ReMix:Super Metroid "Norfair Deathmarch" 2:50

By Mazedude

Arranging the music of one song...

"Norfair - Ancient Ruins Area"

Primary Game: Super Metroid (Nintendo , 1994, SNES), music by Kenji Yamamoto (I), Minako Hamano

Posted 2001-07-14, evaluated by djpretzel

A really evil-sounding track that marches relentlessly forward, with excellent dramatic percussion. Badass tympani and orchestral snare and some excellent backing parts all surround what might be the track's only weakness, a lead melody covered by a very synthetic choral patch. A real chorus would have made this absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. Of course, most of us don't have access to a real chorus, so it's understandable that when a composer decides a part should have a vocal feel to it, certain sacrifices are made. Regardless, a well put-together and demonically driving piece, well-concieved.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2023-11-06 23:04:31

Now this is a classic! I daresay that it was this mix that put Mazedude in my radar as the Lower Norfair theme is one of my favourites. So take that theme, or even the Metroid Prime Magmoor Caverns revisit of this theme, and turn the dial up to 11, and you have this ReMix. Bombastic, just like exploding lava, and a great preview of the work that Mazedude would go on to do, especially with Doom music. This has been in my playlist for well over 15 years, if not longer.

on 2012-05-07 19:08:55

I love this mix. It's exactly, in my mind, what the Norfair theme should be! Dark, atmospheric, EPIC. The almost militaristic feel of the drums works for me in this piece. Good stuffs

on 2011-08-09 18:58:33

I know a lot of people don't like this song, but i honestly enjoyed the dark, ominous tones of this (in my opinion) rather good remix of the Lower Norfair Theme... the only problem i had was that the song ends too soon for me... a solid 8/10

on 2010-06-26 05:42:44

I'm just not feeling it. It has to be coincidence, (since they both happened at roughly the same time) but It sounds too much like the magmoor caverns bg music from Metroid Prime (okay, it sound almost exactly like the magmoor caverns music). I know you were trying for a chorus, but it could really use a real one. the electronic one sounds too much like a pipe organ. points for style though. I give it a 6/10

on 2009-12-17 08:49:03

That snare is pretty good and really gives the feel of a 'deathmarch', but the choir and the repetitiveness of this kinda kills it for me. The cut-off at the end didn't really help either.

Sorry, but this doesn't do it for me, I'm afraid.

on 2009-12-13 09:54:57

One of the first mixes I got from ocr, so this became the definitive version of lower Norfair for me. Has a sense of impending doom or unspeakable evil or whatever else you can think of. Its name says it best, it's a deathmarch, and an awesome on at that.

on 2008-02-12 13:59:36

Excellent percussion married to pretty bad choir synth, which dates this severely. It's actually kind of strange how if you replaced that one sample it would have a totally improved feel, as the rest of the soundscape is completely different. Every other sound used in this feels cohesive, so an updated version would be really nice.

Otherwise it's solid, except for the abrupt cut at the end.

on 2005-06-15 18:10:59

Well yeah, as far as i'm concerned it's definitely got its fair share of SNES nostalgia. :) I feel much of the vicious intensions as shown by the backing instrumentation as well as the overall atmospheric touch here. I do have my reasons in saying that this isn't necessarily Mazedude's best work, although it does work well if you're a fan of the game.

To broaden the scopes further, I have a full writeup for this mix:-



For much of the mix's structure it has high recognizable tendencies taken towards the source; can be shown to be a bit too reliable to it but it still has its own moments to make it work out. Some people may feel a bit quirky over the execution here; in the original the shifting chord progressions in the opening half of the theme showed the melodic riff going up by 3 semitones each time, however Mazedude has gone as far as bringing it up by 2 instead. This could stir up some people, however I actually like the idea behind it. That has helped to show some added creativity when it came to processing the theme structure alongside the ending, but outside from there I couldn't find much else to catch the audience's eye. For that purpose the arrangement structure followed the target material a bit too closely, although the climatic ending structure did have a good attempt at saving it here. It definitely succeeded for me in concept, although if anything could be improved there I would prefer to see the strings fade out at the end instead of being cut off at the end of the file. Going through here, while this isn't the most brash of Norfair interpretations in concept some of the tendencies taken to vary the theme around has made it fare well as a pretty good but conservative incarnation.


Aside from the different structuring of the melodic progressions I didn't notice much that seemed to take interest to me through this side of the track to start off with, so that can be seen as a moderately disappointing aspect on that field. Fortunately, the sections link together pretty well in maintaining the original’s known vicious atmosphere even through its rather conservative variation format. However because of that latter point, there's not much to consider "fresh" given its cover-like status although some of the backing instrument choices have managed to help vary the instrument selection on that field. Even through here, repetition can be seen as a moderate quirk for some given that some of the rhythmic performances seem to struggle to vary too much, although for some that just want a clean arrangement that shouldn't be seen as too much of a problem. In terms of the tilt factor it may fit well if you're a Metroid fan and want more characteristic listening, although in terms of fitting for the casual listener's attention I've seen some stronger efforts from Mazedude. It's not bad though.


Some of the ambient percussive sounds chosen were very good for what they were, although what I think seems to spoil it here is some of the MIDI-like nature on some of the sounds like the synths and choir sample. In terms of sound clarity, the sound channels feel a bit muffled thus showing minimal attention to utilizing EQs; I also wanted to see more reverb onto some of the melodic sounds to make it fit with the moody atmosphere it was looking for but for much of the time the processing on the sounds is okay. What I think killed the track more than anything was the encoding; there was definitely a lot of material going on, but at 128kbps all the way through it was difficult to sense many of which being able to stick out at its clearest form. The sound leveling is generally okay for what it was in terms of mix presentation, although one thing that I found as a light qualm is towards some of the melodic and accompaniment instrumentation - it sounds as if much of them are competing against one another on which should lead the entire way. Mind you, the panning has been realized well with the percussion space granted throughout, although here I personally wanted to hear some bolder texture work to be able to see it fit. So while I can say the production techniques aren't the best seen here there's some interesting concepts to be able to fit in the menacing tendencies taken towards that stage of the game. Not bad.


Bringing the track into a nutshell, it's got its moments to appreciate for the Metroid fans at heart as well as being true to the feel of the theme. What I think brings it down more than anything is its quirky production qualities and the rather conservative arrangement approach here; not quite something i'd look for in a mix, but it's understandable given that it's 4 years old.

Nonetheless, I found it to be an interesting blast from the past to take a gander into from Mazedude, and who knows; maybe in the future I'd see into a bit more of his prolific material :) I hope he comes back with another mix or two soon.

on 2005-05-24 20:01:14

A good remix, makes me want to play the SNES again. Have to nitpick however that some notes are incorrect (in the descending sequence by the lead instrument at 1:22 and 1:53).

on 2004-04-03 07:48:46

Kind of reminds me of "Be Prepared" from The Lion King...ah yes, those were the days...*ahem* umm, right...the mix. Its a great redition of the original. I like the way it fades in. Kind of gives a feeling like you are the character bearing witness to a humongous army that doesnt know of your spying.

Samus walks her way through Norfair, then hearing something faint, but compelling nonetheless. She moves toward where the sound is coming from and comes to a small vent about a foot in diameter. She can see a large hall beyond the vent. In this hall, she witnessed the rallying of a massive army of space pirates, presumably preparing themselves epic battle in the near future. Some of them were banging on huge war drums, and others seemed to be chanting in a tounge unfamiliar to Samus. Her blood started to quicken as she realized she was in for the fight of her life.

-short part of a short story by Knightz OTR (sorry if I seem like a ham, this is one way that I show I really like a mix)

on 2004-03-03 11:06:45
8O Holy crap. The minute I first heard this, I was shocked. This is a great dark and sinister track. It's probably what they would play if they space pirates captured Samus and were planning to execute her. Definately going on my burned CD. 9/10
Sammy D
on 2003-06-23 22:31:16

hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, delicious, or that could be the pizza i'm eating, but the song was good. Dark and moody, a keeper.

on 2003-04-20 02:27:32

There are alot of reallt good Metriod remixes on this site but this remix is only rivalled by DreamsInRed in my opionin. I can't decide wich one is better so you should download both immediatly.

on 2003-04-02 11:10:26

A REALLY AWESOME REMIX!!! Sometimes you listen to a song and you think by yourself, damn I would had made the song just a little different so it would rock even more. That's the case with this remix. This is how the ingame sound should have been!!! Excellent job!

on 2003-01-23 16:57:37

I'm completely reminded of the baddies and their BGM in Lord of the Rings when I hear this. Yeah. Villains. Totally cool. 8)

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Super Metroid (Nintendo , 1994, SNES)
Music by Kenji Yamamoto (I),Minako Hamano
"Norfair - Ancient Ruins Area"

Tags (7)

Time > 4/4 Time Signature
Time > Tempo: Slow

File Information

4,244,223 bytes


8-bit Jazz Heroes - Press Start
View All

Latest Albums

View All

Latest ReMixes