ReMix: Final Fantasy VI 'Squaresoft Variation'

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Final Fantasy VI

Oh. My. God. For those unfamiliar with the name of Jeremy Soule, he's the composer of numerous great game soundtracks, a couple of which have been ReMixed here on OCR... and he has submitted what is singlehandedly one of the most awesome orchestral rearrangements I have ever heard. I literally kicked myself when I realized he had sent us this back around Christmas of last year, and extend my sincere apologies both to him and to all you listeners for whom, I can assure you, it would have been the best holiday present you could have hoped for. Quite simply, this is amazing. Soule accompanied this mix with the following words:

"I just wanted to let you know that I support what you're doing with game music. Here's something I just completed in both your honor and Nobuo Uematsu's."

So, another professional game composer who supports unofficial game arrangements and, furthermore, has created his own, in honor of the one and only Nobuo Uematsu. And, personally, if I were Uematsu, I'd be very honored. This is a lush, symphonic retelling of the Terra theme that has both triumphant, spine-tingling peaks and subtle, crystalline, subdued passages, and paints its musical colors with the broad but refined palette of someone who is clearly a master. It's amazingly cool that someone as talented and high-profile as Soule has acknowledged the game arrangement community, but even moreso that he has done so in this form, with what is a singular and epic piece of arrangement everyone and their grandmother should download NOW. My deepest thanks to Jeremy Soule for submitting this. Highest recommendations - superlative.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
TillyFun
on 2014-07-02 14:57:54
I'm a fan of the Secret of Evermore soundtrack (White Castle Town!) with its malevolent and sometimes ambient feel. (Seriously, have a listen: the whole soundtrack has some wonderfully insidious quality.)
With that said, I've listened to Squaresoft Variation and I can't seem to enjoy it.
The source melody sounds too quiet and is overpowered by other elements (eg. 0:42-1:00). These other elements seem to get too loud, swallowing up the parallel melody when I still want to listen to them.
(I don't get to hear them for nearly long enough!)
For example,
I do like the music from 1:08, but -- again -- the string (?) at 1:12 sounds too loud, overpowering the other melodies.
I do like the music from 1:42-2:06 before it also becomes too loud soon after.
It could well be this is a particular orchestral genre I'm not fond of, because I have listened to many orchestral versions of Terra and enjoyed them, with and without added embellishments and variation in pace.
DusK
on 2011-12-27 11:24:54
I was so angry at myself when I found this mix. I had been lurking the site for years. I knew who Jeremy Soule was; Guild Wars happens to be one of my favorite soundtracks. So the fact that I had completely missed this was extremely upsetting. I got over it quickly. A fantastic orchestral arrangement that sounds like I could easily slap it into Skyrim's music folder and listen to it on my adventures. So atmospheric.
OA
on 2010-09-02 11:43:39
Really nice handling of the melody here, I love when it is given to the horns.
A super lush sounding rendition for 2004, and it stands up pretty strongly today as well. Strings were good, and while it doesn't have the bombast and excitement some people are seemingly expecting, it has a lot of subtle energy that makes it work equally well. Awesome stuff.
lurid
on 2010-08-08 11:44:33
I really like this mix despite my preference for heavy-metal-type mixes. It's one of those ones that's really great when you're working on something and it shows up in a shuffled playlist.
It's also great to drop into Morrowind's or Obilivion's soundtrack. Just browse to the location you've installed the game, then copy this into "Data[ Files]\Music\Explore\" and it'll randomly get played alongside the official music for the game.
OC Remix music is great for this kind of thing in general, actually, but this song easily fits the musical style of those games.
therippeddeck
on 2010-07-15 00:39:32
Made an account to comment on this remix right here.
When I first heard it, I shared the sentiments of the Jeremy Soule haters, which was unusual because I loved Secret of Evermore and Morrowind. The remix certainly has the flow, and the instruments were treated with the respect they sometimes don't get on this website. Elsewhere, I understood the arrangement and it's complexity, and combined with the instruments, I had no doubt Mr. Soule was the author of this remix. Unfortunately, I guess I can't hear the brilliance that some of the fanboys are gushing, or maybe I've held his standards too high. Some remixes on this site have shown the potential to be great, and others use that same potential to it's fullest extent. This falls in the grey area. It's really good, but the fact that it's not perfect makes it disappointing. It would be unfair of me to leave out examples of what I thought were "perfect" songs by Mr. Soule. These include the title theme of Morrowind and "The Secret of Evermore" from the game of the same name, which is also a remix of the song "Dog Maze". To my discredit, I seem to favor certain styles over others, and orchestral mixes have not done very well. No doubt, this is an orchestral paradise.
IrateResearchers
on 2009-11-09 02:12:26
This is the same style I know and love from Total Annihilation.
It is the same composer after all.
I normally don't download peaceful music like this but... I need to have this one.
Alexis
on 2009-05-17 02:01:55
How is it that I'm just now discovering this remix? This is awesome, love the arrangement. And holy freaking crap, Jeremey Soule.
kurokikaze
on 2008-10-21 09:07:29
Jeremy Soule? Here? Damn. Piece is cool but way too short. When i get home this evening, i'll listen on better sound system (here i have only crappy 1-ear-mute headphones).
Wild Armor
on 2008-10-19 00:32:01
Well I must applaud to this, a very great song indeed. It feels like I'm listening to what Beethoven's 5th symphony Movement 1 and Terra's theme would sound like if they had a child. The theme is repeated and changed from instrument to instrument very nicely.
Very lovely.
The Runaway Five
on 2008-10-17 16:14:46
This is single handed the greatest mix on this site. I remember listening to this many years ago and now that I'm a forum member, I felt obliged to comment. Incredible work. Hopefully Soule will bless us with another arrangment/orchestration in the near future.
cloudkitt
on 2008-09-18 23:03:46
Wow wow wow. How the hell did I miss this? I love Terra's Theme, I'm not sure how I never spotted the JEREMY SOULE before though. I have a way of liking soundtracks and only later discovering he did them (such as Guild Wars titles). I adore the Oblivion soundtrack.
It really is cool that someone like that submitted a remix here, rather incredible, really. And this is even pretty old, before ocremix started to get more recognition.
It's a great piece, it's actually not my favorite Terra remix (that might still have to go to Ailsean's) but it is cool how noticeably his style it is. This mix would fit in Oblivion and no one but FF fans would even take notice.
Very cool.
Chris Hurn
on 2008-06-03 19:23:11
This is incredible, Wow. I've flicked through the last 16 pages, and I have to say, there some real jealous people here. Bad EQ and reverb? Hardly. Relying on Gigasamples? hardly. This is orchestrated incredibly well, and rendered equally as well.
Congratulations to Mr Soule for this.
Chris
sephfire
on 2008-04-22 15:16:40
This piece has a very subtle beauty that's common in most of Soule's work. It doesn't go out of its way to grab your attention, but there's plenty of quality to find if you look closely. While it may not stray far from the source, Soule did a really great job of reinforcing the strengths of the original melody.
All in all, this sort of mix is a real honor for our community; both as a contribution from the professional side of the fence and as a great piece of music. I'd love to hear more from Soule around here if he finds the time someday.
artemisjaeger
on 2008-04-22 13:08:48
I could have sworn I'd written a review for this piece before.
It's not terrible, but it's bad. Horribly bland - which is a disappointment because I think Jeremy Soule is a fine composer. His work on Morrowind was exceptional, and Oblivion takes a close third (Secret of Evermore being his best).
But here it's just so uninspired! We have Terra's theme placed over generic filmy sounding crap. The piece never goes anywhere interesting or new. Heck, some of the chord choices just seem to clash, and that's sad.
And it seriously makes me sick to see the hero worship that goes on in this thread. Some of these posts in praise of the work are decent and well thought out, but good lord, some people are just trying to get in Jeremy's lap if you know what I mean.
Dafydd
on 2007-12-01 11:08:39
Anything made by this guy can be instantly recognized to have been made by him - this piece is certainly no exception. Interesting to hear this theme remixed into his style.