Arranging the music of one song...

"Sanctuary Dungeon"

Primary Game: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (Nintendo , 1991, SNES), music by Koji Kondo

Posted 2004-08-15, evaluated by djpretzel

Well, the Olympics have started, and here in Virginia at least we escaped Hurricane Charley. Best wishes to any listeners dealing with the mess in Florida. NBC "borrowed" the slower theme from the first Jurassic Park for their pre-Olympic documentary bit, which I thought was rather odd since there's an abundance of great themes and fanfares composed by Williams himself as well as others, written specifically for the occassion. Anyways, the games should provide good couch potato material for weeks to come. I somehow feel guilty eating a large pepperoni pizza all by myself, sitting on my ass, watching people swim 400 meters or do amazing gymnastic stuffs. But we all have our fortes. The forte (segue!) of Neskvartetten has been and remains making great, very atmospheric and authentic jazz game arrangements, with a predilection towards the Zelda series. This latest sub from Zelda 3 features Erik Kristoffesen on Alto Sax and is perhaps a little more challenging (i.e. less structured) than previous pieces by the group, but the core elements - a great, intimate, acoustic sound, impeccable musicianship, and spot-on mixing (the panning and effects are so natural you don't notice how good they are, it just all clicks together) - are all there in classic Neskvartetten style. I actually looped this a few times while viewing some of OCR listener tuggummi's excellent winamp visualizations - trippy in a very mellow way. In Zoetrope/Coppola's film The Conversation Gene Hackman plays sax, and for one reason or another this mix reminded me of that film. Same sort of experimental, 70's jazz jamming feel to it, I s'pose. The alto dances at a varying pace around the largely ride-cymbal driven percussion, laced with rolls, as bass, guitar, and a very electric-pianoish organ (or organesque EP) all accentuate. Again, as is the group's style, basically every player gets a chance to solo. From a certain point of view, you could say that all of them are constantly soloing, as none of the parts are on auto-pilot and all do fun things from bar to bar. I think a good way of summing up this mix, as well as their previous mixes, is to say that they put together arrangements that live musicians would have fun performing. That's not necessarily the most important thing in the world, but the side effect is that the parts all have life to them and breath, and the sum is always something mutating and expressive. Great stuff, VERY moody.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2023-09-04 18:16:42

A little trim in the opening and ending sections would have done wonders, but that's just my preferences coming in. The actual meat of the ReMix was great and it was pleasant to listen to. Not bad at all.

on 2010-09-12 18:34:47

Oh man, only recently have I discovered Neskvartetten, gotta say, some of THE best jazz I've heard. This one is a particular favourite, the arrangement is just fantasic, the melody is pulled about over the top of some wonderful chords.

Simply awesome stuff, wish I could play sax like this guy.

on 2010-03-04 16:15:36

This blows my mind. I love how in one sense it moves so far away from the original track, but in another sense (mood, chord progression) it stays so close to home. Perfect.

on 2009-12-02 14:46:47

Interesting opening with some smokey sounding sax work and some rhythm section hints. Sounds all live, which is a plus, but i felt the arrangement was a bit meandering for my taste. I'm sure this will be a hit with a lot of people, but i'm not a huge fan. Sorry. :-(

on 2009-11-20 18:50:16

Wow, this sounds like Miles Davis, John Coltrane and John McLaughlin all at once. It's fantastic. Terrific work.

on 2008-12-16 21:49:49

Very smooth and ambient, and great jazz

I have to admit the intro wasn't to enticing for me;it's slow to start, but later on it gets going into something more substantial.

All in all, a great mix.

on 2007-02-02 03:13:51

At first, I didn't think this track could be mixed any other way... but the chords actually do well for a Jazz ensemble.

GREAT sax work.

on 2006-06-30 01:14:19

Not just any Miles Davis either; it screams "Bitches Brew/In A Silent Way". The sax player's tone sounded a lot like Bob Mintzer from the Yellowjackets.

on 2006-05-08 19:02:53

Neskvartetten (had to copy and paste that) are my new favourite remixers on this site. This remix is the one that I wanted to hear Sanctuary Dungeon made into, as soon as I heard the trumpet in the original.

on 2006-04-13 01:54:53

I just bought a pair of Sennheiser HD555s, and this was one of the first songs I used for a road test. Now I already knew the quality prevalent in this song, but now I can say that Neskvartetten sounds awesome. Mustin is right to have this in his top ten ever remixes. Brilliant.

on 2005-01-13 22:30:57

It's harder to like the music if you've never heard it in the game before. And i didn't like this song until I played through Four Swords Adventures. So now I'm really enjoying this song. Even though i'm not a huge fan of jazz, it's great. Great work Neskvartetten! :D

on 2004-09-29 17:14:53

Man, this is some good stuff, I've always been a fan of jazz, especially small combos. I was a little skeptical when I decided to listen to this song. I've listen to some of the other jazzish remixes on this site, and i wasn't too impressed. But this is great. You could have told me that this was done by a pro, and I'd probably beleive you. Good stuff.

on 2004-09-23 20:21:49

This one was great. It was nice and long and you don't hear many remixes of this song. Actually I think this is the only remix of this song. The jazz is very nice in this song, it'd be sweet if our band at school would learn this.

on 2004-09-16 16:02:05

While agree with Koelsch on the bit about the bass, the song is still incredible. I love the intro, the suspense just keeps building until the song finally reaches a continuing point. Reminds me of watching some "thriller" movie when I hear this. Good stuff.

on 2004-09-14 17:45:41

The bass is way too low frequency. It sounds fine on computer speakers, but when its played on good sound systems, the bass muds it up too much.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (Nintendo , 1991, SNES)
Music by Koji Kondo
"Sanctuary Dungeon"

Tags (4)

Time > Duration: Long

File Information

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