ReMix: Donkey Kong Country "Focus" 7:40

By DarkSim

Artist Links
duration-long
Arranging the music of one song...

"Fear Factory"

Primary Game: Donkey Kong Country (Nintendo, 1994, SNES), music by David Wise, Eveline Novakovic, Robin Beanland

Posted 2014-01-01, evaluated by the judges panel


HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

2013 was an epic year for OCR, but we're gonna try and make sure that 2014 is EVEN BETTER!! That begins today, on the first of the year, with a flood of TEN amazing ReMixes!! We start things off with Donkey Kong Country... one, two, AND three!! That's right, three mixes in a row from each entry of the original trilogy! Up first is DarkSim with an epic progressive house arrangement of 'Fear Factory' from the Country that started it all:

"Now then, I've attempted a ReMix of this source before in a drum and bass style that was rejected, but I love this source so much I thought I'd do a completely different ReMix attempt. This time I've gone all-out progressive house, inspired entirely by deadmau5 and his epic 10-minute long masterpiece "Strobe." This isn't quite 10 minutes, but at almost 8 I feel I achieved my goal of having the 3 sections present in "Strobe" that are the ambient beginning, the driving beat in the middle section, then the final climax of the song as it leads into the outro. I could go on for ages about how good David Wise's compositions are, but I rather like reading djp's writeups, so hopefully I'll get one for this!"

Indeed you shall, sir! A 7'40" runtime makes this one of our longer electronic pieces; after (excellent) arrangements of Dennis, Mario Golf, Machinarium, and Hedgewars, it's also DarkSim's first ReMix of a more popular/mainstream source tune. Prog house sorta mandates a certain amount of build time; the stage is set & the atmosphere builds, with the source becoming readily apparent circa 1'51" as piano enters with that familiar motif, after which bass & beat anchor rev up and synth takes said motif over. Things open up temporarily at 3'08", where some edgier synth texture are employed, foreshadowing a more sustained breakout at 5'18" - I really dig the underlying textures here, which have a semi-orchestral quality to them. Nutritious writes:

"Solid production work here. Everything's gelling nicely in the soundscape. Yeah, that lead at 4:15 was pretty underwhelming. I think something that cuts through more would've been more effective. Oh, hai there lead at 5:18, I guess you were saving the stronger lead for later :).

I'm hearing the crits on the simplicity of parts of the track, and agree it could be trimmed down without really hurting the arrangement. Still, I'm definitely digging what I'm hearing here, and it hits the mark on both the arrangement and production fronts."

Judges had some reservations about the ratio of substantive development to duration, but the genre in question definitely thrives on setups, builds, drops, etc. so conciseness isn't straightforward, and no one section stood out as being superfluous, which is critical. Overall, great stuff from DarkSim - I definitely want to throw him some special bonus props for his previous FOUR posted submissions each being from unmixed games; it's been fantastic to see some new VGM get the spotlight, and he's broken that trend with this mix, but I think you'll agree that it was worth it!!

djpretzel

Discussion: Latest 10 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Necrox
on 2015-12-22 23:19:34

Well-done ambient intro; tension is definitely established. The transitions to the bass and kick feel natural, making the somewhat simple loop entertaining. 4:17 lead is pretty weak. The next section broke my worry of this mix not being intense enough, but I wish it was longer for proportion reasons. Nice outro though.

Black_Doom
on 2014-11-05 13:47:33

When I at first heard this, I thought "Hey, this is ambient! It can't be DarkSim work!" But the ambient intro is actually very good, being a bit long, though. Then, after a two-minuite intro, it finally breaks out. And it's... Just wow. Pretty impressive. I esecially love when piano returns and blends with cool beats and synths and all that stuff. That synths at 5:18 are just stellar, by the way. Nice work, man!

crimsonidol
on 2014-03-10 16:01:01

Now this remix made me buy the cited deadmau5-record "For Lack of a Better Name" I really like this version of Fear Factory as it really gets the vibe of the stages.

DjjD
on 2014-01-25 13:37:04

Very, very cool man.

You've inspired me. Great job on this remix, looking forward to the next one! :)

Crulex
on 2014-01-02 10:38:20

Nice long intro that builds into the progressive beat, but I do have to agree that the volume discrepancy was just a tad to much once you got past the intro, but it wasn't something that a simple turning up and down of the volume couldn't fix. Being that Fear Factory is my favorite DKC1 source, I love how the middle section at 4:48 was handled before the ReMix breaks out of it's bonds for a moment. Overall, a few things that could be nitpicked at, but certainly nothing that broke the ReMix. Good stuff.

SwordBreaker
on 2014-01-01 16:48:04

The intro was absolutely mesmerizing. Loved the soundscape you were going for there as it reminded me of some of Miss Yoko Shimumura's work (listen to Sommom Woods from Mario Luigi: Dream Team). I'm disappointed that you didn't follow through with that kind of sound, opting for a dance remix instead. I didn't like the rest of the track as it sounded repetitive and overstayed its welcome, but that's just me.

MindWanderer
on 2014-01-01 14:58:34
I thought the intro piano was pretty quiet and unusually distant, and that the other elements at that moment seemed more tasteful from the sound design perspective. Great bell at 1:35, and the trebly sweeps are really well done. Bass at 2:00 was a bit much in the 60Hz for my headphones, to the point of it being grating after 1 or 2 minutes, but it may just be me. The arp at 2:22 and other similar spots was pretty loud, while the bells at 2:55 and other similar spots were pretty distant, but I guess it's ok.
I agree with all this. My one big crit of this remix is that the volume is all over the place. A comfortable volume level for the intro and outro raises the main song into the "hurts my ears" level, and a comfortable level for the main song lowers those into the inaudible. I got used to that bass throb but it did take some getting used to.

I actually really like the synth strings, but then I like synth strings in general. I find it to be well contrasted with, rather than outdone by, the slick synth at 5:18.

Overall a really well-done and entertaining mix.

BaconProcurement
on 2014-01-01 11:57:59

The beginning for the most part is very quiet but it gives off a really nice atmosphere. When it starts to pick up around the 2 minute mark, it really groves. In my opinion, Fear Factory is my favorite track in the DKC soundtrack so this is a nice surprise for the new year. Awesome mix!

timaeus222
on 2014-01-01 01:06:33

I thought the intro piano was pretty quiet and unusually distant, and that the other elements at that moment seemed more tasteful from the sound design perspective. Great bell at 1:35, and the trebly sweeps are really well done. Bass at 2:00 was a bit much in the 60Hz for my headphones, to the point of it being grating after 1 or 2 minutes, but it may just be me. The arp at 2:22 and other similar spots was pretty loud, while the bells at 2:55 and other similar spots were pretty distant, but I guess it's ok.

I thought the same as Larry at 4:15 with the leading strings; a little underwhelming compared to the other electronic elements due to the somewhat flat articulation used. The lead at 5:18 is a pretty nice sync lead, and certainly tops the strings. I wouldn't say, then, that the strings were meant to come off that way, but oh well.

Not repetitive enough to be a track where people will want to skip around on it, and nitpicks aside, pretty solid track. Good job man.

Liontamer
on 2013-12-31 11:00:08

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

Sources Arranged (1 Song)


Primary Game:
Donkey Kong Country (Nintendo, 1994, SNES)
Music by David Wise, Eveline Novakovic, Robin Beanland
Songs:
"Fear Factory"

Tags (1)


Genre:
Mood:
Instrumentation:
Additional:
Time > Duration: Long

File Information


Name:
Donkey_Kong_Country_Focus_OC_ReMix.mp3
Size:
11,130,907 bytes
MD5:
9bfcc5ccaab81ca4bbee63446241696b
Bitrate:
192Kbps
Duration:
7:40

Promotion

Latest Albums

Latest ReMixes