ReMix: Super Mario Land 'Why So Serious?'
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So, craziness: SGC rocked last weekend, and we were lucky enough to be there. Larry and I were also lucky enough to end up as the finalists in the HD Remix tourney, but my lime green Ken sadly fell to the overwhelming masculine security of his pink T-hawk. We got this on video, but I'm currently looking for someone skilled enough to edit it so it looks like I won. Handily. There was a Nolan Bushnell keynote, a presentation and debate with Jack Thompson himself, and plenty of other awesomeness. If this con doesn't repeat next year and keep growing, there be no justice. We also need to send a major shout out to GPX Gaming - these guys run the gaming operations at tons of awesome events and do a first-class job. Manny hooked us up with speakers in the dealer's room so people could actually HEAR our shizz, and Javier and Glen made sure everything went smoothly with our live remix request set and HDR prize giveaway. It was glorious; we're definitely psyched about hanging with them again at Game Unicon in August.
We've been extra-super-busy with the convention circuit this summer, which has really exploded. Two additional announcements on that front:
- Larry, Vinnie and myself will be running our very first West Coast panel at this year's PAX in September!
- Also, for anyone still on the fence about whether to go to Otakon (C'mon! Get serious!), we can simply assure you that we have special plans for this panel in particular that may or may not rhyme with "Trinal Bantasy Gore"... cryptic, eh?
Now on to the mix: halc showed up last year with a great Tetris Attack mix, and it's good to see him back in action in 2009, this time collabing with neighbor chthonic, whose last mix was (sadly) "way back" in 2007. Crazy, eh? Andrew writes:
"Let me start by saying that Super Mario Land is really hard. We've been producing this on Ben's computer, and there's no internet at his place, so everytime we needed to hear the source tune for Stage 2-1, I had to pick up the Gameboy and beat the first three stages, which was like... extremely difficult (for me, anyway) at first. Now I can play through the first three stages flawlessly without losing any lives. Enjoy and god bless the chip."
I'm really not a hardcore gamer, but I actually thought SML was pretty easy back in the day... I remember beating it and looping back to the beginning to accrue more extra lives - those bonus games were certainly helpful. I think the hardest thing about that game was playing on the Game Boy's un-backlit screen in low light, when the entire game basically looked like one big indeterminate greenish blob. Still, rather cool that the process for this mix involved playing the actual game each time they needed a source reference, and it seems like halc's platforming skills benefitted from the process. Ben writes:
"What to say. First off, I should probably mention that this is a collaborative effort... halcyon and I live in the same area, and we recently started using my brand new desktop pc. I thought of this theme on a whim, and we ran with it for a few months until it became this strange little super mario opus. This psuedo-chip tronica of sorts is becoming one of my personal favorite soundscapes... but really, the title says it all. Relax, people."
Of course, in the recent collective consciousness, the title question is being asked by a homicidal maniac dressed up in clown makeup, which might compromise the sentiment, but it's valid nonetheless. I'm sort of in a rush this morning, so it's time for the power of judgequote - Palpable writes:
"A few of the original sections also use the chord progression so I'm comfortable with the liberalness. Great use of texture in this, you constantly go from one soundscape to another (soundscape). Even though the 1-1 melody is used a bunch of times, the track still evolves through the use of different drums and synths."
"I'm going to keep this short and sweet. SML was the first game I ever owned (besides Tetris which came with my Gameboy, so I don't count it). I'm quite familiar with the melody. I played this game for freaking hours and hours and hours. I think it's a fun deviation from what a lot of people around here seem to try to put into a remix lately. I didn't hear any production gripes that caused me to bite my cheek. I think it's a great arrangement and to me, the source connection remained plenty solid even during the parts where it seemed like entirely original music."
Mattias also wrote up a pretty detailed source breakdown in the judges' decision that you should read. Bottom line: great, interpretive collab from two guys who are each awesome in their own right and whose strengths are both put to great use; seriously good unseriousness.
- Argle on November 15, 2012
It's been on repeat for the better part of two days now. Oh the nostalgia.
- Darangen on November 14, 2012
Geoffrey Taucer;708966 wrote: One of my girls will be competing a floor routine to this mix this season.
youtube link when this happens
- halc on August 25, 2010
- Geoffrey Taucer on August 25, 2010
In any case, this song is just as enjoyable as any other chthonic song! No gripes, always interesting, always charming, nothing short of genius! Yeah, I'm a total fanboy, and proud of it!
Great song, you two! Now I'm off to check out halc's music! :D
Seriously, I'm so excited to find more chthonic material!
- Nario on January 14, 2010
I think the mix gets better and better as it progresses; the arrangement certainly takes on a life of its own, moving into unfamiliar tangents that complement the nostalgic melodies quite nicely. This is constantly keeping things fresh, despite the fact it is the length of an average dance mix. Sustaining happy, lo-fi electronic music that long and never having it grow tedious is a commendable achievement.
The chiptune scene on the site seems to be going from strength to strength, and this very enjoyable collab mix is a definite stepping stone to the current awesomeness.
- Marmiduke on January 3, 2010
Then I listened, and I realized that I was taking it too seriously myself :-P This is a plain [i]happy[/i] remix and, between the infectious dance beat and the chipper chiptune style, I can't help but feel a bit more joyous while I'm listening :-)
The subtle use of the guitar toward the end really inspires me, and I plan to blatantly rip that off in a coming collab of my own ;-)
- Emunator on December 22, 2009
- Zombie on December 21, 2009
- Pachi Risu on November 22, 2009
- Polo on November 7, 2009
- MaxxAndrew on September 29, 2009
KyleJCrb;564420 wrote: Loved this so much I played it on [URL="http://kngi.org/2009/04/12/nitro-game-injection-113-revenge-of-the-podcast/"]an episode of NGI[/URL] awhile back. Nice one, dudes.
wow, i guess i never caught this. you guys are awesome - i definitely enjoyed that. and larry, you are the man.
also just a comment on this whole live collaboration situation; ben's one of my good buds - not only do we live in the same 'general' area, but we actually went to high school together and have been within that proximity ever since.
anyway, thanks! glad you guys dig our mix. you'll certainly hear from us again. :-D
- halc on September 25, 2009
Now to actual critiquing.
The intro was nice, with the coming in on those broken chords, and I liked how remniscent it was of the actual music. The slowdown later in the piece was a nice touch, and I also liked the 'background' type synth. As to negatives.... Well, this is one where I actually can't really catch much of anything. The coin sound was a bit annoying as it happened at irregular intervals, and was fairly quiet, making you listen harder for it, but not finding it. I also wish this had lasted longer... it seemed to end too soon, and the ending didn't really match the tone of the rest of the piece. Other than that, great job!
- Red_Link on September 14, 2009
- stkyle on August 19, 2009
- halc on August 16, 2009