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OCR01569 - Touhou Youyoumu: Perfect Cherry Blossom "Icy Peaks"


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Wow...never heard of the game or the track, but the awesomeness of this ReMix made me REALLY curious. I need to play this game sometime.

Anyway, again...wow...the playing and the recording quality are flawless to my ears...as DJP said it really feels like four individual people are playing Violins, not one. This ReMix actually reminds me of the "Zora's Domain" cover in the Ocarina of Time "Hyrule Symphony" album. Awesome stuff.

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Wow you guys. I'm really not sure what to say. I have to admit, I actually expected it NOT to get accepted at all, much less with this sort of praise.

As I mentioned in my original submission, this is just something I kind of threw together during a rare slow evening at the studio. It was just a fun little file on my computer, and the decision to submit it to OCR was fairly spontaneous. Kind of a "hell, why not" sort of thing, born of a more tame "I should show this to a few buddies" kind of thinking. As I was reading the judges' commentary, every time someone brought up a negative point, like the playing being flat here and there, or the short length, or how it was similar to the original at times, I found myself nodding and going "yes, exactly".

Since you guys enjoyed this gimmick so much, I'm going to have to make sure the next submission is COMPLETELY different. I think I'm gonna have to dust off my DX-7 and my Roland R-8 and make some 80s-tastic dance music next! Believe it or not, I've been thinking about writing some Italo Disco beats.

In the meantime, I'd love to collab with some of the other remixers. If someone wants to write me a violin part (or 4) I will gladly play and record it (or them), at least as long as it isn't impossible to play! Though sadly, the SM-81 I used to record this one is on the fritz at the mo', so I may just have to use the AKG C414EB instead. HORRORS! :lmassoff:

In all seriousness though, while I did finish a music degree, I rarely actually do music like this anymore, making this submission extra-weird for me. I run one studio that does mostly indie pop, metal, and other rock, and I work for a different studio that focuses on hip-hop, R&B, blues, jazz, and gospel, so I don't get to pull my old orchestral chops out very often anymore. What makes it even worse is that I LOVE tinkering with synthesizers, so when I do make music, it's usually cheesy electronic stuff (and I don't mean that electronic music is cheesy, just when I do it).

Answers:

@The Lone Ranger: Yeah, I did those weird Lufia mixes forever and ever ago, back when I just used some cheap soundfonts (and vintage dreams, which is still awesome, and which I still use on an E-mu e6400), and didn't really understand what "hardcore" was outside of a few MP3s I had downloaded called "hardcore mix". I know better now. At least I had the good sense never to submit those travesties here.

@CHz: Well the Western "Touhou community" is pretty small. The Touhou Wiki at www.poshlmer.com is a decent English resource for info on the series, and the Maidens of the Kaleidoscope forums are fairly jumping small English forums to sound off about it, at least if they ever show up again anyways. There are SO MANY Japanese remixes of this music! But apparently they sell, because the fanbase is HUGE there! I've actually thought about compiling an entire album of Touhou remixes and trying to get them sold at cons over there, since there's quite a market, even if it is highly competitive. They don't even have to know I'm not Japanese that way! ;-)

@Dhsu: Tinny it may be, but the man really cares about delivering a fun and relevant musical backdrop to his games. He does pretty well given that it's all done on a single $400 digital synthesizer (an Edirol SD-80, to be exact). Those who remember me from VGMusic know that I once wrote music similarly, using only an SC-8850...so I can really relate to it! It's what you gotta do if you're too poor to afford good gear, too honest to pirate software, and too busy making music (or entire video games, in ZUN's case) to dick with free crap. Really, a lot of his melodies are quite moving in the context of the game. They can be moving outside the context of the game too if presented in the right way, as I've proven given the response on this remix. Besides this one piece of music, ZUN has written dozens more every bit as majestic and catching, if one can only set aside the hatred for cheap-sounding MIDI. I'm glad I could help you see it from a new perspective!

@Abadoss: Financially afford it? Dude, fire away. I'd love to collab! I mean, if it's like the solo part of some virtuoso-level concerto you're writing, then maybe we ought to talk $$$, but if you just want a couple phrases, or an easy melody part then I'm all for it! Oh, and I probably under-charge for gigs. I make plenty of scratch running my studio, so the violin thing is really just gravy for me anyways. I'd rather DO it then insist on big money for it. Recording rock bands is fun, but if I couldn't play violin, I would die!

@Black Mage: My name, Justus, is pronounced "Just us". My parents, who were (and arguably still are) dirty hippies, thought that would be a really clever name to give their first born. ;-)

@underthesun: That's really touching, man. I'm still floored by what happened in Viginia myself. The instrument I play on is a J.B. Villaume I inherited that came to the US with my ancestors who were escaping the pogroms in Russia. If any surreality came out of a recording made with it, it's because it's an instrument already familiar with mass murder and death. Wow, was that overly melodramatic there or what? Well, it does get a very dark tone, unusually so for a Villaume.

@swordbreaker: The game itself is not free. It is in fact made, music, graphics, story, levels, programming, and all, by just one person who supports himself financially with his work. You can purchase Perfect Cherry Blossom, or any of the other games in the Touhou series from an import store such as Himeya. You can even download the demo version, with the first three levels, for free from ZUN's website. For those who can't navigate moon runes, it's on this page, and it's the link that says " 体験版 ver 0.11 フルパッケージ" and then has (9.28 MB) next to it.

@Dave Harris: What's up Dave? See? You got to hear more of my work after all! As you can see, I still write small novels for posts. WHEE!!

@Arek: I'd love for your orchestra to play something by me! Just promise to send a recording if it's at all possible! You guys may think I did a great job making mine sound like it wasn't an overdub romp, but nothing can truly replicate the spirit of a live performance! I could send you a scan of the sheet music. The cool news for you is that I've already done it up with appropriate expression markings and everything, so all you guys have to do is play it! But hey, do you have Finale by any chance? Or some software capable of reading Enigma files? If so, I could send you the score in that format, which is even better!

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Alright. Sent in the e-mail. Don't mind all the dorky marks like "eroica". I was mostly just being goofy because I didn't expect anyone else to actually look at the score...and yes, I did in fact ignore a lot of my own bowings. I thought they'd be cool when I wrote them, but when I was actually playing....not so much. So you guys just bow it however. Also, it doesn't by any stretch HAVE to be 4 violins. You could do 2-4 fiddles per part if you want, and it would still sound pretty cool. Finally, sorry for not using 8va for the high crap at the end :-(

EDIT: Oh, by the way, what school do you go to?

EDIT 2: I keep forgetting this, but I have a working fax machine now, so I could even fax the score (or a revision) somewhere if you wanted.

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Answers:

@The Lone Ranger: Yeah, I did those weird Lufia mixes forever and ever ago, back when I just used some cheap soundfonts (and vintage dreams, which is still awesome, and which I still use on an E-mu e6400), and didn't really understand what "hardcore" was outside of a few MP3s I had downloaded called "hardcore mix". I know better now. At least I had the good sense never to submit those travesties here.

lol, well anyway, congratulations on your latest song! hope to hear more from you.:wink:
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For those curious, this is the kind of game Perfect Cherry Blossom is:

Madness? THIS. IS. TOUHOU! :D

Absolutely beautiful song, Justus. It's a bit slow and short, but it's very smooth, and the original shines through the arrangement you did to it. Also, you're an insanely talented violinist.

MOAR! :)

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You could have submitted this as an Arcanum remix and I doubt anyone would be able to tell the difference. It does sound very reminiscient of Arcanum's main/title theme.

This one's very short but I like it very much. For some reason I feel that it needs more <i>cowbell</i> piano.

edit- by the way, if any of you out there like something like this, by all means check out Arcanum (one of the best RPGs ever made)'s soundtrack.

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Arcanum eh? You think? I dunno, I don't think there's really all that much in common other than the instrumentation. Actually, I thought Arcanum's soundtrack was kind of boring, to be honest.

As for piano...well, I suppose there's no particular reason I couldn't. Just the particular wild hair I had at the time happened to be layering myself on the violin, and then I submitted it on a whim. If I threw in a piano, I'd probably want to use no more than two violin parts. Hmm...but I kind of like it the way it is already, too! Besides, I could spend that time working on something new.

Only wish it didn't end so abruptly. This is one of the best pieces I've heard here with strings in it, and this one is entirely strings. Hope to hear more from you soon.

OCRemix: Now WITH strings attached.

Man...I just got an MS-2000, and I really really wanna make some cheesy dance music, but you guys twist my arm enough and I might have to do something else...cinematic.

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Just compose whatever you want, Justus. I'm sure we'll love it (if it gets through the judges, that is...)

Yeah! I don't know what an MS-2000 is but it sounds cool...

I'll go look it up on wikipedia.

Found it, and I was right, it does look cool.

Oh, and Justus, you can configure your computer to notify you of Private Messages by going to control panel, clicking "Edit Options" and scrolling down to the Private Messaging section.

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Hey Justus. This is some really great music you submitted here, I think it's probably my favourite I've found on this site so far. Very expressive with a great sense of musicality. We need more of these kind of pieces on this site. I'm looking forward to any other ReMixes you may do.

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While it is true that this one is rather short, I think that it's actually okay that way. The violin skills displayed here are awesome; however, since the songs consists only of strings, making it longer would probably take away some of the magic, or, to put it bland, make it boring.

Anyway, I would really love to hear more violin-goodness from Justus in some collabs; then preferably for 4+ minutes plus a solo.

Also, cheezy 80-ish dance music? Bring it on.

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  • 2 years later...

I think the length is perfect for a strings-only piece. You come in, do what you're going to do, and never overstay your welcome. The playing is beautiful, the arrangement is classy (though I haven't heard the original) and in general this is just a solid piece :-) I only have the capacity to listen to solo pieces like this in short bursts (though, in cases like this, I enjoy it immensely while I do) so this satisfied me perfectly :-)

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  • 4 months later...

Very well played, produced, and the arrangement was decent too. The harmonies were excellent, and the whole piece just worked so well. I don't think people need my recommendation to check out this mix, but i'm giving it anyways; it's really one-of-a-kind. Don't miss it.

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  • Liontamer changed the title to OCR01569 - Touhou Youyoumu: Perfect Cherry Blossom "Icy Peaks"

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