ReMix: SimCity 2000 "SimFunkadelic"
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4,160,980 bytes, 2:50, 192kbps
Yes! We've been posting some excellent mixes of console games, older and newer, lately, but there's a veritable ocean of awesome music out there from the old DOS and earlier Windows era - not to mention Amiga, Atari ST, and Mac - just waiting to be explored. Far from obscure, SimCity 2000 was a huge hit at the time, had some funky OPL3 (and S-YXG50) tunage, and is well deserving of a modern update. Newcomers HALO_ZERO and Dr. Velvet (Cody & Adam Walton) are just the brothers for the job. Cody writes:
"This is my first submission. I've been a fan of OC ReMix since nearly the beginning, but never really thought I could participate until recently. My foray into remixing came after Trent Reznor started releasing his tracks in Apple GarageBand format. A little over a year ago I created a NIN+FFVII mashup/remix album called F1N4LF4NT4S7Z3R0 (http://codywalton.com/ff7z/). I received generally positive feedback from people on both the OCR forums and the NIN forums, and that just encouraged me to keep trying new remixes (though I still work in GarageBand... for now).
The inspiration for this particular track came from my realization that music from one of my favorite games ever, SimCity 2000, was not represented on OCR. A tragedy! This had to be rectified. After a few unsuccessful attempts at doing something in a Grunge theme I settled on Funk (an easy transition from the Jazz influenced original soundtrack). This particular arrangement is a combination of original performance, midi, and loops. Arranged and mastered by me (amateur musician and remixer) with some additional guitar tracks from my brother Adam (Dr. Velvet, professional musician and guitar maestro)."
For a first submission, after years of visiting, I'd say Cody hit the nail on the head. Also, just as an aside, I love the nick "Dr. Velvet", because it sounds like a form of generic Dr. Pepper that's trying to get as close to the brand name without trademark infringement. I've actually seen Dr. Fizz, Mr. Flavor, and (my personal favorite), Dr. Smooth out there in the real world, and I think some grocery store out there is now obligated to release Dr. Velvet, if they haven't already. I remember when Cody posted about F1N4LF4NT4S7Z3R0, and it's cool that he's been able to follow that up with an individual submission that's more in line w/ OCR's focus. Judges initially took issue w/ some brass that was faky enough to negatively affect the track, but Cody swapped that out for organ that maintained the funk and sounded much better. Vinnie writes:
"I remember this ditty from when I was a kid playing this game on my Mac, using the cheat code to put up arcologies within my first month as mayor (good times). This kicks life into that simple little track, instantly recognizable as a remix of it but much more colorful. Man, that brass is wrecking what is otherwise a delicious track. I've half a mind to pass this anyway... but alas, I can't.
Edit (3/20): Brass replaced with an organ that sounds much better than the brass. I can't help but wish we could get some live brass there instead, but the organ definitely does the job keeping the funkiness. It's a little longer now too, with some synth-y stuff going on towards the end."
I don't know about you, but I for one am shocked and chagrinned that Vinnie used CHEAT CODE (!) as a kid - for shame. The brass-organ swapout was a plus, and overall the mix of slap bass, clavinet, and wah guitar is hard not to get into; there's a bit of repetition, but it's broken up by breaks & pauses that fit the funk mold nicely. I respect and admire the restraint in NOT throwing a James Brown shout sample in here, but I think when I listen to this mix I'm gonna do so myself. In my mind. Great stuff from the Walton brothers, mixing a source that should have some nostalgic resonance with the "older" crowd and be funky enough for everyone.
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