ReMix: Final Fantasy IV "The Light of My Father"
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Happy 25th birthday, Final Fantasy IV!!
"Today is the 25th anniversary of Final Fantasy IV (Initial release date: July 19, 1991) and I wanted to pay tribute to the game that had the most profound impact on my life. I must have been about twelve when I got a Super Nintendo. It was a while after everyone else, and I took my SNES over to a friend's house for a sleepover. I wanted to play Super Mario World because I had never had the chance to play it outside of the store kiosks, but my friends had rented a game called "Final Fantasy IV" (then II). I was completely uninterested in this game because it involved reading and graphics that weren't as good as Mario. But after they fell asleep I felt compelled to pick up the controller and keep going on their game. From that moment, I was hooked. The music drew me in and I quickly became an RPG fan. When they woke up the next morning, I was still playing. I owe this game a lot for distracting me from many of the more difficult parts of my childhood. I identified with Cecil and his struggles with the darkness within him, and with him not knowing his father. I'm very thankful this game was there for me when others weren't.
I started playing around with a Rhodes sound and just reminiscing on the theme. Then I kicked in a little spice for the full version of the melody which I only hinted at before. The bridge of this track takes influence of the Lunarian soundscape to represent the presence of Cecil's father. And I liked using the sine lead to carry out the melody at the end as it's very nostalgic to me.
I hope you enjoy my tribute and if you haven't had a chance to play the game, I highly recommend it."
We're posting this out of cycle because hey, it's FF4's 25th birthday, Mustin clearly has a deep connection with this game and its music, and that definitely comes through in this mix. He starts off with solo electric piano that's actually more than just an intro - it remains solitary for long enough that I thought this was gonna be a solo EP arrangement, but a sweet RNB/ballad groove eventually comes in and things develop from there. The initial playing on the EP is laid back, expressive, and chill, with a good sense of where to add some flourishes & stings. Electric piano really is its OWN thing, and especially as a solo instrument it can & should be played differently from an acoustic piano... and this is something Mustin clearly knows. Overall production reminds me of his own FF7 arrangement, "Serenity," not for style per se but for how each individual element is discernible and is "just so" - very particular sounds, in very specific positions, with very precise part-writing. Mustin has powerful producer feng shui, in other words. This isn't a sprawling opus or something designed to bowl you over with technique, but instead is a very tightly put together, emotive package that channels mellow waves of nostalgia and takes its time to reminisce, smell the roses, and THEN develop into a groove.
We hadn't posted anything from Mustin since 2011's (excellent) "KR44441D" Metroid ReMix, so in addition to providing an excellent 25th birthday homage to FF4, it's great to see him back. Enjoy!
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