ReMix:Metroid "Kraid's Hideout" 3:56

By Select Start

Arranging the music of one song...

"Kraid's Chamber"

Primary Game: Metroid (Nintendo , 1986, NES), music by Hirokazu Tanaka

Posted 2004-05-11, evaluated by the judges panel

First, the bad: this mix has some significant tuning problems. Seemed to bother me more than the judges, but if you got perfect pitch and can detect (and loathe) pitch discrepancies in cents as opposed to semitones, you might have some issues. Now, the good: first, newcomers Select Start (check the site, for info) have not only a cool band name, but are offering something decidedly different to the annals of Metroid ReMixdom with this initial submission in ensemble strings and guitar. Very innovative, and works largely due to the arrangement capitalizing on the lack of percussion and really highlighting both higher and lower string parts (violin and cello) and varying articulations as well. The Metroid theme in question lends itself well to the sort of haunting, maudlin string performances here, which harken to classical horror movies from days of yore. One of the greatest things about this ReMix is actually the fact that he-of-supposedly-infallible-truths, Protricity, was totally wrong in calling what are clearly REAL strings samples. Let's look at his embarassing, factual blunder, shall we?

"Violins don't sound real at all. Lots of repeating."

Of course, he later went back and corrected himself, like the champ he is, but the damage was already done: clearly, Ari Asulin has been, on at least one occassion, wrong. Mark your calendars. Moving on - the same thing this mix has going for it it also has going against it; namely, the exposed style is quite risky, especially with real instruments, and while this couldn't have been done as effectively if not for the live aspect, there are some afforementioned tuning issues that are problematic, albeit at certain times more than others. Judge Cabrera writes:

"There is LOTS of variation on the attack and articulation. And the bad tuning is usually an indication of real instruments. Anyway, I like it for the same reasons that Mr. Wingless likes it. And it's not note for note. It varies in sections like the one that starts around 2:15. I'm giving it a YES even WITH the bad tuning because it almost adds to the creepiness of it all."

In all honesty, I don't think the tuning is intentional, BUT it does happen to work and add to the creepiness for that retro-dracula feel as Dan points out. Plus, even if it's not in absolute alignment, the playing is other regards competent and the mix will laid out. For another track, where the tuning might have been more prohibitive and not played into their hands, we might have had more reservations, but this remains a different take on an oft-covered track, a good combination of a real instrumental ensemble, and a haunting, ominous, gothic arrangement. Featuring real strings. That are real :)



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
ella guro
on 2011-02-10 15:43:33
I definitely could have gone for more interpretation, but this got it done in '04. LOL at every 2004 hater on this track, swarming in quickly just to crap on it. Can't believe how closed-minded those reviews are. Let them get the wax out of their ears.

This was a great listen, forget what those idiots said. Especially KogeJoe, one of the dumbest dumbshits that ever posted on OC ReMix. (Good riddance :lol: ) The mood was excellent, and the tuning was nothing but a benefit to that dark mood. It's Kraid, you idiots; it fits like a glove.

Hey, no need to get mean.

I do like reading this thread and other review threads so I can be embarrassed by some of my older posts. I do actually really like the timbre of the out of tune violin now, and think this has a haunting/off-kilter sound that really works for the source. I don't really think the arrangement goes nearly as far as it could/should but what's there is pretty effective anyway.

on 2011-02-10 02:35:19

I definitely could have gone for more interpretation, but this got it done in '04. LOL at every 2004 hater on this track, swarming in quickly just to crap on it. Can't believe how closed-minded those reviews are. Let them get the wax out of their ears.

This was a great listen, forget what those idiots said. Especially KogeJoe, one of the dumbest dumbshits that ever posted on OC ReMix. (Good riddance :lol: ) The mood was excellent, and the tuning was nothing but a benefit to that dark mood. It's Kraid, you idiots; it fits like a glove.

on 2010-08-30 15:17:46

Wait, I stand corrected, I was under the impression that it was the main theme, but even so, it took me 7 plays and Armcannon's friggin badass version to notice it, so no complaints here, still a superb remix.

on 2010-08-30 13:43:15

I dunno what most of you guys are bantering on about regarding the off key tune, but after listening to this frankly amazing track, I didn't notice a SINGLE tune out of place. Having played the Metroid remake on the GBA, from the same year, this song is identical, and this remix is a rendition worthy of two Samus Aran thumbs up!

on 2010-08-26 15:20:35

besides the aforementioned tuning issues, this was pretty nice; the super spacious sound made it feel very desolate and creepy, and Though the arrangement was conservative, there were enough unique touches to really give it personality. I am amazed that Select Start formed in 2002, how time flies. :-)

on 2009-07-18 00:59:55

There's some harsh opinions on this one, evidentally.

Look, I think this is pretty simple, no matter how you look at it. It's biggest creative stamp is the fact that it is out of tune, so it doesn't win me over on the arrangement side. It's a song that is suited for piano being played by a live string quartet. That's cool, and I think it works extremely well.

If this mix does something wrong, it's the fact that it doesn't do anything except whine out the Kraid theme. The different combinations of instruments working together in different sections of the mix are definately interesting and do evoke a dreadful, moody atmosphere, but I don't think this has much to say. I do wish that there was an off-center arrangement to go with the off-center musicality.

Regardless, this is nowhere near as bad as all the pro in-tune picketers would have had me believe. Or rather, the tuning is far from the mix's biggest setback.

on 2009-07-17 15:14:09

This piece really presents a spooky, things-aren't-quite-right atmosphere that, frankly, is embellished by the tuning 'errors'. Intentional or not, they do indeed accentuate the uneasiness of the track -- of the titular situation, namely approaching the hideout of a gargantuan beast (which calls into question the logistics of his having a 'hideout') who longs to kill/eat you.

on 2008-12-06 22:00:11

I think the off-pitch adds a certain eclecticity (I'm going to pretend that's a word) to the piece that takes it beyond what could have just been a simple cover; Kraid is a creepy guy, he's not going to have a spick-and-span tidy little string arrangement, it's going to be out of wack, it's going to be demented, it's going to sound like this. It's unusual and I like it.

on 2007-04-16 19:25:04

I just started listening to it, and I definitely think the off tune is intentional, as it is off-tune the same way every time, and no one who plays an instrument has that bad hearing to know that it's off (let alone 6 people who make up the band), I play violin and this is seriously EXTREMELY off the beaten path, but I can't stop listening to it, morbid fascination is an excellent way to describe it.


on 2007-01-26 08:07:02

Honestly, you need to get good players before attempting anything like this. I could hear the good intentions, but this piece falls flat on its face.

Forget the out of tune strings, where's the bass when I needed it? Left the lone guitar out to dry. Perhaps you made the last runs easier on the violin? It really sucks when people can't get the melody right...

Sorry, this is one of my favorite Metroid tunes, and it was ruined. Absolutely ruined.

Don't do a Metroid piece ever again.

on 2005-10-18 01:07:40

I have to say that I absolutely love this take on kraid's theme, it sounds like it was all played live, but I could definitely be wrong. I really like the off tune nature of this mix too. Especially around 00:52 when the "chorus" comes in, I think someone else here described it as "nails on a chalkboard" but in a good way, and I couldn't have said it better. It's everything that I've ever wanted to do with mixing but couldn't (due to lack of skills/money). With this all being said, i think this mix deserves a 5 out of 5 rating.

on 2005-10-17 23:32:23

I knew there was something off about this song, but I didn't know what it was. It didn't really ever bother me; in fact, that "offness" is what makes me like this track. Knowing that it's offtune doesn't change my opinion about the song.


on 2005-10-17 20:38:39

I agree; I could clearly hear the bad tuning and it was even off-key at some points. However, I really like this song. The bad tuning gives it an exquisitely depressing tone. It's really creepy. In my opinion, listening to this song is like listening to a rock song played backwards; it sounds inhumanely creepy, but is very interesting to listen to. Then again, I wonder what THIS song would sound like played backwards. Woah, gave me chills just thinking of it! 8O

Red Katana out :wink:

on 2005-08-19 16:54:31

I have to agree with the tuning issues, sometimes it was worse than at others, but by the end it was giving me a bit of a headache. Which is a real, real shame as I think that the strings are a really nice change from the rest of the metroid remixes. I would certainly listen to this over and over if the tuning issues were fixed. :)

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Metroid (Nintendo , 1986, NES)
Music by Hirokazu Tanaka
"Kraid's Chamber"

Tags (7)

Origin > Collaboration
Production > Live Ensemble
Production > Live Recording

File Information

5,744,024 bytes


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