ReMix: Final Fantasy VII 'Materia Junkie'

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Final Fantasy VII: Voices of the LifestreamFinal Fantasy VII

LuIzA is a one-woman army of sound. While that sounds cheesy as all hell, and not unlike the type of empty PR you'd hear from over-hyped mainstream artists, the bottom line is, it's just accurate in her case. With her first mix, she single-handedly illustrated some downright frightening guitar skills along with an ear for arranging to suit an aggressive rock motif without sacrificing substance. With this arrangement of Under the Rotting Pizza and The Oppressed, oops, she's done it again. Voices of the Lifestream features quite a bit of guitar, both electric and acoustic, so the instrument is well-represented (nicely justifying its incorporation into the album logo, so I didn't have to redo it!), but what amazes me is how each musician has a distinct and identifiable sound. When I think of the verb "shred", which is unmistakably what these guys and gal are doing, I don't think of subtle variations, but the guitarists of FF7:VotL definitely show how there's more than one way to skin a fret.

This mix probably has the dirtiest, most aggressive production on the album; elsewhere guits are usually more tightly coupled with synths and more pristine production. There's live ambience that gives everything a tense, suspenseful feel, and between chugs, a rather lovely bass, lead, and very natural acoustic drums, there's even... an organ solo. With piano stage left. Sweet - in addition to a bitchin' wah guitar solo we get some excellent keyboard material as well! And, while I know some people don't care half as much as I do, it's also always nice when mix titles are appropriate and well-chosen, as is the case here. Luiza S. Carvalho is one hell of a talented musician (on multiple levels), and has put together an outstanding addition to FF7:VotL that rocks out with the best of them.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Mikeaudio
on 2011-12-08 10:26:59
LuIzA;825952 wrote: Thank you. But no, the title was actually zircon's idea, I believe. It was given much later the song was completed. My main inspiration was the vibe the original itself gave me, really thescenario in the game itself.



Well, you did a fantastic job! Keep up the great work! I'm looking foward to hearing more of your mixes.
LuIzA
on 2011-12-06 13:30:21
Thank you. But no, the title was actually zircon's idea, I believe. It was given much later the song was completed. My main inspiration was the vibe the original itself gave me, really thescenario in the game itself.
Mikeaudio
on 2011-12-06 12:17:46
I love the imagery this mix has! It sounds like the depressed, stagnant, hungover hopelessness of Midgar. Definitely a favorite for me. You chose the name 'Materia Junkie' well. Did you do this mix with that title in mind?
Synthony
on 2011-02-13 14:27:44
This is definitely one of the most impressive ReMixes I've come across. While staying faithful to the source material, you somehow managed to seamlessly blend together two of my favorite themes from the game -- two with radically different moods and rhythms -- using a skillful mix of guitars and synthesizers.
What took me aback the most about this song was the organ and piano solos during the Oppressed section. It's not often that I've seen the guitars in rock instrumentals suddenly take a backseat to the keys. For that, you have my utmost respect.
Samildanach Emrys
on 2011-01-18 15:30:52
Very impressive! One of my favourite remixes.
Master in Lunacy
on 2009-12-29 04:48:48
That's a personal FF7 Favorite for me.
Marmiduke
on 2009-11-12 05:36:44
Nice. Loving the whole melting pot ideal of gritty sounds and tones; it establishes a pretty bizarre combination that for the most part is easy to get a taste for. Call me traditional, but my view is that dirty guitar-chugging and ska generally aren't considered instantly meshable. The fact it was pulled off with gusto here is an impressive feat.
The fact that the lighter elements aren't totally at home with the harder, filthier bookends of the mix makes this seem maybe a little too dynamic for its own good, but in all, it's a better than average hard rock piece that does something more mixes should do; not take itself too seriously. It has fun when it wants to, and that's always a good thing, even if it taints the overall tone a little in the process. The arrangement is awesome and supports the shifts in moods pretty well too. What it basically comes down to is if you can take shredding guitars and ska-playing organs at the same time and still enjoy yourself. If you can't, you're missing out. But I can also understand why this might not hit everyone's rock-loving sweetspot.
sefirosu
on 2009-04-07 15:06:11
I must say, kick ass song.
I must ask... Can i get the Bass tabs/sheet music for this?
My friends love the song, too, but they have no music experience and i'd like to attempt to blow them away.

I think I've become a "Materia Junkie" junkie!
HeavyHorse
on 2009-03-27 20:01:34
This is like...grunge-funk. Like Soundgarden and James Brown had a baby o_O.
Nonetheless, really tight track. Very grooving piece, complete with a very crisp angry sound. Love it, awesome job LuIzA.
evktalo
on 2008-07-31 16:28:23
One of the most memorable tracks on VotL. I love the "cyberpunk" feel I get from this. What a tasty bass! There's a lot of space in the mix which is really nice. I love the subtle, eerie synths, and the big "wide" distorted guitar chords which are like sheets of metallic sound. The middle ska section with the piano and organ is fun, even if I like the other parts much more, and the sections complement each other well. Can't complain. A fantastic track!
--Eino
Nobbynob Littlun
on 2007-09-29 07:02:18
Wow, those guitars are... chunky.
The great strength of this song is that it is far from a wall of sound. Nice range of tones, and periods of relative quiet that only give the guitar more oomph. As for the atmosphere, I felt like this is the sort of thing that Uematsu Nobou(sp?) was trying to capture both in the game and in Advent Children. (see Advent Children's "Black Water" for instance).
Lotd2242
on 2007-09-20 16:45:31
Absolutely loved everything about this track. It's gritty, it's dirty, it doesn't suffer from any of the schizofrenia that some of the other tracks in VotL do, and all while remaining true to the source. Can't ask for more.
big giant circles
on 2007-09-15 20:03:29
luiza is a one-woman army of dirty awesome axe-wielding skills. her track is as fun to listen to as it is impressive. i listened to her track the other day whilst picking at my own guit-fiddle, and i got shred-envy. :)
AeroZ
on 2007-09-15 14:54:48
Damn.. I love this one.
2 of my favorite tracks in videogame history.
And you do such a good job with it.
Think you raised the standards for OCremix a bit with this one.
Very good job.
The Joker
on 2007-09-15 07:24:46
Awesome mix from one of my favorite guitar players, here in ocr & outside of the scene! I remeber hearing this as a very early wip, & it sounds even more awesome now, than it did then. (note: it was really awesome back then as well)
So, yeah, I like this mix, & I reccommend it to every one who likes the gritty, let's get into a bar fight with some drunk bokers, then get all cheeky with their chicks (the ska section would be this part), then face off with their leader. Who smells of, what can only be described as whiskey & urine.
Long story short, JTown Seal of just-friggin-download-it Excellence.