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*NO* Silent Hill 2 "Beneath the Surface"


Rexy
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  • Name of game(s) arranged: Silent Hill 2
  • Name of arrangement: Beneath the Surface
  • Name of individual song(s) arranged: true
  • Link to the original soundtrack:
     
Source Usage
 
Not much to say about the source usage on this one; everything is there, for the most part in the same order as the original track.  There is one notable exception however, which is that the last statements of both main themes are played on top  of eachother, one in the cello and the other in the keys.  There is plenty of original writing in here, but for the most part it takes a back seat the source material.  If you're listening for it, you'll hear some new melodies played by the piano & keys during the second theme, and when the main theme is restated in the upper register of the piano later on the cello is playing original material in the lower registers. 
 
The arrangement itself is a sort of chill/lofi setting, starting out small with a guitar and gradually building up to a climax with the string section before fading out again.  It sort of walks this middle ground between being warm and crackly, but still clear.  It doesn't sound authentically vinyl, but I think it adds a nice touch to the atmosphere. 
Edited by MindWanderer
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  • 2 months later...

Certainly very close to the original source material, but with some subtle additions. This is on the edge of what I would consider too conservative, but the small changes and additions you brought to the table aren't lost on me! 

However, the instrumentation and sequencing is another aspect of this track that I feel falls slightly short of expectations. Most of the instruments have a very rigid feel to them that belies the warm, organic soundscape you're looking to create. The biggest offender in my book is the electric piano, which has almost no expressiveness whatsoever and plays heavily quantized to the grid. The piano is definitely the most natural sounding performance of the bunch, and the rest of the instrumentation falls somewhere in between. I find that realism in sequencing is especially important in an arrangement like this where you're working with so few sounds, and everything is so exposed. 

I have no problems with this conceptually, but the execution in creating a realistic, organic soundscape is not quite there yet, but could easily get there with little effort!

NO (resubmit)

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  • Emunator changed the title to 2020/11/09 - (1N) Silent Hill 2 "Beneath the Surface"
  • 1 month later...

well, i love the instrumentation concepts. the guitar, piano, ep, and drums are all great sample choices (although the drums are a bit more underwater than i'd like). the soundscape build around 1:30 through 1:40 is really nice (with one caveat, see below). i agree with emu that the track sounds heavily quantized but it's not the worst thing, in my opinion. there definitely was some room there to be more flexible with your realization.

there are two major issues that i see. the first is that this is super heavy in the mids. there's essentially nothing in the lows, and the highs are muted due to the style - probably too much - so everything in a tight band in the mids. it's cluttered as a result. this is really noticeable for most of the section between 1:15 and 2:10. your ep, piano, guitar, cello, strings, and choir-replacement burbles are all kind of in the same place. it would probably require some notable EQing to fix that, and also likely some rearrangement to get notes out of the same registers.

my second issue is that this is really, really conservative of an arrangement. if everything was rock-solid outside of the arrangement i'd consider a borderline yes - that's how close this is to not being enough for me. there's a ton of opportunity for personalization here. the stepwise motion of the melody means that altered chords would be easy to substitute in. an altered time signature would really mix it up as well. additional countermelodies or harmonies, some more variation of instrumentation to get it away from the original, more dynamic variation...any of those would help a ton. as it is, it's so close to the original that it's hard for me to say that enough was done for it to be a transformative arrangement.

 

 

NO

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  • prophetik music changed the title to 2020/11/09 - (2N) Silent Hill 2 "Beneath the Surface"
  • 3 months later...

I don't mind a quantized electronic instrument, and the piano and guitar sound fine to me, but the solo violin and ensemble strings sound very thin.

I also agree that the arrangement is too far on the conservative side.  Not only are the melody and structure very similar, but the general lo-fi, atmospheric, minimal approach comes across as very similar to the original as well.  It's not what I would consider "transformative" at all.

NO

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  • MindWanderer changed the title to *NO* Silent Hill 2 "Beneath the Surface"
  • MindWanderer locked this topic
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