ReMix: Chrono Trigger "The Frog Dance"
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5,913,727 bytes, 4:03, 192kbps
DJ Velly debuted at the very end of 2009 with a bumpin' Mega Man ZX ReMix, so it's taken awhile for his follow-up to be posted. Part of that was getting a fixed file from him, but the judges decision was also split, and I had to sweep in personally with the tie-breaking vote. To cut to the chase, this is a dance/electronica track that DOES have some tried-and-true components that should sound very... familiar. But there's a difference between using presets or "cookie-cutter" techniques to put together a track that's basically running on auto-pilot, as opposed to using comfortable, proven methods competently and throwing in enough of your own soul to make it legit. I might prefer mixes that color outside the lines a bit more, that push the envelope or surprise me, but I can also appreciate a solid, old school boom-tiss track if the foundation is there and the details have gotten some TLC. In other words, just because electronica has evolved and changed aesthetics doesn't mean a track that sounds a bit 1990s can't still rox our sox. Or at the least, my sox. Josh writes:
"I've been working on this mix for a very long time. It's the largest music project I've ever compiled, having spent countless hours tweaking and adding extra layers. At first I was a little skeptical about whether I should even bother with this source tune, since it's already been done eight times on the OCR site. Still, none of these mixes were in my style (whatever that is!), so I figured it was worth a shot, given how much I absolutely adore this theme. And I'm quite satisfied with how it's turned out."
I think he should be, too; nothing stands out to me as particularly problematic, it's a variation on a great theme that does change the rhythm up enough to be distinct, there's good energy, and the breakbeats channel countless j-pop anime opening themes, even from more recent series. zircon (get well soon, man!) knows a thing or two about electronica, and he basically summed up my thoughts:
"The first thing that came into my head here is that this reminds me of old-school OCR. Retro drumloops, synths and a sort of rough production style overall. It would have fit right in around 2003 or 2004, so the question is whether it merits a post now. The amount of arrangement and original interpretation is pretty impressive, IMO, and I disagree with some of my fellow judges that there's nothing original going on... We should recognize when a dance mix is going above and beyond."
Responding to Jesse specifically, Fishy added:
"Yo Vig, I'm real happy for you and imma let you finish, but I think you guys are being a bit harsh... I like it. It's euro-gubbins guilty pleasure sorbet, whatever that is."
Exactly... I think. Last but not least, because it's always a hoot, I'll quote my own tiebreaking vote:
"Not every mix is going to be the second coming or reinvent the genre; it's enough - by our own submission standards, as written - that the source be arranged in a fashion that shows clear interpretation, and that production be sufficiently sophisticated for the genre/context."
Yeah! What I said! At any rate, I'm glad I had the chance to step in and make sure this mix got approved; I don't want to devalue the benefits of our evaluation process, and there CAN be mixes that just coast through without saying anything or showing any signs of deviation or craftsmanship, but I don't think this was one of them. I also think a lot of folk will dig it; nice follow-up CT action from DJ Velly!
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