ReMix: Chrono Trigger "Notes from a Small Island" 3:29

By JJT

Artist Links
Arranging the music of one song...

"Chrono Trigger"

Primary Game: Chrono Trigger (Square, 1995, SNES), music by Nobuo Uematsu, Noriko Matsueda, Yasunori Mitsuda

Posted 2014-06-27, evaluated by djpretzel


File under MUST DOWNLOAD!! This absolutely GORGEOUS new post-rock/britpop take on the main Chrono Trigger theme comes from none other than JJT himself, whose new album with his band, The Roof Beam Carpenters, Golden Hill, JUST went on sale yesterday!! I especially dig the second & third tracks, w/ "College Avenue" having some super-catchy hooks & background vocals - be sure to check it out & show Jon some support!

"It's been a minute since I've worn my remixing hat. Thought I'd combine my love of '00s-era Britpop with my love of Chrono Trigger and see what happened. This happened.

Also, I'm releasing a record with my band The Roof Beam Carpenters. Check it out at http://theroofbeamcarpenters.bandcamp.com and https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/golden-hill/id892865159."

I'm a huge fan of Jon's stuff, and his arrangement of "Big Blue" will always have a special place in my heart, but now it'll have even more company, as this unfamiliar take on a familiar theme breaths new life & adds some rawness & immediacy to an already fantastic melody. Larry writes:

"There's grittiness in the production, yet the overall feeling of this piece was mellow and smooth. It's pretty contemplative music, so I'm interested in reading what kind of imagery and feelings it conjures up from fans. IF it were thrown into a Chrono game or anime, it'd make great end credits music. I hope Yasunori Mitsuda would enjoy this take on the main theme, especially for how different it is from the many others out there.

It's great to hear how far Jon's come as a musician, as his debut electronic take on "Frog's Theme" back in 2003 was cool for its day, yet also gave no clue as to what he'd evolve to more than a decade later. Whether it's piano or rock, his sound truly is something worth sharing. I hope everyone in the community will buy and pimp his new original album with The Roof Beam Carpenters, because it's tremendous and Jon's a hell of a singer-songwriter. "San Fernando" is a personal favorite of mine, and all of Golden Hill is well-written and super-polished.

P.S. The 7-part video webseries about the fundraiser for Golden Hill was hilarious. Jon's legitimately got a career in comedy if he wants it. WATCH IT!"

Introing with an acoustic guitar riff that could be mistaken for Oasis, the shimmering & resonant EP that enters on lead sets the tone, and drums/electric/bass just layer in beautifully. The art here is balancing multiple competing textures, all of which have a certain amount of dirt/grime on them, without things just feeling cluttered and chaotic - and Jon nails it. Short but sweet @ 3'28", it'll be over before you're ready for it to end - just like the game. Unforgettable & timeless work from JJT, this is one that I'll have in steady rotation for years to come!

djpretzel

Discussion

Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
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Nathan Allen Pinard
on 2016-06-23 09:53:13

Nice idea for this theme, which honestly has been done to death (I've had a few ideas of one myself) but this is pretty unique. Has more of a pop feel to it, to the point where you WANT it to have vocals. With that melody.

As far as engineering, it's hard for me to gauge all of that as a first time poster here. Personally it's a bit compressed, however for what has been said above (brit-pop) that actually fits and it sounds great with the Rhodes and guitar. There are parts where you hear artifacts as a result though. At 2:45 it gets a bit harsh.

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Chromarin
on 2016-06-17 20:47:39

This is absolutely brilliant, I love the "britpopness" of it from the first note! I would not hesitate to name this as an example of the genre that has everything quintessential to it, while avoiding the dreadful "here's Wonderwall" cliche!

(....I am no musical expert though. :/ But I know what I like when I hear it! )

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JJT
on 2016-03-07 18:30:31
4 hours ago, LuIzA said:

HOLY ****! I'm late to the party here, but DAMN, I like this better than the original. 3

JJT, you've outdone yourself yet again.

too kind!

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LuIzA
on 2016-03-07 13:32:43

HOLY ****! I'm late to the party here, but DAMN, I like this better than the original. 3

JJT, you've outdone yourself yet again.

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Emunator
on 2015-01-10 12:38:12

This one is really growing on me with each successive listen, like most of Jon's stuff tends to do. It's mixed with just the right amount of distortion to achieve the desired effect without being rough on the ears. Granted, I don't really hear any of the post-rock djp is referring to in the writeup, but this mix does a great job seamlessly fussing multiple styles and aesthetics together.

Excellent track!

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Melody of Light
on 2014-06-28 16:59:43

I used to download the remixes posted here very frequently, but now that the mixes are posted to YouTube I admit that I listen to many, appreciate the work, but rarely download. My listening habits have changed, I've already accumulated years' worth of mixes, and while I admire many of the mixes posted, I figure that they'll just sit on my drive and not receive more listens in the future. So when I saw DJ Pretzel's statement of "file under must download" I smiled and thought to myself, "probably not, Pretzel."

Well, I posted to say that Pretzel was right and the mirror servers took another hit from me, because this song is amazing and it's going to receive many more listens. Well done, JJT!

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Crulex
on 2014-06-28 11:21:49

Yeah, boy! This ReMix skates close to being cluttered and clunky in the middle because of how much was going on, but JJT managed to swoop out and take the ReMix up for air at the last minute, which was nice to hear. Certainly a nice arrangement. My only complaint is the distortion at the intro and outro seemed a little loud or sharp, but once things got underway, it didn't really bug me because it seemed to even out enough. Minor points aside, awesome work, man.

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Nase
on 2014-06-28 05:59:40

Sweet transmogrification! Nice feel to it.

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OverClocked PodCast
on 2014-06-27 22:43:55

I don't have any Chrono Trigger nostalgia floating around in my brain, but I can appreciate an arrangement with this much soul. Feels very real. Love the rhythm. The distortion felt like it was drilling into my ears at first, but it mellowed out (or I did) and the rest of the trip was very cool.

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Chimpazilla
on 2014-06-27 17:09:31

What a fabulous track. Emotional and brilliantly produced. I have one small nitpick and that is the bass sounds a little too loud when it plays a G. Other than that I'm loving this.

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zykO
on 2014-06-27 14:51:25

my boy jjt does it again. sick

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evktalo
on 2014-06-27 14:38:31

It's great to see a new JJT mix come up, a couple of his tracks are some of my fondest from the OCR catalog. I've also really liked what Roof Beam Carpenters I've heard. I'll have to save the new album for later, but I did buy the previous EP right now.

Into the mix at hand. The new chording with the guitar alone is pretty thrilling to hear, and throughout it's an original, yet very fitting way to treat the source material.

As a nod to the intended era and style the piece very successful and fun to listen to. The big crash cymbals section of the beat seemed to squish a lot of the other instrumentation away (I also remember the huge crash cymbal beats from Hydrophone Breakdown, loud there too!). Overall the mix feels a little tiring to the ears, for one there's a lot of distortion in the EP and it's maybe piling up some frequencies, but the acoustic guitar is sounding a little suspect on its own. Other than that the production was very good the playing really tight.

The bit that I wasn't feeling at all in the arrangement was the chromatically descending bit of the melody at 0:44 and 1:44. It's a high point of the melody in the original but didn't seem to work in this context. I tried noodling around on the guitar and the final chord which seems to clash might be something like Eadd2? It sounds to me that the G in the melody is causing some sort of a major/minor mode collision due to the major E chord on the guitar. Esus4 seemed to maybe be ambiguous enough to not clash like that, but hard to say about just humming above some chords which I might be transcribing wrong in the first place (plus just in case it sounds remotely like I know or pretend to know music theory, I don't really, I'm just using a reverse guitar chord finder and trying to put into words why those spots didn't seem to work to me).

Other than that I thought the arrangement was quite superb, well I generally like the type of arrangement that keeps the melody and rewrites the backing already so this was an easy plus for me. I liked how the melody was transferred from one instrument to the next in each section, and the original melodic bits fit in very cohesively.

timaeus, you should really check out more JJT, like right now! I agree that this sounded pretty pro.

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timaeus222
on 2014-06-27 13:52:46

The amount of controlled distortion here actually reminds me of what a pop star producer could do (in a good way). Kinda reminds me of Demi Lovato's "

". I don't think I've ever heard JJT's stuff before. This makes me want to hear more.
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Sixto
on 2014-06-27 12:25:35

awwwyeeeeeah, new jiggin' john tesh. been waiting for this one to get posted. sounds so chill and dreamy

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djpretzel
on 2014-06-27 12:08:15

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

Sources Arranged (1 Song)


Primary Game:
Chrono Trigger (Square, 1995, SNES)
Music by Nobuo Uematsu, Noriko Matsueda, Yasunori Mitsuda
Songs:
"Chrono Trigger"

Tags (7)


Genre:
Rock
Mood:
Mellow
Instrumentation:
Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Electric Piano
Additional:
Effects > Lo-Fi
Time > 4/4 Time Signature

File Information


Name:
Chrono_Trigger_Notes_from_a_Small_Island_OC_ReMix.mp3
Size:
6,524,422 bytes
MD5:
7a9bdcc35cc1831aad1c522bcc6b0c2e
Bitrate:
246Kbps
Duration:
3:29

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