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*NO* Final Fantasy 6 'It's Alive!'


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Hi Judges!

I'd like to submit a remix of Devil's Lab from Final Fantasy 6. It's done in the style of a band called Pendulum who hopefully some of you know! Basically its a jump up drum and bass track with a bit of chiptuney stuff thrown in!

* Your ReMixer name: Ellywu2

* Your real name: Chris Elliott

* Your email address: ellywu2@hotmail.com

* Name of game(s) arranged: Final Fantasy 6

* Name of individual song(s) arranged: Devil's Lab

* Link: or (both expire in 7 days, so shout if you need me to resend!)

Hope this is all the info you need, and thanks in advance.



http://snesmusic.org/v2/download.php?spcNow=ff6 - "Devil's Lab" (ff6-214.spc)

Opens up with an 8-bit take on the source, before bringing in some additional sounds at :22 (heh, Speak & Spell action from :30-:33) and eventually shifting into higher-level sounds entirely at :44.

There is totally something missing from the soundscape once things kick in at :44. The d'n'b stuff tucked way in the back felt too Amen break-ish, thus really generic and tacky. The soundfield could use a pad or something to give the track some more background-level fullness. Can't say I agree with the melody being quieter than the beats; it lacks a lot of presence as a result, and the drums only feel that more droning and repetitive as a result. It would have been ok if the core drum pattern wasn't so bland. The soundscape feels empty, with the drums overcompensating with volume and the breaks being too quiet. Just a weird balance going on to me, but I'd like to hear some other opinions.

Shifted over into some string pads at 1:51, then another voice sampling, before moving back into the 8-bit sounds at 2:06. Conceptually this felt scattershot and messed with the flow of the track. The voice clip does mention the devil, but otherwise felt needless in the big picture.

Anyway, picked back up at 2:31 with the thick beatwork again. Weird sweeping effect from 2:31-2:51. Lots of crazy synths and processing before shifting into some more d'n'b at 2:52. More of the same stuff from before to close it out.

From an interpretive standpoint, nothing wrong with it. The production was a bit flat, with much of the soundfield feeling pretty empty, dry and distant. Could be nitpicking, but I can't help but think the production should be refined to better balance the sounds and make the track seem properly fuller. This isn't poorly made, but there's just something off about the whole thing at that level.

You've been improving significantly, no matter where my vote falls. Good to also see something outside of your orchestral work. No problem if this passes as is, but I'm looking forward to some more opinions to confirm or deny what I'm hearing. As is though, I gonna roll with a borderline NO, primarily on account of the production, and also on account of the percussion criticisms. Good luck with the rest of the vote, Chris.

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Heard this in WIP, let's see what changed.

Intro is nice, buildup at :33 is real solid, and then the big beat drops at :44. I don't have any problem with the drums there - I don't know what Larry is talking about. Sounds very in-your-face which is exactly how it should sound. However I would have preferred less reliance on Amen, and more changeups on the beat in general. The issue with :44 that Larry probably is getting at is that it's too sparse. It literally is just drum & bass, and the bass is also doubling as the lead. I don't think it's enough to work. If the synth was more interesting, with lots of crazy filtering, glitching, or other processing going on, it might work, but as is, it's not enough. I would shift the synth into a bass-only role and make the processing more interesting. Maybe do a chip synth or some other kind of basic melody instrument there.

1:07 is more what I'm talking about. I'm still feeling a lack of distinct harmony. Some kind of sidechained pad(s), strings, arpeggios, or stabs would help to fill things in. You can do that and still sound heavy. ;) Of course then it goes back to the drum+bass only thing. I do think the way the melody is treated is cool throughout, so good job there. 1:54 could be voiced better, in terms of orchestration - the chords are too low, which makes them sound muddy and lack power. Expand the chord across more of the range, IMO, and consider maybe adding brass too. I was also disappointed that this section ended so quickly! You could have turned it into a sweet breakdown at least 2x-4x as long, if not longer.

The tom fill at 2:29 is sweeeeeet, love that, but then the section following is kind of low-energy. The melodic interpretation is cool (my only suggestion: more vibrato automation on the synth) but everything else kind of plods a bit. After that it's another sweet build, and then a return to repetition at 3:05, eventually leading to a pretty simple ending.

This is definitely on the right track, and enjoyable as is, but needs beefing up in some areas. The riff at :44 is repeated too much for comfort, and is too minimal for being repeated that much. Several of the synths could use additional automation (filter, vibrato), and the orchestral break in the middle can (and should) be expanded more to vary things up more. If you are running out of ideas, use more parts from the source - you still haven't touched the B section at all.

Production, generally speaking, is hott. Nice and big sound.

I feel like this is maybe 80% of the way there. Please resub!

NO. resub

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The other judges have already made great comments and suggestions regarding this mix.

I am very familiar with Pendulum! They put a lot of background elements in their mixes which fills out the soundscape, in addition to them always having put exciters on their drumbeats.

The way you've mixed things here is very similar to the way that pendulum mixes. This is close to me passing it, however there are a few things to do with production that I think would really make this great.

The intro part with the transition from the 8bit sounds: when the synth comes in, with the drums and the vocal sample, they are all quite dry and could use a short reverb to allow it all to gel together. When the main beat comes in at 0.44, again the drums need some reverb on them, with additional background elements so that the synth is not on it's own and the mix doesn't sound as sparse. This also gives you the opportunity to put some of your own elements into this, as this is somewhat too similar to pendulum's stuff, even down to the triplet fills! Just something original from you, that is uniquely yours, otherwise this is likely to get renamed by some to 'Pendulum mix' lol.

I usually stay away from making stylistic suggestions but I really think that taking all of what has been said here into consideration by all the judgements here I would definitely pass this.

NO (great candidate for resub)

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