Battle of the Ego

  • Submitted on time! Jul 4, 2020

Wow, this is the first time I’ve finished one of these assignments more than an hour in advance of the deadline! Must be making up for missing the last prompt 😉

I opted for a simpler arrangement for this song than my last few assignments. The percussion is me stomping up and down the stairs and the clinking is an overflowing cup of bottle caps. The song feels to me like it sits somewhere on the spectrum between Radiohead, Muse, and Father John Misty.

Maybe you can relate, but recently I’ve been getting defensive and upset when I am forced to confront uncomfortable truths.


The silence deafening the words upon my tongue
I try to see the damage I have done
And as the pounding of the blood inside my ears
Subsides, I hope there’s nothing left to hear

No it doesn’t have to be a
Battle of the ego
Listen to the music,
What is there to lose?

I’ve seen a lot of men tangle in their pride
And talk themselves a knot they can’t untie
You know your temper is a temporary gain
The conflict and your worth are not the same

Put these guns aside,
Take a minute to see clearly through your eyes

No, it doesn’t have to be a
Battle of the ego
Listen to the music
What is there to lose?

Looking for feedback on

Still struggling with mixing in ProTools


Ben July 16, 2020 10:31pm

Wow I love this whole “playing piano” thing you seem to be doing for the past few songs. Have you ever done solo gigs in this arrangement? I guess it’d be hard to incorporate your foot percussion, but I could see you doing shows like this.

So far every song you’ve done has been swirly and whirly with these great arpeggios and I think it’s great. Love the performance and songwriting and recording. I think it’s tied with some of your others from a songwriting/creative perspective, but I think it’s probably the strongest single recording you’ve made so far in Neon Chef in terms pf mix/clarity/editing and overall sound.

I tottttally hear the Misty and the Yorke too. Great work.

nurphgun July 11, 2020 9:01pm

Wow the piano Alec!! Well fucking done. That outro, damn. The chord progression and the melody are classic in the best way. The piano sounds really really good – played well and it sounds great in the mix to me. I hear Elton John and the Beatles in addition to the ones you mentioned.

alechutson July 13, 2020 1:25pm

Thanks Nora! I feel the Elton John and later Beatles influence as well. Just a bit of my childhood peeking through I suppose 🙂 Glad you like it

nick July 10, 2020 10:32am

mmm very nice. love how clear your voice is. nice and crisp. Piano sounds great, too. I suppose, since it’s kind of the main bed of harmonics, it could be slightly wider? Calling on @@Kyle again—any piano tips?

Kyle July 10, 2020 1:49pm

Agree that vox sound great! Love the chord at 1:51 as well.

How did you track the piano? Moving a pair of mics further apart can always help for width. Mics with more top end sound pretty sweet on piano too.

alechutson July 13, 2020 1:29pm

Thanks guys, I really appreciate the tips. I’ve been using my Zoom H4n to record everything, though I do also have two shotgun mics and a cheap condenser mic that I can use. Feels like I’ve figured out how to best use it with my voice, but I am still honing in how to record keys and other things properly. Up until now, I’ve just been setting my Zoom on top of the piano, but I’m guessing that’s not the best placement for the mic.

Carseat July 5, 2020 9:26pm

Wow. Wow. The chords. The arpeggios. The melody. The percussion choice. So good.

Carseat July 5, 2020 9:28pm

Also the piano feature gives me Muse vibes — specifically their “Butterflies and Hurricanes.” I really really dig it.

alechutson July 7, 2020 1:50pm

Thank you, really glad you dig it!! Definitely some Butterflies and Hurricanes influence in there 😉