Posted 2005-07-19, evaluated by the judges panel

¡Si, Señora! Newcomer Xtormrage, in real life one mild-mannered Jorge Luis Boscan, gives us a salsa makeover of the indefatigable MGS2 main theme:

"Took some time to assemble the percussion, but it was really fun making this tune. I've never enjoyed making a song/remix this much."

Firstly, disclaimer: this is definitely one of those mixes where arrangement picked up some slack for production. Some significant slack, actually, reminding me of the earlier of Dr. Fruitcake's two submissions (to date), which was strong on arrangement but not breaking the sample bank. These sorts of tracks do put us in quandary, because OCR is specifically not a MIDI site, and yet sometimes the relative audio quality of nevertheless exceptional arrangements does stray into General MIDI territory. Jorge's arrangement well capitalizes on what it's got, though, and let's face it - no matter how great your samples are, doing a latin arrangement rife with sax and brass is going to be difficult. Articulations, dynamics, and the overall arrangement are actually more key than having the best samples in the world, and the remixer handles all three gracefully and skillfully. Plus, the percussion - yummy. Nothing less than stellar, and perfect samples in this instance. The rhythm track alone is a compelling reason to download and enjoy this mix, but the real spotlight is the conceptual transmogrification of this militant, epic orchestral theme into a salsa piece - sounds difficult even on paper, to me at least, but from the very outset it's apparent Jorge is deadset on achieving this goal, and he never waivers. Senor Baranowsky got jiggy with the ethnic instrument identification game:

"Take it from me, i've been getting into latin percussion pretty hardcore lately, and these skins are quite well done. We've got the tumbao on the congas, we've got shakers, some cymbals, and rad timbale licks. The mixer does well to use cowbell when it's appropriate, and not in Bruce Dickinson-style excess. It's beyond my current abilities to recognize whether it's in 3:2 or 2:3 casscare, but it sounds like there's an effective use of both, in moderation. A drum kit, with ride cymbal work, might have filled up the percussion a bit more, but there's nothing wrong with sticking to the classics.

We've got the genre-authentic piano that provides a groove rather than trying to be the star, and the electric bass is certainly kosher for the more pop-centric salsa sound. It's not Pancho Sanchez, but it's fun, sounds convincingly hispanic and is very successful at adapting a tune in a way that I never saw coming. Great Work here."

RAD TIMBALE LICKS - now there's a phrase you just don't hear often enough, eh? At any rate, most judges cited brevity, samples, and some questionable panning decisions on the saxes as salient issues, but the arrangement ultimately won them over. You've gotta respect the conceptual cajones at the very least, even if you're not into the genre per se. I have this gut feeling that the teeming masses have been crying out for RAD TIMBALE LICKS, and Xtormrage, with his initial mix, delivers timbale licks that are indeed radical, and a whole lot more. Sounds like Jorge had a blast making this mix, and I'm guessing it'll have a similar effect on many upon hearing it. Fantástico!



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2014-06-09 04:00:39

Awesome percussion. Timbale work here is rad indeed.

on 2009-04-02 09:22:22

A stupid concept that works surprisingly well. Either the mixer was just lucky that his skills exceeded his creativity, or he was really smart and could foresee that there was potential in this sort of genre stuff.

I don't tend to enjoy game melodies crammed to fit into bizarre, ill-suited genres just for the sake of representing a genre, but I think this one is pretty damn enjoyable. It just sounds decent, to the degree that I just sat back and didn't argue it. It spices up the melody in a way I wasn't expecting, which resulted in me really getting into it.

The prominent brass is a great compliment to the original tune, even if it isn't as authentic sounding as humanly possible. It should, at the very least, show a lot of people how this sort of adaptation is done correctly, and that a lot of thought (or luck?) is crucial.

on 2008-06-07 05:20:56

Wow,esto esta increible!!!!

Quien se hiba a imaginar que existira algo como el Theme de Metal Gear Solid 2 en Salsa!???

Para mi esta increible y me la disfruto el doble con esta sangre Puertorriquena que tengo ^_^

Ohhh y yo tambien me llamo Jorge Luis jajaja!!!

Buen trabajo,me la disfruto cada segundo!

Perfect out of 10 ^_^

on 2008-02-18 15:10:08

Exceptionally better than I was expecting. Actually a lot more serious than I was anticipating as well. The intro was pretty nice; elegant, with a great piano run leading up to the party.

The percussion is well layered and the bass line is suitably authentic, though I think the mid-high are a bit loud in it, making it sound more synthetic than it needs to. The piano is superb and really leads the mix. Also notably good are the brass hits; very effective and well programmed. Excellent hits, and the sax is pretty good too.

Overall a great mix, though I think a Big hit on the final note would have been a more satisfying ending. As is, it's still a keeper. :-)

on 2007-12-18 17:02:44

I have to say, I like Latin stuff (I just keep it a closely guarded secret).

This is no exception. Yeah, the instruments were synthed, but what you did with them more than made up for it.


on 2007-08-16 16:59:03


Originally Posted by #ocremix

i can so picture Snake and Raiden Salsa' dancing to this, lol

well, raiden at least

like a fag :P

Yeah? I actually have a MUCH easier time picturing Snake doing the dancing. He's got a much better sense of humor than Raiden, he just hides it well~

Anyway, as for this remix, I think it's hilarious. That's all I really have to say about it.

If it were ever recorded with live instruments, I think it could be epic.

DJ Pili
on 2005-08-07 00:58:54

I don't usually like salsa, but this tune is catchy. Maybe someday makes it to the 'Me' Remixes list (I have burned 8 CDs of 'Me' ReMixes so far, totaling 120 ReMixes!)

The Xyco
on 2005-07-25 12:32:09

The arrangement is there, but the sax sounds pretty fake-ish.

Nonetheless, very well done. I liked the intro espeically.

danny B
on 2005-07-21 01:27:48

¡Los Licks Radicalé!

on 2005-07-20 18:34:24

Very Well done remix. Adds the elements of salsa and mixes them with the MGS theme. You get a 10/10.

Bien echo.

Less Ashamed Of Self
on 2005-07-19 16:07:40

Not a bad idea, and fair arrangement, but it's pretty hard to get by that synthesized sax imo. It's so 2002...

on 2005-07-19 13:44:30

I've loved this mix for a long while since I saw it on vgmix. It's just awesome, you did a great job. To be honest, when I first saw it, I said to myself "nope, nobody can do the MGS theme in salsa, it's just not humanly possible...oh...wait....there it's been done."

on 2005-07-19 10:56:55

Un fenómeno para mí absolutamente asombroso y exorbitante. La disidencia cubana es una de las más tenaces y valientes. La única cosa que escuchaba era música tradicional cubana. Su entusiasmo de compartir su música con otra gente los llevó a trabajar juntos entre otros. La calidad total podería ser...claro, lo mejor no se ocurrió. Pero, creo que hay un gran trabajo. :)


on 2005-07-19 03:22:59

LOL this song is hilarious, but in a good way.

i can imagine the cast of metal gear forming a big conga line.

great song :D

on 2005-07-19 02:04:19
i can so picture Snake and Raiden Salsa' dancing to this, lol

well, raiden at least

like a fag :P

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (Konami , 2001, PS2)
Music by Harry Gregson-Williams,Norihiko Hibino,Rika Muranaka,Tappy Iwase
""Metal Gear Solid" Main Theme"

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