ReMix: Double Dragon 'The Secrets of Sosetsuken'

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Double Dragon

S.O.S. - Summer of Sixto? Stunning our Senses? ... or perhaps, 'Secrets of Sosetsuken,' the latest in a mind-numbingly awesome and prolific series of ReMixes '08 has seen Juan Medrano produce. Like Ms. Furtado, he's clearly promiscuous, having had intimate relations with TMNT IV, MM2, MM3, Sonic, and back in December of last year, Shadow of the Colossus. Sure, some of those were sordid collabs, often involving two or more mixers in a torrid display of decadent musical collaboration that would shock values voters, but the common denominator here is Mr. Medrano, who continues to commit these displays of obscene musical awesomeness - in public! There's still more to come in the not-so-distant future, but this latest fiesta of flavor is a Double Dragon joint. DD was one of those games a certain demographic of gamers were raised on in arcades; I remember playing it at a Godfather's Pizza in Springfield, VA where I grew up. I remember one of my sisters trying to be cool and carrying an extra large pizza with one hand (palm up), and dropping the whole thing on the floor, and I remember being strangely apathetic to this first degree pizza murder because it meant I could spend more time trying to get Billy's girlfriend back and beating the crap out of Abobos (Abobii??) - good times. Suffice to say, the game holds a special, pre-SF2 place in the hearts of arcade gamers from that era, and its soundtrack does as well.

This one starts off rather unexpectedly with a synth pad sweep and quick breakbeats underpinned by running synths - really rather good electronica foundation for someone who's historical focus has been on rock, I must say. Good enough that I'd actually like to challenge Sixto to submit a mix without guitar... I think his skills elsewhere have progressed to the point where it should be doable, and I think it'd be an interesting experiment. No worries if he's not interested and would rather stick to rocking it out with the guits, just saying it'd be... unique, and furthermore I think he could do it. Juan writes:

"I always thought that the Double Dragon games had pretty great music. Even as a kid, I could imagine hearing some of the tracks being played by a live band, so coming up with an idea wasn't very difficult. I tried fusing two different types of sounds together as I've done a few times before; electronic sounds and rock instruments. This time, rather than go to zircon for the electronic parts, I decided to do everything myself (though he did provide me with lots of presets and neat sounds to play around with. Thanks for that, sir!) Now, I spent hours and hours trying to come up with a decent guitar solo section, but nothing was sounding near as great as the original solo in the source track so I decided to try and reproduce the solo as best as I could. I'm pretty satisfied with what I came up with. Hope you guys enjoy!"

The arrangement here turns more towards rock at 0'19", with a nice filter sweep transition into rock kit drums and meaty electric guitars, after which routine amounts of Juan's ass-kicking rock arrangement take over. Of course, his mixes are anything BUT routine - while the execution is usually guitar-centric and always superb, his arrangements are each unique entities unto themselves, with distinct character. Here synths play a continued role even after drums and guitar take the helm, keeping a running tempo in play and maintaining momentum, and breakbeats are reintroduced later. This type of reintroduction is key to making them more of an integrated component as opposed to an "intro gimmick," and intangibly helps the overall flow of the piece.

I've been watching the Beijing Olympics and seen some jaw-dropping stuff, but one thing I've noticed remains consistent for every Olympics I've ever seen: amazing athletes successfully perform things that look ridiculously difficult, but the gold medalists - the super stars - do the exact same thing, and make it look effortless. Okay, maybe not effortless, but there's a certain grace and natural movement that makes them look as if they were born to do what they're doing, and it's what makes the difference between microseconds and tenths of points. Point being, Juan makes mixing look effortless, was born to make music, and keeps on winning gold medals this year, making him the honorary Phelps of OCR '08. Metaphors aside, another great piece from Juan, who continues to rock out and improve his skills at the same time.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
DusK
on 2011-12-27 11:22:57
I used this song as boss fight music for a D&D game. No joke.
This track really gets me bangin'. The guitars have a lot of character to them. Very shreddy. The piano pieces seem a bit overwhelming at times, but not enough to make me want to turn this badass track off. I'm really glad Sixto went with the original solo. Such a massive nostalgia kick at that moment.
blackguitar
on 2011-09-02 02:43:25
This is, by far, my favourite remix on this site. Nice sound, nice playing, absolutely gorgeous tune to be remixed in a rock-fashion-style. Long-lost memories stir me up when i am listening to this. Double Dragon on Nintendo's Gameboy was one of my first handheld games and i played it for a very long time. Respect, dude, for what i call a perfect remix.
WesternZypher
on 2011-07-13 18:22:22
Ninja Attack!
G-G-GuiTaR PunCH!
That is all.
Emunator
on 2009-12-11 19:13:34
This one isn't as memorable as, say, Twin Blood, for me, but it's still a very strong track in its own respect. I don't really feel like the electronic elements are very engaging and it starts to feel repetitive after a while, but the guitar is well produced, well performed, and pretty much carries this song for me. Nice solo, that was definitely needed by that point in the song.
Not a favorite, but I still enjoy listening to it on occasion. At the very least, there's a well-produced rock song with some cool riffs that might not be as creative as some of his newer mixes, but ain't bad compared to a lot of other rock schtuff you hear around the net :-)
big giant circles
on 2009-10-12 21:33:01
Really stellar track, per usual Sixto. I'm just constantly amazed by the quality of your tracks, man. It's one thing to write a track that's like wall-to-wall sound, but it's another to still make it happen cleanly.
Sixto
on 2009-07-02 10:28:20
Hillsy;563079 wrote: One critisim would be your 'Twin Blood' is it based on 'Roar of the Dragon'?

Yep, it sure is. :< I'm already working on a new Double Dragon track, though.
Maybe.
Hillsy
on 2009-07-01 21:01:48
Really well done, I can tell you put your heart and soul into this. I love how the guitar kicks in at the beginning, excellent.
One critisim would be your 'Twin Blood' is it based on 'Roar of the Dragon'? Have a listen to Double Dragon II Arranged Tracks, it has 'Roar of the Dragon', its' good, but it is begging to be rocked by you. Please, if you get the chance look into this.
I'm not taking anything away from this track though 'The Secrets of Sosetsuken', excellent throughout.
kwkurono
on 2008-10-17 14:09:08
This guy is amazing. His guitar tone is excellent and the solo is was ace.
OA
on 2008-09-16 13:08:47
My second favorite Double Dragon theme, behind the title track, done up about as good as it can get.
I love the rhythm guitar phrasing, the little breakdowns, the original touches, and the solo is killer. It was great back then, but is even better as a 'real' solo.
The irons have been upped. Rock on, Sixto. \m/
Martin Penwald
on 2008-09-08 15:30:38
Everyone knows that Sixto is able to make rockin' remixes, but this piece here goes beyond that. The electronica influences really add a lot to the song, taking it closer to VGM territory (especially 1:12 onwards). The piano is a very nice touch, too.
BomberKid
on 2008-08-31 15:01:45
I always enjoy Sixto Sounds' songs, what else can I say? Actually, I can say that I really dig the piano spots, bits of techno and Sixto's usual rockin'. And I'm getting no readings from my "Annoying-Repetition Radar!"
Great to see his new song have some differences in sound from previous ones- namely the instruments other than the guitar. :nicework:
Sir_Downunder
on 2008-08-26 00:31:29
Duuuuude... this track is awesome! A great piece of solid production with a kickass solo and ending to boot!
Viva Sixto! May his age of remixing never end! :nicework:
SargeSmash
on 2008-08-21 14:39:57
I've been listening to this mix for a while now, and I'm incredibly impressed with this one. I distinctly remember how cool I thought it was the first time I listened. It literally drew a "Aww, HECK yeah!" from me.
Sixto, keep up the great work. You're definitely one of the most talented guitarists out there.
Thumbs way, WAY up.
Victor1283
on 2008-08-21 04:11:05
Awesome!
It's not repetitive. Some different every couple of seconds. Solid ending. Nice mixture of the guitar and piano.
Again Awesome!
Palpable
on 2008-08-20 23:07:14
Awesome arrangement, but I really really love the third section, where you go wild on guitar. I was actually anticipating what you would do with that section from the beginning, and you didn't disappoint me at all. :)!!