ReMix: Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars "The Usurper Queen"
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- Game: Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars (Nintendo, 1996, SNES)
- ReMixer(s): djpretzel
- Composer(s): Koji Kondo, Nobuo Uematsu, Yoko Shimomura
- Song(s): "Margarie Margarita"
- Posted: 2017-02-21, evaluated by the judges
- Album: Featured on Super Mario RPG: Window to the Stars
- Terms (BETA): aggressive brass choir dark flute glitching harpsichord lo-fi strings symphonic trap woodwinds
ReMix #3500! AKA "Oh hey, that's right, djpretzel used to make music from time to time ;)"
With fatherhood, and work, and grad school, and wanting to make OC ReMix a better website/community & move the 501c3 non-profit initiative further along, it's hard to find the time. Luckily Super Mario RPG: Window to the Stars co-director Emery "DaMonz" Monzerol wasn't shy about reminding me that I had taken a track - "Margarie Margarita" (or "Valentina's Castle" if you prefer!) - and needed to make things happen, so my first thanks are to him for the persistence & patience! I was getting tired of seeing executive privilege so thoroughly abused IRL, so I actually submitted this to the judges panel with the following notes:
"Symphonic trap, mastered aggressively... the dominant concept I attempted to convey was sadism; this arrangement re-envisions the very proper & classical harpsichord original as something narcissistic & malevolent, no qualms about it. The source is basically a bunch of overlapping motifs; difficult to arrange without just doing a cover, which I don't like doing. My solution was to extend each motif out, in some cases extending descending progressions further downward as well."
This is a weird mix, but it's a relatively weird source - old school harpsichord, kinda iterates through some patterns, lots of overlapping lines, not really a verse/chorus type of affair. And Margarie's a weird character... she does, after all, have a bird on her head and a drink in her hand, most of the time. Of course, I can somewhat relate to the latter. I won't pretend that this is authentic trap, as it's missing some of the staples and is also my first attempt at anything remotely resembling that genre, which I know can be polarizing but which I kinda dig. Wavesfactory harpsichord ("Demonic Virtuoso" is the actual name of the library!), 8Dio Majestica, Spitfire woodwinds, some Super Audio Cart, and some Output Substance on bass... I actually kept it pretty simple/limited, but tried to make every element count, with some layered drops, bitcrushed choir (Metropolis Ark I), and other fun stuff. This isn't designed for dancing, grooving, background music, or even.... enjoyment, per se :) It's designed to kinda imagine the character in a gritty, realistic, and plausibly aggressive fashion... as someone who's going to mess you up, deceive you, seduce you, leave you for dead, AND enjoy every minute of it. Everything Rick Astley will NEVER do, basically. So, yeah... NOT NICE. Hopefully this explains the presiding aesthetic; I actually had a lot of fun crafting something that's different from most of my other work, using some of my newer toys.... I mean "tools"... and which gives zero f*#ks about being at all pleasant. Sir_NutS writes:
"It's cool that even while you're familiar with the genre, you understood right away that trap is all about them hat triplets+rolls and the correct usage of he 808 kick as your sub. I think regarding the kick you could've extended the release as a proper trap song would to cover most of the measures, without the pauses, and boost its overall presence more. So in that sense I think I agree with Deia on the kick not being quite there, but since this isn't straight-up trap, it works alright. I love me some harpsichord and this mix doesn't disappoint. The glitching towards the end keeps things interesting."
I did have fun with the hats. How many pieces of music are going to feature a hi-hat trio over a descending flute line for the break? I figure not many, and I'm good with that. The kick is the odd man out and probably won't rub everyone the right way, but I wanted something that would leave a LOT of room for the symphonic & bass stuff going on, and this fit the bill. I'm finally, finally, finally getting my music production situation stabilized, where I hope to focus solely on workflow and, you know, actually making music... part of what makes all of this fun is trying new things, pushing yourself, and not necessarily going for an approach that is first & foremost concerned with widespread appeal... within boundaries. This was something strange for me to attempt, I'm pretty happy with the outcome (especially how it relates to what I had in mind for the character), and I'm very honored to have been part of this album & to continue running OCR while still eeking out time to contribute some ReMixes!
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