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Liontamer

OCR01980 - *YES* Kingdom Hearts 'Destiny Forgotten'

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Remix title: Destiny Forgotten

Remixer name: diotrans, adrian

Real name: Amy Hsieh, Adrian Porter

Email address: amy@amyhsieh.com, adrian-o@aporter.org

Website: amyhsieh.com, aporter.org

Userid: 21446

Source game: Kingdom Hearts

Source song: Simple and Clean/Hikari

Composer: Utada Hikaru

"Simple and Clean" has been one of my favorite songs ever for a long time. I've been playing acoustic guitar covers of this for years, so I thought it would be only fitting for it to be my first attempt at an OCRemix. For this remix, I decided to do something completely new by adding a string quartet. In this recording, adrian played cello; I played violins and viola. Many thanks to Palpable who taught me so much about FL Studio for me to produce this mix, and also to adrian for his mad cello skills!

The title comes from the lyric "unmei wasurete" from the Japanese version of the song, which translates to "Destiny Forgotten" from a translation I read on the internet. Yeah, I actually don't speak Japanese at all (which is probably evident to any listeners who are fluent in Japanese), I just learned the pronunciations phonetically, so I hope I didn't butcher it too much ^_^; I just love both versions of the song so much, and each has differences in the vocal melody, so I wanted to include parts of each.

-diotrans

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I'm counting both the Japanese and English versions as sources, since they feature different sets of lyrics.

Kingdom Hearts - "Simple and Clean" & "Hikari"

Better than the WIPs I heard as far as the sound balance, although the vocals and instruments were competing for the same space too much, particularly during the first verse. I thought the vocal delivery, Amy, could have been a little tighter, more important because of the dryness, but it gets it done. A couple of spots could have used some de-essing, but it was nothing huge.

I would have loved the vocals to get a little delay on them to thicken them up, but y'all went for an unplugged style that I'm down with. I'd just say pull back some of the instrumentation that ended up competing with the vocals and this would be OK.

Liking the arrangement, which kept the vocals intact but gave the music a new coat of paint. More interpretation with the vocals delivery would have been great, but that wasn't the focus here. Keep it up Amy, and I hope we hear more from Adrian as well!

YES (conditional)

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I'm a little biased, hearing this one as Amy was working on it and helping her with it a little, but this was pretty much entirely her work, and I think I can provide a fair vote. The vocals and guitar are pulled from the originals, but the string quartet that makes up the meat of the backing track is entirely original and has some great writing. Mixing the Japanese and English was an interesting call that spices up the vocal part. The structure and mood are changed too, culminating in a more somber take. It might have been nice to hear some vocal differences, but this clearly stands apart from the originals.

The minor criticisms I have are on the production side. I think it's a little too dry though I know Amy was shooting for that kind of soundscape. The parts could also be separated better but everything is still audible. I'm cool without the conditional.

YES

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How dry do you want it?

The performances and arrangement I am totally down with, but production choices are strange to say the least. Even adding some very slight room verb to the mp3 myself made it sound a lot more natural.

I agree with Larry that the strings and vocals are fighting a bit, bit i can still hear things clear enough. It doesn't reduce clarity, but smooths things out a bit.

http://www.oceansend.com/5502/ocr/reverb.mp3

Despite my questioning of your production methods, and my personal dislike of the conditional modifier (though i wouldn't complain if you added some reverb to this, and made some more rom for the vocals ;-) ), I think it's good enough on all fronts to pass.

yes

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Nice track. Because it's inevitably going to come up in the review thread, it's worth noting that while Amy's voice (intonation mostly) is not flawless, I think she does a well enough job, especially without using any autotune or other vocal fixer-uppers. I suppose it gives the track a more organic feel, and there's definitely nothing wrong with that. That being said, I don't think a subtle amount would have hurt it necessarily, but I do want to make it clear that she can certainly carry a tune well enough for it to not impede my ability to admire her voice.

Alright, now that that's out of the way, this is a really nice arrangement. I am especially appreciative of the strings, and kudos are most certainly in order.

I don't really have any real production gripes now that Amy has gone back and added some much-needed reverb to sofen the edges just a little bit, although as I was telling Vinnie the other night, I think it wouldn't have hurt if she had put maybe just another 5% reverb on her vocals. I feel like they don't quite match the spaciousness of the guitar. Plus, just a bit more and it would have made me feel like this is they type of performance that's sung in a concert hall, which would be some complimentary brain imagery while listening. But whatever, very minor gripe.

YES

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I'd just like to make my feelings known: the english lyrics of this song are just shockingly bad; Thus I welcomed the presence of the original Japanese. Arrangement is all fine, nice string parts. Guitar playing is capable.

Vocals are not in tune :/. They're not massively off or anything, but enough for it to annoy people with a good ear. My gf didn't notice at all, so I'm going to assume that this isn't an issue for most people.

I didn't hear the first version so I can't compare, but the balance and production is okay now. Vocals are a bit dry, but thats a choice more then something to "fix". It makes the performance a bit more intimate and exposed, possibly making the intonation issues a bit more audible. Basically I wouldn't complain about a bit more reverb in general, but it's just about okay as is.

On the whole whilst its a bit iffy production side its arrangement is well put together, and I'm sure KH fans would get a fangasm out of it (though I'll never understand why, it was the most boring 5 hours of my life before I gave up caring after my friend forced me to play it).

YES borderline

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