (selfishly) come in and from there then use your experience to MD their live set when they're ready. Anyway getting back to the track, its really well put together and a lot or professionalism in there, definitely happy to share around. Off to listen to more of your stuff. All the best C
I like this song! Have you had this track mastered? I ask because I like the track enough to ask you to send a high quality mp3 to me for future promotion/inclusion on Aspenbeat, and, at the same time, there’s something about the sound that is a bit too raw. I'm not enamored of the video, although parts of it showing instrumental performances keep me watching (especially the piano playing). Feel free to get in touch with me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to further discuss. Thanks for your submission, good luck with your music!
I like the music but I am not too excited about the vocal delivery...It has a bit to do with how they are recorded but also, the timing...a little more relaxed, not-on-the-beat vox delivery could go a long way here...some more swagger (I'd like to hear a more Sultans of Swing type of delivery or a Lou Reed's "New Sensation" comes to mind....sort of like talking over the music... not so much singing every note...) Maybe try a cool, defining filter/effect...something interesting...maybe a telephone filter? a little muted effect? You have something here...just needs some tweaking...
Thanks for sending this to me. First thing I would suggest is to add a lot more information to your Submission description. You can do this by logging in and going back into the Promotion and Editing it so you can add more information on the song, the artist, lyrics, and links to the social media profiles of the artist. I would definitely also ask the curators you submitted to what you're asking from them. For the song, I like it and will refer you to Andrea from Aspen Beat, Dale Goodridge, and a few others. Check out their profiles and feel free to submit it to them directly. The song isn't my speed and cup of tea, but I think you can find the right audience with a little more research and outreach.
Here's what I like: Like the intro - very cool arrangement and just the right amount of build. LOVE the drum groove in the verse. It seems that you have a good grip on your sound, and the production is nothing to scoff at. Most of all, I appreciate the simplicity of the song form. Here's what I didn't: The 1st pre-chorus threw me a bit, no need to get fancy with the dynamics this early in the song. Here's what I'd suggest: I dig the story telling element, but one thing I'd suggest is a less personal narrative. And while the vocals are sonically compatible, I'd like to hear more range, especially in emotional moments.