ReMix: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past "Link's Epoch"

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25YEARLEGEND: A Legend of Zelda Indie Game Composer TributeThe Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

As part of the original lineup that Roger put together, Danny B was originally going to have a track on 25YEARLEGEND, but he couldn't pull it together in time before Minecon, which made me cry tears of solid babies. I recovered, though, and there was still enough time to see if Mr. Morse could work his refined, prodigal magic on the Zelda franchise, which he has previously avoided. Joshua's an indie composer, too, after all, and I felt like 25YL could use a bit of his siganture jams to go with the rest of its vision. When he heard JM's orchestral-ethnic-funk medley, Roger agreed:

"This track fits right in the pocket of funk and triggers a really nasty case of nostalgia. Josh, you nailed this one!"

Honestly, it'd be a pretty big deal, in my mind, if ALL we were posting today was Joshua Morse's first Zelda ReMix - it's always fun when established mixers arrange games/series that they've somehow managed to skip over the years, for whatever reason. We are of course releasing an entire ALBUM of amazing Zelda mixes, but JM's contribution definitely adds his unique flavor to the larger work. He writes:

"My main goal with this arrangement was to bring out the (subjective) natural flavors of the main theme. The B section always struck me with an Arabic vibe. I tried to capitalize on that by bringing out some ethnic flavors in those sections, but not in a way that would deter from the feel of the original source."

It's a subtle twist; things remain recognizable throughout, but you can definitely sense something's been altered. With a melody as familiar as this, any major changes are going to stick way, way out - not necessarily a bad thing, but it also means there's room for some more nuanced modifications. Morse doesn't completely trick out the themes, but the changes in timing & intonation allow Kondo's melodies to sound completely at home in their new, funkier, ethnically-infused surrounding. Guitar's a nice add, and the orchestral elements are full & include a nice blend of both strings AND brass. In the short amount of time given, I feel like Morse really seized the opportunity & lended his A game to a mix that makes 25YEARLEGEND a more complete vision, and I'm glad Roger was completely open to the late-breaking addition!

We'll be posting more soon, but that concludes our four-mix introduction to 25YEARLEGEND: A Legend of Zelda Indie Game Composer Tribute - I'd like to thank Roger for working with us to release this album, congratulate all the talented indie game composers who contributed their amazing arrangements, and of course send out the mad QUARTER-CENTURY anniversary props to Nintendo, Zelda, Koji Kondo, and all the other composers who have contributed to a truly legendary franchise!

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 10 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Black_Doom
on 2014-12-31 07:52:17

What a wonderful arrangement of one of the most recongizable VGM tunes! I don't mind the orchestration here, for me it sounds just amazing. It sounds so light, so freash, so ethreal! The groovy percussion and some shreddage for good mesaure are nice as well as the eastern-inspired section.

meccaneer
on 2012-05-18 23:36:20

So, I like Zelda. But, I didn't particularly care for this track. It sounded... hodge-podge; lots of instruments thrown together that weren't really sonically compatible. The instruments sound good by themselves, but seem to be thematically inconsistent. You have your epic-sounding strings with a flute-like fluttering, mixed with a rather simplistic tribal sounding hand-drum. And there's an electric piano in the background and I'm thinking 'is this elevator music or a serious classical piece?' At the end there's an electric guitar which, again, doesn't seem to fit. Overall, I'd say it was just... weird.

ryankeeton
on 2011-12-27 14:55:45

I can't not like anything Zelda. Nice stereo balance, all the instruments are easy to discern, sounds great. Guitar at 2:45 caught me off guard, it doesn't seem to belong with the track. I enjoyed the section at 3:15 much more. Classy stuff, funky and nostalgic

Neblix
on 2011-12-15 16:26:18

I really like the groove you got going on here. Orchestral + jazzy dance.

My only complaint is the instruments are sort of dry. They lack a sort of a human texture. Perhaps if they were a bit wetter with reverb they would settle more closely into the mix.

I like what you did with the theme. On one hand, it's very close to the original, but on the other, you gave it a completely new texture I haven't heard before. points++ on the zelda's lullaby, though I was a bit sad that didn't get any groove in it.

Great song, I like it, my only issue is the orchestral samples.

HitoriJaNai
on 2011-12-06 02:48:33

Oh, boy... this is one of the mixes that I didn't quite know whether or not I'd like it before I started listening... but once I started listening, it just... it worked. It clicked. It was a ReMix of "Epoch" proportions! :tomatoface:

Anyways, I'm a sucker for LoZ music, and Mr. Morse does the sources justice. And I mean real justice. No, not Justice-style. Just... I recognize the sources immediately, yet there is definitely a different feel, and not just reinstrumentation. Everything works perfectly. Its funky. Its fresh. Its Zelda.

I love it. :)

OA
on 2011-12-05 14:47:15

This is a pretty solid and classy take on the classic theme, featuring some really nice flute articulation, and powerful horns. The subtle chord changes throughout are nice, and the transition to the Zelda rescue theme was cool and unexpected. I do feel the electric was a little buried, but it didn't feel broken, just a little off considering how solid the rest of the track was.

Cool ending as well, this is a very good mix!

Rexy
on 2011-11-30 15:32:45

I'm sad that Danny B didn't make it, but it's still good to see Mr. Morse fill his shoes.

The track manages to play well to Joshua's strengths in funk-based grooves, with a strong emphasis on the drum parts. I'm not quite so sure, but the first overworld variation here even kinds of bears some similarities to the version in Link's Awakening - not a bad thing at all, might be a hidden reference somehow. :)

The level of interpretation is good; plays fairly safe though during the overworld sections, but the Zelda's Lullaby part really played well with the chord re-shuffling, and that to me is clearly a strong writing highlight there. Overall, strongly-structured and really defines what he's all about.

Now, I know for sure that he doesn't like anyone who criticises his work, but I have to say this anyway; the orchestrated parts for me have their stiff moments, which I noted more particularly during the intro and the Zelda's Lullaby part. I admit it's hard enough for anyone to succeed in that field, but if these sounds are to be used more frequently then there has to be more time spent with the samples' filters to get them to sound that pinch more convincing.

It's really my only qualm with this outside from a well set overworld interpretation for the new Zelda project; a good showcase from Joshua Morse, and I'm keen to see where his next few releases would take us :)

Bahamut
on 2011-11-24 19:51:46

Ah, I always look forward to hearing Joshua Morse songs :) . It has funk and a grand welcome back home atmosphere to it. The guitar sits a bit strangely for me is probably the only thing that bothers me a bit - it sounds like it gets a bit drowned. A great piece by Josh though, enjoyable as always!

Crulex
on 2011-11-22 11:43:52

Well, this is a treat! Some heroic, some ethnic, some funk, all fantastic! This combines the classic sound we all know and love and injects some flavor into it, and I love it. Wonderful transition from the Overworld theme to the Zelda Rescue theme and back. I particularly enjoyed the last minute of the ReMix when the guitar joined the mix. Not sure if I've ever heard hard guitar and ethnic flavors at the same time, but it was pretty cool, so I wouldn't mind hearing more. Nice work.

djpretzel
on 2011-11-22 11:19:44

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