ReMix: Jet Grind Radio "Late Night Sneakin'"

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Jet Grind Radio

I encourage everyone to read the judges' decision on this ReMix, linked at the bottom of the page - it gave us quite a headache trying to work through whether this met our definition of a "ReMix," which out of necessity is sometimes flexible but does have some clearer-cut aspects to it as well. Essentially, HappyBivouac has merged two songs from the heavily groove-oriented Jet Set Radio soundtrack into a new hybrid piece. He's done this using an extensive amount of sampling from the original, which is probably the single most obvious reason our eyebrows were raised - everyone was concerned the mix constituted too little arrangement and too much juxtaposition of material sampled directly from the source. We were also concerned about setting a precedent, as clearly we don't want an inundation of a million mixes incorporating a hodgepodge of samples and little else. However, in this specific case, after some judges changed their vote (twice) and Jesse came in with a tiebreaker, we decided that the merging of two themes and the original elements added, given the groove-oriented nature of the originals in the first place, was enough to be considered substantive arrangement, in a sense. To be sure, it was one of the more debated discussions to date. Vigilante writes:

"This mix borrows fairly heavily from the two original songs, but it arranges the borrowed elements in a cohesive and interesting way that is definitely different from either of the originals. There is a large amount of creative overlap and original material. This mix falls in some very gray area. Both sides of the argument have valid points, and I've never seen such intense debate on IRC. A decision either way would be justifiable. I made my vote because the mix is not a straight rip by any means. It has been made clear that using in-game clips is acceptable, and this mixes the two themes in a creative way, and adds captivating bass and drum sections. It's a good listen, so I stand by my vote."

Some of the drum sections in particular are quite fun, and the mix overall is high-energy, irreverent, and full of that certain neo-urban charm that JSR and JSRF both nailed so well visually and aurally. Layering of slap bass and synth bass, tasteful use of orchestra hits, and a good feel for using samples - extensively - without things feeling arbitrary all contribute towards what could easily have been a track on the game's OST that just happened to be comprised predominantly of bits and pieces of two other tracks, "Let Mom Sleep" and "Sneakman," but constituted a unique entity unto itself. The ReMixer has done an admirable job of covering material that was very high quality to begin with, and has taken an interesting hybridization approach to combine two pieces with some original percussion work - while it stretches the definition of a ReMix a bit, we think it does enough to remain within the sphere of acceptability, and that you'll enjoy it quite a bit if you've any predilection for the JSR soundtracks or groove-based composition in general. Definitely challenging for the judges panel on a technical basis, and definitely funky.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Black_Doom
on 2014-09-12 13:38:19

While being close to the original, this is very good work. Maybe the vocal samples are overused a bit, but they are catchy as hell. Love the percussion and funk hints here. Crazy stuff.

Marmiduke
on 2010-02-13 08:13:40

Wow, this still sounds really fresh. I've completely forgotten about this mix, and I can't ever remember liking it as much as I do now. Maybe it's because I started getting into The Avalanches a year or two ago, which this is strikingly similar to in that it is a great standalone piece held together with some clever voice samples.

I'm not the biggest proponent for voice samples, but when they are chosen for their rhythmic nuances over their context or subject matter like they are here and with The Avalanches' work, I find it hard not to get behind it. It works too well to turn my nose up at.

Not much to say about the actual sounds and samples really, since most of it is lifted. But the drums stand out for good reason, I think they hold up and give the piece some accent that does a decent jo of establishing a defected identity for itself. It's ability to emancipate from the direction of the source is probably the only reason this mix got through, and I'm glad it did.

I've been an outsider looking in at Jet Grind Radio, but its always been on my 'To Play' list. I had no idea the soundtrack was such a refreshing explosion of energy and groove. To hell with the gameplay, I think I'm in love already. Will definitely be checking it out, thanks to this mix that has been greatly underloved by me for far too long.

Polo
on 2010-01-29 16:44:13

It's definitely a faithful blend/maintenance of the manic moods of both sources while tightening up their activity. The voice clips are obnoxious IMO, but I can appreciate the liberties taken in placing/splicing/cutting them up in the spirit of the originals without stifling the percussion. Even the ending is a nod to how the sources end, further upping the impression that this came off the OST.

And who doesn't love 1:14-1:50? It feels both like a freestyle playground and an arrangement challenge. It really outgrows its borders.

OA
on 2009-11-20 16:25:15

really rocking percussion, but dizammn, that's a lot of vocal samples. Rhythmically, they are well used, but geez, I just want to jam! ;_;

The track itself definitely fits the arrangement standards, but that doesn't mean that i'm horribly distracted by it. I'd really dig the track otherwise, but it's just too much for my sample-weak stomach.

"Would you quit playing with those vocal samples? I'm trying to enjoy the mix!"

Ryu2Wolf
on 2009-01-06 20:40:11

Pretty neat drumming bit in the middle. Never heard that in JSR and if otherwise listened to in the piece, I would have thought it to be kinda risky. Great Job! Liked how you picked it up at the end.

halc
on 2008-12-11 22:42:01

feels like it could have come right out of the game

interesting to hear a remix that doesn't take the source in a new direction per say, but imitates the style of the original so well that I would expect to hear it on the soundtrack

great mix

DJNeon
on 2005-10-06 22:17:23
Ironically enough, having listened to "Sneakman" for Song of the Week, Week #34's voting today, I thought this mix took a decent original and completely improved it. There's way more energy in this ReMix as compared to "Sneakman", and I'd pick it over the original any day. If I was a Judge back when this was decided, the vote only would have only been more decisively in this mix's favor. Great job, HB

Did you also listen to the original version of "Let mom sleep"? What the composer did recreate (which I forgot to acknowldge and for that I apologise) was the energy, especially from let mom sleep. The remix was too "jungle" for the originals ie. too much bongo too little break-beats, I personally think the composer fused the wrong elements from the songs with one another. Maybe a "That's Enough" and Everybody Jump Around" remix would've been better.

Lord Ilpalazzo
on 2005-10-06 19:11:49

I decided to go back and listen to this, I've had it on my compy for a while now. LOL, all I'm saying is listen to it slowed down in windows media player, the whats going on guy sounds totally high :lol:

Liontamer
on 2005-10-06 17:34:03
Sorry dude i've listened to your track many a time it makes me sad to say; you missed the groove that both the originals have while it isn't ghastly it ain't in my view worthy of being under the Jet Set Radio or even the remix brackets, try listening to the medley on the sound track, while it isn't a remix from the quality timing it wouldn't make it hard to become one. I'm a hardcore JSR/JGR/JSRF fan and I pretty disappointed with this.

Ironically enough, having listened to "Sneakman" for Song of the Week, Week #34's voting today, I thought this mix took a decent original and completely improved it. There's way more energy in this ReMix as compared to "Sneakman", and I'd pick it over the original any day. If I was a Judge back when this was decided, the vote only would have only been more decisively in this mix's favor. Great job, HB.

DJNeon
on 2005-04-19 22:12:36

Sorry dude i've listened to your track many a time it makes me sad to say; you missed the groove that both the originals have while it isn't ghastly it ain't in my view worthy of being under the Jet Set Radio or even the remix brackets, try listening to the medley on the sound track, while it isn't a remix from the quality timing it wouldn't make it hard to become one. I'm a hardcore JSR/JGR/JSRF fan and I pretty disappointed with this.

Blue_Drac
on 2004-10-15 14:19:43

In a word... "grooooooovalicious"

Ok, so it's not a real word, sue me...you won't get much...

Cheeszeman_
on 2004-10-08 10:19:24

HWAHAHAHA!! THIS MIX IS AWESOME!!! first time the guy said: 'whats going on?' i swear, that guy read my mind! yeah, want one of the way out there mixes, get this one... no doubt!

i really like the drums that start around 1:15... they seem to on, and on, and on... just like the energizer bunny!!

really cool tho!!!

kinda cought me off guard... 'im trying to get to sleep... *yay!*'

lol that was just odd....

ok, just dl the f***in mix

jordex
on 2004-08-24 20:14:50

i love this remix, so hyper, it sounds like a song the band 'art of noise' would make

CC Ricers
on 2004-08-03 17:19:11

I know these songs not from playing JSRF but by playing them as Stepmania originals. This song takes samples and uses them constantly without becoming too repetitive. And the drumwork is very groovy and excellent.

Kiyobi
on 2004-07-15 18:03:59

ultimate JSRF remix. period. it's got my 2 favorite JSRF songs!!!