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*NO* Sonic the Hedgehog 'Serene Tranquil Zone'

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Contact Information:

ReMixer Name: MaesterTed
Real Name: Jonas Bombeke
E-mail address: 
UserID: 35358
Submission Information:
Name of the game arranged: Sonic The Hedgehog
Name of Arrangement: Serene Tranquil Zone
Name of individual song arranged: Green Hill Zone
Composer, system: Masato Nakamura, Sega Genesis
Link to original soundtrack:
This mix came to life as an entry to a cover contest hosted by fellow Youtuber "Soundole VGM Covers".
The challenge was to take a song, and remix it in a chill, relaxed way.
Seeing as I tend to experiment with Celtic music, I have remade this normally quite energetic song in a relaxing, Celtic style. This was the result.
You can find the remix attached in this mail.

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I like the idea behind this.  There are a lot of high-energy Green Hill remixes out there, so it's nice to hear something more pastoral.  I didn't realize that Irish-Americans have been integrating the banjo into their own folk music for nearly a century--it came across as more American old-time with Celtic influence to me, especially since the melodica sounds a lot like a harmonica.

The performance quality is definitely solid, if a bit rigid.  At first I actually thought some of it was sequenced and not performed live, your timing and velocity are so consistent.

My one big concern is that this isn't very fully developed as an arrangement.  It's very well "orchestrated" (if that's the word) for the parts you chose to use, with excellent instrumentation and accompaniment throughout.  But the overall structure is basically a cover.  It's very short, with extremely minimal introduction and ending, otherwise consisting of two loops of the source.

We've historically accepted arrangements done much like this--structurally conservative but thoroughly reorchestrated--but they tend to be longer and with more parts.  This is very well done for what it is, though.

I'm going to think about this one some more, and see what other judges have to say.

Update 7/8/19: While I wouldn't go so far as to call this a transcription--there are some differences, especially in the second half--the bulk of the accompaniment is lifted straight from the source.  It's executed well but not enough is added or changed for our purposes.


Edited by MindWanderer

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Wow, this is a lovely production!  Your instruments are well balanced, the choice of parts is appropriate for this Celtic feel - and having seen the video as well, I feel justified in saying your performance chops worked wonders.  Your time around other Youtube musicians have shown you were keen to get your presentation up to speed with the best of them, so be proud of that.

However, the problem with this arrangement is how critically conservative it is.  MindWanderer is right in that we've had conservative re-orchestrations posted in the past - but if they didn't have any further expansions, they'd instead typically have more interpretation of the source, creative writing or both within their short length.  The way I see it, the change of genre and key are nice, but it's still Green Hill's melodies and counter elements note for note.

This track still has promise though, so I'm keen to see if you can revise the concept and flesh out the idea whether it's modifying the current contents or extending it.  Your style is gorgeous, so it'll be amazing to see you on the front page some point in the future.

NO (resubmit)

Edited by Rexy

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what a delightful transcription! you've done a really beautiful job of pulling together a stylistically-consistent reorchestration of the tune. i really appreciate the attention paid to the soundscape's panning and aural layout. i do feel that the lead part of the banjo is too loud from :57 onward, and that's a big surprise because the rest is so balanced. i realize the banjo doesn't sustain nearly as consistently as other plectral instruments, but it's still far too loud for the setting there, especially when doubled by those great mando/uke tremolos.

ultimately, though, this is not an arrangement per se, but a transcription. you've taken another work and adapted it wholesale to a new group of instruments without changing any of the original, outside of what was needed for the chosen group of instruments to play it in a stylistically correct manner.

per the standards (emphasis mine):


2. Your arrangement must be substantial and original.

  • Submissions must be different enough from the source material to clearly illustrate the contributions, modifications, and enhancements you have made. Acceptable arrangement often involves more than one of the following techniques:
    • Modifying the genre, chord progression, instrumentation, rhythms, dynamics, tempo, or overall composition of the source material
    • Adding original solos, transitions, harmonies, counter-melodies, lyrics, or vocals to the source material
  • Taking the original game audio and simply adding drum loops or using an existing MIDI file and assigning new instruments does not qualify as substantial or original arrangement.

this does not have enough of any "contributions, modifications, and enhancements". adapting the bass parts to I-V-I-V and arpeggiating the guitar in the background is fitting for the style, and honestly sounds pretty great, but it simply doesn't have enough content that's new for me to pass it on that ground. i don't feel it's close either.

the work is quite short as it is. if you're willing, adding additional content that features some of the techniques mentioned above or others would make this an easy yes vote from me. until then, it's not up to standards, sadly.

NO (resub!)

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