ReMix: Animal Crossing "Letting Go"

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Animal Crossing

I remember awhile back being approached by Joe Cam about an Animal Crossing project he was working on. I took a listen to the OST to see about contributing something, but to be honest I really wasn't feeling it. There are some great melodies in there, to be sure, but I had a hard time getting past the animal yelp sample instrumentation. Well, things didn't end up working out for the overall project, but a lot of folks made some great music as part of the process, so that's still a success in my book, just not one that's tied to a point-in-time album release. OA put something together that represents some of his best work yet, I think, and definitely his deepest & most intricate synth work to date. The artist writes:

"This is exactly the type of song that needs remixing, where it has a beautiful and charming melody, but abysmal original sound quality. I mean, I love KK more than most people and it's even tough for me to stomach those "oh me oh quay quays" sometimes. The melody is pretty intact, with a few changes, but the rest of the song is completely redone, with a lot of additional counterpoint, and an original bridge section. This ended up being one of my more personal remixes, if such a thing were possible. This is easily my favorite song from the soundtrack, so i'm glad I got the chance to remix it."

I think Andrew's appreciation for the source shines through - I get the feeling that he was not only inspired by the underlying melody, but that he really wanted a version that he himself, first and foremost, could fully enjoy. Maybe that's what he means by "personal," and maybe it isn't, but either way, this is some great r&b/pop ballad-ish work. Crunchy, layered drums with bitcrushed, cross-panned elements, paired with simple, unobtrusive bass lay the foundation for sugary bells, sine leads, some acoustic strummin', piano, electric piano, and gated synth chords - I especially like the breakup effect on these, around 1'38". Also, gotta love the big poppa super bass slide solo circa 2'02"; ooooohhhhhh yeaaaahhhhh. Because it was being held up for the project release, this one has judge comments from way back in '08; then-panelist zyko writes:

"it's so good, it's almost a no-brainer. i don't think there are any arrangement controversies here :) and the production is top notch. i love animal crossing music because it is such an enigma of WTF and brilliance at the same time. i always tell myself i'm going to do an animal crossing mix but i'm afraid to mix my own insanity with the soundtrack's inherent insanity. but i, too, am tryin my hand at it for Joe's project. the drums are very nice. the guitar work is subtle but sweet. the synths, especially the sliced, syncopated ones are cool as hell. i love the leads."

Well said. It's very odd to me that this mix is a couple years old, because in some ways it's an improvement on certain elements, specifically the synths, in stuff OA has done since. Not that any of that was bad at all, just that this mix has a certain sheen to it and gets some of the synth fx 110% right. Andrew told me it might be his personal favorite mix that he's done so far, and I can see why, as I think he really showed depth and versatility and worked a little Kaijin-esque influence into his game. Great stuff that does the quirky, eccentric Animal Crossing score justice and makes it a lot more accessible at the same time.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
TillyFun
on 2014-01-23 02:25:37

What a beautiful melody~ Very chill and peaceful. Thank you for making this. :)

The moment at 0:51 and 2:05 make me think of little deformed animal people running through fields. aw ^_^

trupotato
on 2013-09-01 23:14:19

It's kind of Star Light Angel-ish from Robot Carnival. I very much enjoyed this

Mirby
on 2011-12-23 09:00:57

I shall stab at OA's final form by reviewing HIS OWN WORK! BAHAHA! I see Crulex has already done the same. BRAVO!

As for the review, this song has always been enjoyable to me. A nice mellow track that does portray the title quite well. This song, to me, fits the theme of "letting go" of something. Maybe it's one's past, or some regrets, or a lost lover. Whatever it may be, this song would work as backing for a scene of someone letting go of something.

Nice work, OA! now if only this was the final blow. also, this will have no context once this month is over

Crulex
on 2011-12-20 13:43:08

Ahhhh, what a nice and peaceful piece of music. It really does sound like friendship theme with a bit of a pop edge to it. Love the piano in here and I actually almost got a "you are my sunshine" feeling out of it right before the second minute. The synths were done very well in this ReMix and this is a well-needed song for getting a smile back on gloomy days. Beautiful stuff, great job.

OA
on 2010-09-02 12:26:47

This song makes me want to do something worth doing.

:-)

urdailywater
on 2010-04-16 19:03:39

I absolutely LOVE the synth in this one (probably my favorite synth work on OC overall). The song just sounds so beautiful and really evolves the source so it has the same feel to it but is actually listenable (I didn't like K.K.'s voice..)

I'll be honest, I don't believe I ever heard the source on this even though I played the game a LOT. (Except maybe the aircheck but I wouldn't remember). I went back to listen to it and you did the source great justice OA. Keep up the good work. : )

There needs to be more Animal Crossing remixes. It's one of the few games I'd say that needs it. This remix is proof.

Martin Penwald
on 2010-02-22 07:08:51
This screams out 'anime friendship theme' to me.

You're not alone; I got the same vibe from the remix. That is, most of the time; the synth taking the main stage from 1:40 onwards has a very spacey feeling to it and evokes images of 70's SciFi IMO.

Overall an enjoyable remix, but not my favourite OA track.

jintoreedwine
on 2010-02-09 13:23:18

Fantastic mix OA. Another great showcase of your synth work :) . The laid back feel of this mix and attention to detail really make this a kick-butt mix!

Nase
on 2010-02-07 12:44:16

This screams out 'anime friendship theme' to me. Don't take this the wrong way though, I have a very soft spot for that kind of sound.

Very soothing overall, contrasted with some lively elements here and there, but the chord progressions also convey a hint of melancholy.

This stuff tells stories. Very enjoyable!

Bahamut
on 2010-02-05 22:27:17

Man, I like it! This has a relaxing atmosphere you can sit back to, even with the synth there the slightly upbeat pacing.

John Revoredo
on 2010-02-05 15:59:20

Wow, this is quite cool!. Sounds like OA's put an incredible amount of work in the drum synth sections. If these drums aren't real, then they are the best fake drums i have heard yet. (..and same goes for the guitar in the background).

This is very chilling piece and really enjoyable. Fantastic stuff.:-o

Elsewhere
on 2010-02-04 20:22:03

Not my favorite track by OA, but a good listen nevertheless.

Once I listen to it a few more times it'll probably get way better.

ella guro
on 2010-02-03 23:39:36

This is really good! I could tell how much you care about the source straight from the beginning. The synth work is almost all great, and doesn't obstruct at all from the directness or emotion behind the mix. I could say the same about the whole thing - it doesn't feel like a collection of synths and effects, but a living, breathing piece of music. It's nice when I can really hear how much a person cares about what they're mixing, like I can here.

Andrew has done something here that both does justice to it and stands on its own as a piece of music. This is the kind of mix that shows me that there's something special to remixing, and I should stick with it. Really great stuff, dude.

Emunator
on 2010-02-03 21:13:56

This was my favorite song off of K.K. Setlist and it continues to stay that way now :-) It's one of the relatively-few songs from that project that really felt like a complete song that was ready to see the light of day - the polish and attention to little sonic details is just what I'd expect from Andrew :-) The acoustic guitar riffs felt slightly out of place, maybe just because of the tone, and there was a bit of bleeding between notes as Willrock pointed out to me.

Nothing was there that stopped me from enjoying this one just as much as any of OA's songs that I've heard so far, though. Nice work dude :-D

Tables
on 2010-02-03 15:52:41

Oh man, I loved this track back when the unfinished animal crossing thing was released, and it's terrific to see it in the official OCR archives. Catchy as hell, and the little details make this listenable a hundred times.