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djpretzel

*NO* Terranigma 'Shallow Peace'

11 posts in this topic

ReMixer name - RoeTaKa

Real name - Alex Roe

Name of game - Terranigma

Name of individual song - Crysta

Comments - Last year, I made a Crysta ReMix which I was really proud of. Today, I look back and say "What have I done" so, pleased with the arrangement, I remade it and added to it. From an ethnic ballad, to an ethnic chillout, it's certainly more enjoyable. Have to say, big points to mv for inspiration from his own Crysta track. Anyways, I'm not afraid that it's a long track, I think it's satisfying enough as a chilled out-moving piece. So, you could quite possibly say...6 months work? Hah it would seem so. But from it all it's really the result of 3 solid hours on something that took days to make.

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http://www.snesmusic.org/spcsets/ts.rsn - "Hometown" (ts-03.spc)

Quite a ponderous mix, one that I had to let marinate for a few weeks, so I don't think one could really make a fair call on this quickly. The first few minutes didn't use the familiar Crysta melody, but rather rearranged the theme by messing around with the motifs of the backing strings & harmonizing winds from the original. Took me a while to really get a grasp on it, but I was impressed when I finally made sense of it.

The source melody wasn't even invoked (briefly) until 1:44, which I don't mean to sound negative. I thought it was actually intriguing that the source material could be rearranged this much without using the most prominent part of it.

The woodwind made a bad-sounding note transition at 2:27; very flat and unrealistic. Performance realism in the sounds may get criticized more harshly by the others.

Nice job not even bringing in the source tune's familiar melody until 3:30. The strings sounded fine on the whole but struggled with realism in some of the note movements. They were serviceable in my opinion.

The mix definitely started dragging and sounding too samey beyond the 5-minute mark toward the finish, so you could have afforded to take things in a slightly different direction to keep things from becoming monotonous.

The abrupt decay of the string samples at 5:48 exposed the samples. I’ve been hearing too many people in this batch slacking the little details at the very end. BAH.

The approach of the arrangement came across to me as divisive, but I'm feeling the unorthodox approach from Alex, primarily rearranging the supporting elements of the source material. Some will bitch about the melody being brought in so late, but I bleh on them. As long as the original was genuinely and recognizably interpreted, which I felt it was, I've got no issue.

Though it seemed like I was mostly pointing out flaws, I thought the arrangement & production were solid. I originally thought I would have to compare this with mv's "Aquamarine" but the approaches weren't similar enough in my eyes to merit a side-by-side comparison. Good work, Alex. Best of luck on the rest of the vote.

YES

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I like the texture of the piece; the strings, guitar, and hand percussion work well together. They're a bit punchy though, so this mix feels like it's plodding a bit. Strings aren't too creative; lots of sustained stuff, but I'm guilty of that too usually, and it works here.

However, I think this mix is way too long. You could cut out a lot of the intro and condense the rest of the piece to make something more effective. It takes too long to get to the actual melody; more than halfway through the piece. The preceding material just feels like timewaster material, going through the chords again and again.

Borderline NO

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The samples are the only major problem here, in my opinion. That's not to say that they're bad, but just that sometimes their flaws are a bit too exposed. The guitar in particular seemed to work better when it was hidden a bit.

But otherwise, I rather enjoyed this. The arrangement drifts pleasantly along, builds nicely, and is just overall a joy to listen to.

Nothing too flashy, but this is nice.

YES

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Interesting intro. IMO, the key changes from 0:12-0:28 were simplistic (marching up the A-minor scale) and served as a pretty poor indicator of the beautiful chord progressions and key changes that followed with the rest of the mix. When the same progression returns later it works because there are more elements to create plenty of interesting harmonies. However like Larry, I’m inclined to appreciate the intro for its rearrangement of the chord progression rather than the main melody. After 1:37 I enjoy how the main melodies of the source gradually make their way into the mix.

The guitar and the piano work well together at 3:30-4:07 and the subtle percussion that enters at 4:07 is a nice touch that helps the gradual build that occurs throughout the song. The delayed piano notes at 4:03, 5:37 don’t work as well in this mix as they do in the source. It’s something of a distraction for me but the dissonance is resolved soon enough.

From 5:05 through the end things start coming unglued. The “guitar player” sounds tired and the harmonies in places are marginal and this is the major contributor to the borderline status of my vote.

This was a pleasant listen and for the most part I feel that the length was justified by the arrangement of the source through the first 1:37 followed by a good build to a pleasant resolution. I wish the encoding were a little better as well.

Borderline YES

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While I agree that the source melody isn't instantly recognizable, the progression, mood, and instrumentation certainly bring it to mind. The sudden swell at 1:36 or so was a little unexpected, though, and I think the percussion that comes in there is somewhat grating. The strings feel sort of cold and harsh rather than soft and musical, too. The piano also is a bit sharp rather than warm. On the other hand, the choir, and the guitar-like instrument sound great. I noticed some clipping towards the end as well; please watch that. My thoughts on the production overall is that the high end is too present; the mix almost hurts the ears over time because everything is so cutting. Go easier on the EQ, or if you're not already using them, use them to bring down the highly accentuated high end. I really liked the feel of the first part of the mix, before 1:36, in terms of mixing; the volume shouldn't have gotten so much louder.

Anyway, as far as arrangement goes, this definitely is NOT a cover, but like I said, the original can be gleaned. I certainly would not mind more of the melodic source used, and perhaps a tighter overall arrangement since it seems like similar ideas and motifs are repeated over and over towards the second half of the structure. I think that would be my major problem with this mix - it doesn't really go anywhere after awhile. The percussive style doesn't change much, and no significant changes are made to key, tempo, instrumentation, etc. Rethinking this element of the mix would be a good idea. You could probably cut out at least a minute without losing any ideas currently.

Overall - I like some of the stuff going on here (particularly the lead instrument and how its played), but I think there are some structural as well as production problems that should be addressed. Refine and resubmit.

NO

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I'm having a lot of trouble recognizing the original here. I don't often have the patience for drawn-out melodic statements. It sounds like the same song, but i'm not hearing a lot of similarity in the melodic content. Not really a bad thing, this just isn't the kind of music I usually dig. OMFG BIAS aside, there's a decent job of creating an evolving soundscape here. Compositionally, there's variation, and a solid harmonic backdrop. It evokes a pretty lush atmosphere, and never sounds too sparse.

However, I can't help but feel it sounds far too "rushed". The strings have had no effort to match up their attack with the actual beat. The mixing at some points is pretty imbalanced, with backing parts overpowering leads, etc. Sometimes the overlapping harmonies seem somewhat arbitrary, like the chord choices were made seperately then dumped on top of each other. While I appreciate the attempt at such a full and dynamic mix, it sometimes comes off as just.... messy.

This track needs some more attention to detail before it's ripe. Keep at it, I like what I'm hearing so far.

NO

-D

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The string attack really does hurt the mix...the dynamics are pretty well-done. however the strings on the whole arent used very well...lots of single-note longtones, not tons of harmony more complecated than triads. The result of this is that the song is somewhat harmonically dull...it plods along and there isnt too much color.

i'd like to hear more interesting harmonies and the strings a bit better used.

NO

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There are a couple serious harmonic flubs in the earlier portion of this song and a several more towards the end.

:evil: 1:30 thanks to reverb the G is still present over the Emajor Triad here and it does not sound like a #9th. It sounds like a mistakenly placed minor third.

:evil: 2:27 reverb cannot explain this one. Some of your instruments resolve to A while everyone else resolves to F#. Quite unpleasant. If there were tons of polytonal harmonies all over the place this would make more sense but right now it just sounds like an ametuerish mistake.

:evil: 4:57 same exact problem as at 2:27

:evil: 5:12 Piano plays a C# Triad while everyone else is playing A/C# ouch!

:evil: 5:16 Piano plays G#minor triad which spells out an Emaj7 while the melody has a D suggesting Edominant. This is just plain sloppy

:evil: 5:18 same thing as 5:12

:evil: 5:24 same thing as 5:12 and 5:18

:evil: 5:36 same thing as 5:12, 5:18 and 5:24

This stuff alone is more than enough reason for a rejection so I won't even get into the arrangement issues.

NO

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confusing.

there are moments i am in love and others i'm cringing and recoiling in terror.

want to echo the comment about the texture. its quite magnificent... atmospheric and as danny said, lush. so in that regard, you've instrumented it well

but there are some serious issues. those strings are too imposing... the attack is just killing me. this is also very very loud. like i said earlier, i like the instrumentation and how the guitar parts are complimentary and subtle but the strings and some unresolving harmonies make this a very uncomfortable listen

NO

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confusing.

there are moments i am in love and others i'm cringing and recoiling in terror.

want to echo the comment about the texture. its quite magnificent... atmospheric and as danny said, lush. so in that regard, you've instrumented it well

but there are some serious issues. those strings are too imposing... the attack is just killing me. this is also very very loud. like i said earlier, i like the instrumentation and how the guitar parts are complimentary and subtle but the strings and some unresolving harmonies make this a very uncomfortable listen

NO

Late to the party. I just want to wrap this review up by echoing what Zyko said. As far as the NO votes, Zyko's is probably the key comment I think Roe should hone in on. Resubmit!

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