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OCR01319 - *YES* Xenogears 'Xenosphere'


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Email sub file Xenosphere.mp3 - djp

Hey guys, its been a while since I have done any remix stuff but a few days ago I decided to to one. This song is another cross remix that I wrote as a tribute to Yasunori Mitsuda. The basic structure is Omen from Xenogears but you will hear elements from Presentiment (Chrono Trigger).

Enjoy!

Jerad Muller

ReMixer - Oceanfire

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lemme do a doubletake on that darkesworde comment

wow.

textural is an understatement here - this is beaming with texture. everything from the perfect reverb, the female vocals, the percussion.

i used to have a slight problem with xenogears music (felt the interest in it was trendy) until i heard this and that gorgeous gorgeous synth that you feature at the onstart of this - reminiscent of innovative pink floyd electronica.

impeccable work.

YES

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Beautiful atmosphere, great soundscape. Really like the instrumentation. Great arrangement, great production. My only slight complaint is there's not much balance with the strings. You have the typical Violins in the left, but opposite that you still have high strings playing on the right. I would have written something to compliment the violins for the right section, here it just sounds imbalanced. Minor flaw though.

Great mix. YES

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http://www.tzone.org/~llin/psf/packs2/Xenogears_psf.rar - 215 "Omen"

http://www.snesmusic.org/spcsets/ct.rsn - "Presentiment" (ct-1-01.spc)???

It's always good to see one of OCR's one-shot contributors return, especially with something as solidly constructed as this. If I didn't know any better, I'd say that this mix was actually from Xenogears itself, which is about the highest compliment I can give it.

Omen's use as the backing stays pretty straightforward. For the life of me, I can't fully identify what tune Jerad's using at :50, but recognize it from somewhere. "Frozen Flame" from Radical Dreamers? Beats me. It's vaguely familiar from somewhere in Square universe, but I'd prefer to know what exactly it is.

I thought everything else sounded good, like the female vox at 1:58, and I have no problem with the panning. I have reservations on this though. Once we move into 1:24, aside from hearing a cover of "Omen" in the background with light string plucks that never changes for the rest of the track, I have no idea where the rest of the track is inspired from. The vox sounds nice and creates a full sound, but where it's derived from relative to some source material, I couldn't say. I also don't hear CT's "Presentiment" referenced in any overt way. Maybe someone can elaborate on where other aspects of the arrangement come from. I can contact the artist to ask for more information if need be, but ask that we hold off on passing this.

EDIT - 1/27: Sorry for not doing it sooner, but I mailed Jerad today asking for more information. Waiting to hear back.

1/30: Have a reply back from Jerad. I'll post it here as well as vote as soon as I can.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Jerad PMed me yesterday at Ormgas.com after I mailed him:

Hey Larry,

I have been trying to contact you since I recieved your email but my email accounts have not been getting the message through so I came on the forums here to PM you.

Thank you for taking the time to write me an email instead of just saying no. I am sorry I did not leave a longer description about the song for you.

This song was written as a tribute to Yasunori Mitsuda. What I wanted to accomplish with this song was to create a warm atmospheric song that would put the listener into a relaxed trance like state by using the Xenogears song "Omen" as base and then building off it it by using other Mitsuda style Melody's and phrases.

In the opening of the song I start out with a harp playing the driving theme of "Omen" accompanied by a warm drone and sweeping synths. I wanted the underlying backbone of "Xenosphere" to have the atmosphere of "Omen" but I did not want it to be as static so every 8 measures I changed up the harp and underlying Drones. At 00:34 I start up with some staccato strings and Darbuk drums to brighten the song so I could introduce the Brass at 00:51. The melody from the brass came from the Chrono Trigger song "Undersea Palace". At 01:08 I bring in some strings that are structured around the ones from "Omen". I use them to calm the piece. At 01:24 I sweep the song to back to its warm soft "Omen" atmosphere by fading out the strings and Darbuk drums. This is also where I bring in a warm ambient choir that adds balance to the lower frequency tones of the drone and the large tribal drum. I then hold the listener in this atmosphere. At 01:59 bring in an original female solo to enhance the atmosphere and the bring out the chord changes that happen every 8 measures. At 02:33 I added some spacey metallic percussion (which was a pain in the ass to write because the song is in 3/3 time). At 02:56 The female vocalist come to a climax and allow her to trail off past 03:06. At 03:06 is where I end the percussion and allow the song to fade off into 03:40.

>.< I am not quite sure why I said "Presentiment" in the first email because I meant "Undersea Palace"... lol It was really late that night and I must have not been thinking correctly when I sent you the song.

I checked out the profile and it looks great! Thank you, everything is updated including my website. If you have any more questions for me feel free to email me and ill get back to you as soon as I can.

Thanks again for the email and I hope this longer description helps.

Jerad Muller (Re mixer Oceanfire)

Excellent. So getting back to my vote...

http://www.tzone.org/~llin/psf/packs2/Xenogears_psf.rar - 215 "Omen"

http://www.snesmusic.org/spcsets/ct.rsn - "Undersea Palace" (ct-3-08.spc) [:30 of the source]

Good handling of the "Undersea Palace" theme at :50. The first 1:24 of the track is absolutely excellent on the rearrangement front. I liked the vox in the mix starting at 1:25, but going to :59 of "Omen" and trying to see if the note patterns were similar, it seems as if the vox work was all original, and not derived from the vox work in the source. This relies on the harp to handle all of the arrangement of Omen, so change the vox here a bit to incorporate ideas from the vox in Omen.

I liked how Jerad increased the plucking on the harp from 2:32-3:06, with some arpeggiated activity though. That was more of what I would have liked to have heard on the rearrangement side. I liked the chord changes of "Omen" going on with the harp strings every 8 measures. Though they occured more frequently in this mix than in the source, those changes were also simply taken from the source nonetheless.

This mix was a good example of keeping the same vibe as the source, while providing very expansive and logical original additions. But I felt the handling of "Omen" itself via the harp was too conservative, and that's what the base of the arrangement here was. At the core of the track, the harp strings handling the Omen melody needed to go a slightly more interpretive route.

It's a hell of arrangement, and would easily fit as in-game music or on an arrange album, but again, I looked at the core component of it and found the harp (which is the only instrument even performing the source material from 1:24 until the end of the track) to not be offering enough on rearrangement. The other elements in this track sound excellent and are very Mitsuda-seque, but are all original additions not derived from the actual source material. After 1:24, if you took out the harp here, you wouldn't find a trace of the source material elsewhere; just stylistic similarities. I can't vote YES on mostly stylistic similarities.

I don't wanna seem as if I didn't take Jerad's detailed PM into account, as I certainly did, and appreciated his reply greatly, but I gotta go NO (borderline) . Personally, I really enjoyed the track, and perhaps no one else will have the same reservations I had on the minimalism of the arrangement post-1:24, but that's how I saw this one. Thanks again to Jerad for replying back to me so quickly, and best of luck to him on the rest of the vote.

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Listening to the original for the first time; it's beautiful. This arrangement is pretty in its own right, but you have to credit the original first, then appreciate the additions and replacements like the female vocalist and deep synth here. Towards the middle, the song becomes sparse, which instead of being a detriment, actually allows for softer dynamics and for the music to begin settling down.

The only complaints I have are concerning the general volume, which I think could benefit from being higher, and the repetitious shaker percussion panned left that continues throughout. I see no problem with the harp that Larry refers to as being close to the original's. I don't see it as core to either song at all, and its pattern in the original is much different anyway. This arrangement is not based on the original's style alone; it recreates the original's texture with new elements (horns, strings, synth, vocals, percussion), the only mutual element being the harp. The texture is the derivation, and the textures of the two songs aren't even similar beyond both being "ambient."

The rearrangement is fine. YES

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I'm sorry, but why do we need 6Y on this piece? There are four fairly strong YESes with a borderline NO. That doesn't seem like a very borderline piece to me. :?

No. While this sounds great, I believe the "arrangement" for the second half is dicey at best and pushes the boundaries of what's acceptable. If anything, I'm borderline NO because the presentation is excellent. If it were a lockdown candidate, I might vote to keep it, but in terms of taking it as a submission, I ask for more votes. I am not trying to simply hold up the process, but ask that the nature of the arrangement be considered closely. My request is to please go to 6.

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I'm sorry, but why do we need 6Y on this piece? There are four fairly strong YESes with a borderline NO. That doesn't seem like a very borderline piece to me. :?

No. While this sounds great, I believe the "arrangement" for the second half is dicey at best and pushes the boundaries of what's acceptable. If anything, I'm borderline NO because the presentation is excellent. If it were a lockdown candidate, I might vote to keep it, but in terms of taking it as a submission, I ask for more votes. I am not trying to simply hold up the process, but ask that the nature of the arrangement be considered closely. My request is to please go to 6.

Sounds good to me.

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While I think some of the power of this mix comes from the pro samples used, I think that one could create a similar atmosphere using free samples. I obviously have no problems with ANY technical aspects here - absolutely beautiful usage of orchestral instruments and percussion, ethnic percussion, synths, vocals, etc.. couldn't have asked for more. I agree with Gray that while you could interpret this as being quite similar to the original, listening closely reveals that it is using new elements and a new structure to create a different style and tone. I wouldn't object to more material being added, but as it is, I'd say this is an extremely well-done and unique interpretation.

Excellent job. YES

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we did discuss this a bit in the chat

i agree with larry that while the the first part of this mix is ideal ocr material, the rest just doesn't have much to do with anything, afaik.

what this mix needs is a reprise or variation that connects the ideas presented in the first part to the ideas presented in the last part.

in the end, i'm not opposed to this passing,

but i'm going to recommend a resubmit anyways.

no

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While i'll admit that the arrangement is somewhat similar in structure to the original, I find that this track does a very effective job of not only melding two tracks together, but expanding upon the originals in creative ways. It's almost as if the two originals met halfway and added some percussion that does well not to overdo it. Both electronic-style percussion and traditional-style make an appearance, and both seem to fit perfectly.

It's got an effective atmosphere, a solid presentation, and adequately expands upon the original, while also tying the two tracks together, although in a subtle manner.

YES

-D

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