ReMix: Final Fantasy 'Secrets Abound'
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Streaming preview on YouTube
Next up we've got Jay Zaffos, aka Midgarian Sky, with a track that's got more of a cleaner, upbeat rock vibe, with a nice chord riff that even reminds me of the more retro Wind Waker mix we posted recently by Hot Freaks. Things get more metal towards the middle with some excellent soloing, but I liked how - while remaining aggressive to an extent - this track has a different production aesthetic and changes things up on the album from an epic tone to more of a carefree jam. I guess I'm more of a rock guy than a metal guy when it comes down to it, and while I can (and do) certainly appreciate both, this track put me in a more familiar place, and it also does an excellent job putting the melody front and center. Jay writes:
"Nobuo Uematsu's original compositions on the Final Fantasy series have been and still remain a huge influence on my original music style. I took the original arrangement of "Matoya's Cave" and meshed it with my original style, which consists of classical, rock, progressive rock, and metal. I stayed fairly close to the original composition throughout most of the track, aiming to mimic the sound of the orchestral instruments used with just my guitar, amp, and very few Boss Pedal effects. I added an interlude and solo section in the middle of the track to highlight my unique style of lead guitar work over a chord progression reminiscent of the original track."
Nice - definitely pretty conservative on the melody, but in this case I think the purity really worked, and the context/accompaniment is all new & fits like a glove. Plus DAMN were those some good melodies... Uematsu only got better, but this is still a fantastic 8-bit soundtrack that's aged beautifully. The harmonies that Jay's added at certain points are perfect, and at a bit over three minutes, the whole thing is a rockin' excursion that packs solid ideas & performance into a water-tight package. Brandon writes:
"Midgarian Sky, or Jay Zaffos, is a friend of Justin Taylor from Knight of the Round. Another musician with a Myspace page and some very exquisite portrayals of Final Fantasy tunes. Jay is more of a clean tone person, producing some really beautiful songs with a clean sound. He does produce the heavy with his version of "Matoya's Cave," but there's a sweet little solo section with a very clean sound. He stays fairly true to the source material while weaving in his own original bits, including some drum programming that he did by hand, with individual WAVs... I feel bad that he had to do that and hope he finds a good drum VST soon. I wish great things for Midgarian Sky, another newcomer to OCR!"
This track stands out on Random Encounter, but in a good way - it actually blends in nicely from a sheer musicality perspective, but it also offers a cleaner, dare I say happier rock take on a very familiar theme. We welcome another talented new artist to OCR as the FF:RE flood continues!
I hope to hear more in the future!
- Bahamut on July 4, 2012
- BONKERS on June 18, 2012
- djpretzel on June 18, 2012