ReMix: Golden Axe II "Battle Axe-Wielding Dwarf" 3:50

By Diggi Dis

Arranging the music of one song...

"Ravaged Village"

Primary Game: Golden Axe II (Sega, 1991, GEN), music by Naofumi Hataya

Posted 2010-04-22, evaluated by the judges panel

Digg Dis needs to make a Dig Dug mix, just so I can proclaim that "You'll dig Diggi Dis's Dig Dug!!" - until that fateful day, however, we've got one more mix from van 't Ende to enjoy. We last heard from Frank back in 2008, with one of my favorites from him, 'Mamacitas in My Valley,' so it's cool to be posting something new. And from previously unmixed Sega classic Golden Axe II, no less! While the first GA was the more important title, its sequel carried the torch further and had some great tunes as well. Personally, I was all about the dwarf (that's Gilius Thunderhead to you...) - that charging headbutt move? Money. Also, kicking those helpless little elf thieves during the bonus stages, so as to acquire extra potion? That was 16-bit console gaming at its finest.

Ah right, the music: Diggi starts us off with straight orchestral - energetic, if not the most convincing samples, but it establishes the setting w/ rolling snare pattern, leading up to a nice big kick drop at 0'30" used to introduce a beat & some synths. Love the rising, lo-fi bitcrushed synth riff that in turn gives way to some electric guitar power chords and modulated synth lead. Beat drops out and filters back in, picking up some temporary swing-time swagger as flute takes over on the melody, then we come back with ensemble strings before jazzing it up with a solo piano break. I think judges were correct in their crits that the intro isn't the mix's strongest point and that the first third is more conservative, but you gotta love the energy and variation later on. I especially like the way Frank handles tradeoffs between leads, i.e. seamlessly. The strictly solo piano conclusion is a nice unorthodox ending that works in some fantastic new arrangement ideas at the eleventh hour - I like it. Deia writes:

"I was expecting this to stay as an orchestral mix throughout, but once things kicked in I was pleasantly surprised. The pacing overall worked just right; the changes of instrumentation/style came at just the right time to make me want to keep listening."

"Pacing" is the right word - there are a lot of ideas presented in succession here, keeping things fresh the whole time, but it never feels scatterbrain or incoherent. I also think Frank chose a really awesome source that definitely needed some love - gotta branch out a bit more, people! I love me some Chrono Trigger, too, but it's taken us 10+ years to get a Golden Axe II ReMix, and the source here is every bit as rich & deep as some of the more popular RPG themes out there! A little conservative, takes some time to get going, but Diggi Dis's latest is another great, musical arrangement filled with style AND substance.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2018-01-10 16:04:49

Holy crap, this is certainly one of the most epic hybrid pieces out there! Certainly dig the piano breakdown at 1:48 as well as the all the following parts, including small synth solo at 2:04, the seamless interplay with electric guitar at 2:10, badass comeback of the fuller soundscape at 2:20 and, of course, the piano ending! Oh, and that flute soloing was a nice touch too! Damn, I really really really love this track, thanks man!

on 2012-10-04 11:25:49
on 2012-08-20 10:57:45

Strong orchestral intro into a kickin' electro-rock ReMix? Yes please! Electro-rock has to be one of my favorite sources and this arrangement is simply amazing. Love the addition of the piano at points, and the piano outro was a nice touch. Great ReMix.

on 2011-12-25 08:28:13

This song is a bunch of genres all hiding together, taking turns rocking out to the source. That's it.

And only Diggi Dis could get them to do that and have it turn out as perfectly as this. :D

on 2011-12-06 08:42:35

The introduction completely threw me off. I was fully expecting an orchestral rendition, but the arrangement steadily morphs into and mix of electronica and rock. This, is just fantastic and really well executed. There is a mix of many styles and they are all done really well. The arrangement makes this amazing and the performances just reinforce that further. It manages to keep you on your toes without throwing you every which way. The piano ending is just beautiful.

Nobbynob Littlun
on 2011-03-26 21:30:50



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Seconded. This song grows on me every time I hear it. It's those aforementioned effortless transitions. The song and it's "subsongs" are the perfect length, satisfying and varied without dragging on.

on 2010-07-26 08:25:06

Wow. The source material is amazing, but this remix is simply out of this world. Great transitions and nice tone choices for the instruments combine to make this one of my favourite remixes :)

on 2010-07-24 14:58:26

This along with Mamacitas are two of my favorite mixes on the site. This mix just transitions so smoothly.

on 2010-05-16 15:23:02

I really can't stop listening to this. This came out amazingly, one of my favorite pieces from this site in a very long time.

Martin Penwald
on 2010-05-15 05:46:30

I was very pleasantly surprised with how absolutely effortlessly the remix changes genres. Whether it's orchestra, guitar or solo piano, it always flows into each other almost seemlessly, i.e. the transitions are just beautiful.

Also, drumrolls. Love 'em.

on 2010-05-03 00:30:03

I kept turning this up and up not knowing why it felt soft even when the layers r all balls to the walls and EUREKA I think the drums r too far in the back in the latter two thirds of the mix. Besides this (possibly unwarranted) quip I enjoy this a lot and catchy source!!

on 2010-04-23 22:19:32

Frank, you really have come a long way. This stuff is awesome.

Keep groovin', dude. And when are you gonna make it back to MAGFest anyway?

on 2010-04-23 17:05:36

I just replayed this game on the PSP in the Sega Classics Collection, so awesome. This song is going right on my MP3 player, it's about time Golden Axe got some Remix love!

on 2010-04-23 13:06:10

Nice work on this... I played very few Genesis games as a kid (had to choose one system over the other back then!), but Golden Axe was always a favorite. Frank Frezetta style heroes and villains, bashing each others skulls in. Good times. :D

Jonathon Striker
on 2010-04-23 10:58:19

If they decided to redo the Golden Axe series (mind you I only mean the original 3), they should use your track as an arranged version. Definitely get a Final Fight inspired feeling from this mix as I am remembering a classic arcade side-scrolling beat em' up.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Golden Axe II (Sega, 1991, GEN)
Music by Naofumi Hataya
"Ravaged Village"

Tags (6)

Hip Hop
Electronic, Orchestral, Piano, Synth, Woodwinds

File Information

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