ReMix: EarthBound "Da Black Market"

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Bound Together - An EarthBound Remix ProjectEarthBound

Look, if you don't like rap, sure, you might not like this... but man, you'll be missing out. Also, we're looking into a system for highlighting mixes with "explicit" lyrics, but until it's in effect, it's worth noting that the F-bomb's dropped more than a couple times here. Again, if that offends your sensibilities, steer clear, but it's your loss in my opinion, as this is one of the most innovative, schizoid, and creative Earthbound mixes, rap mixes, or just plain mixes period you're gonna hear in '05. D-Lux, Flik, Joe Cam, and Mythril Nazgul pass the mic on a truly crazy set of virtuoso rhymes on top of Mr. Nazgul's best arrangement yet, a classic take on Scaraba. I was privy to several WIPs of this mix, but tonight was my first time hearing the very final version, and it lives up to the copious promise of its forebears. Another track from the Bound Together Earthbound project, in my mind this track gains instant status alongside other fine mixes that have proven that rap/hip-hop can work just as well as any other genre for game mixes. I remember insisting that Navid keep the quadruplets, which I feel really define the source material, and I'm glad he's done that, turning them into a musical chorus that favors scratching and all manner of fx to rapping and offering a natural transition point between segments. The rapping is too varied and elaborate to really cover on any sort of play-by-play basis, but with Myth's bird-flu and old-skool Star Trek referencing, a gangsta-grrl cameo from pixietricks, Flik's beautifully maniacal rant-rapping circa 3'13" (omfg shamisen-intro'd!!), and the strong over-arching leitmotif of ass being kicked, there should be no doubts there. Layered drums, quirky run-down-demented-circus melody, obese bass, balanced production, and lots of attention paid to doubling, panning, call-and-answer, and other tricks to enhance the vocals. Great work from all involved - not something I would have expected was possible or probable, and serves as an excellent compliment to Shadow's instrumental, guitar-driven take on the theme from back in 2003. I've seen some folk saying that rap/hip-hop doesn't jive with the Earthbound universe, that it's either anachronistic or simply inappropriate, but based on this mix, I couldn't disagree more; to me, this collaboration embraces the same eccentricity, instability, and freedom that the game itself and certainly Keiichi Suzuki's score do. Excellent.


Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2010-09-01 17:57:14

I'm not sure about all of the rhymes here, but overall really funny.

Flik once again steals the show.

Oh, you crazy crackaz, I can't quit you.

on 2010-07-26 19:06:45

Man, how have I not posted about this mix yet...

This is absolutely brilliant. I could roll down the street singing along with this all day. It's a brilliantly funny tribute to a brilliantly funny game.

There are so many awesome lines in this... Flik's part at the end is uproariously, crazily funny. It so feels like the overanalysis some nerdy gamer would make after playing Earthbound. Seriously. Excellent mix all around.

on 2009-09-10 05:27:46

A warm organ-like lead starts us off, joined by liberally syncopated synths, several of which sound like roboticized voices (breaths, shouts, mumbles, coughs, etc.). There's at least one unique synth/instrument per section: myf gets a wind instrument (although it appears at the tail end of joe_cam's part), D-Lux gets a whistly synth, and Flik gets acoustic strings. Throughout, there's a magical chime panned left playing (mostly) whole notes, staying subtle but steady. That whirly "losing consciousness" sound effect from the game makes for a slick transition to the start of the rapping.

Ness is confident, sadistic, and egocentric. He's well-versed in world travel as heard in the shout-outs to many places in the game. "So grab your yo-yo and gun, we'll have a little fun" is grin-worthy anticipation. "Throw him to the curb, stomp the little bitch's face, make the fat piggy cry, yeah, put him in his place" - that's definitely a sentiment shared by every Earthbound player.

I imagine Paula shedding "her" wig and dress and revealing herself as Mr. T. mother2_mrt.gif myf's lyrics open up portals to new worlds left and right. "Now they can't stop us cuz we movin' too fast; 'Nuff sand in the eyes, turn the desert to glass" seems to allude to Ness's Skip Sandwich consumption earlier. Intentional or not, it fits, since this is a remix of the Scaraba marketplace. A crunchy splatter pops up in time for the Starcraft reference, and maniacal laughter at the end compliments the insanity that just passed.

Also, fun story: back when I drew OCR faces in '05-'06, myf requested I draw him as well, so using this mix as a base, I literally interpreted his first line (and Jill's). myf dubbed it awesome.

The "robo voice" synths return in time for the chorus, backing up the soft+sad quadruplets. It's like they're belting out their own brand of lyrics.

Poo is intensely focused, packing a "critical SMASH (smash)" behind his collected tone of voice. Highlights include the mention of toothpaste (Colgate Hippie is crescent fresh) and a reference to his popularity with the ladies. The trailing chime fadeout adds another bit of mysticism to the fighter's aura.

In a wild contrast, Jeff is speedy and over-analytical to the point where he confuses himself with his own long-winded conjectures. Measuring the cartridge instead of playing it is a LOL decision that shows his ultra-cautious side. (I imagine Jeff working through the night to fix the broken EB cartridge.) Also, the playful "blip-bloop"-ing during his chemical analysis is killer.

The empty space after Flik's role makes the listener wonder whether the previous chaos happened or not. Then after a second and third dose of the chorus, the whole thing kinda winds down, gating and lowering its notes like a broken record.

Sick, twisted, and contagious. I love it. :-D

on 2008-12-24 00:48:30

Whoever made this needs some credit. I laughed my ass off.

on 2008-12-23 00:26:16

Posting as another rap hater who likes this. I don't like the second bit, though. For one, it's rather non-sequitir (and not in the good way that most of Earthbound is). For another, it seems like exactly what all gangsta rappers do to show off their massive egos ("Look at me, I'm an awesome rapper! My last album went platinum because I'm such an awesome rapper. All the other rappers are less awesome than me." except rhyming).

Lastly (and also leastly), "intensive purposes" makes my inner pedant cry. Otherwise, I like Flik's style and am curious as to where I can find things in a similar style.

pi out of 22/7

on 2008-10-26 11:00:58

genius ... simply genius

on 2008-10-26 09:55:54

The track is well done, quality-wise. Sounds good too, I liked it, but the delivery of the lyrics was a bit odd in some places. The 3rd person was great though. Overall, cool stuff.

on 2008-10-26 01:47:07

didn't really like it, but i'm not into rap that much anyways.

great remix, nevertheless.

on 2008-07-08 23:07:42

this never gets old, honestly

on 2008-04-27 16:29:54

I'm really enjoying this song-- it's one of those occasional rap songs that I find actually listenable.

But I kept listening to it and not really understanding what Myth's part had to do with anything. That whole verse seemed irrelevant to the game, while also seeming like the kind of thing that could be in the game, and I keep wondering whether I'm missing a reference to something or if it's actually just random (or an in-joke or somesuch).

on 2007-06-19 09:15:58

...I'm conflicted...

I hate rap,

But I love this.

So... Does that mean that all I know and hate about rap is wrong?

Or maybe this supercedes rap, and is, in fact, a genre all its own?

The only thing I can think to call this strange new brand of music,

Which undeniably has some features of rap, but is likeable by me:


Ah, this is rapé to my ears!... Strange, I have a lingering feeling that this new genre name is wrong in some way... Either way, I can't wait to be "Rapé'd" by this gang some time soon! (Meh, I'll probably figure it out later)


Earthbound; Da Black Market (By: ...Four people, I'm too lazy to type them down, but they rock.)

95% ~~~ A (As if you care)

on 2007-04-28 01:27:11

Nice work. I especially LOVE that last "rant-rap" part. Hilarious stuff.

on 2007-04-28 00:53:43

This remix is definately a unique one - it actually makes rap *gasp* sound good :P. You guys should make another 1 (or inform me of another 1 that does exist :D)

on 2007-04-27 14:30:37

I was playing some OCRemix songs on random and I this song caught my attention because the first "set" of beats (or syllables?) sounds quite similar to the rap rhyme to Korn's "All in the Family" up to 1:00.

on 2007-01-21 20:45:32

Thank you to everybody for all the kind words over the past many pages.

To the-almighty-tallest who is looking for Bound Together, here be the link

Tons of musical hotness for j00.