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Gario

*NO* Castlevania 2 'The Trail of Tears'

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Hi! This is my first submission to OCR so I hope everything is ok :)

Contact info:
Remixer name: Sinfinian
Real name: Mikki Rousi
Email: 
website: www.sinfinian.com
User ID: 34122
 
Submission info:
Game: Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
Name of the arrangement: The Trail Of Tears (Bloody Tears)
Name of the song: Bloody Tears
Comments: First song of the album "The March Of The Machines" by Sinfinian.
 
Cheers,
Mikki Rousi
 

 

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Classicvania synth-rock with orchestral elements?  Talk about hitting all my buttons!  Some nice riffs and original content to keep an overused source interesting.

I have only a few minor criticisms.  At 1:39, a string note hits that's treated more like a pad, extending for a ridiculous amount of time until fading into a choir sample.  It's dominating and unrealistic.  Of course, the strings are unrealistic all around, but I expect that in an arrangement like this, and except in that one section and from 1:00-1:08, they're never in your face.  1:00-1:08 is a bit problematic also because there's a lot of frequency conflict between the strings and guitars, but it's only for 8 seconds.

I think I caught a few clashing notes with the choir near the end--sounds like the tails of each note are a little long--but it's pretty subtle.

Otherwise, this is really solid stuff and I hope we hear more from you!

Edit: Unfortunately, Gario's right.  I know this source so well that my brain sort of filled the lead in automatically, but if you're not doing that, then it's true--you have one saw and the guitar that come through pretty well, but there's a secondary saw and some other synths that don't.  From about 1:24, only the guitar lead can be heard clearly.  I'm afraid I have to flip my vote, but I hope you'll clean this up and send it back.

NO (resubmit)

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Rock-Synth-Orchestra on Castlevania is pretty much bread-and-butter for amazing Castlevania arrangements. This arrangement has a great deal going for it, from solid riffing in the guitar to keep things interesting, the aforementioned original sections that MW mentioned, and some high production values on your synths and instruments to boot.

The mixing of this arrangement really doesn't click, though. Very often it sounds like an indiscriminate wall of sound - 2:42 is a particularly terrible offender, but this issue permeates nearly the entire arrangement. Even in sections where it's not as crowded (like at 0:09) the synths that carry the melodies don't come through over that rhythm guitar. Before I can give it my thumbs up, this track needs to go back in the mix and balance the instruments so the themes come through appropriately, and so that the more complex sections gives each instrument its own space. Toning down the reverb on your instruments will help a great deal in cleaning up your track, as well, so be sure to take a look at that, as well.

I love this, but I can't ignore that this sounds like a wash of sound. You've got talent, though, so I could see you cleaning this up and sending back a clean, kickass arrangement.

NO

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The lead synth was pretty generic, but great energy out of the gate. As soon as the track pivoted to the chorus at :24-:32... yep, the mixing was totally imbalanced and sounded like indistinct mud. When you had a strong lead to focus on in the foreground, things weren't as bad, but the mixing's still pretty messed up.

From :54-1:09 for example, the "Bloody Tears" melody was being played, but it was buried deep, deep, deep in the back of the track; same from 1:24-2:16, the lines playing the "Bloody Tears" theme might as well not be there, it's practically inaudible (and for multiple instances). The whole wall of sound execution of this piece ended up jacking it up pretty badly, and you've got an indistinct mush of sounds for much of the piece.

On the plus side, Mikki, the energy's fantastic, and all of your original part-writing fit like a glove alongside the CV2 arrangement parts. We would love to see this get posted in some form, and the writing side doesn't need to be touched here.

If you can rehabilitate your mixing job or just make sure you're rendering this correctly, then this has a chance. The arrangement aspect was definitely ready for primetime here, so -- if you're not already doing so -- please use our Workshop forums for critique of this track and to ask targeted production questions, or head to any pro audio forum and ask around there.

NO (resubmit)

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