ReMix: Super Metroid 'Ashes to Ashes'
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Mo' wubstep VGM, this time from zircon, off of HoH:
"Dubstep! I don't know how this genre managed to completely blow up in the last year or two, but while I was reluctant at first to give it a chance, I eventually came around. I've done several original songs now with dubstep elements, but this ReMix is the first track I've produced which could probably be 100% classified in that genre. It's got the slow, huge halftime drums, aggressive synths, distortion and, of course, copious wub-wub-wub. To achieve the huge variety of synth sounds (particular basses) I ended up using over 50 synth plugin instances, including 27 of Zebra 2 and 15 of Massive!
As for its relation to the game and source, I should be honest first that I was never really fond of the original Lower Norfair theme. There have been some great arrangements of it, but I think it sounds a bit puny and repetitive. Nonetheless, when Darren (leader of the Shinesparks Metroid anniversary project) said it was open, I thought it would be a nice challenge and rolled with it. I'm proud of the energy of this mix: I wanted to avoid being really repetitive, while also using the source in neat (but different) ways throughout. I hope you like it too!
0:15 - 1:13 - Source A (0:11 riff with various rhythmic changeups)
1:14 - 1:28 - Source A bass (sparse as it is, 0:00)
1:29 - 1:42 - Source A (1:09 descending riff) layered with Source B (0:00 intro riff)
1:43 - 2:13 - Source A (0:11 riff again)
2:20 - 2:35 - Source B (0:00 intro riff)
2:38 - 3:08 - Source A (0:11 riff). This one is not as prominent but it's just playing a triplet version in the background - Ab Ab Gb Ab Ab Gb Ab Ab A B C B. The original riff is Ab Gb Ab Gb Ab A B A etc. The bass dubsteppy stuff is in front but the synth chords are 100% source."
Damn, that's a lot of plugin instances! It was certainly worth it, though, as the track is besieged on all sides by a veritable snake pit of entangled, vicious synths. Lonely, reverberant monophonic piano line never had a chance! The real evil playground starts at 1'14" with a breakdown of everything AND the kitchen sink, but I also like how Andy paid attention to the quieter, melodic bits with nice low-end pizzicato & harp, and ends the whole enchilada that way as well. Guitar textures pop-up here and there & are similarly well done, adding a thicker midrange wall of angry to the animalistic bass growls and ephemeral, floating melodies. Gut-busting bass, dressed up to the nines, works rather darn well w/ 'Norfair - Ancient Ruins Area' - zircon showed up big for Metroid's 25th anniversary, and he brought his arsenal of synth basses with him, so in the modified words of Tony Montana: say hello to his huge friends.
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