ReMix: Street Fighter II: The World Warrior "The Masked Man"

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Street Fighter II: The World Warrior

Mr. Medford - who, besides a lone Super Metroid mix, has stuck mostly to RPGs - sends us this catchy, hybridized rendition of the classic 'Vega Stage' theme. If for some bizarre, inexplicable reason you haven't yet seen the Flash animation (on YouTube, too) that Psycosis91 put together for José's arrangement of the same source, uh... please do, for it is awesome. But that is that, and this is this; Nutritious writes:

"This remix was created for the Street Fighter II remix competition at trackitdown.net. It was one of those mixes for me that just clicked very quickly - I think I ended up finishing it in 3-4 days. My intention was to keep a lot of the Spanish flavor from the original in the use of solo trumpet, acoustic guitar, and some auxiliary percussion; but also bring it to a more cinematic breakbeat-type style with orchestra and... er.... beats.

I tried to get enough realism from the guitar and trumpet (both sample-based) to be passable for a Spanish feel, since those tend to be prominent instruments in the genre. The guitar especially took some work to get both sustained strums and quick solo playing to the point I felt comfortable keeping them."

I remember when this competition was going on, wondering what the entries would sound like, so it's cool to actually hear one. Justin's usual style is more epic orchestral, so it's definitely branching out for him to do something like this, which blends orchestral elements with Spanish, adds some processed acoustic beats and gated synths, and comes out with something that initially sounds cinematic. Then there's a tempo shift that, well... really took me by surprise, actually. I'm not entirely sure I would have mixed up the tempo so much, as this particular accelerando (starting at 1'03") struck me as awkward, but afterward the mix picks up and further transitions are smoother. To nitpick, I think the mix's percussive needs might have been better served by more electronic drums; the castanets are perfect, but when the mix gets "synthier" with the gated stuff, it felt a little odd to have a normal acoustic kit under the hood, powering everything. Your mileage may vary, though: none of the judges had issues with tempo transitions, and some specifically complimented them, so perhaps I'm just a curmudgeonly old man. OA writes:

"Great breakdowns and pretty effective tempo changes, and though I am aching for some live guitar up in this, I certainly won't turn my nose up. Cool synths and orchestra, and decent beats, but I think one thing you should focus on upcoming tracks is making some natural fills and really making the drums come alive. You have a good ear for writing cool patterns, but having some one-off tom hits here and there, or a slightly altered rhythm for a split second before returning to your regularly scheduled groove would take it to the next level."

I definitely agree with the drum fills comment - of course, that's easy for Andrew to say, since he's awesome at doing exactly that. While I'll have to go on record that I did not think the tempo changes were as seamless or graceful as they could have been, what I dig about this mix is that it represents a stylistic departure for the artist, in more ways than one. Source material is different, instrumentation is different, genre(s) are different - this is Nutritious outside of his comfort zone, or at least his established oeuvre here on OCR, and it sounds good. I think with some development Justin could easily do great pieces in pretty much any genre he chooses, and I'm certainly looking forward to it if he continues branching out. Either way, it's a win-win, and this is a solid, enjoyable Vega mix.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 14 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
42
on 2009-12-02 19:30:32

I like the intro, like its a radio fading in. Still for the longest, it felt to me like it was like a very "narrow" mix. It feels like its constantly building up for some grand finale but never quite gets there.

It's good, I like it, but it just doesn't do a lot to leave a lasting impression on me. Really the only thing aurally interesting here is the tempo changes, nothing much else...

Emunator
on 2009-12-01 18:33:28

Like with his to-be-posted Xenogears remix, it's great to see Nutritious branching his style out while still retaining some of the classic orchestral-goodness that he's so good at :-) Tempo changes were a bit strange and I don't think they were done as adeptly as possible, but aside from the transitions I enjoyed each individual section. There were a few moment of really clever percussion work in here, but towards the end it kind of lost steam :|

You really expanded on a few good ideas and trekked through some uncharted waters, stylistically-speaking, so kudos on that! :-D

Bahamut
on 2009-11-24 00:31:39

Interesting ideas - it shifts around quite a bit. I'm not a fan of the ending though - I feel like there's no real working closure for some reason. Perhaps I'm alone in this, but otherwise I do like the ideas I see here.

Martin Penwald
on 2009-11-23 15:46:08

Loving the intro outro; the way it goes from lo-fi to proper remix is pretty great. The tempo changes don't really bother me, and the arrangement is nice.

Good work.

metalsnakejuice
on 2009-11-20 07:29:43

The intro was great and that tempo change was a great. You really are getting better really fast:-P

Good work.

Sir_Downunder
on 2009-11-17 00:14:20

Great intro, the tempo shift caught me off guard for a moment, but now I love it. Very epic and Vega-y indeed. :nicework:

DragonAvenger
on 2009-11-11 15:54:31

I'm going to be a little bit of a downer on this and say this didn't really click with me as much as it seems to be with everyone else. However, I think there are some outside reasons to it. 1 - I was never into fighter games, and therefore am unfamiliar with the source. 2 - I played trumpet for years, so hearing it like this, despite that it works for this specific mix, is hurting my (not very present anymore) trumpet pride. 3 - I'm hungry.

BUT - I do like this! I just am not as wowed as I'd like to be. Some pretty awesome stuff that is going on is the fact that Justin is really expanding his groove to new levels, and I can bet that in not too many mixes he will be rocking this out very well. Secondly, as usual, Justin really knows how to fill the entire soundfield well, and it really helps this mix have that epic feel that people are commenting on.

Keep them coming, Justin!

BorgMan
on 2009-11-11 08:08:14

A high energetic track, I personally have the feeling that Vega's soundtrack should be more akin to this. I've wondered when we'd get something with such a vibe here on OCR. Great job! I am wondering, though, what happened to the other tracks. Was there a forum thread on trackitdown or something? Becaue I (and with me a lot of people I think) am really curious to hear what the others have remixed. Who was the winner anyway?

Dhsu
on 2009-11-10 19:43:40

Is it too early to start comparing remixers to other remixers? I'm getting some zircon-ish vibes from this one. :) I do agree with djp about the transition being a little forced, and there were some odd chord modifications, but overall very well-done.

Lucentas
on 2009-11-10 13:01:52

Two words for this: E. PIC. I was like, air guitaring and air drumming and air...synthing? all at once, and I'm glad there's no one else in the house right now or they seriously would have thought I was having a seizure.

Therefore this piece is awesome.

MechaFone
on 2009-11-10 12:55:33

Interesting! I loved the intro, it had a very epic feel to it. The tempo transition was a little weird for me, but you made it work. All in all, great stuff.

OA
on 2009-11-10 12:19:38

i love the intro and the half time feel about 2/3 through right before the big break. Good stuff, but next time hit me up for some guitar, or if you keep learning it on your own, do it yourself! ;-)

Crulex
on 2009-11-10 11:57:59

Very nice. The Spanish flair of this one was great and I liked the tempo change myself. I imagine others will have a problem with the change, but either way, I enjoyed it. And it has nothing to do with me liking Vega more than anyone else either. :-P

djpretzel
on 2009-11-10 11:21:16

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