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Zelda: Wind Waker Molgera 'Flight of the Sandworm' (Major Revision 10/26/09)

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Well hello again everyone. I've been ridiculously busy with work and school lately, but I've managed every now and then to work on this track. Like the last time I revised it, it sounds significantly different.

Hope you all like the changes. I think I might be in the running for having the longest-living WIP on the board, so hopefully I can bow out of that race when I sub it soon.

Listen to v5 here.

-------------Older Posts-------------

OK, this time when I say this is nearing completion, I really mean it. New stuff:

Tempo up 4 bpm

Some new sound effects/ambient stuff (you may love it/hate it)

Changed the melodies in the second half a bit (again love it/hate it)

Upped the sound quality and stereo production (finally)

As far as the Daft Punk source goes, I may tweak it before submitting so that problem goes away. I hate to do it, but I'd hate getting NO'd simply for being stubborn more.

Anyway, have a listen and I'd enjoy hearing your thoughts.

Listen to v4.5 here.

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Since my links at Tindeck went down, the new v4.0 will be the only version up for now. I've reworked this one for 2009 and am hopefully closer to submission with it. Let me know what you guys think.

-prog

Listen to v4.0 here.

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Alright, here's a small update to address some issues with the main leads getting too loud at higher frequencies.

What I changed:

-Main leads shouldn't be ear-splitting (I hope) in their upper ranges anymore. I tested this on several speaker setups.

-Drums are now punchier and have a bit more drive to them. Shaker on left, hi-hat on right.

-Bass thump is new.

-Tempo is up to 110 bpm now to fit the drums. I think this works even better than before, but I hope I can resist speeding it up any more or I'll end up with a 2 minute song. :\

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Well guys, it's been a long ride with this one. I decided to start a new thread because this song now sounds nothing like what I originally posted (link). I intend to tweak a few things and listen to any comments you might have, but I think it's nearing completion.

For those of you who missed the speed of the first version, this one will be something of a hybrid between that and the second. It now moves along at a brisk 105 bpm to regain some forward movement without compromising the elements I added in second version. You'll also notice more links to the source, more original content, a brand new minor section in the middle, and that everything has generally been polished and moves along more confidently.

Let me know what you think!

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I was among the seeming minority that liked the faster version than the new (until recently), slower, version. The slower and this version both feel like deconstructions of your original. Unfortunately, the former felt more reconstructed than this, which seems to of taken away much of the structure of the original and replaced with new things. It kind of reminds me of when I was doing my own remix, how getting bored with it really helped add variety and take away the bad parts.

I think you have three very good and distinct remixes of the same song with like instrumentation.

I wish I could give more feedback (err...did I give any?), but I thought I should at least express how I felt about your piece.

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I really liked this track in the game OST; the way it played out was creative and unique for a boss battle song in a Zelda game, which typically relied upon a more brass approach.

Your version is different, and it really sounds excellent in my humble opinion. Definitely reminiscent of the Donkey Kong Country 2 soundtrack, particularly 'Stickerbush Symphony,' and that is never a bad thing. Get some more feedback before submitting to see if it would pass; were it my decision, it definitely would belong on OCR.

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Mixing needs work, the leads are just painful in their higher range, some frequencies get way too loud. You could also work with spacing, stereo placement, perception of distance, stuff like that, just to get them out of my head and into a room, space, something. SInce you've got both a high-range flute and high-range bells, there's a lot of high frequencies that you could mask with reverb. You could dampen their volume too, or EQ down their high range a few dB.

Around 3 mins it gets a bit cluttered and the high range is just one garbled mess of frequencies, long/loud release tails get part of the blame. You might need to get rid of some instruments there, but don't make a ny drastic cuts until you've processed stuff first so you see how they sound then. And take a backup, this version is good enough to use as a base for various edits, but those edits can screw up some settings and writing. Backup=good idea.

The panning thing in the bg should balanced by something in each ear, as the whole remix seems to be wobbling off-balance. Hihats in one ear, shaker in the other, or use a stereo delay effect to send the echo to one ear while keeping the hihat/shaker in the other. "drumz haev noes enurgy!" In this case, they don't need that much energy, they're rhythm, not drive.Unless you want them to have drive, which might solve your clutter issue around 3:00. Still, for most of the track, they don't need it imo. Regardless, you need to give the drums more stereo spread, so pan and mirror the shaker/hat.

Arrangement is pretty. I think this track is well suited (and well adapted) to a slower pace. It sounds very complete in many ways. Source in undoubtedly there, as is interpretation, so you're most likely in the green there.

Reminds me I have a wip of this somewhere on my hard drive. Should do that one at some point.

Yeah, the creative bits here might get this a YES, at least get it close. Production is still a bit painful in the high range, and there are balance issues to deal with. Overall, good.

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This track really captures the unique feel of WindWaker and for that alone I give you props. At times some of the main melodic instruments feel a little lonely, obviously with the flute / ocarina being my prime example, and I think it may be because it's just a little too loud on its own. I think later in the track this isn't a problem as you've got some more progression filtering in, but early on, it just seems a little loud and lonely.

Overall I loved this, thank you for a great listen.

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It's improved. Sounds a little quiet now, tho, boost it with a limiter or multiband compressor. Some sustained high notes are still a little painful, but the vibrato makes it less prominent. I recommend dropping the volume slightly on sustained notes, that or closing the cutoff (control it with an envelope, 1 second decay, 50-70% sustain).

There's a few clicks in the end that you need to watch out for. Panning of the snare is a little annoying, you should probably give it stereo width using reverb or something. Using two different kicks makes it kind'a weird. They're not synched, so while changing the balance between the two is a good way to vary the sound, this isn't that.

Can't think of anything else atm. Getting better. :)

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About the "clicks," I've heard this from a few people now, so I might try changing that percussion up a little.

As for submitting, yes I'd love to, but this track really needs to be polished up before I let it go. I am very happy with the way it turned out musically, but I do think it needs some better mixing and mastering when I compare it to some of my favorite mixes here. I've put a lot of competing sounds in one space toward the end, which was my intent, so bringing this up to OCR production values to showcase them is my goal right now. This is my first submit, so I think my background in live music and pure luck are to thank for getting me this far in FL studio. Beyond that, I have no clue. :|

Thanks to everyone who's listened and kept up with this mix so far!

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I like the concept, but "Aerodynamic" probably constitutes too much of the arrangement to be considered acceptable on the site. Some of the chords are off-key too, but I think the borrowing is the bigger issue.

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Very nice sound, intresting combination of tunes. Might indeed be problematic for this site, but nice work nonetheless.

The high lead that comes in at 00:17 is still piercing, I had to turn it down on another set of headphones because it hurt, and on these it's still uncomfortable.

Melody and background chords don't fit together at 00:25 and 00:28.

--Eino

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Maybe I'm biased because I loved the source music so much, but I think this sounds great, and I think the stranger chord desicions worked well.

Like many, my only issue is with the high notes. I'm not sure what the best way to fix this would be, since simply turning down those tracks would make the entire thing sound muted.

As it is, the high notes are tolerable, but getting rid of the ear-piercing sounds and still maintaining clarity would really make this piece.

Great job so far and good luck to you!

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Watch the panning, the track gets a little right-heavy in the intro.

The lead synth is also a little shrill, might need more overtones, less volume. Might just need to have it's root frequency cut a bit. The bells suffer from the same problem, they're a little on the shrill side yet don't seem to have the full high range of frequencies. Then again, it might just be that they're too loud. Try dropping them 5 dB, see if they get too quiet. (might have to drop them 10, then raise by 5 to reset your ears).

I think you're in the green as far as source/interpretation goes.

heh, I recognize that rhythmic pad you're using from illusen's Ecco wip. I assume it's a preset. I'm not sure what the Js are gonna say about that, you might want to modify it a little. A _little_.

Percussion is a little boring, and the track sometimes sounds too slow (at other times it's fine), try raising the bpm by one or two, it could make the wold of a difference.

Anyway, just production stuff to deal with, imo. Great work so far.

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I'm all for using alternate voicings/inversions being applied to source melodies... but the way you've kept the melody mostly the same (within itself) and transposed it all at once I'm finding a little awkward on some parts. Transposing the whole melody at once to make a different flavor to the melody I think should mostly be restricted to simple melodies that just so happen to work all throughout that way. First example of this that comes to mind is DJP's Pachelbel's Ganon (haven't heard it in a while but I think it fits the description).

To clarify what I mean, the melody here is playing in (what would be, in the original) E minor, while the key of this remix is B minor. So when the melody gets to the high C, first at :26, you can hear the awkwardness. The scale of B minor in the dorian mode, does not have C natural in it.

I guess what I would be suggesting is to go through the melody and find notes that don't sound as right as the others, and try moving them up or down within a few steps to something that fits better. This could even have a side effect of giving it more liberty, which I guess is what the judges are into these days.

By the way, I just now remembered/linked up your name in my memory. We're buds from back in the day xD. I hope my critiques aren't too harsh.

Do know that looking past the slightly awkward, to me, scale stuff, I actually really like this. Also know that in the past, I've been known to complain a lot about things like missed or awkward notes, so the fact that I can see past that and enjoy this does say a bit. The portamento square-y synth is quite jazzy. I like it. =)

One thought that just randomly occurred to me, which may or may not be a good idea, but what if you very lightly gave the lead whistle sound some sort of filter variations, lightly throughout or in certain parts? Give the whistle more of a voice, so to speak.

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Hey Miku, your input is always appreciated, dude. It's good that you can look past that high C, because I'm not seeing many options at this point. I kept the melody intact because I threw so many new things at this one. For you, though, I will look into it. :razz:

I'll experiment with some filters for the ocarina. And I was listening to both source tracks again and think I came up with a couple good ideas I might try out. I'm also probably going to speed things up by about 2 bpm. Update soonish.

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OK, this time when I say this is nearing completion, I really mean it. New stuff:

Tempo up 4 bpm

Some new sound effects/ambient stuff (you may love it/hate it)

Changed the melodies in the second half a bit (again love it/hate it)

Upped the sound quality and stereo production (finally)

As far as the Daft Punk source goes, I may tweak it before submitting so that problem goes away. I hate to do it, but I'd hate getting NO'd simply for being stubborn more.

Anyway, have a listen and I'd enjoy hearing your thoughts.

Listen to v4.5 here.

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