ReMix: The Secret of Monkey Island "Voodoo, Roots 'n Grog"

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Heroes vs. VillainsThe Secret of Monkey Island

So Frank had a tough act to follow w/ Jay's Guybrush - how can he make LeChuck just as persuasive? FUNK HIM OUT, that's how... with TROMBONE. When I first heard the clip of Diggi Dis' arrangement used in the trailer, I suspected it was Real Live Bone™, and I'm glad my ears did not deceive me. It's an awesome instrument, really, and Alex Jones can definitely rock it out, so it's an ideal collab. Diggi writes:

"When I started working on this track, I didn't have a clear vision of which direction I wanted to take this song. After about 4 or 5 different takes on the song, the track started to form itself. When I showed it to audio fidelity, he kindly offered me to have Alex Jones play the lead trombone. He deserves major credit, because without him, I don't think it would have sounded half as good. I had a lot of fun doing a somewhat different genre than I usually tend to do and really hope you guys will like it."

You'd never know Frank was out of his element or that he didn't *regularly* write pirate funk music featuring trombones, because everything about this track feels right. The offbeat crunchy clean guitar intro, shuffling acoustic kit with a thick kick, funky offbeat rhythm guitar panned right, the delicious bass, and then the lovely bone. But he's not done... clavinet that would make Stevie Wonder happy, slick EP, and funxploitation synth follow, and then - chiptune breakdown?!? - just because he CAN. Ensemble brass stabs, rollicking, rolling piano, and just a heapin' helpin' of 'Superstition'-style jam ensues, prior to another hit on that main motif. A veritable workshop in jazz/funk part-writing, this mix takes LeChuck's theme in a new, unexpected direction, while still sounding quite piratey at times. Awesome work from Diggi Dis; a definite highlight of Heroes vs. Villains.


Discussion: Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2015-12-28 22:01:15

I like how OCR format makes the title seem to be the secret of Monkey Island. Lots of fun stuff here; we got a mischievous trombone and a funky keyboard which is later accompanied by a chip synth. And then there's the sick chiptune break. Don't forget the piano. Very good mix.

on 2015-12-28 15:21:52

This track has become a 'classic' for me. I downloaded this a few years ago, and here I'm coming back to it. I forgot Diggi Dis even did this. But it still sounds like him! :)

on 2015-12-28 14:30:27

Yeah, I guess I can't do much but echo what's been said on here already. This is one of the coolest, funkiest mixes on the site. As this one stands as one of my all time favorites, it's easy to overlook some of the other Diggi Dis remixes but they are all awesome. He puts the same level of creativity in each one of his re-interpretations but this one...I dunno man. Dat chiptune breakdown. Killer Studio Chops hasn't been a thing for a while but it certainly works here. :nicework:

In all seriousness, listen to this mix. Learn something about variation from it, and show it to all of your friends, loved ones, and distant relations. The groove is undeniably strong in this one. Highly recommended.

on 2014-11-05 13:20:54

Bad dudes seem to love Sagat's theme, don't they? Ok, this is cool stuff. Of course, the main star here is trombone, but the non-trombone parts are also funky and just catchy as hall. And chippy break is really fitting here, considering that the main genre of this track is far away from being totally electronic. Oh, forgot to mention, the piano that appears here just for a few seconds is a nice touch as well. Superb thing!

Ronald Poe
on 2013-08-23 23:07:42

It's like a cross between "I Wanna Be Like You" (King Louie's song from The Jungle Book) meets "Stray Cat Strut" only with a trombone as the main instrument and no lyrics. I like it. :) Got any tips? :razz:

on 2013-02-25 17:15:29

This is a frigging masterpiece!:D I always get into a good mood when listening to this. This is how we jam out, baby! A very stylish song with a delightfulupbeat spirit. EVERYONE should check this out. Exponential groove. Instant head nodding.

Like Djp said, one of Heroes vs. Villains' highlights.

on 2012-09-27 10:11:11

Now that's what I call funky! Damn, this has a groove that just don't quit, and I love the chiptune breakdown. Nice throwing Sagat in there for extra funk. Love the trombone, the piano, the arrangement, hell, everything on this ReMix sounded great. Sweet ReMix, fellas.

One-Winged Angle
on 2012-09-14 10:20:46

What is it about this mix that makes the ol' spidey-sense tingle? Is it the hilariously outlandish trombone? Or the groovin' chiptune solo, which is probably my favorite of all time? Or just the fact that this is one of the jazziest remixes on the website? Probably all of the above. This is definitely one of my favorites.

on 2012-09-03 16:07:47

You know, it's been so long since I've played this game, I had forgotten just how ridiculously catchy and fun its music was... and this remix brought that feeling back in full force right off the bat.

I agree with djpretzel's review, this song has elements of all sorts of fun music in it... starts out with a nice, subdued guitar intro, quickly adding quite a good dose of funk, a bit of blues, and a nice, meaty ska-influenced rhythm section tying it all together. Then, the trombone comes in at 0:28, and it suddenly changes from just being a fun sort of ska song into really being LeChuck's theme, bringing in that good ol' pirate swagger, but making it just subtle enough to let the other styles shine.

Throughout the song, there's sprinkles of some of the best parts (both unison and solo) I've heard in years. The interplay between the clavi and synth around 1:35 is awesome, and the harmonies starting at 1:50 are perfect, almost evoking some of the classic big band standards. The chiptune breakdown was an unexpected little present in the middle, and the piano solo that follows it is also stellar.

I've actually had this one on repeat for a while now, which is always a good sign, though I think I've got to stop trying to pick out favorite parts of this; it's a losing battle.

on 2011-12-04 20:01:15

Every so often a mix comes along that is SO GOOD I just have to link it to people who have no interest in VGM at all, and this is one of them. Every single component of this just blows my mind. To start with, it's a great source, but to do it this well... it's an incredible feat. Everything's so clean, right from the acoustic guitar intro to the live trombone, and even the chiptune section is integrated seamlessly. The electric piano soloing is a glorious way to end it, and yet still leave me wanting more. That's what the replay button is for I guess!

Even amongst all this excellence though, there's one part that does stand out further, and that's the percussion. I really appreciate a well thought out drum pattern, and this has such variation and groove that even just listening to the backing is enough to get you dancing. There's so much detail in there, right down to some stick work towards the end in the final breakdown. Marvellous!

Samildanach Emrys
on 2011-06-07 01:06:26

Brilliant stuff. It brought a smile to my face.

on 2011-02-11 11:21:00

The only thing I am missing is a grog. In my hand. Right now! Amazing display of arrangement, especially the chiptune breakdown was not expected, but pulled off in a very pleasent way. Cool stuff, dude.

on 2011-02-10 19:26:01

This mix has everything... great instrumentation, pace, structure, nostalgia factor. So impressed right now!

on 2011-02-09 17:34:52

Not sure who wouldn't like this track to be honest. The arrangment is so infectious, and the source is a classic. Trombone leads, piano and organ solos, and some really funky riffs to top it all off and you got yourself a classic remix. So good. Maybe the best track on the album.

on 2011-02-08 23:39:15

As much as I love this mix, there's one thing that could have made this mix epic. A trombone solo comping on the melody line the last time it goes through the motions towards the end.

I mean, you don't stick in live trombone in a funk piece without a solo, yet you did :(

Other then that though, good stuff.