"Okay so I was talking to Rayman the other day, and he was pretty mad about the whole not having any of his games on OCR. So I was like, hey dude you don't have any arms or legs so maybe I should do a remix. And he was like good plan little man. I told him that was a strange thing to say because I am much taller than him and not to mention I am real and he is not."
Undoubtedly a true story from the ReMix's creator, Mr. Briggs. Personally, I find it somewhat politically incorrect to have pointed out Rayman's lack of interconnecting limbs so matter-of-factly, but I'm one of those crazy blue state people, so what do I know... I could personally never understand how Rayman got his name; unlike the nefarious evildoers that people the Mega Man universe, who are all intuitively named after their respective abilities, Rayman seems like an enigma wrapped in a puzzle bunched up inside the minds of some zany French guys. Nevertheless, his first game was one of the few highlights of my brief experiment in Atari Jaguar ownership (just a youthful lark, really), and his second set of appendage-challenged misadventures I recall the Dreamcast incarnation of rather fondly. Now chthonic, who seems to have one too many H's in his pseudonym, happily provides Man Ray with some happy mixage. Synth bass intros, drums at 0'08" with a funky lil hat and a pattern that builds to the chirpy + cheerful synth lead at 0'23". Check out the extensive cross-panning on the lead - Ben paid a lot of attention to this aspect of the lead, and it's alternating left/right playfulness works. Yankee Doodle makes a brief cameo, then the sitar's whipped out for some funkiness, which segues bizarrely into a sort of evil, mad-scientist organfest, leading us all the way back to the original happy-go-lucky synth motif. For some reason, the riff here reminds me of the catchy-as-all-hell and cheesy-beyond-belief organ solo from the golden oldy "Sugar Shack". Shariq says:
"wtf yankee doodle lol
Yeah, this is supertite. Nice percussive work, with some neat breaks here and there. This is totally feel good music. I love the use of triplets all over the place for pickups. Slick stuff. The overall package is nice; good sounds, fun groove."
Jesse was a bit more critical but was still won over by the sheer sugary sweetness, which he is of course terribly susceptible to:
"This mix has a lot of subtlety that is done particularly well. Panning, percussion hits, breaks. The instruments are simple, but tight. countermelodies (like the flute) are really cool. The mix is weaker when looking at the big picture. The groove is pretty much the same throughout. There isnt so much escalation as there is switching off between instruments and ideas."
I'll agree on the lack of escalation, but it's Rayman, man... he's all about just kickin' it. You can't afford to escalate too much when you've got nothing connecting your torso to your extremities, so instead you go with the flow and cook up whatever whimsical and strange musical concoction you can, which is exactly what Mr. Briggs has done, albeit in his typical, beyond-competent, correctly appendaged fashion. Catchy, sugary stuff that plays around the material with both enthusiasm and craft.
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