ReMix: Sonic the Hedgehog "Finality (Radio Edit)"
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3,998,364 bytes, 2:44, 192kbps
Really interesting orchestral arrangement here from newcomer JH Sounds, with vocals by Cyril the Wolf. I don't think it's gonna convert any vocal haters, but the concept & execution are very distinct, putting a somber, completely serious spin on the source material; JH writes:
"This remix of mine was originally made for my arrangement album Hedgehog Hysteria, available at http://music.jhsounds.com/album/hedgehog-hysteria. The idea for "Finality" was to not only interpret the musical theme, but also the theme of the zone itself. In this case the song is about the finality of death, and the inevitability of mortality. After I worked on the backing track and lyrics, Cyril the Wolf was gracious enough to provide his vocal for it, and brought in vocal ideas that I believe strengthened the overall arrangement."
Heavy stuff - to clarify, this is NOT the "feel-good mix of the year," by a longshot. Instead, it's a meditation on mortality - life, death, those sorts of things - with an intelligent, deliberate piano part, augmented by strings (nice dynamics), and later a bittersweet oboe solo that floats in space, and some march-style orchestral percussion. Deia writes:
"I will admit to being a sucker for this kind of 'somber right before the final battle' music. I like how you've treated the source, and your reasoning behind it. Conner's voice works pretty well for this, and I think this is one of his better performances. I'd still suggest working on your breath support, especially for the opening line (slow, quiet, low lines are not easy by any means)."
"Nice arrangement idea, and generally good execution. Connor sounds good, with a lot better intonation than I'm accustomed to, and the subtle harmonies added give some additional interest. The lyrics are good, thought he chorus was slightly redundant. The production crits Deia has are valid, but overall things clicked. The ending seemed a bit abrupt, as I think either some rubato piano, or even something more involved would be a good epilogue to the lyrics, giving the listener time to reflect; but otherwise, the inherent strengths of this track easily overpower the assorted weaknesses."
If nothing else, I admire the vision & hubris to take the source material in this serious & dramatic a direction, but I also think Connor's vocals lent the necessary degree of weight to the lyrics, and the dynamics were subtle but expressive enough to convey the message. A bit of a downer, sure, but music can communicate a wide variety of emotions & tackle the gravest of subjects, and this arrangement embraces that flexibility.
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