ReMix: Xenon "Hajonta"
Help us take OCR to the next level by supporting us on
4,626,270 bytes, 2:43, 224kbps
Man, OC ReMix had been going strong for 15 years before we posted our first ReMix of Xenon last year, the x-tastically titled "Xoldin' Out for a Xero" from Binster, and now we've got ANOTHER Xenon mix, this time from Eino Keskitalo, who cooks up some... garage chip-prog? Sure, let's go with that:
"This is a slightly tweaked version of my entry to the Meat 'n Potatoes compo, round 37. Let's see if I can pass the panel with two days worth of work. It was cool to see Binster getting a ReMix of the tune posted just around the compo. The compo source was the Atari ST version. It's the same composition as the Amiga version, but has a different feel to it. I guess the power chord guitar sample in the Amiga version makes some difference compositionally too. I have actually played the Atari ST version a bit, too!
Ingredients: live bass, live guitar, a couple of breaks from the Renoise sample library, a short sample from the very beginning of the source tune (used as the instrument for the riff at 1:26-1:51) and a simple synth sound for background arp and melody (also from the Renoise library). I worked the bass/guitar riffs into arbitrary time signatures, which is something I kind of seem to fall into as a way of personalizing the source. I worked the oddly-syncopated hits into the rhythm guitar, not exactly like it's in the source, I suppose, but painful enough to play on time, ha.
The economy of the source is interesting. You can tell it's put together from blocks of musical elements/riffs, especially the melody/arp. Then the tune changes key a couple of times, with the blocks staying the same, but shuffled around a bit, which is a nice touch. I just recently read Game Sound by Karen Collins, where she explains this sort of thing was often done on 8/16-bit platforms to conserve the limited space/memory resources. Pretty cool! I followed the key changes at 0:42 and 1:08, but without repeating the whole structure.
This isn't super polished, but I like the overall raw aesthetic that came together. It reminds me of a cassette recording of a garage band jamming. Used to play in bands quite a bit, you see. Takes me back, all nostalgic, so it's in a good place for me. Hope you enjoy too!"
I did; I too like the raw aesthetic, feels immediate & unfettered. The drums here make the mix, but the overall balance between elements is relatively unique.. and of course, the time signature is fun. Larry Oji sums things up well:
"This initially felt somewhat texturally empty, but once I paid closer attention, things are adequately filled out. I wish the lead guitar work were more upfront, and wanted the bass to sound sharper as well, but it's all more of a personal taste thing. Nice work changing the time signature (don't ask me what that is :-D), and the excellence of the drum writing was an understated plus here.
It definitely is a meat-and-potatoes arrangement as far as retaining the structure of the source tune, but it personalized the adaptation enough IMO, with a solid rock adaptation that later brought in the chip leads for a nice change of pace, and featured lots of strong original writing addition like the energetic percussion and bass writing. Nice work, Eino!"
Basically: What he said. Not much to add relative to Larry's analysis & Eino's own comments... it's a good sound & a good source, and ALSO happens to be our first Atari ST ReMix on the site! Held my interest, had me counting along, and does a good job of capturing a loose, jammin' sort of vibe while not being mushy or sloppy... good stuff from Eino!