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OCR01905 - *YES* Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past 'Dark World Ballad'

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Remixer name: effinjerk

Real name: Brian Effinger

Email: beffinger@neversoft.com

Website: myspace.com/bfinger

Userid: 26801

Game arranged: Zelda – A Link to the past

Name of song: Dark World Theme

Recorded at Conservatory of Recording Arts and Sciences

Guitar : Brian Effinger

Piano: Cliff Hooper

Arranged by both Brian Effinger and Cliff Hooper


Neversoft, eh? SEND ME ALL OF YOUR GAMES PLZ! Says on your MySpace that you're an aspiring composer, Brian, so good luck now that you've got your foot in the door!

http://snesmusic.org/v2/download.php?spcNow=loz3 - "Dark World" (loz3-12.spc)

Just doing a quick breakdown, since there were a lot of wholly original sections. This barely squeaked by over 50% source usage, for me, but >50%'s all I need.

:13-:29, :37-:42, :44-:50, :53-1:13, 1:37-1:42, 1:44-1:58, 2:30.75-2:35, 2:37.5-2:55

Onto the other comments, there was a guitar flub at :21-:22 that marred the intro. Some buzz from 1:54-1:55 as well. The piano distorted around 2:02-2:07. Perhaps minor in the big picture, but given that there are only two elements in the whole track, those issues shouldn't be there, or at least adequately downplayed.

One thing that sounded weak on headphones was how there was noticeable hiss for the guitar recording, but then the hiss periodically dropped out when the guitar was gone. Try to reduce the hiss; if it can't be removed entirely, it would actually be better to leave the hiss in there at all times for a consistent soundscape.

More important issue, the two parts really don't sound like they occupy the same soundscape. The piano had some nice verb on it, while the guitar was really clean & bright. It didn't mesh properly so there was no synergy.

The arrangement's fairly solid, so I've got no issues there. Ironing out some of the production kinks would help, but the major one that I'd need addressed is making the piano and guitar feel like they're sharing the same overall space. Make that happen, and this is ready to roll. If it can't be done, the sum total of the issues would make it a close, but unfortunate no-go to me.

YES (conditional)

EDIT (7/6): New version still doesn't sound like the instruments shared the same space, but the mixing was definitely better regardless. The overall levels being higher would have been good too, but would have involved some compression, so I'm cool with not really touching them. The other minor issues like the hiss & brief flubs were also take care of, so now we're playing with power. Nice work, bros; this should go over pretty nicely!


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The guitar sounds gated, it cuts-off when you're not playing. This sounds very unprofessional and you could probably clean up the recording with a de-esser, noise reducer such as SoundSoap or any similar tool. Also, don't gate it. Other than that it's very close-mic'd and sounds like it's in a completely different room than the piano. A shared reverb would make the instruments blend together much better.

There's also some pretty bad clipping during the solo at 2:05-09. That should not be there. Make it go away! :tomatoface:

The performance was quite good, a little loose but that's how we like it! Creative source usage, especially the new chords and harmonies. When just listening too it there was no question about enough source usage here and since Larry says 50%+ GO! I won't go into that further.

I think the production needs to be streamlined for this to pass. Since the arrangement is solid and the recording probably doesn't have to be redone (depends on the clipping really) I will go conditional on this. Fix it and you've could a pretty damn cool arrangement right here. If you can't fix it I can't apss this but then I urge you to do a new recording, if it adresses the issues I'll YES it in a heartbeat.

EDIT (7/6)): New version is improved. Still some minor issues like the difference in "space" is still there and some minor clipping during the guitar solo if my ears doesn't decieve me. Nothing major though, this one's ok with me now.


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  • 3 weeks later...

Not much to add here. The arrangement is very solid, the instruments playing off each other well. The bluesy additions to the Dark World theme were unexpected, but in a good way. It felt all of one piece.

The big problem I hear is that the guitar is upfront and has all the high frequencies, while the piano is pushed back and is missing the high frequencies. They do sound like they're in different rooms. Luckily, that is pretty easily fixed with some reverb on the guitar to make it sound more like the piano. Add some damping on the higher frequencies and push it back some so that it doesn't sound in your face. There's some clipping on the piano and a slight buzzing on the guitar that could be fixed too, but I don't think those were as big an issue.

I'll go conditional too, because the fix shouldn't take long. Congrats, guys. This was a really nice piece.

YES (conditional on reverb)

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  • 3 months later...

The concept of this is awesome, and the arrangement is really nice as well, though some of the execution details are where it stumbles a bit. The guitar is overpowering the piano something fierce, it sounds like the piano is at a reasonable distance while the guitar is right in my face. This is something that doesn't feel right to me at all; it's unnatural, i tell you!

The arrangement is classy with both some subtle changes to the original and several cool original sections.

Besides that exceptionally painful flub early on, the playing for both instruments was great; that flashy run at 2:08 wasn't pristine, but was still well enough executed. No major complaints at all in this department.

Note that i'm not comfortable passing this based on the current sound balance, but if we can get a new version with the guitar volume more in line with the piano, i'll change my vote in a heartbeat. Either a simple volume adjustment, or Palpable's reverb suggestion would do the trick. I'd love to hear 0:21 re-recorded, but I realize that it might not be possible, and would still pass this even if it remained.

no, please resub

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Andrew, if all you're asking for is lowering the guitar I suggest you go conditional. We have all gone that way before you and the remixer then has to take a stab at production again, since it's an easy fix a resubmission might not be the way to go but it's entirely up to you.

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Yeah, I agree with Mattias that if it's just the production-related fix of element, that's more likely to be a conditional YES. For the ones that believe in using it, anyway. :-)

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