ReMix: NiGHTS into dreams... "Panzer Nightopia"

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NiGHTS: Lucid DreamingNiGHTS into dreams...

NiGHTS... in the style of Panzer Dragoon? How cool... Matt E. Waldman (formerly MattInc) gave us a sweet Panzer Dragoon II ReMix back during our 10th anniversary mixflood, and it seems he was still in a similar mindset when Stevo hit him up for Lucid Dreaming:

"For this ReMix, the style sort-of came to me by accident through experimentation with a drum VST I bought. It reminded me of the tribal/ambient-ness of the Panzer Dragoon series (I was still in a Panzer Dragoon obsession phase), so I just slapped on an appropriate title. (sounds silly, yeah?) When it comes to music, I'm not the strongest writer ever, so instead of relying on that, I tried evoking a more moody/ambient style in this piece. I went with a very electronic/symphonic sound as opposed to the pop-y cheerfulness of the source."

You can definitely hear the Panzer influence on the blend of orchestral, film, and ethnic textures, specifically with the percussion and the portamento string bends; good stuff. Album director Stevo Bortz writes:

"Panzer Nightopia...what can I say? This song is the embodiment of adventure and intrigue. Taking a source tune from one of the Saturn’s most iconic games and giving it the genre treatment of another of the Saturn’s iconic games is the idea of a mad genius. MattInc crafted this incredibly interesting soundscape, with tribal drums and lush strings layered between warm synths and a crystal clear piano. Since his first WIP, I had it in mind that this would be the way to start the project off. It is definitely a stark contrast to the style of the source, but the melodies are still all there and given amazing treatment. It also gets the NiGHTS leitmotif a thorough runthrough, preparing the listener for its inclusion in the tracks that follow the rest of the project. Great work from a super-nice ReMixer, and a perfect start to the album."

Palpable chimes in on the unanimous judge decision:

"I'll just add that the ambient arrangement was a great match for the original, which is a less melodic take on the NiGHTS melody than many of the other songs in the game. This arrangement had a strong soundtrack feel, and the strings and piano floated beautifully atop the warm pads, like whispers in the wind."

Eloquently put; consensus was that this arrangement was a perfect addition to the album since it provided a LESS melody-intensive take on the main theme, which is emphasized in abundance elsewhere, providing a more expansive, cinematic context. I definitely agree - I'm a fan of how Matt approaches his arrangements, and I think he sells himself a little short; while the main strength of this mix might be the production, it still took some definite skill to blend the major-key, sugary pop sweetness of the NiGHTS theme with the arid, desert adventure of PD and come up with something this good. Kudos for combining two totally different Sega classics into yet another fantastic track off of Lucid Dreaming!

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 8 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
evktalo
on 2014-08-01 15:29:29

Such a great, concise arrangement. Reminds me of some American minimalistic music.. lovely strings! Cool, unconventional instrumentation, and structuring as well - I especially like the tempo changes! Nothing but good things to say about this piece.

Loning
on 2014-05-03 17:22:25

I dont think the judges could've said it any better and completely agree with them. This was a great take and mixing in another OST in order to bring out the best in NIGHTS into dreams... is just brilliant.

Crulex
on 2013-07-18 14:23:57

NiGHTS is recognizable in just about any way that it's used, and being blended with some Panzer Dragoon style arrangement that makes it sound a little adventurous is a cool idea to say the least. The little bits of electronica along with the piano is fantastic and I can see what the others are saying about this having a bit of a Firefly vibe. Great idea here.

Bahamut
on 2012-07-04 08:36:14

I remember hearing this a while ago - Matt did a good job here providing a minimal electronic hybrid that doesn't overstay its welcome. Alas, I'm not as familiar with the Panzer Dragoon games or NiGHTS so I miss the nuances there, but what's there is enjoyable as a nice interlude or introduction of sorts.

Guifrog
on 2012-04-24 10:44:58

I have no idea what's with the lack of new mix reviews lately, but as I believe this deserves more than that I'll give my thoughts.

This is mostly the type of sound that I like to hear n' make. There's remarkable stuff like tribal and electronic influences, but there's also a few other elements that add to the feeling it gives - not to a specific genre. So what do I feel here? Mystery, suspense, like the beginning of a journey, just as it was intended to be.

Me likez!

WesternZypher
on 2012-04-24 10:30:54

I can see how this has Firefly-esque/ gritty roaming the cosmos feel to it, definitely!

To me it also sounds like a first night flight or take-off, testing a new plane, picking up speed, then lifting off, and ascending through the cloud cover, with only the stars above!

salmon_lox
on 2012-04-24 03:23:42

I love this remix! It's a superb opener to the "Lucid Dreaming" album, and I'd say my favorite from it overall. It has such a great blend to it; spacey but western, or some form of "steampunk sound". I don't really know how to describe it, but it reminds me of the TV show "Firefly", for what that's worth. I'm unfamiliar with the music of "Panzer Dragoon", but from the end result here, I'd say the combination of the two very different games and game musical styles worked to perfection. I'll be checking out Panzer Dragoon music next because of this mix, so thanks MattInc!

djpretzel
on 2012-04-20 17:29:24

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