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OCR03160 - *YES* Final Fantasy 2 'Grind My Crank'

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This is for Brandon's FF2 Album

Remixer Name: XPRTNovice
Real Name: Joseph Zieja
Website: http://renmanstudio.com

Games Arranged: Final Fantasy II
Name of Arrangement: Miles and Miles Away
Name of Individual Songs Arranged: "Magician's Tower"

Remixer Comments:

You seriously don't want to hear the first time I tried to mix this. Brandon wanted me to do this, and I thought, cool, I'll try my hand at something prog-metal ish.

It was ass. I spent 8 months creating an utter failure, then promptly threw it away and accomplished this mix in less than 24 hours. Many thanks to Brandon for mastering.

Warning: Guitar, clarinet and drunken yelling are live recorded in my basement, where both of these things go together.

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I was considering this for a DP but the overall structure and some of the transitional passages were really unconventional so I wanted to get this vetted by the panel instead. Will listen more and vote later.

EDIT: The vote's already been closed out at this point so I'm going to keep this brief, but since I commented initially, I'd like to formally put my vote behind this track as well. This is insanely creative, full of spirit and atmosphere, and does a lot of fun stuff with the source. I can feel personality oozing from everything you do Joe, and this is no exception.


Edited by Emunator
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This track is excellent as I'd expect from Joe, it's fun and completely unique like all his stuff is. But yeah there are some odd transitions such as the one at 1:42 where the entire track comes to a stop. There are a few sections where I feel 16 bars could have been shortened to 8 bars instead. Also I'm not sure what is going on starting at 2:19 but I really don't like that section, 2:19-2:57, that whole section just sounds like filler, it is purposely discordant but honestly I'm not a fan.

All that said, this track still has all the awesomeness that is XPRTNovice. I love the sounds used, the organ, the clarinet and the drunken "singing" are all highlights. Much more positive than negative here, as per Larry's "seesaw of what works vs. what doesn't." The track works for me overall, it's a fun listen.


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  • 2 weeks later...

Funny how the klezmer stuff from 2:19-2:58 seemed to wander off aimlessly, which some people will hate, but I loved vegging out to it.

The build to the final crescendo starting around 3:36 got cramped by the reach of the apex at 3:52 IMO, but it wasn't a big deal.

Arrangement- & concept-wise, love it.

I love it.


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  • 1 month later...


I was confused at first. Perhaps I still am. Yeah. Definitely am still confused. Very meandering, but thoughtfully so. I love the layering, the vocals are a great touch, as are the accordion, mandolin, and clarinet. This track is so vibey, and it's just long enough that I don't get tired of the style. Well-written, and well-layered.


You know who's gonna love this shit?


you're speaking my language, XPRTNovice

poignant living room organ intro, slow-rising and unapologetically serene. it instantly feels intimate, quirky and surreal all at once, like strollin down to the local jr market atop an orange elephant. you've got an XPRT touch at layering the different textures (granted, it's entirely formulaic to marry a mando, accordion and clarinet together. the french have been doin it for centuries and yet somehow you're doing it in a way that doesn't at all feel overused).

the break is sudden and jarring and feels like a horrible NOVICE ending (so you know i dig it lol), takes you to a back corner of the bazaar, a sultry place where you have clever strings in the background coercing the listener to look into the creepy tent made of human skin with the dinklage sitting outside of it (this = good). and when i do......

i am met with a rollicking good time, singing and all. ohhhhhhh i'm in love. take me with you to this crank if this is what crank is then i want to go there. ok but the voices are fucking great, you know that?

ok in all seriousness, how is that not a live clarinet? excellent work. i would knock the accordion because it sounds lifeless but seriously, with such a great arrangement, it doesn't matter. NOTHING MATTERS.

just YESSING it.



(p.s. i love you larry)

Edited by Vig
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