Rexy

*NO* Pokémon Trading Card Game "Card Shark Shuffle"

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Hello,

Key facts on us and on the ReMix:
  • ReMixer name: BigLeagueBoys
  • Real names: Jack Cunningham and Luke DeMuro
  • OCR Forums Userid: 35898
  • Game arranged: Pokémon Trading Card Game (GBC)
  • Arrangement Name: "Card Shark Shuffle"
  • Song Arranged: "Duel"
 
We hope you like it!
 
More about us:
 
We're BigLeagueBoys - the VGM dream team made up of Jack Cunningham and Luke DeMuro. Jack was the first intern over at OC Records (hi Larry!), and Luke owns and operates a private home recording studio. We've been arranging game tunes together for about 8 years now, but have only released our works to smaller audiences.
 
When considering submitting to OCR, we landed on this track as our first choice immediately. Both of us had played the incredible, underrated gem that is the Pokémon Trading Card Game GBC game, and both of us were stunned that this principal track hadn't been attempted on OCR before. Pokémon TCG is a simpler take on the series compared to the mainline games, but it's just as much fun to play, and the soundtrack is just as memorable. I'm sure that the analog between "comparatively simpler gameplay" and "comparatively less technical music" was deliberate, but really we just like this soundtrack because the music does more of the heavy lifting when it comes to being totally immersed in the adventure. After all, something needs to smooth the transition between monster fighting and card collecting, right?
 
Our approach here was what came most naturally to us: beef up this criminally misrepresented track with a groovin' bassline, sick guitarmonies, and the rhythm section it deserves (did you pick up on the auxiliary percussion bit at 2:37?). From there, the blues riffs and trumpets helped to really pack a wallop the second time through, and the last part... well, we couldn't resist. Some card clubs in the 50s used to sing, right?
 
Anyway, thanks for your time in reading and listening. Looking forward to making much more!
 
Sincerely yours,
 
BigLeagueBoys
 
Edited by Rexy

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oh man, i played this game so many times! the entire soundtrack is dope. and the game came with a limited edition card in it! that meowth was great for scraping clean an opponent's bench of injured pokes.

the book on this one is pretty straightforward. the mastering is really clean (i wouldn't have minded a touch more compression, but that's me). the recording is really well-done, and is very clean and light - almost too much so, the lack of a pad or something in the middle to maintain the chords makes it feel pretty hollow throughout. the performance is note for note solid - but, that's the rub, in that there' essentially no arrangement here. it's a cover. the guitar parts are recorded to be exactly as the melody was in the original (even the harmony parts), and there's no altered chords, rhythms, or anything that could be called arrangement in there. the blues riffs were nice, and the vox parts at the end were cute, but realistically this is a cover, nothing more. i expected a lot more arrangement from the high-flying description.

i love the track, but it doesn't fit the arrangement criteria even a little unfortunately. this is a great cover, but we can't accept covers at OCR. playing with some altered chords, mixing up the rhythms to make the melody more your own, or adding some new moving voices behind the melody would really transform this a lot and add a ton of interest. right now, though, this can't pass.

 

 

NO

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Yeah, unfortunately the tweaks to the original are pretty darn subtle.  They're there, but it isn't enough to make this more than a cover.  It's a very good cover, and I can see why you were excited about the end result, but it's not the sort of reinterpretation we look for.

Also some of the singing in the ending is a bit flat.

I'd love to hear more from you if you get some more out-of-the-box ideas.

NO

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If there's anything I've learned from being a judge, it's that this BGM is so good!  Someone needs to give it some representation on the front page sooner or later.

On the presentation side, you guys nailed it.  The mixdown is clean, the performances are tight and on point, and no instrument is there for the sake of being there.  Take pride in what you achieved here - it's comfortably above expectations.

Yet, the arrangement didn't have much changed over from the source.  Aside from your percussion and rhythm guitar, the first variation is tonally identical.  The second variation changed things up slightly with an additional guitar countermelody, as well as a synth brass doubling up at 3:20 before providing melodic content of its own.  The slowdown and vocals at 4:16 is adorable and out of leftfield, yet while I liked your stylistic changeup, it happened too late in the running time, unfortunately.

Here are some ideas on how to vary up the arrangement while still keeping source presence intact.  You could play around with the melody, bass or chord structure; you could add an original solo on top of the existing bass; heck, you could even put the melody over a different accompaniment pattern altogether - and that's just scratching the surface.  With a partnership between you two that has lasted for nearly a decade, I know you can sit down together and figure out ideas on the fly.

Nevertheless, your production and performance chops are sick, so I hope you guys continue to make music together in the time ahead of you.  Should you ever go back to this track, it'll be nice to hear a version that does more to the source material beyond just the addition of some backing parts.  Please submit again in the future!

NO (resubmit)

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