Guidelines On Writing A Good Song Review

As a music promoter or blogger, it important to review(give your thoughts) about a song that you want your audience to listen to. Why? It helps a reader know if they should listen to a song or not.

Here are some guidelines you can follow when reviewing a song. Be honest. If a song is not good say so and vice versa. Go a step further and state the aspects of a song that you like or dislike for example,the melody, vocals, lyrics, and instrumental accompaniments.

Do not plainly say, “I do not like this song.” Always start by highlighting the positive aspects of a song before delving into the negative if any.

 This is the process that we follow at Wemix to review a song.

song_review_flowchart_website

Download the Song Review Flowchart Here.

  • First and foremost, listen to the song and quickly jot down initial reactions to the track in your own words aided by the music review     terms below. This list of music review terms was borrowed from HubPages:

For melodies

Positive: tuneful, interesting, shapely (or well-shaped), strong, melodious, memorable, original

Negative: plain, shapeless, tuneless, boring, too simple, overly complex, unoriginal

For vocals

Positive: distinctive, rich, warm, expressive, feeling, strong, attractive, appealing, confident, conviction, heartfelt, clear, stylish, soulful, impressive, pitch range, dynamic, edgy, raw, powerful

Negative: thin, weak, inconsistent, out-of-tune, pitch problems, expressionless, bland, self-conscious

For lyrics

Positive: original, amusing, thought-provoking, inspiring, heart-warming, punchy, meaningful, clever, deep

Negative: plain, uninspiring, weak, pretentious, cheesy, corny, cringe worthy, obscure, confusing, predictable, repetitive, offensive

For instrumental accompaniments

Positive: balanced, varied, full, rich, rhythmic, engaging, compelling, competent, smooth, accomplished, imaginative, creative, solid, original, exciting, powerful, driving, atmospheric, ethereal

Negative: weak, plain, safe, uninspired, lacking conviction, poor balance, untogether, over-sentimental, unvaried, lacking contrast, strident, harsh

For artists

Positive: talented, imaginative, professional, creative, accomplished, competent, skillful, careful, experienced, natural

Negative: unimaginative, predictable, careless, unprofessional, untogether, dated, awkward

You can refer to these music review terms at whatever stage of the review process you are working on.

2.    Get knowledgeable about the genre of music that the song you are going to review is part of. For example, if the song you are going to review is a hip hop song and you are not familiar with the technical aspects of hip hop, read about hip hop on Wikipedia or conduct a Google search about the genre.

music_review_image

  Do the same for other music genres like Reggae, Rock, R&B Afro Pop, Afro Beat, and others. You do not have to keep reading about a genre each time you review a song once you read about it the first time.

3.    Afterwards, conduct a Google search to find the artist’s official profile in case you are not familiar with the artist whose song you are reviewing. Also read reviews of the same song on other music sites to get a feel of what other media outlets are saying about the song if available.

For example, “Ruyonga artist profile.”

ruyonga_artist-profile

If there is no artist information available, you can rely on your own judgment to form opinions about the song.

4.    Look for other songs by the artist online if you are not familiar with their content to broaden your understanding of the artist’s style.

5.    Thereafter answer some or all of the following questions to aid your thought process.

  • What is the name of the song?
  • What is the name of the artist?
  • Is anyone featured on the song?
  • Who produced the song?
  • Is the song off an album?
  • How did you hear about the; song, video, band?
  • Why do you like the; song, lyrics, video, band, singer, vocals, melody, style, mood, production quality, song title, band name, album, music genre?
  • Does the video match the song?
  • Is there a deeper meaning behind this; song, video, lyrics?
  • How does each thing make you feel? (song, lyric, video)
  • If you had super powers, what would be your favorite thing to do while hearing this song?
  • What do you daydream about while listening to this?
  • What do you know about the; song, lyrics, video, band?
  • Why is the; artist, song, lyrics, or video special?
  • How did you find the; artist, band, video, song?
  • What kind of people should listen to this song?
  • What does the; video, band, song remind you of?
  • How do you personally relate to the; song, video, band?
  • What attracted/s you to the; song, video, band, lyrics, melody, singer?
  • What is your favorite part of this; song, band, artist, video?
  • Does this song remind you of another; artist, band, video, song, lyrics, place, experience?
  • How would you compare this song to other songs by the same artist/band?
  • Is there anything about the; song, video, band that you would change? What don’t you like about the song, video, lyrics, artist, artist’s favorite food, pot pie, weapons of mass destruction?
  • What do you think about the artist’s “style” and brand “image”?

6.    Afterwards, write decorative sentences about the song. An average of 5 sentences is good for a song review. On the high end, your review should be about 200 words. After writing the review, proof read it with this checklist:

proof_reading_checklist

7.    Thereafter, publish your review personally or send it to a music website of your choice.

Tips:

1. Write the way you talk, if you find it hard to start writing, toss out the rule book and just write.

2. Quickly improve your music review skills by doing copy work on the best music reviews you can find.

Download the PDF version of this article here for future reference.

Bibliography

Day, S. O. (2016). Song Of The Day. Retrieved April 8, 2016, from Song Of The Day Web site: http://songoftheday.co/how-to-write-a-review/

HubPages. (2016, February 18). HubPages. Retrieved April 8, 2016, from HubPages Web site: http://hubpages.com/literature/slicethepie-reviews

 

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