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Sir_NutS

OCR03578 - *YES* Run Saber "Break My Strider"

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#shamelessselfpaneling

Artist: Sir_NutS
Name of the games arranged: Run Saber
Name of the arrangement: Break My Strider
Name of the individual songs arranged: 'Renegade Saber'

Link to remix:  (edited)

Links to originals: 

 

It's been a while since I finished a song so I thought it was about time.  This is a remix of Run Saber, a game I used to rent all the time as a kid.  It was a simple, enjoyable action game with great music.  Kind of a Strider ripoff with multiplayer, but fun.

Anyways this theme, I had been bugging Willrock to remix it almost every time we talked for over a year, because I always thought it was perfect for him,  but he wasn't very interested, so I decided I should remix it myself, somewhat in the style I think Will would do it but adding my own as well.  So you get a discount Willrock sort of a remix.  I tried to get him to do the guitars only after I finished it, but it seems he was too busy with other projects so yeah.  

I ended up using Shreddage, which sounds alright in this song imo.  The rest of the song was done using my usual array of synths.  I had a lot of fun with the arrangement, doing some extensive soloing for some of the parts.  In the end, doing synthrock with modern drum elements and techniques was a lot of fun and I may do it again soon.  The track name is a double pun thanks to F4T4L as always.  

Enjoy!

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Mmm, I can definitely taste the fake Willrock here.  He would probably have hammed it up much more, especially in 2:39-3:00, but overall, mission accomplished.  Just a little chippier than what he usually does, getting that genuine NutS flavor in.

There are a couple of strange notes scattered around, but otherwise I have no real criticisms.  Looking forward to seeing this on the front page!

YES

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Not sure why the opening cymbal was simply muted at :02; even in a real life setting, that was an odd choice, but it's a small thing. As soon as the mix hit the first verse at :22, the mixing seemed too bright and piercing, so I'm not sure what happened there. The synth lead first at :05 and the gliding synth lead at :22 were too generic, IMO.

The electric guitar chugs mixed in the back felt somewhat stiff and exposed, but were solid and added some good depth. Though the boomy kicks/thumps felt a bit indistinct, the beats also filled things in nicely. Something's just off with the frequencies here; I wish I could articulate what's going on. I also wish the core beat wasn't so plain; there's so much detail work going on with the beat-writing that's a lot quieter, but the pattern of the main beat during the verses felt bland, despite a lot of creative fills clearly being used to break things up. At 2:32, when those plain beats returned, it just felt like track could have gone in a more creative direction.

When things cleared up after the dropoff at 1:52, the texture had more breathing room, but I'm still not sure why this was all so piercing. The delayed notes from 2:20-2:25 were oddly written; would be nice to smooth that out.

The arrangement's a straightforward pass, but a lot of smaller issues for me with the mixing, sound design, and writing were adding up to a NO (resubmit). I think some more personality/uniqueness to the leads and some re-working of that main would help this, plus smoothing out whatever's making the leads seem so shrill. It feels like it needs one more pass on the production to iron out several kinks. I may simply be old man-ing this, Mike, so good luck with the rest of the vote.

EDIT (3/13): Looking at Chimpa's additional comments below, she definitely nailed the assessment of the revision, i.e. it's improved, but still sounds much heavier with the higher frequencies. The kicks aren't that much more distinct, but they cut through more. I would have liked some writing & synth tweaks, but the mixing updates are enough to nudge this over. It should be have been a more solid pass, and I hold Mike to a high standard personally, but this version is solid enough. I'll change over to (borderline) YES, but this didn't fully realize the potential & energy of the composition.

Edited by Liontamer
changed vote to YES

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I'll bet I know why Larry is hearing this as bright/piercing/crispy/shrill... the track is missing lows.  The bass needs to come up in volume in the lowest end, perhaps the entire bass should come up in volume, and the kick sounds weak and thumpy and doesn't have any punch, the kick needs more volume and also some smack to come through the mix.  I'll bet those changes alone will make the instrument balance work.  I have no issue with the synths used, NutS favors the 80s sounding saw leads, the leads are fine.  The Shreddage guitar chugs sound just dandy to me, who needs Willrock???  Writing and arrangement are fantastic.  I'll withhold my vote until the low end is fixed up. (spoiler alert, it's a YES once the low end is fixed up :-) ) 

edit 3/13/17:  Listening to the revised version, the bass is now louder but it isn't filling out the low end like I thought it would, since the bass isn't playing in a very low range.  The bass might almost be too loud now, but I like it better this way.  The highs are tamed now, but there is still an overall high-mid crispy feel to the mix which I think is due to the timbres all having similar characteristics and playing in similar ranges.  It's definitely over the bar for me now, but perhaps these are issues to address in future mixes.

YES

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Pretty straight-forward arrangement, but it definitely has its own flair to its presentation. Those decorative leads certainly add a lot to the track, and though I found it harmonically strange from time to time, that's how the source was too, so I suppose I can't give the arranger grief for it this time around. ;)

The mix in this is pretty oppressive. Honestly, it feels like that bass instrument is quite loud in comparison to the rest of the instruments, which doesn't give the synths much sound space to work with. Thus, from time to time the track sounds a little overcompressed due to that. I think this is more a balance issue than an EQ one - that bass synth is just loud compared to the other instruments. To the mix's credit, the instruments are not difficult to distinguish, so while I have my issues with it I can't say that's dealbreaking, either.

The soundscape (especially the backing instruments) gets a bit static after a while. The section at 1:52 is a great way to break the overall sound - it feels like a breath of fresh air where it's needed most. The lead switches from synth to guitar from time to time, as well, which helps.

There are a few smaller things that irk me the wrong way (the mixing of the bass, the static soundscape), but it's not quite enough to turn my vote. It's still a pretty fun romp where it counts, so I'm all for it. Nice work!

YES

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