ReMix: Xenogears "Xenosphere" 3:40

By Oceanfire

Arranging the music of 2 songs from 2 games (view all)...

"Ocean Palace", "Premonition"

Primary Game: Xenogears (Square, 1998, PS1), music by Yasunori Mitsuda

Posted 2005-02-24, evaluated by the judges panel


I'm in Oscars mode right now, gearing up for the Academy Awards this Sunday, honing my shouting voice so I can effectively disagree with the Academy via my television in the loudest, most futile volumes possible, so forgive me if my focus wanders or views appear occluded. We haven't seen Oceanfire since the end of 2002, which has to be up there in terms of longest broken hiatuses from ReMixing:

"Hey guys, its been a while since I have done any remix stuff but a few days ago I decided to do one. This song is another cross remix that I wrote as a tribute to Yasunori Mitsuda. The basic structure is Omen from Xenogears but you will hear elements from Presentiment (Chrono Trigger)."

Be glad he felt inspired, as this very textural mix, while perhaps emphasizing production over elaborate arrangement, is drop-dead gorgeous, with a solo female vocal that floats Maria Callas-style over harp, ambient synth textures, simple, dark percussion, and striking orchestral strings and brass. Further in, a more electronic snare is added to the percussion, to give it more forward motion and a more electronic feel, but overall the aura is dark, organic, brooding - it actually reminds me, particularly because of the singing, of some of the selections from the Donnie Darko soundtrack, primarily because of the similarly operatic vocalising and deliberate, processional pacing. zircon wrote:

"While I think some of the power of this mix comes from the pro samples used, I think that one could create a similar atmosphere using free samples. I obviously have no problems with ANY technical aspects here - absolutely beautiful usage of orchestral instruments and percussion, ethnic percussion, synths, vocals, etc.. couldn't have asked for more. I agree with Gray that while you could interpret this as being quite similar to the original, listening closely reveals that it is using new elements and a new structure to create a different style and tone."

Larry and analoq still had some reservations about the arrangement factor, and I can see their perspective - on the surface, there's more than a few similarities to the original, with instrumentation even being almost identical in places. However, like the rest of the panel, I think focusing in on what's going on under the hood yields enough augmentation or juxtaposition to effect reinterpretation. We talked about this one quite a bit, and Larry did a superlative job of voicing legitimate concerns along these lines, so I do wanna give some attention to certain potentially problematic holdovers from the source material, but at the same time, the female vocal alone adds so much additional depth, you've gotta appreciate what Oceanfire's done. It's great to see him back after so long, and I think many will be quite into this deep, swirling arrangement.

djpretzel

Discussion

Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
avatar
Necrox
on 2015-12-21 00:36:43

Nice atmosphere in the intro. I particularly like the cymbal-ish sound. I'm not fond of the hand drums though. The vocals, on the other hand, are awesome. They really glue everything together and complete the mood of the track.

avatar
alrubedo
on 2014-02-05 11:26:24

From the moment this track starts, I was sunk into it. I think it captures something the main source track failed to capture, for me, and that was the despair that was so readily running through the course of the game.

The chilling vocalist in the track, too - adds to it.

avatar
42
on 2010-12-04 20:04:06

There's just a lingering sense of doom/finality/fate in this mix that is so tasty from an aural sense. I also like the soloist that comes in, almost like she's singing the song that ends the earth.

Ok, yeah, when direct side by side comparing this to Omen, this mix does play it safe and conservatively but it's still a treat. I still like this a lot largely because it's a lot more subtle in its intentions than Omen is. Specifically, there are a few instances where Omen has some orchestral crescendos, but this has much more milder moments. I definitely recommend checking this out.

avatar
a_d
on 2010-01-20 04:06:02
Yes http://ocremix.org/song/68

Note that you can click on songs to see alternate song names and the game they are assigned to.

Sweet, thanks

avatar
djpretzel
on 2010-01-20 04:04:32
...................................................8O

"Ocean Palace" is listed as a source tune, but I can't find a track by any name like that for the Xenogears OST. Is this track from Chrono Trigger?

Yes http://ocremix.org/song/68

Note that you can click on songs to see alternate song names and the game they are assigned to.

avatar
a_d
on 2010-01-14 21:37:33

...................................................8O

"Ocean Palace" is listed as a source tune, but I can't find a track by any name like that for the Xenogears OST. Is this track from Chrono Trigger?

avatar
OA
on 2009-11-20 17:45:36

Structure and instrumentation are way close to the original, but the voice added was very pretty and added additional sophistication to everything. Nice samples that are well used, with some good articulations, and some new details protect this from lockdown, but overall it sounds like a sound upgrade mostly to me. Doesn't mean I dislike it, but I wish a few additional risks had been taken.

avatar
Catharsis
on 2008-09-11 00:12:20

Anyone find similarity to Donnie Darko music when it comes to the voice?

avatar
Audity
on 2006-10-29 15:26:48

Gets kind of repetitive. 0:50-1:07 I'm not fond of, though I'm very familiar with the sound. 1:07-1:24 I like quite a bit. Reminds me of the good cathedral-ish strings from Xenosaga Episode III, and some of Final Fantasy XII, and possibly an area of Star Ocean III. The section after is pretty good. The voice I'm not crazy over. The percussion at 2:33 is reminiscent of a particular track in XS Ep.III within a darkened corporate facility, which has now become a recognizable favorite of mine, so nice touch there. Overall, though, while a slow and smooth constant ambient groove can be a good thing, I really wish the chord progression changed just a tad while still sounding good. I mean it's already a thought-provoking type arrangement/song anyway; might as well have varied it up as opposed to thinking the same thought for 3 minutes or whatever.

I plead of you, if you're reading this, YOU -MUST- DOWNLOAD THIS MIX. Extremely well-placed, gorgeous vocals, along with an eerie ambience and excellent tune selection... this remix will go down as legendary. Words can't describe its perfection. AMAZING work from Oceanfire. Simply stunning.

Holy shit. You're from the same location as I.

avatar
avaris
on 2006-10-26 14:25:28

This mix is absolutely amazing. I have been listening to it off and on for months and it never gets old.

I wish Oceanfire did some more tunes as his stuff is excellent. To do his style of music well is insanely hard and involves using strong melodies and very high production values. Not many are capable of pulling it off.

Strictly this is friggin epic, I love it.

avatar
DJzeles
on 2005-11-18 04:19:33

The vocals in that song are all done in what is called the Whistle Range. Whoever recorded the original was incredible.

Very very nice mix, somehow reminds me of that silly Chronicals of Riddick movie at one part of the song. Not that that detracts from the song at all.

avatar
YearXero
on 2005-08-23 08:01:58

being one of my three fave Xenogears remixes (the other two being Pillar of Salt and 7 Years Broken) I definitely recommend this one, a definite 11/10 on my scale

avatar
Annoxus
on 2005-07-08 01:38:16

I plead of you, if you're reading this, YOU -MUST- DOWNLOAD THIS MIX. Extremely well-placed, gorgeous vocals, along with an eerie ambience and excellent tune selection... this remix will go down as legendary. Words can't describe its perfection. AMAZING work from Oceanfire. Simply stunning.

avatar
zircon
on 2005-07-07 22:30:59
wow, this is definitely one of my new favorites. Those vocals are absolutely haunting, and sound absolutely real (except at that one point where they go insanely high -- but though they don't sound real at that point, they still sound very beautiful)

An operatic soprano can hit two octaves above middle C without that much difficulty, and that's the highest the vocals in "Xenosphere" go. But for normal humans, yeah, that's HIGH.

avatar
Geoffrey Taucer
on 2005-07-07 19:52:03

wow, this is definitely one of my new favorites. Those vocals are absolutely haunting, and sound absolutely real (except at that one point where they go insanely high -- but though they don't sound real at that point, they still sound very beautiful)

Sources Arranged (2 Songs, 2 Games)


Primary Game:
Xenogears (Square, 1998, PS1)
Music by Yasunori Mitsuda
Songs:
"Premonition"
Additional Game:
Chrono Trigger (Square, 1995, SNES)
Music by Nobuo Uematsu, Noriko Matsueda, Yasunori Mitsuda
Songs:
"Ocean Palace"

Tags (6)


Genre:
Cinematic
Mood:
Sad
Instrumentation:
Brass, Singing, Strings, Vocals: Female
Additional:

File Information


Name:
Xenogears_Xenosphere_OC_ReMix.mp3
Size:
5,375,324 bytes
MD5:
85343e5d21085092182162d7ae500bb7
Bitrate:
192Kbps
Duration:
3:40

Promotion

8-bit Jazz Heroes - Press Start
View All

Latest Albums

View All

Latest ReMixes