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Rolling Thunder 'El Salsa'

I could never get into the music of Rolling Thunder. I tried, but it was never my groove. I heard the themes quite a bit, but they never stuck in my head. But djp has taken this and given it a Latin-esque sound, which comes off pretty well I think. Could use some reverb since it does sound kind of dry, but other than that it's not too shabby. Do keep in mind that this is an early djp effort, as a few instruments do sound a bit thin.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 months later...

Well, what to say about this mix. Some people might like it, personally (and note the "personally") I find it mediocre and forgettable. Not to say its bad, but I don't think it stands up to some of DJP's better mixes. And when listening to it, I can't shake the image of a comical looking guy in a sombrero strumming a stringed intstrument. Who has drunk too much tequila. But I digress, and apoligise for that if you are mexican. And reading this.

Anyway, the mix is straight into it, with a very "rolling" intro melody, which lasts all of 19 seconds, before going silent and starting a more muted tune. An cool souunding stringed instrument comes in along with some others, and (if you're me) you start seeing the sombrero guy, with his annoying moustache. But at least he plays well. About this time, you get hungry for salsa and corn chips, almost exactly at 1:10.

The tune is pretty standard until 1:27, when a drumroll kicks in for two seconds, then goes back to the melody, with a drumroll pattern laid on top of that. Thakfully, the focus changes to a different instrument at 1:46 for variety, then breaks into the main pattern at 2 minutes. Then, the mix winds down to the end.

So maybe its just me, but I don't find this anything more than repetitive, and basic. But then, maybe you like this type of music. In that case you might want to give it a try. Just don't expect a Mario 64 Sunken suite.

Subjective-Tequlia-drinking-sombrero-guy-with-moustache-O-meter: 5/10

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  • 3 years later...

Was just watching an NES time attack of this game. Damn those are some lanky characters. The guy who made the the time attack made an analogy to the Ku Klux Klan to describe the enemy aliens here, which was so good. They're hilarious when a level is beaten and they punch the air.

Anyway, the "Main Theme" source material is actually disjointed in that the intro only lasts a few second before changing into something else entirely. Weird, but at the same time good to hear it reflected here.

The mix is certainly dated, but I liked the arrangement approach here. The second part of the source is so minimal that it really offers a lot of creative freedom to expand upon it and write new material, which djp handled nicely here going for that salsa flavor. Even way back, he had the right idea on how to really personalize an arrangement. Cool old stuff.

I also bumped this from the very, VERY bottom of ReMix ReViews, where it sat at the bottom of page 29. Space Harrier 'Spaced' can now enjoy it's shiny new spot at the bottom.

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  • 1 year later...

The intro didn't quite lead into the main part of the song as well as it could. If there was more of a crescendo and then a slight pause it would have made more sense I think. The samples used aren't very good, but the arrangement is pretty cool. The layers of percussion give it a great feel, it's just the lead instruments that let it down.

I'd love to hear an update of this with higher quality lead sounds, actually.

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  • 7 months later...

Hahaha, I had forgotten about the music from this game. That stupid intro. I really like what you're trying to do here, DJP, with the little salsa flourishes on the guitar and drums. The chords of the original lend themselves very well to this sort of rendition. If it was less stiff and more live-sounding, it'd be fantastic.

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  • 9 months later...

Great flavor to the mix, although I feel like it doesn't really end up anywhere. Sounds dated, and it is, so that makes sense.

some of the more improvy sections feel lost in a directional sense, but that sounds that it's more from the original than DJP's doing, so I won't fault there.

Not the most memorable mix, but decent overall. Good to see how much he's improved since then, though.

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  • 2 months later...
I enjoy this, datedness and all. It's positively strange, and the bassline is extremely effective.

--Eino

You're like the ONLY one :) Actually, the source is pretty strange as well, and the game itself was rather odd... enemies looked like hooded Klu Klux Klan members who got tired of wearing white all the time and went CRAZY with the colors.

For some additional context, my primary motivation behind this mix was to get some arcade love going but more importantly to do something "Latin"... is this Latin? No, I think it's probably just "Mediocre,"... it's DEFINITELY not Salsa, and I don't even know what the hell "El Salsa" was all about. My apologies to Spanish speakers everywhere; my intentions were good!

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  • 8 months later...

So others have said probably most of it - samples are not quite up to snuff, and I hear very little on the low end here. However, I do think the arrangement is pretty interesting, and could be quite nice if it were updated with the requisite production & samples.

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  • 2 months later...

I actually like this quite a bit! Yeah I think the sounds are dated...it probably has more to do with the lack of processing or fx on most things than the sounds themselves. It doesn't bother me nearly as much as it might someone else though.

Yeah, actually this is pretty darn cool. The way the sounds mix together is quite nice and funky. There's a lot of really cool jazzy salsa-themed interplay between the instruments to make things interesting. Honestly this is very well arranged and conceived for being an older mix. If the aim was to be a good Latin mix djp probably failed there, but this has its own unique appeal - it's good, even if it's not really what was aimed for. I guess I'd have to hear the source to confirm how much is actually arrangement.

But yeah...Cool stuff, especially for being one of the first mixes on the site.

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The opening... synth thing (I can't identify it) annoys me, but the percussion going on in the intro (and the rest of the mix, really) is decent. I do like the soloing on what I'm pretty sure is supposed to be a guitar toward the end, though.

Despite the really poor samples, you can tell djp knew what he was doing from an arrangement perspective right from the start... or at least had a good idea, anyway. This leaves room for improvement but I'm sure it was awesome by the standards from 10 years ago :-P

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  • 4 months later...
  • 2 months later...

Meh. The quality of nearly all the instruments reminds me of a midi, aside from the percussion on occasion. And yeah, the intro is very annoying. At 2:23 when it chills out a little more, it gets better, maybe a little more realistic-sounding... and then before you know it it just ends. Some remixes have aged well on this site, and I'm afraid this isn't one of them. Sorry :|:tomatoface:

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  • 7 months later...

0:20 this hiatus probably makes more sense for those that have played the game

0:40 lots of neat rhythms going on here

0:56 clean steel guitar comes through quite well

1:29 a bit too crowded for me

1:46 interesting harmonica element

2:22 nice verse and buildup, was expecting another chorus, but the ending worked out just fine

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  • 7 months later...
  • 1 month later...

Sexy salsa sounds. I'm not entirely for the dry mastering, but it works alright - it's not too distracting, due to the constant wall of instruments that are coming in.

That slab bass is pretty bad sounding, especially when compared to the decent sounds used for the rest of the instruments. Overall the sample quality is pretty good, though - not perfect, but great for the time.

The rhythms are stylistically fitting, and damn catchy, too boot. Certainly can't turn that aspect of the mix down.

I love the variety of instruments that come into the mix. Muted trumpets, steel string guitar, nylon string guitar... it all comes together very well.

Salsa, it is sexy. It earns about seven and a half sombreros out of ten.

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DJPretzel, if you can read this: RESUB THIS!

It's not the best ReMix I've heard, and it does seem a bit outdated, but if DJP made this today I'm sure it would be amazing. The arrangement itself was fine, it was the production that brings this down. But compared to other ReMixes of the time its pretty good. I don't know why, but I'm a sucker for this kind of music (probably has to do with the fact I live 2 hours from Miami).

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It's SO dry! Some amounts of reverb on the instruments throughout could have really done a lot to improve the sound of this. It sounds a bit too raw as it is. The sequenced 'acoustic guitar' sample is not very good, and is pretty mechanically sequenced. That Seinfeld slap bass was unexpected but put a big smile on my face. I love the transition at 2:00 -- the note spamming on the conga is pretty well done, and although there's not a lot of velocity variation on the notes, the sample isn't too bad. I think adding reverb could have gone a long way with this, but also having a real guitar recording would have been great. I'm sure at the time there were people who were like "omg you play guitar???" Hahaha... Overall, a nice but pretty busy (and dry) mix. :-)

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  • Liontamer changed the title to OCR00007 - Rolling Thunder "El Salsa"

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