ReMix: Commander Keen IV: Secret of the Oracle "Tuatara Swamp Jam" 3:27

By Mazedude

Artist Links
goofy synth
Arranging the music of one song...

"You've Got to Eat Your Vegetables!!"

Primary Game: Commander Keen IV: Secret of the Oracle (Apogee, 1991, DOS), music by Bobby Prince

Posted 2005-01-12, evaluated by the judges panel


Mazedude writes:

"Another "swamp" remix, albeit much more world-music influenced, and jazzier than the last. Inspired and in part a tribute to one of my favorite instrumental bands, Tuatara. If you haven't heard their work, I highly recommend it. Amazing fusion, totally live. Enjoy! Oh, and if you didn't see it yet - I was on TV last week with my Capoeira group. Got to chill with Tom Arnold and them on Fox. In the Capoeira section of my site."

...pretty cool - I didn't really know what Capoeira was, so that link was a learning experience for me. I thought it was just the name of the aliens in Bust-a-Groove... go figure. This is a goofy mix, with sort of an off-kilter feel to it, as if Mr. Keen had one too many and was swaying back and forth as he attempted to escape from a whimsical yet vaguely disturbing swamp. Due to some high pitches (I know... I'm one to talk, etc., etc.) you might not want to blast this, but I found it to be an interesting distraction from musical normalcy. It doesn't expand on the original melody itself too much, for a Mazedude mix, but instead opts for filling in the spartan context of the original with new percussion and auxiliary, supporting instrumentation. As the first to cover Commander Keen on OCR, from the same title as well, I am required by law to quote reserved-but-positive judge analoq:

"while it doesn't particularly evolve within itself or from the original much... there are some cool things going on with the percussion and some new harmonizations that make this mix interesting."

It's not Mazedude's strongest work, from an arrangement or production perspective, but it's very quirky in its appeal and has some charm to its dissonance and occasional nanny-nanny-boo-boo motifs. It's not something that's gonna be particularly soothing if you've got a migraine, say, but it does have as analoq notes some cool harmonies and underlying percussive effects going on. A little esoteric, not for everyone, but an odd piece that, while less accessible, sorta fits in with his Cool Spot mix in its lighthearted swagger.

djpretzel

Discussion

Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
avatar
timaeus222
on 2016-08-11 14:13:05
On 1/17/2005 at 2:51 AM, Joseph Collins said:

Not to mention that it's boring, uninspired, and just drags on. . .

Yeah, of course; it's a *tuatara* swamp jam - one of the slowest jams you'll ever have. :-D (no innuendo intended.)

avatar
BLAHMASTER
on 2016-08-11 12:24:57

na-na na-na boo-boo

I like the stereo aspects here. I'd probably like this song a lot less without them, although they aren't overstated or anything. Fun listen! :)

avatar
ella guro
on 2010-02-05 03:03:47

It's funny, I didn't even know I wrote a review of this back then, let alone a negative one. I actually like this quite a bit now. It's not mazedude's best, but it is a nostalgia trip for me. And even when mazedude doesn't blow your mind, he does subtle things with layering and expanding the sound to make it an interesting piece of music to listen to.

This is very tracker-ish and cartoony sounding, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. It certainly seems intentional, not due to lack of effort.

avatar
Sir_Downunder
on 2009-12-12 00:03:13

This mix is definitely off-kilter, and a little nuts to boot.

And yet, it strangely works in the Mazedude fashion. Like OA said, it's almost like Mazedude went out of his way to make this sound crazy. Not the most likable melody, but definitely enjoyably enough to warrant a listen.

Another quirky and insane mix from the 'dude.

avatar
Marmiduke
on 2009-02-16 05:50:40

There's no doubt. It sounds slightly insane. And I love that.

However, it does draw your attention from the music to the novelty, which is a shame because there are some pretty cool little additions and harmonious bits tucked away in the crevices between the big, strange, almost dissonant stuff.

It's not the most likable of melodies, let's face it. I don't know how I'd go listening to it on loop. But that's definately not to say I didn't enjoy it. It's Mazedude, of course I enjoyed it.

avatar
OA
on 2008-05-06 10:47:12

Distinctly not my style, but I do appreciate the care in which this track was assembled. It seems like Mazedude went out of his way to make it sound crazy, but with all the counterpoint and harmonies, it's clear he knows exactly what he is doing.

Quirky and creative, but a really high barrier of entry.

avatar
Nannette82
on 2007-07-12 21:44:48
Could it possibly be the trippy, somewhat dissonant qualities of the mix, with a bubbling, liquidy feel that is somewhat reminiscant of the dollar store rods with the little thing inside that moved up and down when you twisted it, making a whoooooooooooooooooo sound.

That's why I liked it. Weird, but awesome!

avatar
Navi
on 2005-01-26 15:53:32

Why do I like this mix? Let me count the ways. Could it possibly be the trippy, somewhat dissonant qualities of the mix, with a bubbling, liquidy feel that is somewhat reminiscant of the dollar store rods with the little thing inside that moved up and down when you twisted it, making a whoooooooooooooooooo sound. I dunno what they are called, but this reminds me of one of those thingies. It has an almost mocking quality, daring the listener not to like it, daring the listener to get turned off by its quirky, strange and squishy sound. The nah nah nah nah boo boo part only adds to the mocking feel. We hear hints of steel drums in the background, and other elements that give this song a bit of a caribbean taste, which adds to the swampy feel, i guess. Parts of this mix remind me of the soundtrack to Legend of Legaia.

Heh. Not the best of reviews, but i will admit that I like this mix, for all of its crazy ass mood.

Also:

As I said twice before, this is definately more of an arrangement than a remix.
The word "ReMix" was chosen but is not necessarily appropriate, as the tracks here are more arrangements than remixes (think of this as the difference between a "remix" and a "ReMix," mmmkay?). Besides, "OverClocked Arrangements" would have sounded gimp.
avatar
ella guro
on 2005-01-19 12:42:57

As big a fan as I am of Mazedude and Commander Keen, I was a pretty dissapointed by this. The arrangement is more conservative than usual, but it's still a very good application of the "eat your veggies" tune into the genre. My big problem is this completely lacks polish - it sounds a lot like Mazedude's older mixes that I presume were done completely in Impulse Tracker with no mastering.

Now I understand that not everyone has the time to commit to remixing, but the result here is still very dissapointing for someone who is used to stuff (like his cyborg blobby or street fighter mix) with a much more refined sound. Maybe it's just me, but the whole "tracker sound" wears down my ears a lot more than it used to.

avatar
Ichitootah
on 2005-01-19 01:34:28

Not bad, but really, this music doesn't have

1. Beauty

2. Coolness (yes, opinions)

All it has is swampy-stuff. Which is actually pretty good, but it could have been something... more.

6/10

avatar
RazorVayne
on 2005-01-18 21:08:26

Heck Yes!!! What OCR needed was another Commander Keen 4 ReMix!!

avatar
Liontamer
on 2005-01-18 19:57:54
This arrangement makes my stomach churn for some reason. And gives me a headache. Not to mention that it's boring, uninspired, and just drags on. . . Oi. It's my opinion that he did succeed in making "Eat Your Veggies"(AKA "the Well of Wishes/Dopefish song") from Commander Keen IV: The Secret of the Oracle sound all swampy. . .but is that a good thing?

Firstly, it's just not varied enough from the original to be truly unique. As I said twice before, this is definately more of an arrangement than a remix.

The beginning is rather boring and unmotivated. It's basically the normal beginning, but deeper, and more ambient than the original, with a bubbly sort of instrument thrown in for the Hell of it. And then it just kind of drones on like this, adding drums, removing drums, adding and removing basslines, etc. etc. While I realize the original song was little more than thirty seconds of music, I'm positive Mazedude could have done something more with this piece of music, if he'd really wanted to. Overall, though. . .I'm not impressed. And this track makes me phyiscally ill, to boot.

I'm not deducting points for the music making me ill. That's just wrong. However, I'm still going to have to give it a 3.1 out of 10. Sorry, Mazedude. You fail to impress me.

HAHAHAHAHA! I have to admit, that's one of the most interesting reviews I've ever read for a remix. "This made me physically ill." Yeesh.

avatar
Less Ashamed Of Self
on 2005-01-18 19:17:14

MAZEDUDE D'AISKI!

Man I love a good disjunct sound. I don't know if when I played this game I was forced to use PC speakers or if I just wasn't listening but this is a great little tune that you can tell is close to the original.

Very enjoyable... there's nothing I love more than a nice disjunct/detuned na-na-na-na-boo-boo melody used well. My new song of the month.

Rock.

avatar
Joseph Collins
on 2005-01-17 05:51:40

This arrangement makes my stomach churn for some reason. And gives me a headache. Not to mention that it's boring, uninspired, and just drags on. . . Oi. It's my opinion that he did succeed in making "Eat Your Veggies"(AKA "the Well of Wishes/Dopefish song") from Commander Keen IV: The Secret of the Oracle sound all swampy. . .but is that a good thing?

Firstly, it's just not varied enough from the original to be truly unique. As I said twice before, this is definately more of an arrangement than a remix.

The beginning is rather boring and unmotivated. It's basically the normal beginning, but deeper, and more ambient than the original, with a bubbly sort of instrument thrown in for the Hell of it. And then it just kind of drones on like this, adding drums, removing drums, adding and removing basslines, etc. etc. While I realize the original song was little more than thirty seconds of music, I'm positive Mazedude could have done something more with this piece of music, if he'd really wanted to. Overall, though. . .I'm not impressed. And this track makes me phyiscally ill, to boot.

I'm not deducting points for the music making me ill. That's just wrong. However, I'm still going to have to give it a 3.1 out of 10. Sorry, Mazedude. You fail to impress me.

avatar
seanstar
on 2005-01-15 20:17:48

That is one of the strangest mixes I've heard on OCR in a good while. Nice work! I'm just glad that I finally have a Mac HW/SW combination sufficient to get back into the old DOS games I came to love on my dad's 486. Keen 4 was always my favorite of the series (I think it was all the drugged-up flora and fauna) and 'man sieht sich galaxie' got me back into the games for the first time in a decade. It's great to see another mix that really lives up to the feel of that game!

Sources Arranged (1 Song)


Primary Game:
Commander Keen IV: Secret of the Oracle (Apogee, 1991, DOS)
Music by Bobby Prince
Songs:
"You've Got to Eat Your Vegetables!!"

Tags (2)


Genre:
Mood:
Goofy
Instrumentation:
Synth
Additional:

File Information


Name:
Commander_Keen_4_Tuatara_Swamp_Jam_OC_ReMix.mp3
Size:
5,744,707 bytes
MD5:
f8ac6027978b7d1d2a8a9d1f582c91d9
Bitrate:
218Kbps
Duration:
3:27

Promotion

Kirby’s Liberation Service
View All

Latest Albums

View All

Latest ReMixes