ReMix: Lightening Force: Quest for the Darkstar 'Not Another Full Metal Squad!'

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Lightening Force: Quest for the Darkstar

MORE LIGHTENING FORCE!?! Seems like we're being enlightened (!) quite a bit in 2013, as BONKERS follows Rukunetsu's debut electronica arrangement of the game with his own take, a rock/metal jam that ALSO incorporates some Phantasy Star Online and Castlevania Bloodlines. Of course, "Lightening Force" is just LOCALIZATION FAIL for Thunder Force IV - interesting combination of source tunes from pretty disparate games - each one is a different genre, from a different publisher, on a different console. In a Kerouacian stream of description, Mr. Perry describes his process:

"The way the original song is done, I find to be so perfect and it has a great feeling to the whole thing. I didn't want to change that too much, but I still wanted to find my middle ground as always. I found that by changing up the end of the first chorus and the second intro into variations/harmonized/new lines it helped keep the feeling of the original structure of the piece while striking some middle ground. And then there is the break down sections which are all love love love tributes to the Sega Genesis's FM sound. It started as just the one section of the first verse into it. But then I found Requiem of a Nameless Victim would be PERFECT to add into it without dragging Metal Squad on too long. But then I also had before remembered a melody that went perfect with the section. BUT I COULDN'T REMEMBER WHAT GAME IT WAS FROM. So I sat and sat thinking of what it was and then it hit me it was Phantasy Star Online. So I found which song and poof there it was! and it was only a key a Half step away from what I remembered.

I also did something I've never done before. Both on purpose and as an experiment, I programmed the bass with a FM patch from the DX7 layered on a sub bass sound from a Minimoog. I think the result is REALLY FREAKIN COOL. I can't state how much I LOOOOVE Moog and FM Synth basses. I really wanted to try something different rather than an electric bass to stay true to Metal Squad's FM roots!"

This man here loves him some synth bass, and he's shouting it from the rooftops. Would that we were all so unashamedly vocal of our synth bass passions - how many lives have been ruined by lower-octave repression? I'm a little pressed for time at the moment, so let's see what Emunator thought:

"Very solid concept that's well-executed, it's clear you went the extra mile to make this "not just another metal mix" All of the little instruments and synths that are added around the traditional metal template help make this stand out amongst the dense forest of metal mixes that are out there."

Nothing wrong with a straight-up plain-jane metal mix if it's done well, but I too like the details and variety BONKERS packed into this one - it goes places, it does things, and lest there be any confusion on the matter, it features an interracial SYNTH BASS analog & FM relationship. halc adds:

"man, your production quality has come a long way in the last year or so, noticibly improved even from your FF1 tracks. as the others have pointed out, this is a solid mix. sources are blended together naturally with good transitions, the playing is tight and the mixing overall is pretty clean. really liked the guitar/synth interplay around 2:00, awesome stuff."

BONKERS' previous mixes in 2012 were nothing to sneeze at, but this feels a bit more ambitious and "MEGA" and, while melting face here and there, also takes the time to provide a really thoughtful, elaborate arrangement of the three sources employed. Crazy good stuff from a guy who's, well... bonkers.

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 8 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Crulex
on 2013-04-22 15:35:19
Even though I agree that some of the transistions could have been made a little better between the themes throughout this ReMix, I have to say that I liked some of them, particularly when it gets the slower section. For something that you even admitted to have pulled together in about two weeks, not bad at all. Good to hear more Lightening Force on the rise.
BONKERS
on 2013-02-02 18:45:03
purplecowadoom;902968 wrote: I remember when Saitama Saisyu Heiki did an arrangement for Lightening Force. I thought it was good at the time, but looking back SSH uses nothing but really crappy fake guitar everywhere. This blows it out of the water.

I wouldn't call it crappy, but it's still a decent emulation of the real thing. Sounds even better in some ways haha. I have a very soft spot in me for synth/sampled guitar used by a lot of Japanese remixers personally.:nicework:
purplecowadoom
on 2013-02-01 23:19:49
I remember when Saitama Saisyu Heiki did an arrangement for Lightening Force. I thought it was good at the time, but looking back SSH uses nothing but really crappy fake guitar everywhere. This blows it out of the water.
BONKERS
on 2013-02-01 08:39:49
Txai;902838 wrote: Not really a fan of the snare at 2:42. I also felt the transitions from one song to another could have been a little longer. But nice instrument selection. And I commend you on your source choices.

This is understandable and I partially agree(With everything but the snare. That's probably the one thing in the song that I think turned out fine)
The way the songs tie together hasn't always been my favorite part of the song and is one of things I'd like to improve if I did a new version of the song with just TFIV being the source.(Since this was for DoD)
When you put something together really quickly, don't always have time to look back on everything with a fine tooth comb.
Txai
on 2013-01-31 22:43:58
Not really a fan of the snare at 2:42. I also felt the transitions from one song to another could have been a little longer. But nice instrument selection. And I commend you on your source choices.
KieranCarden
on 2013-01-31 21:43:39
BONKERS;902793 wrote: I'm thinking of doing an entire Thunder Force IV arrange album someday and if I do I will definitely revisit this song and make an entirely new version or make this one even better.

Not only is this mix awesome, but I fully support this. Thunder Force IV has some really amazing music and has always been one of my favorite game soundtracks. Needs more love.
Great job on the remix! Thoroughly enjoyed it.
BONKERS
on 2013-01-31 16:29:50
Looking back there are a few minor things I could improve on in this song. But it's held up well for something I did in like 10-14 days for Magfest X.
I'm thinking of doing an entire Thunder Force IV arrange album someday and if I do I will definitely revisit this song and make an entirely new version or make this one even better.
Hope you guys can enjoy!:)
djpretzel
on 2013-01-31 16:01:32
What did you think? Post your opinion of this ReMix.