ReMix: Willow "Weeping Willow"

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Unsung HeroesWillow

OUT OF THE WAY, PECK! Before Jackson's Baggins or Mini-me or Tyrion Lannister, there was Willow. While Warwick was later sadly relegated to non-speaking parts in Jabba's clique, back in the day Willow was the iconic badass midget to beat, and the film's soundtrack was so good it was reused for trailers of unrelated films in the years that followed. Like Doc Holliday in Tombstone, Madmartigan made Val Kilmer palatable, Sorsha was reasonably hot, and the whole experience just felt like a big late 80s win. I'm not sure it's stood the test of time like Goonies or Die Hard, but high fantasy films were thin on the ground back then, and we took what we were given. I never played the NES game, but I've heard good things, and happily it had original music that was pretty sweet, so it definitely qualifies as one of the most "unsung" of the heroes chosen for the album. ilp0 always delivers, and for this ReMix he went with an eclectic, vibe-driven jazzy arrangement that has TONS of changeups; OA writes:

"This is the kind of fun track I have grown accustomed to hearing from ilp0, with some bouncy rhythms and great expansion of the themes. The instrumentation is a bit of a surprise with the prominent use of tuned percussion, and that choice really makes it stand out from the rest of the album."

Deia adds:

"What a fun take on the source! Everything is super playful here, and I love how well ilp0 uses the vibraphone. There are some classic ilp0 sounds in here as well, so the characteristic remains firmly his. The arrangement is unexpectedly different from the source, but it's a pleasant surprise. I LOVE the super bounciness at 3:25; it really helps seal in the eclectic nature of the entire track."

At times mellow & smooth, at times resembling a mad carnival, sometimes rocking out, and at still other moments sounding like a cued score to a cartoon, the arrangement here is almost manic-depressive, and really does sound like it was composed to match on-screen action of a turbulent & schizophrenic nature. It's certainly ilp0's most playful ReMix to date, and you can tell he didn't pull any punches and let his imagination run pretty wild. There's a vision here, and while it's not what one might have expected given the epic-fantasy-plus-midget context, it's pretty damn awesome, and adds some serious charm & eccentricity to Unsung Heroes.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 12 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Black_Doom
on 2015-01-28 03:09:40

One of ilp0's best works and of the best tracks from UH. This track has so many change-ups and I like it. The intro, for example, sounds like an overture/prologue for some performance. But then the piece becomes more playful, definitely sounding like a dialog theme. Then it becomes a bit sad, then serious, then almost crazy, then back again sad/serious! What a wild and enjoyable ride.

TillyFun
on 2014-04-19 11:29:45

For a game I could barely get into (I stunk! :c), I was going to say this was rather chipper music... until I saw the source. XD

Yeah, for village and talky themes this is perfect fit. Happy jazzy. c:

Some parts scared me, including the outro. n.n' Melancholy.

Crulex
on 2013-04-29 14:16:06

Probably one of my favorite ilp0 ReMixes. Has a bit of weirdness to it at times, but shifting between lighter and darker made it work. Good to see a ReMix that varies itself in a way that reaches both sides of the field.

Bahamut
on 2012-07-12 08:30:13

I 3 ilp0's work, and this is no exception. My reaction after a few seconds was to seek out who did this track, as it possesses a lively yet fun soundscape and an interesting choice of instrumentation. The song moves around, showing darker sides, and breaks through that, shifting back to a more light style.

Overall a fun romp through.

Jean Of mArc
on 2012-03-13 14:06:59

The Unsung Heroes album is a fantastic album, and one of my personal favourites on this site... And this arrangement in particular stood out to me.

I love the mixture of instruments, the rhythmic play, the somewhat avant-garde key modulations at the beginning, the amount of expansion that was produced on such limited source material, and the all-in-all uplifting experience this mix provides, even during its "minor" parts.

Great job, ilp0!

Rexy
on 2012-02-19 16:30:28

I have appreciation for a lot of tracks on Unsung Heroes, but ilp0's track REALLY took that appreciation over the top in something that grew on me a lot since the release day - so much that this was one of the tracks I even picked to use in my video talking of my involvement about it. :)

But enough about myself - while I hadn't played the game (like most people), it still didn't need to have memories of playing the game to invoke power towards the track. It starts out pretty upbeat with plenty of schizophrenic writings, while still remaining very upbeat with the interpretations of the Village theme. Though, the amount of manipulations taken in with the Dialog theme managed to add more of a moody "evil is coming" quality towards it and can even tell of one's own struggle even in their happiest of times. This is especially emphasized with the ending, with the darkening chords and lower timbres adding in more of a feeling of despair that gives me the CHILLS every time I hear it - that's how potent I think the writing is!!

I can't say the Village theme is without its own moments - the lively interpretation at 3:26 with the acoustic guitar performance leading into the mad piano riff really shows as a strong example of ilp0's musicianship and does a lot to fit more of a frantic touch towards the track. In fact, I said in the IRC for the listening party that his style is filling the progressive void a lot in the community, though when someone else (was it KyleJCrb?) said that ilp0 is "his own genre", it does indeed make me think that he's benefitting the community in a very unique way, both with writing, ideas and growing sound quality over the years.

For that, I got to say that this is one of his best works IMO - capturing the source to an emotive quality, great musicianship, and it doesn't necessarily need a nostalgic connection to pack a punch concept-wise. I'm now really looking forward to see what he can provide in the time to come, because honestly, I can't imagine the wider community without him :D

Jewbei
on 2012-02-02 18:01:00

Omg finally someone remixed something from this game.... I was very impressed you've done a good job remixing my favorite theme good job!

stkyle
on 2012-01-27 21:24:38

At 1:33 I can't help but break out "Raindrops on roses and wiskers on kittens!" ^_^ GOOOOULET

MaxFrost
on 2012-01-26 17:46:30

As one of the few people who have not only played, but _owned_ the original cartridge, I can attest to the fact that it's pretty solid.

Nintendo hard of course, but the best was to describe it would be LttP way before the SNES came out. Same style of sword swing, lots of various items that all did stuff, and all had to be used. Had an interesting sword upgrade system. The game made no sense to me until I could properly read though. Way too much text.

uhhh6677
on 2012-01-25 23:07:55

I like the transitions in this mix. The mix is constantly changing, and I dig that. I like the jazz-y feel to it, and it's a very pleasant mix. Nice job!

Fishy
on 2012-01-25 20:02:53

ilp0 is my favouritest remixer. I don't know this game at all (probably why it's on the Unsung album huh), but this is just generally awesome music as usual.

djpretzel
on 2012-01-25 19:33:30

What did you think? Post your opinion of this ReMix.