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CHz

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Everything posted by CHz

  1. Mentioned this in #j (guess everyone had already left by then), but the chorus sounds like Ice Man to me: .
  2. Not touching on the other Sonic tunes, but Yuji Naka says in the liner notes of the recently released Sonic 1 & 2 soundtrack that the Sonic 2 ending theme came first and was later reworked into the vocal version:
  3. Yeah, to confirm Darke's call, Hamaguchi orchestrated OWA for the Reunion Tracks album (they play it at Distant Worlds and such too), and that's exceptionally close to the original. He was also responsible for Liberi Fatali's in-game orchestration. Just paying deference to Hamaguchi; arrangement here is definitely his work unless there's something else I don't know about. Since I'm here and I listened to this, I'll throw an additional YES into the pile for good measure. Themes are pretty well fused, and while the arrangement is a little repetitive with some section repeats, there's variation between them and overall this is more than fine. The brass is exceptionally weak at 1:31-1:50, but a pretty rad sound besides that.
  4. Man, why'd you have to release this on the same day I leave on a trip? No way I'm downloading this on hotel wireless. Thanks jerkoff.
  5. CHz

    RIP Ryu Umemoto

    Here are a couple of links for those who'd like to learn more about Ryu Umemoto: Square Enix Music Online's obituary SEMO put together a nice, long look at his career. Umemoto started in the business nearly twenty years ago, though most of his works during the early years were obscure, Japanese-only games. He was a prolific guy who in his final years composed game music with original pieces on the side, arranged music for official and unofficial albums, and produced both physical and digital soundtrack releases. It seemed like his hard work and involvement with Cave was starting him on the road to becoming a big name, making his premature death especially heartbreaking. Hardcore Gaming 101: A Dragon's Journey: Ryu Umemoto in Europe Umemoto took a trip to Europe to meet Mattias Häggström Gerdt (anosou) and Audun Sørlie (Akumu Audi). Audi wrote up a recap of the trip, including his impressions of Umemoto. There are a fair bit of interviews with VGM composers here and there, but not too many character studies like this one that tell you about a person and what kind of a person he is. Audi also wrote a followup on Original Sound Version after Umemoto's death. K.B. linked Umemoto's VGMdb profile, which is a good place to see just how many different projects he was involved with. There's also a memorial page on Facebook for those who use the Facebooks. Umemoto was a master of FM synthesis. He started writing music for the PC-98, but even in recent years he was still using FM sounds in both games (Akai Katana and NIN2-JUMP) and arrangements. My favorite piece by him is his contribution to PSYVARIAR "THE MIX", an arrangement of the opening theme from Psyvariar Medium Unit (although it's really more of an original piece built on top of a minimal source). He shows off both his chip skills with some screaming guitar and his songwriting skills in general with a piece that absolutely soars. It's a breathtaking tribute to flying at 5000 miles per hour and destroying everything that moves. R.I.P. Ryu Umemoto. You are missed, and will continue to be missed, by a lot of people.
  6. CHz

    Don't worry, she's completely on the wrong trail. By the time she figures it out, there'll be no way to stop Operation Cerberus.

  7. I agree with OA that the drums aren't really fitting in well with the guitars. Right now they feel like they're sitting on top of everything. The bass in the original is pretty monstrous, so props for playing it live. But yeah, this is way too much of a cover. There's only a minute of actual arrangement, followed by a repeat of the whole thing. We look for more personalization of the source material than this; check out submission standards for more. It's okay to keep the melody intact as long as you make other changes. The rock conversion is a good start, but you can add supporting writing, original sections, change the chords, and so on. Rockin' cover though. NO
  8. I really liked the first thirty-five seconds of this. The meat of the arrangement is pretty good too, though. Expanded very well. Gonna have to fall in line with everyone about the guitar timing and mixing with everyone else, though. The supporting writing is good, so make sure we can hear it clearly! NO (resubmit)
  9. Not a favorite tune of mine from the original PMD (it has no reason to loop right there), but nice job extending it with flair. Those hot sections at 1:28 and 2:25 are for sure the weak points; bring down those leads and clean up the balance so you can hear more of what's going on. I love the dynamic range in this, but I think the quieter sections may actually be a tiny bit too soft. That may just be because those bigger sections are so in-your-face that they make everything else seem puny in comparison. This one's almost there. It just needs a little more TLC in the mixing and it's good to go. NO (resubmit)
  10. This is an excellent summary. Yes, the staff roll theme is a medley that doesn't spend very long on each theme, but the style shifts here are way stronger than they are in the original. The individual pieces are enjoyable, but the original being disjointed doesn't give a free pass for disjointedness. And dead horse beating incoming, but what happened to the guitars? NO
  11. Excellent, this is a Hubbard tune I haven't heard yet. I can cross this one off the list now. And that's certainly a direction I wasn't expecting this to be taken. Very cool. The intro is longer than I'd personally have liked, but it's source all they way through and there's still close to three minutes of awesome that comes after it, so no worries. The panning isn't really that much of a problem, although the bass in particular does leave things a bit unbalanced in that direction. Squeaky clean otherwise. I can get behind this. YES
  12. As always, a really creative arrangement with a ton of different ideas. Like a few of the judges, the synth work seemed a bit out of place to me, but otherwise I don't really have any big complaints about that aspect. As also tends to be the case with your mixes, the production could use a lot of work. The balancing never really clicks; at times there's a lot of empty space, and others there's too much going on and things get crowded out. The strings and bass are weak and never really do a good job of filling things in. The guitar is really dry throughout. It's not too terrible when there's other stuff going on, but the moment at 1:08 that everyone's mentioned really shows it off in a bad way. The squeaking of the too-high final trumpet notes is also a bit off. Everything up to that was decent, though. Your sequencing has definitely improved from your earlier stuff. There are too many issues for me to sign off on this one now, but it's almost there. I feel like you're making progress with your music; just keep working at it and see if you can touch this one up. When you can nail production, you'll be a superstar. NO (resubmit)
  13. I like what you did with this. Pretty touching, but not overwrought. I feel that the clarity issues are holding this one back: touching up the low end in particular I think would do wonders. Otherwise not too bad. I wouldn't say no to a volume bump, but that's not a killer. NO (resubmit)
  14. Yeah, this is rather conservative. The melody, accompaniment arpeggio, and bassline are mostly recreated from the original through the first forty-eight seconds, and the drum pattern is pretty similar too. B section is also pretty close, but it has some variation in the melody and original writing. Then there's some rad soloing over the same accompaniment, an A section repeat, and finally more soloing. Cool stuff, but I don't think this is quite interpretive enough for OCR. NO
  15. I uploaded a recording of the source tune from the GBA version of the game. It's louder overall, and the melody itself is more prominent. There's some weird volume fluctuation happening in the melody on the provided version, I'm not sure if it's really like that in the game or what. (I just really like this piece.)
  16. Sheesh, this is a good arrangement. Gonna echo all of the comments on the sequencing and mixing. They're the things keeping this only a great mix and not a "my word, my face seems to have evaporated" mix. Even so, this is still over the bar thanks to the strengths of the arrangement. YES
  17. Nice job expanding the source while staying so close to the original style. Drums need to be beefed up, though, and yeah the mix overall could be polished. You've got space to rebalance things. I highly encourage you work on this and send it back so we can reach our rock quota. NO (resubmit)
  18. The first six notes of those phrases are a pretty direct use of that background fanfare thing happening at 0:03 in the source. The arpeggio is a little looser, but I connected it right away, so I'd count it too. It's definitely pretty loose with the source until 1:41. I'm just not really feeling the arrangement overall. When the melody finally hits at 1:41, it's played straight three times, and the only changes are that more source parts are added without much modification (fanfare thing second time, descending countermelody third time). Next is a break with an original melody and the modified arpeggio. Then at 2:54 is the melody played straight through again with more accompaniment, and then that's it for source: we wind down with more than a minute of original stuff. There are long stretches of loose/original material, and the treatment isn't very interpretive when the melody's front and center. Some nice untz, though. NO
  19. A bunch of different arrangement ideas here, but yeah, the arrangement overall is a bit jumpy. Sequencing isn't really a big deal here, but the mixing for sure could be cleaned up a little bit. Nothing ever gets really indistinct, but there's some definite crowding. The piano in particular is also pretty far in the back for sections like 2:01 when it's the lead. You've got a nice start with this one, but it's not quite clicking together yet. NO (resubmit)
  20. Stylish take on the theme, I like it. The percussion balance as mentioned is pretty odd, with much of it not really fitting in with the rest of the track. The flute and piano sequencing are pretty mechanical too. Your story's frustrating, and this one's really close, but it's just not all the way there. Sorry. NO
  21. Arrangement's a bit on the conservative side, but some nice rockin' and flourishes. I'm hearing the harmonic clashing in the section Palp pointed out. The final section in particular, 3:23–3:35, sounds really bad. The production's okay, with the snare being an obvious weak point. I thought the balancing was a little off overall, like at 0:47 where the lead guitar is a little overshadowed by the accompaniment. Definitely not bad at all by any means, but it doesn't stand out as much as the synth leads do. There's also some cluttering in the busier sections. Good start, but my main sticking point is the harmonic stuff, because again that's not working at all. NO (resubmit)
  22. Structurally, I agree this is pretty rough. All of the segments except Summer just end. A big part is that the themes are just run through once, and when they're finished that's it. But thematically, it kind of works. I really wish it flowed better, like the middle transition, but the lyrics and the sounds of the segments have a clear direction. There could be more interpretation of the individual pieces instead of just moving on, but the transformations of the themes were pretty well done, and you took obvious care in the overall shape of the piece. Recording's great, the song sounds nice and intimate. The rough spots in the performance stand out because the mix is relatively simple. Could this be better? Absolutely. But I think it's good enough, and it honors the source material in an interesting and great way. YES
  23. Fun arrangement. A bit loose at times, as DA mentioned, but overall it's connected enough. Definitely lots of mechanical sequencing. The flute is pretty good, but the piano, bouzouki, and strings aren't that great. I agree that the piano tone is a bit dull. It doesn't help that it's sitting in the back in the mix, even when it's the lead. There's some crowding in the busier sections with the flute, synth, and bouzouki all competing for space. There's a lot of potential here, but the production isn't quite up to snuff yet. Try to clean this one up a bit and send it back. NO (resubmit)
  24. The transitions between the themes weren't that great. The first one at 1:08 was especially rough, but the later out to lead out the track was also pretty abrupt. As above, the additional supporting writing was good, but the arrangement is still too coverish. Try varying the melody and structure of the original, changing up the harmonies, or otherwise adding more interpretation of the original tunes. Nothing really to add about the production: basic sounds which could be balanced better and rigid sequencing which makes the main part of the piece feel a bit dull. NO
  25. reduces me to a sobbing wreck every time I listen to it, without fail. I find it really somber and moving without ever getting melodramatic or overblown. Beautiful performances from both the orchestra and vocalists.It's also really well written/orchestrated, but half of the time I'm not even paying attention to that because ffffffffff here come the waterworks.
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