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Liontamer

*NO* Legend of Zelda 1 & 3 'Book of Mudora' *RESUB*

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Original Decision: http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?t=14885

1st RESUB: http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16616

2nd RESUB: http://www.ocremix.org/forums/showthread.php?t=18913

Fourth time's the charm? I took the judges' advice and posted my newest version on the forum and the only advice I'd gotten was just to submit it again. So I am.

The things I've changed since the last submit:

1) Mixed and EQed the vocals very differently to emphasise the higher end

2) Mixed and EQed the piano to be brighter and more present

3) Re-recorded the tubular bells

4) And various other tiny tweeks (acoustic guitar/bass EQed differently, etc)

* Bastian

* http://myspace.com/bastian

Submission Information

* Legend of Zelda and Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

* Overworld, Princess Zelda's Theme

* Composer: Koji Kondo

-------------------------------------------

http://www.zophar.net/nsf/zelda.zip - Track 1 ("Title")

http://snesmusic.org/v2/download.php?spcNow=loz3 - "Princess Zelda's Rescue" (loz3-22.spc)

Hahaha! 320kbps/48kHz, the encoding's completely overdoing it. :lol: And to be honest, the mixing job here doesn't merit the bitrate. S'alright, let's see what's there.

The soundscape still was a bit murky, and some of the vocals needed to be de-essed pretty badly. I'd argue the panning was too drastic as well. Do vocal parts really need to panned hard left and hard right as opposed to mostly left and mostly right?

I also think you emphasized the high-end too much. Along with exacerbating the ess-ing of the vocals, the instrument brought in at 2:26 with quarter notes sounded too loud & grating.

The piano still doesn't sound very realistic. Still, it was pretty buried. Not sure why this was never significantly improved across all these versions.

I'm gonna be generous. I think the mixing/balance is still pretty bad and the piano also sounds bad. But I like the arrangement enough. The pacing is very deliberate, but I think it's OK. Rather than go NO again, I'm gonna use my discretion and give a conditional YES. But you're gonna have to find someone who can do the post-production on this and get it sounding right. Right now, and this is NOT a knock on your abilities, but it hasn't clicked yet when you've taken your shots at it. Whoever helps you can also give you some pointers you can apply to your future work, so I think that'll be the right move for you to get the piece where it needs to be and also improve your game.

I'm being generous here, so good luck with the rest of the vote.

EDIT (6/25): Vote revised to NO; see below.

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I have loved hearing this one progress over the past year. I've never been 100% behind the arrangement (those harmonies still sound weird to me in places), but you've given yourself as much chance as you can by improving the production each time. This is sounding great now apart from the piano, as Larry mentioned, but the piano stays in the background for most of the song. Bridge is awesome, perfectly captures Enya. The mixing was a tad crowded but I wasn't bothered. I felt there was enough clarity, and it is comparable to mixes we have passed.

So I'm calling this one a YES. I wouldn't be surprised to see this go to conditional on improving the piano, making it sound less dinky, but it felt like a small part of the song to me, and now the rest of it outweighs it. I think this is ready to take the stage.

YES

Edit (7/3): Sorry, Bastian, but after reading the other comments here, I feel like I really wanted to pass and it's not actually ready. I had lost my objectivity, probably a lot of us had. Now that a few months have passed since I last heard it, and I'm getting to hear it on my home setup rather than my headphones, the problems seem more apparent. Those harmonies really don't sound good to me, and I think they never will. Maybe that could be overlooked if the production was great, but the mixing is still a problem. The vocals are indistinct, and the piano still sounds plinky and should be fuller with more sustain. I'm starting to think a lot of the mixing problems come down to the specific samples chosen - a lot of your sounds overlap with each other, and it might be tough to mix the ones you have into something where you can hear everything distinctly. The arrangement is fine apart from the out-of-tune harmony stuff, but the production just isn't there. Like Larry, I'd recommend getting someone else to help you finish the mixing and provide better samples. Not that I think you can't do it, because you have improved with each version, but someone else may be able to finish this one up quickly. I feel bad that I got so positive about this one only to pull back, but I think this is the right call.

NO

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That piano is so plinky. Sounds like a guy playing it with his index finger.

Nice vocals. Way better than the last time I heard this mix. You should do the Halo theme. ;)

Great soundscape, very nice. I like it!

YES

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I still think the production has some issues. Vocals need to be de-essed and piano is fakeish. Still, the arrangement is good and quite unique in it's instrumentation even though it's rather close to the source. The vocal performance is solid. I wish it wouldn't START with the piano because it's so exposed there. When it's in the background it isn't bad.

I have to go with Larry and make it conditional on that someone handles some of your production. Seeing as you've resubbed this plenty of times now I just don't see this passing if you don't handle that part to someone else. There's no shame in that and you'll probably learn a thing or two! The arrangement is still pretty cool and the fact that it's close to the source would be outweighed if the production was stellar.

YES (borderline/conditional)

OLD, see below and next page

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Why are the vocals off to the right in the beginning? The mix is really muddy mainly thanks to the strings.

The arrangement is also kinda clunky..what's with all the 1/8th note octave strings? Try some harmony. The break is the bright spot of the song. It's really cool. Unfortunately it's not from zelda at all.

This needs lots of work on all fronts. Good luck.

NO

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[Content missing]

I get the feeling that having never heard this in earlier iterations before, I have a bit of a fresh perspective that you guys may be lacking. I'm having serious trouble identifying why you guys think this thing is [over] the bar.

Larry

[likes] the arrangement enough; the pacing is very deliberate, but I think it's OK.

Deliberate [is an understatement]. I know you're being generous, but maybe you shouldn't.

Palp admits

I've never been 100% behind the arrangement (those harmonies still sound weird to me in places)

[You're damn right. The harmony is dumbed-down from the original, with a sprinkling of outright mistakes for good measure]

You've given yourself as much chance as you can by improving the production each time.

Too bad we don't post remixes based on how hard the remixer tried.

Shariq likes the

great soundscape!

Really? Exactly which part of the soundscape? The muddy plodding strings, the "plinky" piano, or the bone dry, paper thin chorus which for some reason is standing to my right?

Soundscape votes YES [because] "the arrangement is pretty cool."

[Content missing] Dumbing down the harmony doesn't count.

Guys, the only [solid] part of this song is the bridge. Again, sorry for being a dick about it, but you guys were asleep at the wheel for this one and you need a wakeup call. You're all still totally invited to my birthday party.

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I still think the production has some issues. Vocals need to be de-essed and piano is fakeish. Still, the arrangement is good and quite unique even though it's rather close to the source. The vocal performance is solid. I wish it wouldn't START with the piano because it's so exposed there. When it's in the background it isn't bad.

So I take it "the arrangement is good and quite unique" "The vocal performance is solid" and "when it's in the background it isn't bad" doesn't qualify as positive? The arrangement is close the source, I said that, but the bridge and the unique instrumentation (with lyrics) is good enough for me.

I agree this isn't the best remix out there but that's why I gave it a borderline YES, conditional on that someone else handles the production. I think that if the production was great it would outweigh the sometimes coverish arrangement and I made that pretty clear imo. The conditional is based on that he's resubmitted so many times I don't think he can do the production himselves, thus making it conditional on getting in someone else for the work.

I will edit my vote slightly to make this clearer.

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Thanks for clarifying, but the production is the least of this guy's problems. the arrangement isn't really what I'd consider coverish: he dumbed-down the harmony and added a bunch of clumsy mistakes. He "arranged" the string part to make it sound less like a well-written NES song and more like a deaf 5-year-old playing a game of Chase the Melody.

He's got some decent instrumentation ideas, but the composition in this tune is atrocious.

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To be perfectly fair reduction is a viable arrangement technique. If you wanna go all theory I could argue that the simple harmony is reminiscent of medieval music where you used one note as an obvious anchor and then moved around it without sense of "chord" but only sense of "scale". Not saying it's the best example of it but I can't find something that really sounds BAD to my ears. Sure, 1:16 sounds a bit odd but it sounds more like a result of the bad piano sample and mixing. Same issue during the ending, no clarity in the different counter melodies. Also, the arrangement has additional strength in dynamics.

I mean, I see where you're coming from Jesse and no hate on that, but I don't think it's as bad as you think and that it could be passed if the production (mainly balance and piano sample) was polished to perfection.

Again, my vote WAS borderline AND conditional. I could've gone NO (resub) but I don't think that would help much because the remixer's taken so many tries at this without improving it by a enough mixing-wise.

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The structure definitely doesn't pull off the "Far and Away" style completely effectively, but I can live with it. I don't think that's the main problem, and the arrangement is fine. I also kick Jesse in the face for not realizing the entire break section is the second source that I linked.

But yeah, while I don't agree with Jesse's arrangement reasons for going NO, I'm not feeling as generous any longer with the conditional YES. I'm taking another listen and there's just too much wrong with the production where it would take too much effort to lift it over the bar, rather than some straightforward tweaks that could be implemented to get the balance & mixing sounding right.

I think it's a solid enough idea that's just not executed to it's best, and as long as you continue to learn & improve, you'll look back on this in a year or two and wonder how you thought this mixing sounded OK. If this doesn't make it, move on. It's just not working right now for reasons previously stated by the other NOs. Very sorry to drag this out, but when something is middle of the road or a close call, that's means it winds up on the panel for a long time.

NO

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Again, my vote WAS borderline AND conditional. I could've gone NO (resub) but I don't think that would help much because the remixer's taken so many tries at this without improving it by a enough mixing-wise.

The more I think about it, this line sums up why I should vote NO instead of (conditional). While I still don't agree completely with Jesse I'm glad he came and dropped the bomb here since it made me take one or a few extra listens. Sorry about the change of heart but if you can't fix up the production, it's better leaving it. Looking forward to your next sub!

NO

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I can totally feel the Gregorian simplicity of this one, but there are some details that need to be polished a bit before i'm completely comfortable with passing it.

The piano sounds like a single velocity and is super rigid. It should be more delicate sounding, and the string sound bleeds right into the vocals.

Note that this is just my suggestion, but i think it'd really clean up your mix:

Bring the volume of all the choir up by quite a bit- as of right now, it's *sortof* taking the forefront, but it's too shy. The voices are well layered and balanced, but they need to be out there and audible. This would give you a good anchor to arrange the rest of the track around. I don't know the language, but it's cool to hear the theme done with a ton of layered voices, with a good singing voice as well, so this should really be in the spotlight.

Your low strings are at a good volume, but there's too much bleed with the lower tones of the choir. You can scale back the mid low EQ on the strings to make room, as they aren't as crucial as the choir.

There are some really excellent things about the mix though, I thought the clock ticking was super cool,and though the melody was verbatim, the way it was presented was distinctly unique, and the backing track was extensively changed. Even though there is a lot of personalization being done with the added voices and backing parts, I think an additional counterpoint line in the high strings would really take this over the top for arrangement, and would also help fill out the high end.

Keep at it, the idea and the vocals are great, it just needs to all work together.

no (Resub)

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I believe this is my first listen as well, I don't recall hearing any of the prior subs.

I understand where Vig is coming from, and the rest of you who have been swayed as well. But we're being unnecessarily harsh here. I'm not going to write a book of objections here, but here's some quick points:

Arrangement:

Is it epic? No.

Is it obvious and clear? Yes.

Is it good enough for 20th Century Fox? No.

Is it good enough for the OCR fanbase? Yes.

Is it approach unique? Yes. How many other remixes do we have that are centered around authentic gregorian choir?

Does it therefore contribute something new to OCR? Yes.

Production:

Is the production epic? No.

Are there any critical offenses regarding production (clipping, popping, etc.) No.

Could it be better? Yes.

Is it any worse than this one? http://www.ocremix.org/remix/OCR01838/ No.

So how is it we can pass something like that, and simply overlook the obvious lack of production/performance sheen and polish? Well, because it's enjoyable as hell, and it connects with it's intended audience. So it is with this remix.

This is fine the way it is. Not only has Bastian been cool with getting rejected for the past year and a half, but he's done something that while not flawless, is really enjoyable, and quite clearly meets our arrangement criteria. We have no standard as to how someone is supposed to pan their vocals, or how much reverb they're allowed to use. There's no need to be offended by this piece of music, and there's no reason at this point to make Bastian wait another X months just so we can nit-pick his otherwise unique and enjoyable piece.

thumbs_up.jpg

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text

Because it's quite hard to ask a live orchestra to re-record. With that in mind it was good enough. This is sequenced and produced by one artist, possibly in his own bedroom. I somehow feel you can't apply the same criteria to a live orchestra recording as you apply to a one-man-band production. I see a slight difference :)

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Because it's quite hard to ask a live orchestra to re-record. With that in mind it was good enough. This is sequenced and produced by one artist, possibly in his own bedroom. I somehow feel you can't apply the same criteria to a live orchestra recording as you apply to a one-man-band production. I see a slight difference :)

Why not, though? This is highly subjective. It may be difficult to ask an orchestra to try a retake, but how is that any more difficult (or fair) than asking a kid to spend 18+ months working on improving a remix by himself?

I understand that it is a live performance by an orchestra, but as strict as we're being with Bastian, or in any other such similar case, wouldn't it only be fair to tell the GSO "look guys, your track is great, but perhaps you should just take a few stabs at it without the audience. Just book the concert hall for a day or two and comp your best takes. Or maybe it would be better if you just recorded each ensemble/section by themselves and then mixed it all together later."

I mean, if that was what we required, and the GSO REEEEEALLY wanted their track on OCR, they'd find a way to get a better recording with less flubs, errors, and pitch correction when necessary. But instead, we're saying "Naw, guys, it's live and you probably don't have the time/means to get that perfect recording, so we're willing to overlook the off-key moments, the sub-par acoustics and mixing, and the performance misses." It may be no different with Bastian. Perhaps he doesn't have the means to get the track perfectly up to par. I maintain that it's still just as enjoyable as GSO's.

I don't see how our willingness to overlook GSO's flaws but stick it to Bastian hardcore is fair, and not hypocritical.

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Why not, though? This is highly subjective. It may be difficult to ask an orchestra to try a retake, but how is that any more difficult (or fair) than asking a kid to spend 18+ months working on improving a remix by himself?

I understand that it is a live performance by an orchestra, but as strict as we're being with Bastian, or in any other such similar case, wouldn't it only be fair to tell the GSO "look guys, your track is great, but perhaps you should just take a few stabs at it without the audience. Just book the concert hall for a day or two and comp your best takes. Or maybe it would be better if you just recorded each ensemble/section by themselves and then mixed it all together later."

I mean, if that was what we required, and the GSO REEEEEALLY wanted their track on OCR, they'd find a way to get a better recording with less flubs, errors, and pitch correction when necessary. But instead, we're saying "Naw, guys, it's live and you probably don't have the time/means to get that perfect recording, so we're willing to overlook the off-key moments, the sub-par acoustics and mixing, and the performance misses." It may be no different with Bastian. Perhaps he doesn't have the means to get the track perfectly up to par. I maintain that it's still just as enjoyable as GSO's.

I don't see how our willingness to overlook GSO's flaws but stick it to Bastian hardcore is fair, and not hypocritical.

That's also why both mine and Larry's vote was first about him getting someone else to do the production. Also, looking back at the GSO track I was quite borderline on that and I dunno if I did the right thing with that vote.. This is getting quite problematic for sure... I'll get back to you?

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I'm good with my revised call. I don't think the GSO sub, for all it's flaws, had mixing as imbalanced and negatively impactful. Have to be the bad guy, but not every track is meant to pass, and I still like the track. Execution still needs improvement.

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