ReMix: Shenmue 'Dreaming While I Wake'

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"And now for something completely different... " - though Arkimedes' initial Halo mix was certainly goodstuff in a major way, this Shenmue creation is riskier, more creative, and doesn't sound like much of anything else on the site, all positive traits in my book. The ReMixer has created an original vocal set to a bubbling, light electronica background that analoq described as being similar to telepopmusik, perhaps even bearing some traits in common with his own recent Commander Keen mix, which John Romero himself reviewed and passed some props to. Thin, subtlely vocoded vocals whisper atop a percolating octave sine-wave pulse as newage pads and delicate bells spread out underneath. When the vocal enters, it actually reminds me of the one-hit-wonder Primitive Radio Gods' "Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth With Money in My Hand," sans some of the ambient fx and samples. Most of the lyrics work well, and the chorus especially starts introducing a more defined counter-melody that compliments the main Shenmue motif in a hauntingly beautiful fashion. The only real part I personally was iffy on was at 1'45", where it's less sing-song and more spoken-word. This went a little outside the limits of my own personal cheese barometer, especially with the "lone wolf / with a battle plan" lyric. But hell, that's one minor piece of the mix, that incidentally follows some lovely, spliced vocoder work at 1'30" that reminds me again of a one-hit wonder, Forest for the Trees' "Dream". There's an ephemeral, dream-like quality to the variety of sine tones combined with bells and all the harmonic overtones of the vocal coming through, along with some scratching and nano-percussion in the background. This is a refined piece that clearly couples a lot of synthesis and creativity with enough of the original material to be clearly identifiable and in the same general spirit. This is a ReMix with such a defined signature and style that it easily stands out and is memorable in its successful execution of a vibe you don't hear often associated with game mixes, and for that alone it warrants your attention. But Arkimedes has put in effort beyond just making things click, and laced this with variety, subtle detail, and an indescribable aural sheen. It's not without some faults, and as mentioned some portions of the vocal could be quarantined without loss, but this is a singular mix, and as his second contribution to the site, already shows flexibility and innovation. Great work from Arkimedes.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
WesternZypher
on 2010-12-21 16:26:38
Another Mixer I'd always hoped to hear more from. Great song. Hopeful, inspiring, it perfectly captures the uncertainties of life.
OA
on 2010-04-29 12:29:24
Really cool and personal sounding remix. I love the dense atmosphere, and the vocals are very well done.
DJ Pili
on 2009-10-06 01:42:17
This is one of the ReMixes that made it into my Favourites list. Here's my little 'tribute' to it: http://www.zazzle.com/no_worries_no_fears_no_nightmares_no_tears_tshirt-235723914735192758
Master_Yoshi
on 2009-01-24 00:11:46
This is such a deceptively simple song, and I love it for those little details. The lyrics are great, everything just slips together. Great stuff!
superjoe30
on 2008-11-07 04:54:50
I love this song. I want to hear more from Arkimedes.
The Author
on 2007-12-06 09:08:38
I did not know the source material. A couple of weeks ago, this song came on my ipod randomly. My first reaction was: "Uh, is this from the "The Beach" soundtrack?".
It sounds so professional, it's a beautiful song. The spoken lyrics work perfectly with the feeling conveyed by the music. Everything sounds so... unique. I could totally picture myself walking around the city at 4 AM with that song filling my head.
That's how good the song it, I cannot help my mind from wandering when that song is playing. And I also have a hard time explaining why I love it so much. The song sounds like that clarity you get after a bout of insomnia. Which brings me back to the The Beach soundtrack. This song feels like it should be on that soundtrack. It shares the same surreal feeling there is in the whole CD.
This song is great, I love it, and I would love to see more songs of this type on ocremix.
Kozmo
on 2006-02-21 21:32:40
I think that the lyrics are very well written. I am more than content with the way they are executed. They are obviously the prominent part of the mix, but the synths provide a beautiful body of water for the boat of the lyrics to sail on, to make a sappy metaphor. The repeated no worries, no fears, etc hit home well, especially with headphones, due to the bouncing back and forth from side to side. Overall, the lyrics give the mix a great sense of potential and kinetic energy, which arkimedes uses to his advantage in a most satisfying way. Very enjoyable.
Princess_Of_Memories
on 2005-10-03 21:44:29
Ubernym wrote:
Underground871 wrote: I love shenmue. It's official. Brilliant - the detail...the gameplay...how free you are to live his life for him...
I love all music from this

I wonder If when where and how Shenmue 3 will be released.
B e s t
G a m e
I n
T h e
W o r l d

IT WILL NEVER BE RELEASED
Shenmue 2 was one of the most expensive games ever made, and it didn't make all it's money back. Ryo is forever trapped in that cave... just weep your tears now.
There are plans for a Shenmue Online, but it won't continue the story.

Depressing enough?
I loved the remix.
Wow.... I hate and love sad endings....
watkinzez
on 2005-10-01 08:45:29
An awesome song that treads unfamiliar territory and pulls it off with style. While the mix is leaning towards the far end of the scale in terms of including the original source, I believe that its execution is a very interesting musical idea. This is a great mix to put on repeat and zone out on. I love it.
DJ Pili
on 2005-08-05 20:59:32
I somehow relate to the lyrics. That's how I aspire to live also. I even made a T-shirt transfer with the line "no worries, no fears, no nightmares, no tears"!
ubernym
on 2005-03-15 15:57:10
Underground871 wrote: I love shenmue. It's official. Brilliant - the detail...the gameplay...how free you are to live his life for him...
I love all music from this

I wonder If when where and how Shenmue 3 will be released.
B e s t
G a m e
I n
T h e
W o r l d

IT WILL NEVER BE RELEASED
Shenmue 2 was one of the most expensive games ever made, and it didn't make all it's money back. Ryo is forever trapped in that cave... just weep your tears now.
There are plans for a Shenmue Online, but it won't continue the story.
HalcyonSpirit
on 2005-03-14 23:27:57
Since there are people wondering about the lyrics (not surprising, some of it is hard to understand completely)...
The official lyrics, straight from the horse's mouth:
It’s 3 AM and I’m drifting
Staring at an illuminous screen, I’m pondering
What am I doing and why am I here?
It’s times like these when my future isn’t clear
In that place between when you’re asleep and awake
The time that you see yourself so hard to take
That sleepless while where it all falls apart
I wonder how in the world did I get this far?
But then I dream that I am who I want to be
That I’m successful and I’m free
Life’s no longer a mystery
I’m a hero on the big screen
I’m romantic hopelessly
I’m a soldier, a pioneer
There is no pain
I have no fear
Dreaming while I wake, I am so free
When I rise I know my fate, and it makes me believe
I’m a poet, a Renaissance man
I’m a lone wolf with a battle plan
I’m never alone when I’m with friends
I can look into my own eyes again
I can throw everything to the wind
Without any worries at all
‘cuz when I dream, I fly so high
I know I can never fall
(No worries, no fears, no nightmares, no tears)
But then I dream that I am who I want to be
That I’m successful and I’m free
Life’s no longer a mystery
I’m a hero on the big screen
I’m romantic hopelessly
I’m a soldier, a pioneer
There is no pain
I have no fear

In any case, like another poster said, I never listened to this when I downloaded it, and forgot all about it until it came up on my playlist. I've been listening to it since then (7 hours ago by my watch).
Great song, great lyrics. Not much else I can say about it. Great job!
Underground871
on 2005-02-15 19:46:49
I love shenmue. It's official. Brilliant - the detail...the gameplay...how free you are to live his life for him...
I love all music from this

I wonder If when where and how Shenmue 3 will be released.
B e s t
G a m e
I n
T h e
W o r l d
Red Light District
on 2005-02-14 21:39:14
I love this remix. Probably the best vocals I've heard so far...and I love the creativity ...The beginging is bit awkward, but the chorus and 'bridge' (if you will) is wonderful.
three cheers for Arkimedes!
jordex
on 2004-12-04 22:09:54
This is fucking awesome!
The lyrics are deep, aren't cheesy, they make sense and they rhyme!
At first it sounds like "The Postal Service - Such Great Heights" which is great
You get more involved and want to hear more
The lyrics really reach out, I think need to be louder though
I think this is the best song with lyrics on the site
Great job Arkimedes!! I'm gonna be listening to this one on repeat for a quite a while!