DragonAvenger

OCR03591 - *YES* Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, RE4 & RE5 "(Progeny) Of a Frail Humanity" *PROJECT* *FALLTHROUGH*

9 posts in this topic

David PM'd me about this being a possible fallthrough. May also have to check if that last source is cool as it's from the movie.

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 So, I'm not sure it's up to OCR standards, but I thought why the hell not submit my Wesker track from BadAss3.

 I'm sure since it's a OCR project track you guys have all the relevant info for me.

 
 I'll include a rundown of the source usage too:
 
The main Wesker theme from RE1 & Umbrella Chronicles are used throughout the intro of the track, 0:00-1:28 mostly the piano, but the guitar also does a variation of it, & the staccato strings layer the piano.
 
 At around 1:29-1:47, the guitar does the main part from Winds of Madness (RE5), while the choir backing it is from the Wesker Mercenaries Theme (RE4).
 
Then from then on, the backing guitar does the main Wesker Theme again, with the piano doing the variation of it from the beginning of the song.
 
 Also, the tom hits at 1:47 are referencing the RE movies Wesker Theme, The Outsider (Renholder Mix)  by A Perfect Circle!
 
 Not sure if it's up to OCR standards, but here's hoping!
 
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Oh, I do remember this track from when I reviewed the BadAss 3 album. I frankly thought the approach was perfect, for what this is - it just brings 28 Days Later straight to my memory. It's a very slick way to reinterpret the source, here, and the preformance quality is fairly high, to boot.

There's one thing I remember from that review that continues to be an issue here, which is the mixing at 2:15. When that guitar shreds at that point, the mix gets muddied and cluttered, and possibly even overcompressed. It would've been great if the mixing was cleaned up there, bringing that guitar part down a little bit so the other instruments don't cause compression issues when they decide to stand out.

The arrangement is absolutely perfect for the album (acting as a bridge from the softer moments of the album to the more heavy portions), but for OCR it needs to stand well on it's own, too. Thankfully, the arrangement itself is flowing and makes perfect sense. The sources used are a little tough to hear, due to how it's rearranged. The piano part, for example, is a reference to the RE: Umbrella Chronicles arpeggio, but it breaks it up into three groups of two notes, rather than the original's two groups of three notes (with the last two notes per repetition remaining the same, more or less). It's tough to hear, but the shape and tone of the arpeggio remains intact enough for me to count as source. We'll see if other judges agree with that, though - there is an argument to be made whether that counts as source or not.

I really enjoyed how the RE: Umbrella Chronicles theme plays out from 1:55 - 2:34; it slows down over the more consistent repetition from the piano, emphasizing different notes but retaining the original source almost precisely. It's a very clever way to transform the source, so I tip my hat to you. I hear the theme from RE5 slipped in at 1:34 - 1:47, and though it's very small it blends seamlessly there. I'm not linking the choir parts as you said, personally, but that's a minor complaint from my end.

Concerning the issue with the movie part, that's in reference to the drums at 1:55 (it references the drums from 0:28, as linked on here). I don't see a problem with it, as it's completely unnoticeable unless someone specifically points it out. I think it's a pretty cool touch, referencing materials related to the source that aren't from the game like this in as subtle a manner as was done here. Obviously I don't encourage the use of outside source material for ReMixes, but this is a case where it's nearly unnoticeable and doesn't detract at all from the arrangement of the VG sources.

Overall I think there's a lot that can catch listeners off guard on this, but despite the issues that I have with the mixing I feel it's within the bar. Good luck with the rest of the vote!

YES

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I do think this flows pretty nicely between the sources. The evolution of the track works well overall, and the build to the climax is well achieved. I agree that 2:15 is a bit cluttered, and the wash of nice between the cymbals, guitar, drums, and backing its a bit much. The section is overall short though and not a huge deal in the long run. Overall I think this is a solid mix.

YES

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Hmm... interesting.  In the first couple of listens I wasn't very impressed with this, the mix felt a bit dry and unbalanced at places, and I felt like the arrangement was simple and took too long to build up.  The song feels like it builds up forever, and when it reaches climax it just drops off to build up again.

After a few listens though, I found it was really interesting what was done with the sources here.  It's not a straight-up remix, in my ears;  it feels like a new song was made from different parts of those songs.  I'm still not sure how well this works as a remix, as not only were these different parts brought into this song but they have been heavily transformed for the most part.  i.e. the piano is a modified version of the arpeggio in Wesker's theme, or how the RE5 section is barely there.  Again I'm not sure how well this will work for most people as a remix, in the Frankenstein-y way this was put together, but I found it to be very clever in its execution of these disparate portions of different songs.

I'm willing to give this a pass based on the fact that the piano playing the modified hook from Wesker's theme is heard throughout the song and keeps it from going into unrecognizable territory to me.  The other sources are there, not sure how easily recognizable though.  Otherwise this is pretty short and the artist deserves some kudos for how he put this together while still having it make sense.  

YES

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Regarding the arrangement, here's the problem I have: The main hook from the source consists of only eight notes.  Up until 1:16, I hear only the first two and the last two of those notes.  After that, when it does match the source, it continues for only 20 more seconds.  The original takes this in several different directions as the piece evolves; this does not, until it returns at 1:55 in a completely different way.  At that point, I can hear the connection, but with it slowed down so much and the rhythm changed completely--I initially heard this as four groups of two notes, not two triplets plus two notes--it takes me a lot of imagination and concentration to make that connection.

I can't draw any connection between the other aspects of the two pieces, but there's a lot of complicated and subtle stuff going on in both, so I could easily be missing something, if another judge can help identify it.  Like Gario, I do hear the connection to the RE5 source, though again it's tenuous, and not to the RE4 one, though either way the section is so short that it doesn't matter.

(I actually referenced Wesker's theme from RE1 as well as the one from Umbrella Chronicles linked here, and the arpeggio is completely different.  If this does get posted, I would definitely like verification that RE1 is a source for this at all.)

I agree with Gario and Deia both about the mixing issues at 2:15 and that it's not enough of a concern to turn this down, but it could certainly be improved.  Otherwise, production seems fine.

If only that main hook was implemented the same way before 1:16 as after, or better yet if it riffed on the theme the same way the source does (not necessarily the same riffs exactly, but the same style), or if it was implemented more literally after 1:55, I wouldn't have any problem passing this.  But for so much of the arrangement it's different enough that I gotta give this a

NO (borderline, please resubmit)

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The intro build up worked well - while the main melody was repetitive, the accompanying layers that came in over time helped draw attention away from the fact. The transition to the harder part at 1:50 started mostly clean from a production standpoint, but there are audible issues 2:17 onward. This section is muddy in the low end with the bass and rhythm guitars sharing too much space. At the same time a cloud descends over the mix, losing parts in the background like the piano, making them kind of redundant. The drums also had a hard time punching through. Things finished up minimal and clean, but ended somewhat abruptly.

Looking back across the mix it feels like an extended intro with a short body attached. This is not necessarily bad as it adds tension with a climatic conclusion, but when things build up to the final portion, we don't quite get to hear it for what it is and appreciate that section as much as we could. Although this may pass, I do push the importance of keeping heavy parts audible. While I understand a wall of sound adds to the strength of the section, it can be done while still leaving room for the mix to breathe. This section, while short, is too important to have production issues. On this basis, it's a

NO 

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I see what Gario is saying about this track making a perfect bridge between moods on the album, but as a standalone track I don't think the arrangement works well at all.  What I am hearing is a long intro from 0:00-1:36, next I would expect a pretty solid first verse or section but there is none, then there is a soft breakdown from 1:36-1:56 (intro right into breakdown is very odd, imo), a super-short section of beefy material from 1:56-2:33, then a very soft outro.  The parts sound mixed well enough to me but the overall dynamics of the track are too great, with the intro and outro being much too quiet.  Ultimately though, the arrangement sinks it for me.

NO

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I thought the Wesker/Umbrella Chronicles reference was pretty apparent. I don't know why David mentioned RE1's Wesker theme as a source, but that certainly added confusion when I'd been trying to nail down the source tunes for the BadAss 3 documentation, so I feel MindWanderer's pain there; AFAIK, it's not actually a source, just the Umbrella Chronicles version. Maybe David can re-clarify this later.

Anyway, the note pattern and variations of it used in the beginning of this arrangement until 1:36 sounded more like :48 and 1:56 in the Umbrella Chronicles source as opposed to the very beginning, for what that's worth. Just noting that the RE 5 source reference started at :38 of that source, and the choir from the RE 4 source started at :26 of that one. 

The Umbrella Chronicles usage was over half of the arrangement, so I didn't really need to timestamp the rest. I thought the connection was pretty straightforward there.

I'm seeing some of the NO-rationale based on the arrangement being an extended, quiet build to a big climax. OK, so the track opens up delicately and gradually, and then builds. The last time I checked, there's nothing inherently wrong with that.

Gario, DragonAvenger, and Jivemaster were right on the mixing getting cluttered during the densest section at 2:15, but the part-writing remained distinct enough, and a supermajority of the track was well-mixed, so I can easily let this go. 2:15-2:34 was only 19 seconds, it's not poorly mixed, just not ideally mixed, and it's not a dealbreaker.

But enough talk. Have at you!

YES

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I'm in agreement with the YESes. I don't hear anything egregious happening in this track. Source usage is fine, and it's got a nice build to a pretty powerful climax. I'm into it.

YES

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