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OCR04027 - *YES* Deltarune "Groove Buster"

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ReMixer name: Hanging Waters
Real name: Withheld (please contact via email if needed for legal purposes)
Email address: 

Website: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRlQGhP1jx50S59UV7JNn7Q
Userid: 35742

Game arranged: DeltaRune (Chapter 1)
Name of arrangement: Groove Buster
Name of individual songs arranged: Rude Buster, Field of Hopes and Dreams
Composer: Toby Fox
Game Platform: PC
Game Release: 2018
 
Comments: This electronic funk fusion re-imagining of the DeltaRune battle theme aims to maintain the spirit of the original while ramping up the adrenaline. The slapping bass, spaced out square and sawtooth leads, staccato horn synth, and heavily reverbed pads attempt to give the tune a new sense of atmosphere. After a brief venture into 7/8 and an extensive synth solo, we fade out into Field of Hopes and Dreams and reach a dramatic focal point, before climbing up to one final drop and then reminiscing with a transcription of Toby Fox's original Rude Buster solo. 
 
 
 

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Starts off pretty conservative, mostly just an instrument swap/upgrade, until it gets to the jazzy improv section, which it does take in different directions and expand on.  The break in the middle that uses Field of Hopes and Dreams works as intended, so from the 2:00 mark there's certainly enough interpretation.

As for "ramping up the adrenaline," I have mixed feelings about that.  The original is pretty fast-paced, and the remix uses the percussion line pretty much verbatim.  Also, a lot of the depth in the original comes from the piano, and here the piano is significantly squashed to make room for that meaty bass.  The result is that the soundscape sounds thinner, even though it's technically hitting all points of the spectrum.  The 1:21-2:00 jazz solo in particular sounds mid-light, and 3:35-4:02 sounds high-light.  The middle (2:00-3:35) demonstrates great use of energy management, though.  The sweep FX at 3:24 is particularly juicy.

The chords in 2:44-2:57 don't sound right to me.  I don't have the musical vocabulary to explain it, but they sound off-key to me.

The lead synth at 3:35-4:02 is pretty unique, and works well there.  However, when it returns in staccato form in 4:23-4:30, I don't think it works at all.  It just sounds strange as staccato stabs.

Ugh, fadeout ending.

There's room for improvement in a lot of areas, but none of my concerns are really significant.  I'd prefer a beefier soundscape, especially the piano, but on the other hand the production is clean.  And those chords in the middle sound very wrong, but they're brief.  I wouldn't be sad if this got send back for revisions but for me, I don't think anything here adds up to enough to require it.

YES

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this starts off sounding like the original track was from a mega man game.

right off the bat, you can hear the vision you had for this, and it's fun! you did the same thing as a background for nearly two minutes, though. the 7/8 section was really fun from a technical perspective and a welcome break, but it definitely is feeling samey by the 2-minute mark. i dug the solo for sure, but would have loved to hear more flexibility with the articulations (you used some, but there's a lot more room to mix it up so it's not note salad!) and with the envelope filter. live synth solos usually are going nuts on the x/y knob and it adds a lot of character to what's otherwise a fairly static sound. excellent work using extensions around 1:38 - you had a ton of room to keep doing it, too! don't shy away from the crunchy notes, even in the melodic recaps, since that's what this kind of electro fusion sound lives on.

the breakdown at 2:00 is welcome and needed, and introducing another theme is a great idea. it's a good contrast, too - it's a very rhythmic and downbeat-oriented option. MW, what you're hearing is just the quintal harmony on the melody line. the chords themselves are fine, and the melody is just paired fifths nearly the whole way through that part. it sounds weird but is consistent with this style (fusion) because those strange-sounding notes are extensions up the chord tree. most of them are ninths, which sounds odd when unsupported by a 7th and also on the top of the chord, but there's nothing technically wrong with them. i think it adds a great quirky sound to the middle section that helps distinguish it. also there's precedence: they used it back at 0:50 as well.

i'd argue that the thinner-sounding soundscape works throughout due to the style shift. the original's more this noisy jazz/acoustic rock hybrid, and it relies on that fat piano sound to carry most of the presence since the drums are splats. fusion is notoriously more wide in range, and so the brighter, more treble-heavy instruments carry that sound well i think. i didn't feel it was too empty. if anything it's too busy in a few places (right at 3:35 for example). i do agree that the 3:35 lead is fun, and weird, and works there but doesn't later since it's kind of blatty. when you used it like a synth horn section back at 1:07, you used it more idiomatically, and that was ok. at 4:23ish, it's not as carefully used.

i liked the ABA format overall, and i thought that the soloing and humanization that was done was enough to distinguish it enough on the arrangement front. i think it sounds pretty good too.

 

 

YES

Edited by prophetik music
clarifying verbiage

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Arrangement wise, it does play safe and maintain the source's elements verbatim.  But the accompaniment has some excellent additions like synth guitars and brass, sweeps when appropriate, harmonies in 5ths at 0:48 and 2:45, and even referencing both Deltarune sources during that 1:20 solo.  I also really enjoy that 7/8 breakdown at 0:55 from a technical standpoint, too - it pushed itself out of nowhere and added a refreshing break in the run-up to the improvisational section.  Including "Fields of Hopes and Dreams" also helped to break the momentum and build things up for the final part.  And yes, just like MindWanderer, I also feel that fade-out ending fell flat.  It's not a dealbreaker regarding site standards, but I'm just not a fan of ending tracks this way.

The production's also okay - the instruments are clean, I can identify them all in the mix, and I too can understand the desire to emphasize the funk bass over the piano based on the rest of the instrument palette.  It doesn't necessarily pump the adrenaline like you think it did, but the soundscape does have a meaty undertone in comparison to the original's aired nature.  You used volume envelopes well to express your synths, though I'm also with prophetik in regards to the potential of looking at further articulation for next time.  Additionally, I would've preferred a hint of reverb on your snare, so it's not too dry in comparison to everything else.  It's just a small subjective observation, so it's nothing too serious.

With all parts weighed up, I consider it good to go for the front page.  It's a fun take on an equally fun source, and I'm crossing my fingers to see how you can top this in the future.

YES

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Whoa that slap bass is FUNKAY.... love it.  I wish the piano weren't panned totally right, but the track is balanced well enough.  I feel like the track hits a little strongly in the mid lows, but nothing terrible.  The writing and performances are super fun.  The arrangement does feel samey after not too long, but there is plenty of varied writing and embellishment to make up for it.  Source aplenty.  Not a fan of fadeout endings, it feels like a cop-out 99% of the time to me, but I'll live.  Overall I'm loving this.

YES

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