ReMix: Detana!! TwinBee "BUTTS"
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In 2013, we released our first Apex album (dedicated to the fighting game tournament of the same name), we teamed up with Eidos Montreal for our Deus Ex: Sonic Augmentation EP that included an arrangement from original Deus Ex composer Alexander Brandon (!), we released Final Fantasy VI: Balance and Ruin (one of my favorite albums of all time, VGM or otherwise), we celebrated Mega Man's 25th birthday with Capcom by releasing our first-ever commercially-licensed album, For Everlasting Peace (NOW ON SALE FOR 25% OFF!!), and we paid homage to both the American AND Japanese soundtracks to Sonic CD with Temporal Duality...
...AND we posted 231 ReMixes, too, in case all of that other stuff wasn't enough :)
On a more personal note, on December 19th, 2013, our daughter Esther Fiona Lloyd was born, and my wife Anna & I became parents.
She'll turn one year old in 8 days, and while parenting is the hardest challenge I've ever faced in my entire life, it is also the most rewarding - cue canned 1980's sitcom "Awwwwwww...." :)
For our penultimate 15th anniversary flood mix, we've got our first ReMix of Detana!! TwinBee for the Sharp X68000, a cheeky (get it?) rock arrangement from prozax, with searing leads & blistering solos; Dan writes:
"The frustratingly fun shooter with the bright and upbeat music has been kicking butts for a long time. Today, it's ready to rock your butts in a similar fashion. BUTTS."
Once again, ladies and gentlemen: butts. There's a bit of a story behind this behind, and since Larry's the one who made it all happen, I'm gonna let him tell it:
"On the sentimental side, I discovered OC ReMix a month after the ReMixer exodus of 2002, when virt and prozax both requested their OC ReMixes be removed. The bad feelings behind that have long since gone away, so when Dan submitted this great solo mix, I also thought it would be great to have his previously removed mixes be part of the collection once again to coincide with posting this. Luckily, Dan was down with having his old material re-added, and many months later when OC ReMix #3000 was actually close, I had the eleventh-hour idea of asking JD Harding and virt if they were cool to re-add their removed mixes, and they too were "all systems go"! They were always an important part of OCR's history, and with their early music now back on the site, it really feels more whole. :-)
Before I get onto this mix, I'll say that as a judge, I never care if a submission is overmixed or rarely mixed, as it doesn't affect my judgement of a submission. But as a VGM fan, I always love when we get ReMixes that fill gaps in our community's coverage. It took a long time to get ReMixes for the first Mega Man Battle Network, Super Mario Sunshine, and the TwinBee series, but we're finally here. Maybe one day we'll also have mixes from Contra 4, Ecco: Defender of the Future and the X-Men arcade game (a.k.a. "X-MUN!")
Onto the mix, thanks to prozax for bringing us only our second X68000 arrangement; great job on this, Dan! Didn't expect anything less. :-) This one's another fine example of a spirited and personalized rock cover that keeps the structure and tempo of the source intact while changing the instrumentation & textures, and adding live performance flourishes & original writing ideas to take things beyond super-close-cover territory. For a shmup soundtrack, the original's song already got an upbeat, happy feeling to it, but there's just a little intangible something about this rock approach that gives the song a little more of that soaring, break-loose feel. Maybe that's just me, maybe I'm just talking out my BUTTS. :-D I'll never know why prozax named the mix "BUTTS," but at least he's kickin' 'em here. We held onto this for a long time, but for the 15th anniversary of this place, it's an honor for us to post another great piece from one of the major veterans of the VGM arrangement community who helped pave the way."
I feel rather ridiculous saying this, but "BUTTS" has finally given us some closure on the drama of yesteryear. Ill will & bad blood had long since fallen by the wayside (thanks in part to the healing powers of MAGFest - 43 days to go!), but having Dan & Jake agree to their old mixes being reinstated feels like the perfect punctuation; thanks to both of them for being groovy, and to JD Harding as well - a chunk of OCR history has been restored, and the galaxy is most certainly at peace. My personal thanks as well to the one and only Larry Oji for making it so. As for the mix, the underlying structure plays it a little close, but the lead guitar is really the star of both arrangement AND production, and kills it. On top of the poignancy & relevance to OCR history, it is indeed excellent to have more SHMUP representation, and the TwinBee games fall pretty squarely in the diehard/hardcore & old school territory, at least outside of Japan. What else can one say? ENJOY BUTTS!