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Final Fantasy 7 - Lifestream, Character themes (Orchestra)


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This is a mashup between Lifestream and the themes for Cloud (i.e. the FF7 main theme), Tifa and Aerith. The original plan was to include all character themes, but squeezing them into the 6/8 meter and completely changing the harmonies around to fit the Lifestream backing proved to be a bit too challenging.

Every character has their dedicated woodwind instrument: Cloud is the clarinet, Tifa is the oboe and Aerith is the flute. When a character's theme becomes the main focus they are also doubled by a solo string instrument in the same register order: Cello for Cloud, viola for Tifa and violin for Aerith. Every focused theme is also accompanied by fragments of the other character themes using their respective instruments. The fragments are sometimes stretched or squished, and sometimes only the melodic idea remains. Mostly for Cloud this can render the original song somewhat unrecognizable, for example at 2:18. And again for Cloud, because the main theme is so long and they had to be changed to fit, the two fragments at 2:46 and 2:54 may not immediately ring a bell because they are from completely different parts of the original and preserve only certain musical aspects.

This is my first try at really integrating multiple songs into one arrangement, but I'm highly satisfied with the result. I think the piece in its entirety is cohesive enough to be perceived as one and not just multiple arrangements tacked together, so it should still qualify for OCR submission.

Edit: Updated attached music file.

 

20210912.mp3

Edited by suikun
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  • 2 weeks later...

After some more deliberation I don't think I have anything to add to the piece and am marking it as ready for review. I'm still a bit concerned about the tension management because the overarching crescendo is not that noticeable, but the bridges between the different themes should provide enough variation to keep things interesting.

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I completely re-did the mixing to address some issues that had been bugging me forever. The mix should be a lot more transparent now, and all instruments have moved closer to the listener. Through the magic of parallel compression many quiet parts should be more audible. I've also eq-ed most instruments to sit better in the mix.

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