Sign in to follow this  
Nostalvania

wip SMW - Sub Castle BGM (Reggae/Jazz)

9 posts in this topic

Hi Everyone,

Here is my newest ReMix i'm working on. This time i decided to arrange the popular Sub Castle BGM from Super Mario World. I tried to do something different by using a more "upbeat" approach, while still remaining the dark/menacing mood of the source. Probably needs some work on the mixing.

Source: https://youtu.be/N5ODU-luXx8

Remix:  https://app.box.com/s/zdi3cyboadtv6yeam3pfurphrkyne0qd

Feedback welcome :)

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So right of the bat, I'm enjoying the feel. It's still fairly dark and menacing, but it's got more of that "serial killer clown at a haunted amusement park" kind of menacing vibe to it, which is pretty fun. The arrangement is definitely solid, so I don't have much to discuss on that front. Solo writing on the steel pan and trombone are especially high points.

You're right about your initial concerns regarding mixing, though. It's a little too tough to make out the drum parts for my taste. In particular, the piano tends to overpower them even when it's playing a background role (for instance, early on in the first statement of the A-section theme, when the piano is just playing that reggae "bubble" chord pattern, it's a little too much in the forefront. Reggae is a very rhythmic genre, in my eyes, so drums and bass should probably play a more prominent role in the sound, even with the more jazz-styled arrangement you've gone with.

Additionally, if you can find somebody to play those horn parts live, I feel like the quality of this track will improve by an order of magnitude. The writing is so solid, but I just can't get past that "uncanny valley" feeling I get from the trombone.

Seriously, though, keep up the work on this one. It's super good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't comment on the mixing right now, but the arrangement definitely knocks it out of the park. I will say though, that the happier outtro feels like it's missing a cleaner transition into it. Maybe the organ could trail a bit into the next measure? And I think I kind of hear a bass note starting that outtro, but if it decayed more slowly, I think that could help on the transition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great arrangement and feel, I especially like the solos. I feel like if the brass had a few more horns backing it, that it might fit in a little better, but right now it's kinda just a lone ranger. The genre you picked for this fits so well with what you have going on too. The ending could have had a better transition though, as timaeus222 said.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This has an awesome vibe to it.  The mixing isn't all bad but it could use some touch-ups.  The bass in particular seems a tad too powerful.  I realize the bass is pretty important part in this style, but if it was a bit quieter it could help the other parts come through more clearly.  The drums could use a bit more presence as well, though they're close where they are.  Love the organ throughout.  The piano was pretty hard hitting at first which had me worried, but it ducked out of the way a bit once the whole ensemble came in which sounded alright to me.  The trombone is a nice touch, though it does sound a bit fakey.  It could use a bit more humanization, mostly noticeable in the faster runs it does, though it's not bad as it.

The outtro is a pretty drastic change, it could use a more convincing lead-in like others have suggested.  But overall this is a very sweet arrangement, just needs some touch-ups throughout in the mixing like you initially suspected.  Keep at it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice, this is a really different approach to the song - more playful than the original, at first, but as Skyline Drop mentioned, still with a subtly dark atmosphere to it. And the new reggae-style rhythms present the familiar melodies in a new and interesting light (a number of your progressions here have been stuck in my head since I first listened). The eerie choir entering the mix around 1:20, for example, does a good job of maintaining some of that haunting quality the original has - though I'll echo the concerns others have mentioned about the trombone, which is about the only thing that threw me off somewhat. Extra expression/humanization would help but I also think maybe a different, less artificial-sounding sample choice might be needed.

The arrangement and buildups/breakdowns are great too. I like the fierceness of the organ at around 2:28, it serves as a reminder of the song's origins as a theme for a place full of dread and dangerous surprises. Same for the similar reprisal at 4:00, though I'll agree the sudden shift towards a happier tone at the end seems either out of place or needs a better, more gradual transition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay, about the mixing, I would say the kick can be a little more noticeable (I barely feel it). The rimshot and snare could also be louder; they're kind of present, but not really enough in the front. They don't need to be super punchy, but they shouldn't be so quiet. :)

I agree about the trombone needing a bit more expression, or simply a live recording; the legato notes are what's not quite convincing me, and a touch of vibrato on some notes can help.

The bass is a touch loud, and that's mostly noticeable in the bass solo, and it's not a big deal IMO, but maybe reduce the EQ at about 100~150 Hz by 1~3 dB.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@timaeus222 I agree about the drums (and everything else actually), especially the rim click is a bit too quiet. I'd say the snare is more present, but yeah, it could be louder.

I'm aware of that the trombone sounds pretty fake, and of course a live instrument would be great. Actually, i know a trombone player, maybe i'll ask him?

Hmm, maybe i'm gonna change the ending from major to minor (like in the intro), or just try to find a better transition to the major key.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this