ReMix: Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back "The Wrath of Tiny"
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- Game: Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back (Sony, 1997, PS1)
- ReMixer(s): Laarx
- Composer(s): Josh Mancell, Mark Mothersbaugh
- Song(s): "Tiny"
- Posted: 2016-05-02, evaluated by the judges
- Terms (BETA): brass choir chromatic-percussion cinematic energetic epic orchestral piano strings suspenseful symphonic
Great to see so many orchestral arrangements lately; newcomer Laarx (Jon Kelliher) continues that trend with our FIRST EVAR ReMix of Crash Bandicoot 2, taking on the boss battle with Tiny in the epic symphonic/choral style of "Duel of the Fates" - Jon writes:
"The boss battle against Tiny in Crash Bandicoot 2 definitely scarred me as a kid. While he was one of my favourite video game characters, he was also the hardest boss I had encountered in my youth. I remember hearing the music repeating over and over to the point of insanity, so I felt it was only right to depict the battle as an epic Star Wars: The Phantom Menace-esque fight scene.
I found that, since the original source is pretty schizophrenic, it was a challenge to get the sections to flow well into one another. However, by adding some original melodies in the choruses, I was able to at least give the song some sort of loose form."
Definite Williams influence right from the get-go, although you could also make an argument for Carl Orff; big word-builder "Tiny" choral chords open things up, then a timpani roll ushers in big drums, brass, & strings. Piano, chromatic percussion, and a rock drum kit each end up playing substantive roles, and the overall arrangement has the sense of urgency you'd expect from a hectic boss fight, imbued with a dose of Gothic epicosity. Chimpazilla writes:
"The instrumentation of this source and the remix are as different as night and day but the arrangement is conservative enough to hear the source throughout. Wow, what a change in feeling with this source in orchestral! I think you did a great job of adapting the "schizophrenia" of the source into the orchestral soundscape."
Judges did find the mixing a little unusual for an orchestral piece, with overall volume & bass emphasis at relatively unorthodox levels, and there were some humanization issues noted with some of the part-writing, but the general consensus acknowledged the strength & creativity of the arrangement. DaMonz sums it up well:
"Other than that, definitely a super awesome arrangement that easily makes up for all the issues, for me. Source is still very recognizable, and I'm loving how the structure was elaborated to adapt the style."
Our first Crash 2 ReMix, a nice stylistic homage (while still quite distinct), and a great debut from Laarx - definitely hope to hear more!