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Everything posted by nitrozsz

  1. Final Fantasy X HD....the dark aeons. I grinded and grinded and grinded and grinded as much as I could. And then I met Dark Yojimbo. A tough battle indeed. But to win that tough battle five times in a row without saving in between? I couldn't. I don't have the time or patience to grind and grind so much that everyone has max stats. I just don't. So I decided to quit on the dark aeons, and instead focus on beating Nemesis. I wanted to at least feel like all that grinding I did was worth SOMETHING.
  2. YEP. Ken's original theme is so good, it needs to be heard in all its arrangements.
  3. Do the Final Fantasy remixes have to come from Overclocked, or can they come from other sources as well (arrangement albums, live performances, etc...I think the answer might be obvious, but I wanted to double check. Cause holy crap will this be a tough one to submit for if any remix/arrangement is eligable)? Also, yay more Spencer Nilsen!
  4. Ugh, I wish I had reviewed this sooner. I listened to this awhile back, but didn't have the time to actually type up the full review. Until now. In short, I loved it. Love Chrono Trigger, love jazz, so this is one example of a perfect album for me ---- Yasunori Mitsuda did things in the games he composed for that not a lotof composers could do. He was certainly ahead of his time when he composedfor his first game, Chrono Trigger. So how do you rearrange the music of ChronoTrigger in a way that exemplifies, and honors the unique composing style thatYasunori Mitsuda brought to the game? Make a full-on jazz album.Wiesty notes in the comments that this seemed like an impossible task. But inall honestly, the jazz genre perfectly blends with the audio asthetics of ChronoTrigger. So the only impossible tasks were time (no pun intended), and motivation.And all the artists apart of this managed to bring jazz to the forefront of oneof the greatest soundtracks of all time.1. Wiesty, The OC Jazz Collective - "Way Before the Day Before Yesterday"Era: Prehistoric (65,000,000 B.C.)Sources: "Burn! Bobonga! Burn!"; "Lavos's Theme," "Rhythm of Earth, Wind, and Sky" (cameo)An excellent opener for Chronology. It sounds like an excellent warm-up session,quickly transitioning into the opening number of a fine jazz concert. Right away,you know what to expect. The Lavos touch was quite remarkable. As a jazz piece,it adds more of an introductory "OMPH" than any other piece composed for theprehistoric era.2. Triplepoint Trio (Doug Perry, Sam Suggs, Jonny Allen) - "Triggernometry"Source: "Chrono Trigger"I don't know if this was intentional or not, but the transition between track1 and track 2 is one of, if not, the best I have ever heard on an OCR album. Itis so seamless, almost as if both tracks were one in the same. As for the trackitself, it is a great interpretation of the main Chrono Trigger theme. It's justas exciting as the original source material. The vibraphone, and violin work hereis especially phoenomenal.3. Nostalvania, The OC Jazz Collective - "Time's Seal"Era: Dark Ages (12,000 B.C.)Source: "Sealed Door"What makes this track interesting is how they turned a slow, haunting track intosomething very reminiscant of a night stroll through New Orelans. It makes openingthat sealed door a lot more exciting and interesting than kind of depressed andlonely.4. Wiesty, The OC Jazz Collective - "Neuga, Ziena, Zieber, Zom..."Era: Middle Ages (600 A.D.)Source: "Magus Confronted"In comparison to the last piece, this one feels like a night club lounge jazztrack. Pretty appropriate considering the source material, the battle theme ofsomeone who at first is viewed as a dark, foreboding individual. The flute isa nice touch. A fine way to honor the original, while turning a dramatic battletheme into something more subdued, and chilling (the relaxing kind, not the creepykind).5. Wiesty, The OC Jazz Collective - "Dream of Green"Era: Present (1000 A.D.)Sources: "Secret of the Forest"; "Chrono Trigger" (cameo)Both this arrangement, and the original source material give off a sense ofmystery and intrigue. Right off the bat, this arrangement does the forest portionsof the game justice. It doesn't sound like just an arrangement, it sounds likesomething that would fit right in with the actual game. 6. Nostalvania, The OC Jazz Collective - "Fight or Flight"Era: Apocalypse (1999 A.D.)Source: "The Epoch - Wings of Time"The Epoch theme was already jazz inspired to begin with, so I can imagine thisbeing a difficult piece to arrange for a jazz album. The time signature changesreally helped make this arrangement stand out from the original source material ina way that honors the game, and Yasunori Mitsuda's work.7. Wiesty, The OC Jazz Collective - "When Hell Freezes Over"Era: Future (2300 A.D.)Sources: "A Desolate World," "Yearnings of the Wind"Very mysterious, and very intriguing. The original source material was moreominous, and reflective of a defeated mood. This sounds like something you'dhear in a noir film when the main protagonist is at a loss on what to do next.It kind of makes me think of what Casablanca would sound like if it weremade in this day and age (HOLLYWOOD DO NOT REMAKE CASABLANCA). 8. Fratto, Wiesty, The OC Jazz Collective - "Driftwood"Era: End of Time (∞)Source: "At the End of Time"And here we reach the end. The end of time that is. At first, you think this piecewill serve as something of a "wind down" sort of track. But no, it wants to go outwith the excitement and flair that helps define this album.From beginning to end, this album is nothing but pure fun. Other albums serve towow and excite you with how classics can be arranged into different genres, and howmany different feelings you can get throughout the album. That is why I appreciatethe pure fun that this album brings. I am still in awe over how tracks one and twosound back to back. But each track can still be listened to on its own, and appreciatedat the same time. If you don't like jazz, this album may not be for you, as thisis 100% jazz all around.
  5. I'm excited because lately, it seems like most of my gaming time is spent on portable systems, largely because of my job. It takes me an hour and a half to get to work and back. If I didn't have my Vita (3DS once I get Pokemon Sun) with me for that kind of commute, I would have gone insane a long time ago But anyway, depending on the game library, the Switch seems like a logical choice for the next system for me to buy, only because I would have more time to play something like the Switch than any other console I would want, or currently own.
  6. Niiiice. Super Mario 64 was always my favorite Koji Kondo soundtrack, personally.
  7. Hello all. I wasn't sure whether to post this in the community forum, or this one. I'm going to try this one, because what I'm going to ask is for research purposes. But if this is in the wrong place, or if I'm breaking any rules, please let me know and I'll rectify whatever problems arise. I'm currently planning an episode of my podcast *points to the signature* devoted to the music of the main Final Fantasy games (1 through 14, none of the spin-offs). For this episode, I wanted to ask people what their favorite music piece is from each of the main Final Fantasy games, and why they like it. So I'm not really looking for "list your favorite FF tracks!" I'm looking specifically for how, and why your favorite track from each game resonated with you the most. Do you like how a particular piece was used in the game? Did a particular piece make you feel something you've never felt before? Are you in awe of how a particular piece was composed? Did any particular piece inspire your life and/or career in some way? Stuff like that. Any help on this topic would be most appreciated. If you can't think of a piece from each of the 14 FF games, that's fine. But I would like at least one response from each FF game if at all possible. Thank you so much!
  8. Awww hehehe, well I meant when I said it was still a decent addition to the album. I did read what you had to say in the directors notes, so I understand where you're coming from.
  9. While I never got the chance to play Morrowind, I absolutely agree with you on Skyrim being the better game, but Oblivion having the better soundtrack. As for the sci-fi playlist...that's gonna be a tough one to narrow down. Are these supposed to be tracks from sci-fi themed games, or tracks that sound sci-fi?
  10. So once again I'm the only one that has anything to say about the Apex albums? That's too much pressure, guys. The Apex albums are good! They need more comments than just my own! *Ahem* 1. Garrett Williamson, Yungtown - Main Theme of Apex 2016 - Super Smash Bros. "APEX" Source: "Character Select" Original Composer: Hirokazu Ando This track raises the bar for how competition events, let alone albums inspired by competition events should start. The introduction was flawless, and the rest of the track puts you in the mood where you oughta be for competition events. 2. Neblix - Street Fighter V "The Path of Heaven" Sources: Street Fighter II - "Ryu (Japan)," Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike - "Ryu Stage ~ Kobu" Original Composers: Yoko Shimomura, Hideki Okugawa Very fun homage to the Street Fighter series. Reading the director’s notes, everything that Neblix mentioned, I felt and agree with 100%. 3. WillRock - Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 "Have a Nice Death" Source: "Ghost Rider" Original Composer: Hideyuki Fukasawa Damn, for only being produced in two days, this is pretty impressive. 4. timaeus222 - Pokkén Tournament "Iron-Headed Pursuit" Source: "Ferrum Stadium" Original Composer: Shota Kageyama Doesn’t seem as ambitious as what I’m used to from timaeus222, but it’s still a decent track. 5. Chernabogue, Tuberz McGee, Furilas - Super Smash Bros. Brawl "You Only Live to Smash" Source: "Super Smash Bros. Brawl Main Theme" Original Composer: Nobuo Uematsu The quality of this track seems a little muffled compared to the previous tracks. The rock organ work here is excellent though, regardless of the quality. 6. Sir_NutS - Killer Instinct "Werewolf Transformation" Source: Killer Instinct (SNES) - "Tooth & Claw (Sabrewulf)" Original Composer: Robin Beanland Not really a fan of the vocal inserts. Aside from that, the EDM attempt at Saberwulf’s theme was pretty good. It manages to be EDM, while retaining what made the original Saberwulf theme so good. 7. DJ RoboRob - Mortal Kombat "Technical Disorder" Source: Mortal Kombat (Sega CD) - "Techno Syndrome" Original Composer: Oliver Adams It’s the second coming of Techno Syndrome! As a 90s child, I totally approve of this. 8. ladyWildfire - Super Smash Bros. Melee "SMASHDANCE" Source: "Menu 1" Original Composer: Hirokazu Ando This is pretty good “waiting lobby” music, if that waiting lobby allowed participants to dance and rave instead of just sitting there like lumps waiting for their turn. 9. DjjD - Super Smash Bros. for Wii U "Incognito" Source: Super Smash Bros. for Wii U - "Menu" Original Composer: Junichi Nakatsuru And this is the waiting lobby music without the glitz and glamor from the previous track. But I still love it, as after all the excitement from the rest of the album, it needed to end on a nice “chill out” track. --- ....aw, it's over already? That's the one disadvantage I can give to these albums, they're just way too short. I like them, but there's just not enough to enjoy. Ah well, great work once again.
  11. Now this is an interesting idea for an album. An album based on energy levels, as stated in the directors notes, with the energy levels progressing from something with energy to the arrangements to serene lullaby arrangements that will put anyone in a relaxed state of mind. It’s not often we get arrangement albums that want to create soothing moods, so I really enjoyed evaluating this album for review. And as always, here are my takes on each individual track. And sorry if each track review seems short or abrupt in places. I was moving when I first listened to this, and I didn’t want to sit on this review forever. 1-01. "When Toys Come Alive" (The Secret of Monkey Island) Arranger: fredrikd Composers: Andy Newell, Barney Jones, Michael Land, Patric Mundy Source: "Guybrush and Elaine" It almost sounds like something out of a Danny Elfman soundtrack. Parts of the track sounded a little too hot to me though. Still, pretty whimsical. 1-02. "Mon Ami!" (.hack//Infection - Part 1) Arranger: BONKERS Composer: Seizo Nakata Source: "puti_farm (Grunty Farm)" I feel like when I hear this track, we’re building up to something extraordinary. It sounds like a great overture to something much bigger. Maybe this should have been the first track? 1-03. "The Slumber of the Beast" (Super Mario 64) Arranger: DaMonz Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Piranha Plant's Lullaby" I love the Piranha Plant lullaby. Then again, I love the Super Mario 64 soundtrack. This arrangement sounds like it could be used as a world map music track for a Mario game. 1-04. "Baby Blue Sky" (Yoshi Touch & Go) Arranger/Performer: Chimpazilla Arranger: halc Composers: Asuka Hayazaki, Toru Minegishi Source: "Sky Area" Reminds me of something you’d hear out of Hiroki Kikuta’s library. Love the bass. 1-05. "Baby Dreams of Lost Civilizations" (Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door) Arranger: Hylian Lemon Composers: Yoshito Hirano, Yuka Tsujiyoko Source: "Story of the Thousand-Year Door" Once again Hylian Lemon proves to be an expert at bringing chiptune, and “modern era” music together brilliantly. 1-06. "Psalm of the Summer Sky" (Secret of Mana) Arranger: Meteo Xavier Composer: Hiroki Kikuta Source: "Color of the Summer Sky" At first, I felt like this was an odd choice of music style for a soothing music album. But then I have to remind myself that this is the “playtime” album. So I shouldn’t expect the mood to be completely soothing in this part of the album. Even so, wonderful arrangement. 1-07. "Luxendarc Lullaby" (Bravely Default) Arranger: HeavenWraith Composer: Yasuo Kamanaka Sources: "Wicked Flight," "Serpent Devouring the Horizon," "Ballad Moving Towards Hope" A very beautiful take on Revo music. 1-08. "Dream Fast, Little Pilot" (Gradius, Nemesis 2 & Vulcan Venture) Arranger: rebrained Composers: Gradius - Miki Higashino, Nemesis 2 - Motoaki Furukawa, Masahiro Ikariko, Vulcan Venture - Yoshiyuki Hagiwara Sources: Gradius - "Coin (Coin Sound)," "Challenger 1985 (Stage 1 BGM)," Nemesis 2 - "Frontier Disputes (Life Planet Theme)," Gradius - "Free Flyer (Stage 4 BGM)," Vulcan Venture - "Burning Heat (Stage 1 BGM)" I feel like I’m in a ship, sailing….somewhere. An aimless journey almost. The melody is interesting. However, it’s kind of difficult for me to feel anything from this track other than “going somewhere.” 1-09. "Soothing Rain" (Animal Crossing) Arranger: Amphibious Composers: Kenta Nagata, Shinobu Tanaka Source: "Rainy Day" Very respectful to the Animal Crossing source material. 1-10. "Soporific Sonata" (Super Mario Bros. 2 & Super Mario Bros. 3) Arranger: DarkSim Composer: Koji Kondo Sources: Super Mario Bros. 2 - "Ending," Super Mario Bros. 3 - "Ending" Another fairly upbeat track more fitting for a “playtime” mood than a soothing mood. But what doesn’t make this a completely playful track is how it feels like you’re in that playful mood right before the end of the day. 1-11. "Another Sky" (Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure) Arranger: Rexy Composer: Hans Zimmer Source: "Skylanders Main Theme (Instrumental)" And here is the “wind down” portion of playtime. I love that this is an arrangement of Hans Zimmer, cause it sounds nothing like Hans Zimmer. It’s so innocent, and pure. Very lovely. ---- 2-01. "Iso ilo" (ilomilo) Arranger: Eino Keskitalo Vocalist: Birgitta Susi Composer: Daniel Olsén Sources: "Cozy Sofa," "Once Upon" I love the production put into this track. The vocals are very pleasant. 2-02. "Lullaby for an Old Soul" (Final Fantasy VI) Arranger: Abadoss Composer: Nobuo Uematsu Source: "Gau" Very peaceful, and relaxing. Can definitely be used as a lullaby, or a nice stroll. 2-03. "Adagio for Synths" (Final Fantasy IV) Arranger: bLiNd Composer: Nobuo Uematsu Source: "Edward's Harp" Delivers exactly what the title says it is. And that’s not a bad thing at all. 2-04. "Respite" (Kingdom Hearts) Arranger: Emunator Composer: Yoko Shimomura Source: "Dearly Beloved" Not really feeling this one. It’s kind of difficult to pull off a soothing piano arrangement of a track that’s already a soothing piano piece. It just comes across as a kind of “bootleg” attempt at Dearly Beloved. 2-05. "Thy Everlasting Winter Wind Blows" (Pokémon X) Arranger: timaeus222 Composer: Shota Kageyama Sources: "Snowbelle City," "Bicycle" Love the bells, and the synth strings. It feels like you’ve taken Snowbelle City, and made it sound like a town theme for an ancient snowy village. 2-06. "Cherish" (Final Fantasy VI) Arranger: Redg Composer: Nobuo Uematsu Source: "Relm" I know it’s Final Fantasy VI, but this reminds me of the slower music from the Super Castlevania IV soundtrack. And I absolutely love both soundtracks, so that’s perfectly fine by me. 2-07. "Pure Heart" (Secret of Mana) Arranger: Fredrik Häthén Composer: Hiroki Kikuta Source: "Still of the Night" Nice, and almost mysterious. You’re so drawn into this track, it’s almost disappointing that there isn’t more to this track. 2-08. "Merry Dreams" (Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga) Arranger: Chernabogue Composer: Yoko Shimomura Source: "Teehee Valley" Nice. Does a good job capturing the essence of a Mario & Luigi game. 2-09. "Baby Mario Sweepy" (Super Mario Galaxy) Arranger: k-wix Composer: Mahito Yokota Source: "The Star Festival" I love this. It sounds like both Super Mario Galaxy and Yoshi’s Island together at the same time. 2-10. "Rabbit" (To the Moon) Arranger/Performer: Brandon Strader Composer: Kan Gao Sources: "To the Moon - Main Theme," "For River - Piano (Johnny's Version)," "Trailer Theme - Part 2" (lyrics only) Now this sounds like what Dream Fast, Little Pilot should have pulled off. Music that makes you visualize a dreamlike journey filled with wonder, and whimsy. --- 3-01. "Namors Gnudlib Theme (djp Naptime Edit)" [The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time] Arranger/Performer: Sir Jordanius Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Prelude of Light" Nice, pleasant slow jazz vibe. 3-02. "Dream" (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time) Arranger/Performer: DusK Performer: Tuberz McGee Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Zelda's Theme" Great way to incorporate lullaby-esq lyrics to the Zelda theme melody. 3-03. "Off into the Night" (Chrono Trigger) Arranger: pu_freak Composer: Yasunori Mitsuda Sources: "At the Bottom of the Night," "Epilogue - To My Dear Friends" Reminds me of music from Joe Hisaishi. Wonderful arrangement of excellent Chrono Trigger tracks. 3-04. "Another Dream Will Start from Here" (The Legend of Zelda) Arranger/Performer: zykO Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Ending" Very quirky, and light hearted. A little too long for my tastes, though. Love the guitar work. 3-05. "Dreamtime" (Chrono Trigger) Arranger: E-Bison Composer: Yasunori Mitsuda Source: "Outskirts of Time" VERY dreamlike. Could almost fall asleep to this (in a good way). 3-06. "Dawn of a New Dream" (The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask) Arranger: Radiowar Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Tatl & Tael" Not a good idea to put this track after the previous. Yes, it’s very dreamlike, but not as dreamlike as the previous track. 3-07. "Goodnight Moon" (DuckTales) Arranger: E-Bison Composer: Hiroshige Tonomura Source: "The Moon" Most appropriate arrangement to follow the lullaby theme. 3-08. "Sleep Tight, No Bed Bugs" (Super Mario Bros. 2) Arranger: norg Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Ending" I’m loving the piano in this track. 3-09. "Child of Legend" (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time) Arranger: LindsayAnne Pepper Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Zelda's Theme" Not quite as impressive as “Dream” but still a great lullaby arrangement of the Zelda theme. Nice way to end the album. --- 4-01. "Zone of the Esthers" (Zone of the Enders) Arranger/Performer: The Legendary Zoltan Composer: Masumi Ito Source: "Kiss Me Sunlights - Opening Theme" K.K. Slider sings you to sleep? Oh wait. It’s the mice from Babe. Still love it. Makes you feel like you’re dreaming in a wonderland. 4-02. "Namors Gnudlib Theme (djp Naptime Edit - Instrumental)" (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time) Arranger: Sir Jordanius Composer: Koji Kondo Source: "Prelude of Light" It’s…the same track. Only instrumental. Still love it. --- All in all, one of the most creative OCR albums I've ever heard from this website. Excellent work the whole lot of you.
  12. It's so nice to see the Oblivion soundtrack acknowledged every once in awhile in the face of Skyrim's popularity.
  13. Cool. I figured it was Blizzard Entertainment, but I wanted to be sure
  14. Yeeeeeah Shell Shocked. Anything that promotes Turtles in Time/Hyperstone Heist is an automatic A+ Quick question. When you say blizzard music, you mean music from Blizzard Entertainment games, or music for stages with blizzard-like conditions?
  15. Final Fantasy V had an amazing, yet underrated soundtrack. Normally, a Final Fantasy OCR album would consist of arrangements of the entire soundtrack. DarkeSword does things differently with Final Fantasy V. Instead of arranging the ENTIRE soundtrack, the album is split into five smaller parts, with each part representing a specific element and specific characters. Part 1, Fire, was released in 2010. Part 2 came out last month. Very long wait to hear these nine tracks. And the result of that wait is one of the most creative arrangement albums on OCR. Track 1: La Princesa de Taikun –Theme of Leena- By Sixto Sounds Source Track: Leena’s Theme It’s difficult to put into words how great this track is. What it boils down to is that it’s Final Fantasy V music remastered for a modern audience with mariachi and chiptune influences abound. Some of the chiptune pitch bends were a little off-putting for me, but that doesn’t ruin the experience of listening to the track for me. It’s one of the most unique music style combinations I’ve come across recently, and that alone makes this track worth a listen. Track 2: Micker Cripper Mime –Theme of Mime- By Mazedude Source Track: Moogles’ Theme This track is a weird one for me. I did not like the distorted guitar. Sounded way too MIDI for my tastes. Everything else was very unusual (but still tolerable) for my tastes, but perhaps that was the intent? DrakeSword stated in the directors notes how for a theme to represent someone that is known for copying others it sounds very unique. Yeah I can totally see that. It does a good job representing what the Mime is as him/herself, and not as someone else. It tells a good story, but it’s not something I’d want to listen to on its own. Track 3: The Observer –Theme of Time Mage- By halc Source Track: Cursed Lands I could not think of a better genre to suit a time mage more than dubstep. halc brilliantly uses dubstep to represent the time altering abilities of a time mage without going overboard or taking any clichéd production routes (like intentionally changing the tempo of the track just for the hell of it) to represent someone with the ability to control time. On its own, from a production standpoint, this is oddly one of the more chilling dubstep tracks I’ve heard on Overclocked. And I don’t know if halc intended for this to happen, but the endings somewhat abruptness perfectly captures the other ability of a time mage, the ability to stop time. Brilliant way to incorporate a character. Track 4: A Silver Light Shines –Theme of Mystic Knight- By DarkeSword Source: Dungeon This is a nice blend of a traverse through a mysterious dungeon, and the brave warrior who traverses that same dungeon. The dungeon theme was one of my favorites from the original soundtrack. What is achieved with this arrangement is that it doesn’t deviate from the mood of the original, while simultaneously adding a sort of excitement to the original. It’s almost comparable to Yasunori Mitsuda’s style of composing dungeon tracks. Track 5: Remembrance –Theme of Cid- By prophetic music Source: Sorrows of Parting The evolution of this track (IE the slow percussion to the fast paced percussion and beats) does a good job exemplifying the start of an invention from Cid, to the finished product, while the rest of the music does a good job emphasizing the curiosity Cid may have of how this invention he is making. Or it could represent him studying a subject, and by the end of the track, he has come to master the subject. Final Fantasy V’s Cid. Then we get to the latter half of the track, where everything slows down. Perhaps to signify the transition to another invention or subject? It’s a very complex, and almost thought provoking arrangement. Track 6: BZKR –Theme of Berserker- By Sixto Sounds feat. Jeff Ball Source: Battle 1 In an album where genres and music styles are meshed into very different and unique combinations, it seemed very contrasting to include a hard rock arrangement of a Final Fantasy battle theme, something I’ve heard many times before. Thankfully, a violin is incorporated into this track to keep it from being a pure hard rock arrangement. I do wish that the violin could have been balanced just slightly so that it wouldn’t sound like the guitars are trying to drown it out. It’s not a terrible track, I just wish there was a better emphasis on the violin parts. Track 7: Eternal –Theme of Red Mage- By Brandon Strader Source: Unknown Lands For this track, I’m not so sure how the red mage is incorporated into this track. Maybe it’s because the Red Mage is a hybrid warrior of sorts. And hybrid, would be the best way to describe this track. Also to match the “hybrid” theme, it seems like the first half of this track is very chill, while the second half of this track is more exciting. Very interesting, and enjoyable production work here. And to be expected from a Brandon Strader track, the guitar work here is excellent. Track 8: The Wander –Theme of Summoner- By RiverSound Source: A New World The world is merged. Alone stands the summoner as he/she sweeps the battlefield with great creatures of power. At least that’s the story I get, as everything sounds so isolated at first. But as the track progresses, the track sounds more and more hopeful. The sweeping effects do a great job capturing the summoners power of….well, summoning. But the bottom line is, the production work here portrays hope in an almost hopeless situation in a beautiful way. Track 9: See You Next Time –WATER- By DarkeSword Source: The Prelude Argh this track frustrates me. It’s so beautiful, but at the same time it’s so short (it’s still good though). There’s not a lot that can be said about this track. It’s simple, well produced, pretty, and leaves you wanting more. And more will come when the Fire album is released. Overall, this was a very fascinating album. These artists cleverly did things that are generally difficult to achieve, or they did things that I didn’t think would be possible in an arrangement. It’s so experimental, and definitely worth a listen at least once. All of it. Even the ones I kind of griped at. This album does an excellent job exemplifying the motto “try something at least once.” And besides, it’s short, if you love video game music and OCR albums, you can afford to listen to this album at least once.
  16. PS: My vote for who had the better secret song this week goes to Stephen.
  17. 2016 playlist, eh? Well I look forward to the results because I haven't played any games that were released this year x.x (Unless Day of the Tentacle Remastered counts). Might have to submit an OCR track that was released this year.
  18. I know @OverClocked PodCast did a themed playlist on rap music, I would definitely check out any of the tracks contributed. It's episode 10. If I had known about that playlist, I would have contributed the song Outlaw by Croove from the DJ Max Portable series. For rock/metal, I would suggest looking into the Guilty Gear and BlazBlue soundtracks. Akira Yamaoka is also a great rock composer, I would check out his works as well. I would start with Theme of Laura, and Tender Sugar if you want to go down the rock path. For jazz, it depends on what kind of jazz your Mom likes. So for starters, I would go with the Grim Fandango soundtrack. Hope this helps!
  19. I hear you on that. This will be tough for me too (though I am leaning towards a game from Rare's NES catalog). What helped me with the Dreamcast playlist was that I picked the track from Jet Grind Radio mainly because I thought "what if no one else picks Jet Grind Radio?" And sure enough, no one else did. So I'd start with the Rare games you think deserve to be represented on this playlist, and go from there. Also, if it helps, I'm predicting that the Donkey Kong Country series will appear more than once in this playlist XD
  20. Here's the review I'll be posting on my blog --- What could be more BadAss than making BadAss: Boss Themes: Volume III my first official album review for the M Disk Playlist blog? Starting this entire review on a 3+ hour Amtrak ride because he has nothing better to do. Whether on a train, or a car, or in your room, or in the darkest depths of Hell, you owe it to yourself to listen to the final installment of the BadAss trilogy. Boss battle themes and character villain themes have been one of my favorite types of video game music to listen to. There is just something about music exemplifying evil, and the efforts to take down that evil that just gets me very excited. What makes the BadAss albums so special is that these artists take those boss battle themes, those themes that signify the games antagonist(s), and they become something that goes beyond a typical “arrangement.” So without further ado, I present the track by track review of BadAss: Boss Themes: Volume III. This album is directed by pu_freak, assistant directed by Chernabogue, and was master engineered by timaeus222. Track 1-1: Monument of Non-Existence By Lashmush, representing Kefka from the game Final Fantasy VI Source Track: Dancing Mad from Nobuo Uematsu Dancing Mad is one of the greatest final battle themes in the Final Fantasy series. The lead-in to the first section, and the calm transitions between sections gives this track a very ominous feel. Making you feel that Kefka is there, getting ready to attack with all of his might. I’ve heard Dancing Mad arranged before; on Overclocked and by the Black Mages. But what this track manages to accomplish, when compared to prior arrangements, is that this track actually sounds like an arrangement, rather than a remaster of Dancing Mad. Lashmush made this track feel fresh and exciting, like this is a whole new battle theme that happens to be inspired by Dancing Mad. For me, this is the most compelling symphonic rock arrangement of Dancing Mad I’ve ever heard. Track 1-2: Zeromus Sum Game By Sbeast, representing Zeromus from the game Final Fantasy IV Source Track: The Final Battle from Nobuo Uematsu I have to wonder if it was a good idea to make this track the follow-up to the previous track. I worry that people would compare this to the previous track, and then not be impressed because of how conservative it is compared to the other. But I do suggest that you give it a chance. While this track make seem like a great remaster at first, the last minute is what really stood out in my mind. I especially love the mixing, and the balancing of every instrument. And even if it does sound more remastered than arranged, it’s still very well produced. Definitely a good example of how to pull off conservative arrangements. Track 1-3: Darksightedness By Kammo64, representing Dark Bowser from the game Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story Source Track: Returning Memories of the Journey from Yoko Shimomura The intro to this track reminds me so much of the Parasite Eve soundtrack, another fabulous Yoko Shimomura soundtrack. I love that the best Nintendo DS game is represented in this album. What I’m not feeling, however, is the rest of the track after the intro. It seemed like the intro was leading into a creepy, industrial take on this battle theme. But then the mood and rock style drastically changes. It still sounded good, but after the intro build-up, I guess I was expecting something else. So technically, this track is good. But the presentation left me a little disappointed in the end. Track 1-4: The Metal Emperor By Chernabogue, AngelCityOutlaw, and Furilas, representing Machinedramon from the game Digimon World Source Track: Machinedramon Battle from Koji Yamada and Yuko Ishii This track immediately caught me off guard. I would have never assumed that something that’s supposed to represent Machinedramon could sound like something out of Ys. It’s very encouraging, exciting, and a fun take on a hard rock arrangement of a battle theme. My only complaint is that it’s almost too short. Almost. I still loved it, but I could have gone another two minutes with this track personally. Track 1-5: Warriors of Shredder By Gamer Shredding (OmariuZ, and Luis Sáenz) representing Slash from the game Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III: The Manhattan Project Source Tracks: Bad Soldier and Crazy Attack from Yuichi Sakura, Tomoya Tomita, and Kozo Nakamura. This track is pretty fun. Great intro, and outro. The main body of the track was just “okay” for me. Some of the balancing with the background instruments was a little too subtle for my tastes. However, the guitar work in this track is pretty good. So I would still consider this track worth a listen to at least once. Not the best on production value, but it does deliver on the mood it creates. Track 1-6: Jaded by Death By HoboKa, representing Deathevan from the game Breath of Fire II Source Track: Lethal Does from Yuko Takehara Everything about this track, including the title of the source, and the title of this specific track, just screams evil. The mood this track creates is the kind of mood where you are fighting a hopeless battle against the enemy. And that last minute just takes the creepy vibe, and bumps it up, giving you a very ominous ending to a great attempt at a creepy arrangement. On the technical side, the percussion was excellent, and the way the synths were used (especially near the end) did the best job creating a haunting atmosphere. Track 1-7: Crescendo to Chaos By Chernabogue, representing Blue (AKA Rival) from the game Pokemon Red/Blue/Yellow Source Track: Last Battle (VS Rival) from Junichi Masuda The beginning of this track reminds me of a slower version of the intro used in the hidden Black/White remaster of the track. The main body itself does a fabulous job telling the story of an intense Pokemon battle against the champion himself. It almost sounds like a John Williams battle theme, with the way the choir is used, and with how the main body itself was orchestrated. It’s certainly refreshing to hear a darker, more intense arrangement of Pokemon music for a change. Track 1-8: The Power By XPRTNovice, representing Grahf from the game Xenogears Source Tracks: Grahf Ruler of Darkness, and Premonition from Yasunori Mitsuda Right out of the gate, this definitely sounds like it could be an official arrangement done by Yasunori Mitsuda. The ominous and almost disturbing vibe is almost instantaneous. No build-ups necessary. Very interesting and distinguishing choice of instruments used in the main body of this track. The voice work adds a whole new level of this track, making it seem like you’re actually listening to a battle commencing, rather than just listening to a battle theme. Track 1-9: Amputate Your Metal By Mak Eightman, representing Big Bertha from the game Wild Guns Source Track: Boss from Hiroyuki Iwatsuki Absolutely loved the percussion work in this one. One minute, it’s well executed rock drums, the next it almost sounds like a military march accompanying the music in the foreground. The guitar work in this track is intense and exciting. I don’t think the orchestrated portions were as well executed in comparison to the rock portions, but they were still well produced. But it was ultimately the rock work in this track that stood out the most. Track 1-10: Are You BadAss? By Chernabogue, Tuberz McGee, Furilas, Mirby, and Brandon Strader, representing Sturm from the game Advance Wars Source Track: Sturm’s Theme from Taishi Senda Vocals are so controversial in fan made arrangements. This track is an example of a great, clever, and entertaining way to integrate vocals into this track. This could give the typical bad guy theme from Disney movies and shows a run for their money. Although it’s meant to represent Advance Wars, I can immediately see this as an unofficial theme to this entire trilogy (perhaps that was the intent?). The music itself does an excellent job complimenting the vocals. None of the instruments overpower each other, or the vocalists. All around excellent job here. Track 2-1: Opening the Way By Pablo Coma representing the Colossi from the game Shadow of the Colossus Source Track: The Opened Way ~Battle with the Colossus~ From Kow Otani Reading the artists comments included in the zip folder, I can see what the artist was trying to achieve with this arrangement. However, it seems like it takes this track a long time to build up to the atmosphere of “slim hope” mentioned in the comments. I’m waiting and waiting, and then 1:42 happens, and then I finally start to feel a sense of urgency. In a way, I guess that compliments the mystery of Shadow of the Colossus. It’s definitely creepy and mysterious, don’t get me wrong, you just have to be in the right mood to get the most of this track. Track 2-2: The Dark Defender By pu_Freak representing Magus from the game Chrono Trigger Source Track: Magus Confronted from Yasunori Mitsuda Okay, so when I first heard this track, I didn’t notice the low strings right away and only heard the wind. That legit gave me chills. But that’s okay, the low strings still work well enough to set up the main body of this track. The piano work was pretty good, but struck me as a sharp contrast to the ominous low strings, and the subtlety of the howling winds. So the atmosphere didn’t strike me as ominous the more the piano progressed. Still, I applaud pu_Freak for relying on the piano to arrange one of Chrono Trigger’s most iconic themes. Track 2-3: (Progeny) Of a Frail Humanity By David L. Puga, and Mak Eightman representing Wesker from the Resident Evil series. Source Tracks: Wesker’s Beginnings, The Mercenaries: Wesker, and Wind of Madness from Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, Resident Evil 4, and Resident Evil 5 respectively by Masafumi Takada, Jun Fukuda, Misao Senbongi, Shusaku Uchiyama, and Kota Suzuki It may seem like a short track, but when you actually listen to it, it doesn’t feel short at all. You’re too entranced by the haunting rock arrangement produced here. I love the transitions between soft and hard, sort of like Radiohead’s My Iron Lung. The other thing I noticed, and this could just be me, is that it sort of portrays Wesker as being more of a tragic villain than this deranged lunatic that we’ve come to love over the years. It’s somber, and haunting. Short, but sweet. Track 2-4: Fortress of Doom By neshead80 representing the Koopalings from (specifically) the game Super Mario World Source Track: Sub Castle BGM from Koji Kondo This almost reminds me of an industrial (slowly progressing into heavy metal) mash-up of the Super Mario World sub castle theme, and the dark world dungeon theme from A Link to the Past. But after 1:33, I started to hear more and more of Super Mario World. It’s definitely one of the most elaborate attempts at an artist making already existing video game music their own. Track 2-5: Molgera’s Love By Chimpazilla, and Redg representing Molgera from the game The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker Source Track: Molgera from Kenta Nagata, Hajime Wakai, and Toru Minegishi The intro to this track will immediately creep you out, and give you nightmares. Then we get to the main body, and the atmosphere shifts from disturbing, to a more elegant and fun approach to a dark atmosphere. I would have loved to hear the “happy” version mentioned in the artists comments, because this particular arrangement does a fantastic job creating something that is both happy, and scary. Kind of like the Cheshire Cat. So I’m curious as to how “happy” this track sounded before everything turned inside out. Track 2-6: Mad Jack’s Drops By Kammo64 representing Mad Jack from the game Donkey Kong 64 Source Track: Factory Boss from Grant Kirkhope For me, dub step is difficult to tolerate, because the artists tend to abuse the beat drops and/or rely only on the beat drops and not care about the rest of the track. But this track is flawless from beginning to end. Everything was handled well. The build ups, the bridges, the subtle background instruments, that creepy outro, and oh yes, the beat drops were all carefully produced to give that truly twisted carnival vibe. This is what dub step needs more of; equal attention given to how the beat drops are used, and the in-betweens. Track 2-7: Twisted Rebirth By SkyRiderX feat. XPRTNovice representing Dark Samus from the Metroid Prime Trilogy Source Tracks: Vs. Dark Samus Theme, Tallon Overworld, and U-mos from Kenji Yamamoto, Minako Hamano, Masaru Tajima, and Kouichi Kyuma It was kind of hard to hear the voice samples throughout the track (not so much the laugh, and damn was that laugh good for Dark Samus), as the music overpowered them a bit too much. That is my biggest gripe, as the music itself is pretty good. I’d be convinced that this was an actual battle theme from the Metroid Prime trilogy. I really loved the beginning, and how it seemed like Dark Samus was making the music “glitch.” Most of the music sounded a bit compressed, but I actually think that makes this track even more “Metroid Prime” like, and that makes me more convinced at how authentic this sounds. It sounds like a homage to the Metroid Prime Trilogy, while simultaneously sounding like it was actually composed Track 2-8: Soiled by the Egyptians By timaeus222 representing Orbot Purple from the game Vectorman Source Tracks: Cave2 Tank, and Day 5: Arctic Ridge ~ Day 9: Hydroponic Lab from Jon Holland I love reading timaeus222’s source breakdowns. It’s really fascinating how he can take any section of any song, and arrange the order to sound like something that is both different and respectful to the source. But anyway, VECTORMAN! One of the best non-Yuzo Koshiro soundtracks on the Genesis. I was really excited when I found out Vectorman would be in this album. But I digress, this track is pretty damn fun. Good solid beat, and a very addictive percussion. And after seven consecutive “dark” tracks, this album needed an injection of fun. This isn’t the first “eastern culture meets electronica” arrangement I’ve heard, but just because it isn’t an original idea, doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Track 2-9: Become Death By Darkmoocher, and timaeus222 representing Metalhead from the game Vectorman Source Tracks: Day 4: Absolute Zero ~ Day 15: Worldlink Center, Day 2: Metalhead, and Day 16: Twist and Shout from Jon Holland Holy crap, this is such an insane track. This track manages to encompass the fun, the dark, the creepy, and funky aspects of being BadAss all at once. The other thing I love about this track is that before you get comfortable with how the music sounds, the music shifts into another direction. And the best thing about those music shifts is how seamless they are. It fits with the general purpose of the track, leaving nothing in this track to feel abrupt whatsoever. Track 2-10: Seed of Perdition By Lashmush representing Lavos from Chrono Trigger Source Tracks: Lavos' Theme, World Revolution, and Last Battle from Yasunori Mitsuda Lashmush brings this album full circle with his take on Lavos. This track does a great job telling the story of the battle against Lavos, and all its forms, in the style of heavy symphonic death metal. At times, the music sounds a little too hot, forcing me to turn the volume down a little just to clearly hear the music. Minor production issue for me though. It’s one of those tracks that gets better the more it progresses. Once the “last battle” section hits, the quality really takes off. And that ending, so emotional. Like Lavos has emerged victorious. But…the future refused to change. Overall, it seems like effort was made to not make this volume as rock heavy as the other two volumes were. It’s fun, brooding, and evil. Sometimes all at once, sometimes on separate occasions. If you loved volumes 1 and 2 of the BadAss series, then definitely download volume 3. Whether it’s better than the other volumes is up to interpretation. I personally think all three volumes offer an excellent abundance of high quality boss theme/level arrangements. --- And then at the bottom of the post, I'll post links to all the BadAss albums. Great job everyone. Best trilogy since Back to the Future!
  21. To hype myself for BadAss Volume 3, I revisited the first two volumes and thought I'd give them both a "small" review And now for the second: BadAss Volume 2: Electric BadAss The BadAss takes its second form, and its stronger, more intimidating, and more….um….BadAss than the previous form. Seriously, the quality of tracks increased, the sources used combined both popular games and lesser known/underrated games. This may very well be, currently, the best compilation of boss battle arrangements you will find. The one thing I will criticize, and this is a tiny one, is that this album might intimidate those who don’t like hard rock as much. But, there seems to be slightly more representation of other genres than just hard rock in this album. Before I go to my personal favorites, I want to make an honorable mention to the track “Broken Dreams.” The main body of the track struck me as repetitive and generic, but I absolutely loved how it sampled the best of the 90s Sonic cartoons. Personal Favorites: Track 1: Baby Bowser (Super Mario World 2 - Yoshi's Island) - Bowzilla [Lashmush] God damn does Baby Bowser need a diaper change. This track is very angry, and very intense. The intro is outstanding, and I loved how the synth work in this track didn’t take away from the VERYANGRYANDINTENSEGOINGTOKILLYOU riffs. And way to make Baby Bowser seem more intimidating with those roars. Track 2: Robot Bosses (Sonic & Knuckles) - Hedgehog Fodder [Devastus] This track tricks you into thinking you’ll get a nice sounding track (just like Gilgamesh did in volume 1), and then BAM. The sirens go off, and the robots are out to kill you with more intense riffs. I love the liberal risks taken in this track as well. The original riffs really added to the track. And the subtle choirs and chanting really made it seem like this theme was fit for an army, rather than a single entity. Track 3: Teddy Bear (Splatterhouse 3) - Hunger [Mak Eightman] *From my original review of the track* I like how the distortion blends with the music. It makes Genesis music, or Genesis inspired music sound that much more hardcore than it already was. It’s very intense, insane, and those build ups are so solid. Track 4: The Combine (Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2 - Episode Two) - Mister Freeman [Justin Lassen] I mostly appreciate this track for how different it sounds compared to most of the other, rock heavy tracks. It’s slower, more synth reliant, with a dash of a haunting orchestra bridge. Reminds me of something Trent Reznor would do. Track 8: Dr. Wily (Mega Man 1, 3) - Top This [Flexstyle] *From my original review of the track* I can just see a DJ coming out to stage making a grand entrance at the very start of this track, and then saying into a mic “top this” right at the 0:29 mark. The percussion and bass work is outstanding. I want to dance to this, I want to jam to this, I want to rock out to this. The production here is……ahem…..top notch. Track 12: Ultimate Phalanx (Demon's Crest) - Red Retaliation [Torzelan] I love Demon’s Crest, and its soundtrack. I would have loved the final battle theme, if it didn’t last 16 seconds before looping again. That’s what makes this track so brilliant. These guys found a way to take a 16 second track, make it their own, add awesome lyrics to it, and stretch it out into 4 and a half amazing minutes. Whether you like this genre or not, anyone who aspires to arrange video game tracks should listen to this. Mainly to see that yes, it IS possible to make creative arrangements from original sources, no matter how short the source material is. Track 13: The Great Mighty Poo (Conker's Bad Fur Day) - Poop [Brandon Strader] Man, I don’t even know if anything I could say about this track would do it justice. The Great Mighty Poo theme was already an excellent track, and Brandon Strader somehow made it even better by making it a dark comedic rock opera. Track 14: Dr. Robotnik (Sonic the Hedgehog 2) - Egg-Shaped Prison [David L. Puga] At first I thought this album should have ended with the previous track, but by the end of the track, I was content with this being a good track to end the album on. It’s a nice take on the Sonic 2 battle theme, and whether intentional or not, the distorted ending does a good job making you think “is the BadAss onslaught REALLY over with?” Spoiler alert: It’s not
  22. To hype myself for BadAss Volume 3, I revisited the first two volumes and thought I'd give them both a "small" review First, BadAss Volume 1: The BadAss Menace. Some of the best boss theme arrangements can be found in this album. I'm not surprised by the heavy amount of hard rock represented in this album. But some of the tracks in this album do an excellent job in their performances, creating performances that scream "THIS ENEMY WILL KILL YOU" rather than just creating a hard rock remaster with the loudest and fastest riffs. But not all of it is rock, there are orchestrated arrangements as well. Hell, there's even rock AND orchestrated arrangements. This album is more than just artists making their interpretations of random boss battle themes (and stage themes). These artists really thought outside the box with these arrangements. Personal Favorites: Track 1: Gilgamesh (Final Fantasy V) - Master of the Blades [pu_freak] This is such a misleading track. And I mean that in a good way of course. It tempts you into thinking this will be a peaceful, serene sounding experience, before blasting you with all the BadAss themes that await listeners of this album. But what I actually love about this album is how an originally fast paced battle theme like Gilgamesh’s can sound so haunting and so soothing. Track 3: Laughing Octopus (Metal Gear Solid 4) - Routine of War [The Dual Dragons] Man I wish the battle themes in Guns of the Patriots sounded half as good as this track. I don’t know if this was intentional, but I love how the artists used the guitars to create an experience as if Laughing Octopus was actually inside your ears taunting you. Track 8: Dr. Wily (Mega Man 3) - A Daring Escape [Jago] I've heard orchestrated arrangements of this particular stage theme before, but this one knocked it out of the park for me. It adds a sense of urgency to make an otherwise exciting track more dramatic. Track 10: Astaroth (Shadow Hearts - Covenant) - Astaroth's Awakening [The Dual Dragons] I have to confess, I added this track to the custom soundtrack of my copy of Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Specifically the stage where you fight True Ogre. But besides that, Astaroth's battle theme is one of my all time favorite Yasunori Mitsuda tracks. I love that the Dual Dragons didn't try to be Yasunori Mitsuda, and crafted their own mood based on the original melody of the Astaroth battle theme. Track 11: Cobra (G.I. Joe) - Real American Hero [Nutritious] I mostly love how this track combines the drama of an 80s action flick to a modern day battle track. It’s not really intense, but it’s more of an encouraging battle theme. And sometimes, encouraging battle themes are the best. Track 15: Shredder (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV) - The Shredder [Sixto Sounds] The beginning made me think that this would be more of an oriental style remix with slower, more ominous tones. But then the track just surges out right in your face, and belts you with the fastest, exciting, most intense riffs you’ll ever hear in an arrangement of a boss battle theme.
  23. In one fell swoop, this track manages to encapsulate all the moods that the Metroid series represents. Dark, haunting, adventurous, mysterious, and a little bit of excitement here and there. What else could be said that hasn't been said already? Everything was flawless, and arranged so brilliantly, it could pass as an official arrangement produced by Nintendo.
  24. Embrace the Night was one of my favorite tracks to review during December Reviews month, so I'm looking forward to the "in tune" segment featuring this track (haven't listened to this one yet, but I plan on doing so tomorrow).
  25. I'd be interested in hearing more about how one can be a voice actor for this project. I've done a little voice acting here and there, and I know a few other voice actors (pro and amateur alike) if you'd be interested in that as well.
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