ReMix: Super Mario Bros. 3 'Pipes'

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Super Mario Bros. 3

Not to be confused with 'Da Pipes' from way back in Year One, this arrangement from newcomer band Seventh Epic is actually inspired by the arrangement of the underground BGM specifically featured in SMB3, not the original. Submitting band member Josh Queen explains:

"We've been enjoying the site for years, to the point where it has influenced our original scores. We have been wanting to add a cover to our live act, couldn't resist doing the game cover, and went ahead and followed this mix all the way through to production. What resulted is "Pipes". What originally inspired this mix wasn't necessarily the melody (the one strait from SMB1) but more that early 90's hip/hop beat that was added when SMB3 was released. The rest was fairly easy and more fun than killing hundreds of mutant turtles. Enjoy."

If you're in the NC/SC area, you can check 'em out live this summer - sample tracks & dates/locations @ http://www.myspace.com/seventhepic. I dug what I heard, specifically 'Abstract Skies' - it's great to get submissions from VGM cover bands, but equally awesome when non-VGM bands deviate a bit and do a one-off - though I certainly hope there'll be a follow-up track, in this case. Perhaps something from the The 7th Guest or The 7th Saga... you know, to keep the whole "7" vibe running strong? At any rate, by now you've heard this theme covered a zillion ways, and while you've probably encountered arrangements somewhat similar to the approach Seventh Epic have taken, the devil's in the details. Jesse's pretty jaded, but he sums up my intial reaction and eventual conclusion:

"I was ready to not like this mix listening to the intro, but I was pleasantly surprised at all the really interesting and unexpected turns this mix took. Not at all what I was expecting. Great juxtaposition of hard rock guitars and more spacey electronic elements. Well conceived and well executed."

OA adds:

"I'm definitely feeling the arrangement; there are tons of great variations on the source, with some great new parts, and a cool ending. Great creativity in mixing things up while still being recognizable. From the production end, the snare might be a bit too prominent, but other than that, it's definitely over the bar, with a varied soundscape, some nice 7 string lowness that still sounds crisp, and great synths. The organ during the solo was also a nice touch in keeping the track sounding fresh."

I think the blend of heavier, distorted rock/metal elements w/ pure chiptune is great, but then adding soloing, variation, the aforementioned organ, and just keeping things fresh - that's what sets this mix apart from similar approaches to a ubiquitous source. Some of the twisted, tortured textures conjured give the mix a more modern, even industrial feel, and overall I think the band pulled off their vision QUITE well.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Crulex
on 2012-08-28 10:24:17
I'm going to go on record first and say the Underground theme drove me nuts in the original Mario back when I was about five, and was glad that it got a little more to it in SMB3. Now, with that out of the way, this ReMix has got to be one of my favorite underground ReMixes ever. The hard guitar over the chippy beat underneath was super cool, and the feeling that emerges is something simply badass. Nice use of SFX. The solo and switch-up with the drumbeat was SO DAMN GOOD! I really don't think I could say much more without going overboard, so I'll just leave it by saying what I said before: Best underground ReMix I've heard thus far.
SwordBreaker
on 2012-01-22 16:23:03
Can't believe I didn't comment before. Love the garage rock vibe this mix gives out. Very gritty and scratchy guitars...just the way I like 'em. It escalates a simple melody to new heights with the interpretation, too.
Melbu Frahma
on 2011-12-14 02:01:41
Whoa - was NOT expecting that chiptune to come in there around the 0:30 mark, very nice. :nicework: The combination of guitars and electronic sound has a really interesting interplay in the track, as they alternate being exposed and playing together. I particularly liked the synthy sound being used as an echo that showed up around the 1 minute mark - a very nice touch, that. Great stuff for a first post - I hope Seventh Epic submits more to OCR. :-)
DarkSim
on 2010-12-17 17:35:09
Great pick for a source - that drumbeat is just classic. Instant nostalgia. I absolutely LOVE that synth arp at 0:29, and a nice ominous pad building from 0:24 lets you know this isn't going to be a straightforward remix. Killer solo from 1:33, and the change of beat at 1:53 is awesome with the chorused guitar.
Definitely the best version of this theme I've ever heard.
BlackCurtains
on 2010-12-02 01:28:18
:shock:
Holy shit! Where was I when this was posted?! This is awesome!
Antipode
on 2010-07-04 18:19:19
I can't believe I never commented on this mix. I have to say, this is probably my favorite SMB underworld remix ever. At the beginning I wasn't expecting to like it but I was sufficiently blown away. You use some excellent effects, you've got a great solo, and the arrangement was carefully thought out. My favorite part is definitely the transition from 1:53 to 2:13 finishing in that little riff with the guitar - very fulfilling. If I had to pick out any issues, it would be that the mix feels a little crowded near the end and it's tough to hear the low end - but otherwise, spectacular track!
Martin Penwald
on 2010-07-01 14:29:08
As far as arrangement is concerned, the intro is pretty straight forward; too straight forward IMO. Synth coming in at 0:30 adds personalization and sounds pretty awesome. The synth at 1:00 is even better. 1:15 onwards is really, really nice; powerful and atmospheric. Breakdown starting at 1:52 is badass. Climax starting at 2:13 is awesome.
Also, using the fx as the ending is pretty clever.
predcon
on 2010-06-24 01:17:16
A little misleading, considering the islander/Irishman (depending on which continent you hail from, respectively) in me, but a worthy mix nonetheless. Big tip!
[Edit] It just occurred to me I should explain why it's misleading. Well a lad like me who hears the word "pipes" thinks of "bagpipes" of course!
luhny
on 2010-06-20 04:34:21
You know, I have heard countless variations of this, but you people really hit the nail on this one.

The sound is rich and full and the mix features almost everything you could wish for.

I also like your band in general,keep up the nice work. I hope we will be able to listen to another remix from you in the future. Thanks for sharing this remix and all the best to your future.
SonicSynthesis
on 2010-06-19 06:50:48
I absolutely love this. The entire last minute or so sounds completely epic. Great solo too :)
Schneau
on 2010-06-17 16:38:47
There's been a lot of great new stuff on OCR recently, but this might just take the cake. I was worried at first that it might be the same old underground theme ideas, but man, they totally pulled it off. 5 stars!
Level 99
on 2010-06-16 08:43:21
Mmm thems is fine gritty drums der. Purdy!
You know, I always thought that the underground theme was better in SMB3, because I could actually understand the phrase now that it had a beat. Cool pick for the version of the source.
Can't say I'm the biggest fan of such an abrasive middle-focused guitar tone, but it sounds a lot better once it has the low-end covered after the first phrase. The synth accompaniment is pretty catchy, reminds me a bit of some of Pitchshifter's work. Nice wanky solo. The drums sound a little bit too weak when every instrument is going full throttle, but that's not enough to take away from the mix as a whole.
Nice industrial rocks feel. I enjoyed it!
Dafydd
on 2010-06-12 16:43:37
This is pretty awesome. My only real complaint is how, when playing those first 6 (or, rather, 12) notes of the source, you stay in the same octave instead of alternating, as the original does.
Frozoth
on 2010-06-12 12:37:47
Loved it. I always find it impressive when someone can take a track so simple, and develop it into a very unique and interesting tune through and through.
Oh, and I loved the ending.
Brandon Strader
on 2010-06-11 17:35:58
Good stuff, fantastic solo, I thought the arrangement was a bit straight-forward.