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Everything posted by Marmiduke

  1. This is a pretty interesting mix because it adequately represents the original melody is a fresh way WHILST STILL tampering and adding additional layers beneath that. So this to me sounds like a finished mix which has then had a string backing applied much later in production. Not that that is my assumption, that's just how it sounded to me. The result is something that I wouldn't describe as dissonant, but perhaps an against-the-grain harmony that I don't entirely dislike. Whereas the piece would otherwise be a solid but slightly bland take on Bubbleman, it most definately benefits from a new persona with its sombre, unpredictable backing tones. Unmistakably Wingless, which equates to top notch mixing.
  2. As far as Zeal mixes go (and they do go, on and on and on), this remains the most memorable for me. I'm someone that played most of Chrono Trigger as a young person and didn't even think about the music at all, so when I caught up with OCR and listened to the pages and pages of CT tracks, I didn't get much nostalgia, but I finally got to appreciate the CT score. So, it is DreamOfZeal that I think about when someone mentions Zeal theme. There's something about it that is now etched into my recollection. Is there any greater compliment than having the ability to usurp the original? Probably.
  3. Obviously, this is professional sounding and awesome to boot, but there were a few small things that stood out for me. My major concern was that it sounded like it was designed from the ground up to accompany some sort of video. It has a very scored sound, which isn't exactly a rushed sound, but it means it doesn't move between sections at its own time in keeping up with the visual material. Now this probably wasn't a scored mix, but I did get that impression that this would suit an opening introduction to a Soul Calibur game or something, with constantly shifting nature of the mix. Even in saying that, the intro and certain parts sound very authentic and film-quality. Russel definately has a cinematic flair, and it is really apparent here. The woodwind is used so well, it really shows the emotional range of the instrument off. And of course, the organ. I'm a big fan of the organ/choir section; that made the mix for me. Despite the busyness of the arrangement, the mix is something to be proud of.
  4. Well for me, there's a massive hole in this mix, like a boat has just smashed through the center a pier or something. First off I think the bookends of the mix are pretty good. The sounds are maybe a little sharp, but perfection to that degree doesn't interest me at all. The melody is nice, the energy is there. But as soon as we get into the hole of the mix, the annoying things that were partially hidden are totally exposed. Not only exposed, but thrust in our faces and spelled out. It's almost post-modern in its execution. The repetition isn't really enjoyable, and its something that hurts all the other elements of the mix. I'm sure if I set my mind to it, I could find something really analytical and arty to justify the boring portion of this track, but I think I'd rather just save the effort and put it down to an error of judgement for a first-time accepted submission. For what it is worth, I loved the meat of the mix, not so much the bones.
  5. This mix reminds me a lot of the Brinstar Depths arrangement from Super Smash Bros. Melee, and not just because it is melodically identical. I think that both versions of the theme expand on the original mood which the NES couldn't quite master. But that's all I would call this. A good expansion, and since it was made before the Melee track, I appreciate its relevance in relation to the original. Not the most interesting of McVaffe's work, but pretty much anything pales in comparison to the most interesting McVaffe stuff, so it's no big deal.
  6. Wow, what a well-informed arrangement. Noone could ever accuse the mixers of being lazy, that's for sure. This is the extreme opposite of a phoned in mix. A really full, rich mix with some of the strongest roots of influence on the entire site. The authenticity here is stellar, and while I don't mean that it sounds exactly like a 80 piece orchestra with 100 person choir, it does sound like it was ripped from the 1700s, had there have been mixing equiptment and software available during that time. Obviously the choir doesn't reach the uncanny valley, which it sounds like some people would have preferred, but you know, we are at OCR. I think we can all appreciate the skill and sound of something that doesn't precisely meet its grand potential. And anyway, I think the sounds absolutely fantastic. Some parts sound spot on to my ears, and that more than exceeds my expectations. I love how smart this is and I love the obvious passion for this type of music, which is gradually becoming more and more irrelevant to people these days, which is a great shame. Sometimes throwing subtle influence out the window is the best thing to keep certain flames alive, and there's no better flame to save than great music. Well done.
  7. I don't want to promote tall-poppyism, but Protricity is the Jesus Christ of videogame mixes. In my opinion of course. He's had his crucifixion, his resurrection in recent years, and most importantly, some truly divine DKC2 mixes. In fact, if Jesus had played Diddy's Kong Quest, I'm not even sure he would have been able to make better mixes than Ari. Anyway, enough of the comparisons to the Son of God, I'm sure I'm offending a throng of people. Simply, this mix is a gift. It's the highest level of quality. The perfect remix. Of course, it could be because of a bias I have towards my love of DKC2, but I think it trancends that. It's scary good. By the way, I'm an advocate of the birdcussion. I can't really explain why, but it's one of the most effective, well pulled off musical gimmicks I've ever heard. Freaking hell, I love this mix. And thus, it would be unhealthy for me to continue on like this...
  8. Nice. Sparse breakbeat action. It's rare when a mix utilises repetition as a quality and not something that bores or annoys. That NES-like backing never varies, and repeats A LOT of times, which is certainly true to the original and is common in a lot of chiptune based mixes. It doesn't kill the enjoyment, so there can't be anything wrong with it. This piece doesn't do anything huge or have anything radically fresh to spin on the Mega Man 2 score, but it a good ride and a pretty good promoter of balance between original and adapted material. Great way to give a familiar genre and a familiar melody some unique personality.
  9. Xenogears was the first game soundtrack that I thought was too good to belong to a game, back when I considered games something to entertain kids while parents did whatever. Even though those days are gone and my views have changed, I can still understand what I was thinking at the time. GrayLightning really did a great track justice here. I've always thought that Lightning had a great ear for instrument selection, and this is exactly why. Just listen to this track and everything sounds right. The melody is weird and complex, but that's what made it the best one in the game. There's some really nice sounds in this one. I don't know whether it is Lightning's biggest or most creative mix, but for what it is, it's practically unbeatable: Great music to accompany a meandering mind.
  10. Reading the reviews here is a bit of a surprise, but then again not really. I would NEVER have labelled this a piece that is hard to access, hard to interpret and especially would never say it was hard to listen to. Okay, so it has some dissonant notes. It has some fluctuating tempos. It's a piano piece. Versatile, dynamic instruments play versatile dynamic music. Also, the type of play style doesn't equate to a good song, so it's just as well this track and it's artist have the credentials to justify the instrument. Arrangement wise, I can see where the controversy lies, but I also see it as a bit of a moot point. OverClocked Remix, to me, is that flash moment where the familiar meets the unexpected and unimagined. I agree with the critics that say this mix is too divided between old arrangement and original arrangement, but there are some great moments where the two converge. It does lose tightness because this only occurs in a few isolated incidents, but without outside knowledge, noone would really care. As a standalone song, this is perfect. Freaking awesome playing with some truly special portions of music (2:28 - 2:42 is brilliant stuff.) Piano pieces are generally awesome, but this raises the bar. Recommended.
  11. I was surprised when I saw that injury contributed to this, because this is VERY CotMM. The stuff at 4:45 is much more injury style, but who cares about semantics. It's a collab piece and it wouldn't be the same without either's input. The music itself needs no explaining. It's layered expertly, drenched in distortion, grimy leads and greasy synths. It's got a real dark style that I really enjoy. I suppose that's a given with industrial. I'm not a fan of movie quotes in remixes, however. I know they really don't add anything, so they shouldn't really be able to detract anything. Technically, if used sparingly, they are totally harmless. BUT I have personal issues with their context and what it means for the mix. Having a mix forever associated with Pitch Black is a bit of a shame for me, seeings as I see this mix as a lot better than that movie and the imagery of Vin Diesel as Magus makes me weep while facepalming. But obviously quotes aren't going to ruin the crux of this mix, which is all that really matters to me. I mean, I'm not going to put this on at parties any time soon, but there is still an allure with CotMM for me. It's real solitary listening. Good shit.
  12. This is freaking fantastic, even without the knowledge that it is a debut mix. I really like how the melody wasn't just buried under a ton of effects synths and other instruments. It shines through in everything and runs with grain of the mix, which is all I ask for. It's a fun one to listen to. It has that quality where you don't get sick of it. I can't imagine a point in time where I would not feel like listening to this, which is not to say I listen to this often. But now think I ought to. Great remix and the birth of a great OCRemixer.
  13. Link's Awakening. Probably the first game in which I truly recognised a game soundtrack as a singular thing, not just something that was attached to the level I was playing to make it seem more unique. Many fond memories wasting away good hours of holiday time playing Gameboy Color. As for the mix, I really love how it doesn't bother messing around. There could have been a long buildup, a drawn out intro or something and it would have been fine. But less is oftentimes more, as we all know, and the intro that is present here is BETTER than what would have been acceptable. The synthed up instrumentation is... well it's zircon so it's above stellar. I also really loved the Metroid Prime-ish goings-on in the middle of the song. Awesome. If I had paid for it, it would have given me value for money without a doubt.
  14. I've been very much into melancholy and/or ominous piano stuff recently, and hearing this is almost emotionally shocking. Like my heart has jumped from an ice lake into a hot spring. Not... accustomed to... uplifting piano music. So pretty... so full of hope and sunshine. *dies of aural hypothermia* Seriously, this music could uplift the unupliftable. It's an amazing emotive piece that I can't get enough of. It's music to dream happy thoughts to. Thoughts like: Joint-handed children skipping through a town made of teacake situated within a meadow of donuts and napping puppies. Otherwise known as Nirvana.
  15. Aww-Summ. The whole jumping from idea to idea, tempo to tempo is very rarely pulled off as well as it is here. It's bizarre yet completely sensical at the same time. Strings and synths are sweet. Real sweet. The drums in the first third of the mix are somewhat fizzy, which I don't think sounds too hot. It doesn't kill the blazing heat of the mix though. Basically, the mix is crrrazy good. Which is signifcantly higher regarded than regular, non-crrrazy good good. And NoppZ is godlike, in my view. One of his best.
  16. McVaffe piano is the fastest way to tip a mix over the edge from good to the shit. I'm not sure if I would class this as jazz, personally, but I can hear the influence through the DnB. Everything sounds stellar (especially given its age). McVaffe is an expert at sustaining material for vast amounts of time without anything getting stale around the edges, and by this stage he seemed to be right in his element. Well chosen and placed instrumentation (crunchy distorted percussion for the win!) and consistent arranging is something that was/is pretty much guaranteed by a McVaffe mix. This is a great addition to his playlist.
  17. You choose to get a little creative and different with a score like Mega Man 2, you are going to get casualties of war. I mean, this is a radically altered rendition of the themes, and not in an expansive way either. I enjoy the minimalist approach, even though I don't think the concept quite gels with the rapidfire chiptune flavour of Mega Man. So its not 100%, but then, what is? I've come to realise I love pretty much any synth anyone can throw at me, so I enjoy most of those elements in this; the guitar however threw some of the balance off, especially with the chorus backing (even though it does sound nice). So I thought the first half was more successful than the last. Overall, it's a black sheep among the more faithful, blue bomber melody extravaganzas, but it's also fun to listen to in its own right. I can see a lot of people's tastes rejecting this, but nevertheless it should be given a chance.
  18. This melody is one of my favourite in all gaming history. And what you hear in this mix is basically that same melody with little alteration. The alterations that do occur don't really improve anything, nor extend anything beyond what was in the original. Having said that, all that is new doesn't hurt the melody either. Had this been an annoying, simplistic source melody, I wouldn't be so forgiving that this is a remake with debatable instrumentation and an obtrusive length. The fact that the melody is fully preserved just means I get to listen to it more often, which is why I love this mix against all better judgement. And besides, it's AmIEvil. We all know what awesome things he was destined for after this. I want to kill you in a jealous rage!
  19. Vintage pretzel is like cold pizza or soggy cereal. Some people love it and some people just can't get past the way it is supposed to be eaten. Or in this case, listened to. Would this have sounded better if djpretzel concieved this mix today? Of course. But does it sound great regardless? To me, it's hot. I relay all the praise for the sonar sound effect; this gives the mix a gimmick, which is helpful in instantly remembering the song after it gets lost in the vast shuffle. Drums get a little spastic in relation to the keyboard melody, which is also get quite manic. At times, it sounds as though one thing is happening completely detached from the other, which throws me a little. However, then you have moments like at 1:17 - 1:45, which is just ubercool and very slick. Being a track from the first days of OCR, this mix proves that the fun was always there, but also the quality has always been there too. This mix still sounds fresh, interesting and ear-pleasing even after 9 YEARS! And that's a tough thing to do, I imagine. Mind boggling.
  20. Wow, a lot of people liked this less than me. I thought this was fantastic. Flaws or no flaws, I'm just a huge fan of dark electronica, and this is one fine example of just that. There are a lot of interesting technical ideas throughout, and the ambience is really fitting of the piece and the melody. But I have to say my favourite section is at 2:00 when the track launches into a distorted electronic nightmare version of dark church organ style music. I'm a big fan of this mix, and I have no problem saying that. There is a ton more good than bad here. Even tracks you deem flawed deserve to be loved for the sake of their quality parts.
  21. Criminal lack of reviews! Wtf? I love this mix. In a healthy, strictly platonic way, of course. Anything that allows me to conjure up a uber-futuristic Incan metropolis in my mind needs to be cherished! And listened to many, many times. There's a great blend of crazy, yet totally compatible elements here, which I personally find present in most of my favourite remixes. By this stage djpretzel pretty much knew how good he was and you can hear he was having a blast creating aural magic with this suped up, synthed up, pan-fluted up Final Fantasy mix. More people need to stop passing this by. 'tis a gem! and it's djpretzel. I mean... how much more assurance do you need?
  22. NICE. I think the best thing about this mix is that it waits until we are really in the thick of everything going on before it reveals its hand, and then continues to layer surprises on top of that. Never boring for a millisecond. I've been completely ignorant of the TMNT soundtracks my whole life, as I've never been a Turtles fan (blasphemy?), but I'm very happy that there is an community set up with the goal to get me to appreciate it against all odds. This is some really great stuff. This mix is a big deal. For the site, and in general.
  23. Wow, I'm really embarassed to say this, but I've been listening to both this and Canon for years and I've never realised how reminiscent the two are. Which is staggering now that everyone has pointed it out. I really hope it doesn't damage my enjoyment of this mix in future. It shouldn't. Anyway, its not a Canon remix and thankfully the theme is only used as a bed to support the main melody. Rayza is the king of boiling hot dance music that is almost impossible to dance to. No complaints from me, since I don't dance. I enjoy this type of mix because of the audio overload, and that sensation is delivered here while also delivering some kickass tunage as well. You can't ask for much more.
  24. Chill x 200. For me, lounge music is usually background music, but this certainly is an exception to the rule. Very accomplished, interesting throughout and has a real vibe of authenticity to it. I can really imagine this playing at a high-end latte bar, soy icecream parlour or fondu repair center. Final Fanatsy 9 cameo was a ridiculously awesome idea, too. Lastly, I love this for promoting radical diversity from electro/trance OCR mixes early in the game. Nice job.
  25. It definately thrusts Zelda's Lullaby into a Wind Waker style, even though Zelda's Lullaby already had a great Wind Waker treatment in the Wind Waker. But thankfully, it comes in much more focused here, great guitar work. The melody shines brighter than ever in the initial portion of the mix. When the sound gets bigger and the electric elements come into it, I was a little thrown. The transition isn't 100%, although I didn't really notice it at all on my second listen. And I felt the narrative of the piece was a little disjointed. Zelda's Lullaby is a peaceful, reflective song after all, and I didn't really get the full connection between the acoustic and electric sections. With big sounds come a lot of different emotions: sadness, elation, love, hope, defeat. I can extract all of those from the music, but I'm confused as to which, if any, fit with the song. A stronger establishment of concept may have helped here. That's a minor gripe though. The samples were irrelevant but I liked that they were there anyway. Overall, strong work on a track that deserves a lot of love.
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