ReMix:Star Fox 2 "Mercenarios de Lobo" 4:52

By DZComposer

Arranging the music of one song...

"Star Wolf's Theme"

Primary Game: Star Fox 2 (Nintendo , 2017, SNES), music by Kozue Ishikawa, Yumiko Kanki

Posted 2005-09-23, evaluated by the judges panel

Newcomer (to OCR, at least) DZComposer writes:

"I originally got the idea when I heard the orchestrated Star Fox 64 Star Wolf Theme in Star Fox Assault. I had included the Star Fox 2 Star Wolf theme in an earlier arrangement and I was aware that despite them being different songs, they had their similarities. So, I wondered what the Star Fox 2 theme would sound like if it was arranged in the style of the Star Fox Assault theme! Naturally, I had to do it. So, I started work on a new arrangement. However, the arrangement quickly lost it's original intent and became pretty much an arrangement of the Star Fox 2 Star Wolf theme in a mild Spanish style. That arrangement is Mercenarios de Lobo, which is a very loose translation into Spanish of "Wolfen Mercenaries". You can still tell the original intent of the arrangement in the beginning which is VERY similar to the Star Fox Assault SW theme!

This arrangement is for Orchestra featuring the Piccolo Trumpet and the C Trumpet. I have tried something in this arrangement that I havent heard in a remix before (If there are others that have this, I would like to hear them!): A Cadenza. A Cadenza is an unaccompianied solo that is free from the constraint of time signature and tempo. The Cadenza in Mercenarios is for the Piccolo Trumpet. You can hear a reference to the Star Fox 64 Star Wolf theme in it if you listen carefully."

There's definitely some high-pitched piccolo trumpet action going on, so those who're treble-weary might want to do a volume-check ahead of time; frankly, though, this type of brass playing isn't about subtlety as much as it is showmanship and gusto, so you'd be missing out if you went too far. We actually delayed in judging this mix for a considerable time (mostly my fault), as we discussed a policy issue. StarFox 2, like Sonic Crackers, was never officially released, but was leaked on the Internet and enjoyed by fans primarily via emulation. Sketchy, yes, and it's indeed gray area where all should tread carefully. However, it'd be a shame not to see a great game soundtrack that was, in my estimation, in a nearly final if not final state, go unappreciated; from a certain perspective, these games' music is even more in need of homage and resurrection than that of games that saw commercial release. However, on the other hand, we can't really be posting mixes of any old beta, unreleased game that someone might have developed in Visual Basic 3.0 in a single afternoon, either. Crackers and StarFox 2 are both parts of larger, very popular, very established series, and what we essentially decided was that, on a case-by-case basis, we would evaluate how appropriate games like these are for ReMixing. Subjective as all heck? Sure. Arbitrary? Yeah... but so's life. At any rate, the majority opinion was that, even given the games' unofficial/leaked nature, the dependence on emulation to play them, and the fact that their soundtracks may have been incomplete, in these two cases, there's enough to warrant exceptions.

It's a good thing, too, because DZComposer's put together an inspired, latin-infused orchestral arrangement, complete with a cadenza, as he elucidates in the music terminology 101 portion of his submission email. Brandon takes time off from fondling his Flammie to talk arrangement:

"Very engaging, although not too large a departure from the original in terms of genre and instrument selection. In fact, the supporting string/snare combo is a dead ringer for the source in many spots. This is no source knock-off however. The interplay between the horn and string leads (0:03-1:20, 4:06-4:33) adds a wonderful vibrance to the already spirited source and the well-timed tempo and tone changes that are quite skillfully weaved together, form a dynamically evolving piece. Big pluses. With the difficulty involved in sequencing any solo instrument, let alone brass, I commend the sequencing of the cadenza."

Larry Oji, who's recently deigned to grant the game arrangement scene some back-from-the-dead VGF lovin', adds:

"Short and sweet. I thought the horn sequencing was done reasonably well, I liked the sheer amount of variations of the source material pulled off in the arrangement here, and the trumpet cadenza was used effectively. Good Spanish touches were here in the performance, and while I didn't think this was superlative work (as the horn work's syntheticness was exposed a number of times), the results were good here overall. Looking forward to hearing more of your work, as well as improvement in future subs."

I think my take would be a little contradictory: the strength of this mix's arrangement is the brass, but the weakness of this mix's production is... the brass. These are actually rather decent brass samples, and I haven't heard much better, but it's the type of playing/articulation that shows just how far ANY sample is from an actual trumpet player. One day maybe physical modeling combined with more advanced, interactive controller topologies could yield electronic brass that might handle these sorts of passages convincingly, but don't hold your embouchure. Nevertheless, cajones +5 for even attempting a sampled brass cadenza, and sequencing it well enough to make it musical and enjoyable, which is impressive. Not downright awe-inspiring, but still a strong, non-comformist initial orchestral submission from DZC, who helped us clarify (or at least create) site policy at the same time.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2010-06-10 02:20:59

This is great!We need more Star Fox 2 stuff! :

on 2009-09-28 15:02:46

Despite my opinion that I don't think i'll ever hear something like this sounding completely natural with synthetic instruments, this is really about as good as i've heard thus far, with great attention payed to articulations, phrasing, and dynamics (though not breath support). This is definitely some great sequencing.

The arrangement is classy and action-packed as well, and develops throughout; there really isn't a dull moment here, and it's cool to see an instance where ambition is held back by technology. I'd love to hear this live, if only a trumpet player could handle it. :-D

on 2009-01-22 23:17:03

I like this mix. I represents a window into a wonderful realm of possibilities, what could have been.

All made possible by the Internet. :

This is a great and unique track. Awesome work.

on 2006-01-11 23:27:09

This game actually went gold and WAS ADVERTISED in an issuse of Nintendo Power. How the heck did we get a rom of this game anyway? And isn't there only like 1 completed cart... in JAPANESE which I can't speak... Nintendo should re-release this game on the Revolution! that would be great. bla bla, back to the important stuff.

This remix rocked. It sounded like a latin, almost big-band remix of the starwolf battle. You made it sound epic, too, like it could almost be used in some sort of movie. A good idea may be more dynamics (loud and soft sounds) and more army like drums that stand out a little better.

on 2005-10-22 03:19:00

Even though i am still new to the Commmunity (Yes i now i have had this account for a long time, i have just been Busy ya now?) i think this song has volume... Its Strong yet has a Flow to it... you must think i am on crack but, i like this song.. and i dont like that many o.o;

Edit: i agree with meccaneer.... That is disturbing.....


on 2005-10-07 11:35:24

Damn, s0lidsn4k3, that animated pic on your post disturbs me.

Very nice Mexicano rendition. Lotsa emotive force and retention; two very under-appreciated aspects of remixing. The horn solo is a nice touch, though, it sounds a bit synthy for such a use. The sequencing on that horn is great. The bells, timpani and quick strings add to the flavor very well. Excellent contrast and transition. Replace that horn sample and you got yourself a fiver.

on 2005-09-29 22:51:12

Even though the instruments really sound like synths, I think it sort of gives the arrangement a classic feel to it. I don't mind the light reverb because Starfox is a flying game, and it woudl be more fitting if the reverb was light. That is of course unless you're going for an ocremix on the Battle with Andross. Anyway, nice job on the mix DZ. I'll be waiting for your next Star Wolf remix. 8)

Rockin' Dolphin
on 2005-09-28 20:17:30

I have to say I love the remix, especially because Spanish music fascinates me, thumbs up for you!

However, I do have to agree with the portuguese-speaking fellow about the title, if you translated it from Wolfen Mercenaries, "Mercenarios Lobunos" might be a better translation for the title.

I'm looking forward to your next Star Wolf remix.

on 2005-09-28 09:57:11

Oh of course! I should have remembered about it being Spanish not Portuguese... rofl... Anyway, it's spelled exactly the same, and the suggestions i made stand for the title in spanish too!

And also even if Star Wolf fought with teh goodies on Armada i still think of them in the best SF game: LYLATWARS! I chose to partially ignore Armada for obvious reasons... :P

on 2005-09-27 22:20:45

This should go into the next (good) StarFox game! Awesome song and remix, and if you've never snagged the SF2 rom, you'll recognize the song when you play it.

King Matt I
on 2005-09-26 02:15:34

I adore this remix. Can't say as I've heard the original, so no comments on how it relates (not that I really ever make them when I review anyway...), but I absolutely love this. I CAN say this: Even if I had no idea this remix was even loosely inspired by the Wolfen crew or Star Fox in general, I would have instantly, definitely, absolutely, beyond a shadow of a doubt, been reminded of the Wolfen dogfights in StarFox Assault upon hearing it. It has an identical feel. It's superb. Excellent. Wonderful. I only write reviews for remixes I really appreciate, and I give this one a 10/10, hands down.

on 2005-09-25 10:46:21

Good to see that you guys like it. ^_^ I've got another Star Wolf work coming. It's the 64 Vers. theme. It will be in a different style, though. I also have the Sector X and the Warp BGM's in the works too. Not sure which will be out first. But anyways, Methinks it's time OCR had a Star Fox 64 section. ;)

"PS edit:

[01:51:55] Fox_E Tell him I like it too. D=

[01:52:20] Fox_E ...It's very ~blue~."

Hmm... I haven't talked to him in a long time...

"When i hear the original tune, i think "Starwolf! Scum!" but when i hear this remix i think "Starwolf! Good Guys?!"..."

Don't feel bad. Star Wolf actually fought on the good side in Star Fox Asasult. ^_^

Oh, and it is Spanish, not Portuguese. ;) I didn't use a translator either. I used what little I remember from High School Spanish. :roll:

on 2005-09-24 19:44:29

I like the song only... for some strange reason it doesn't remind me of Starwolf...

I'm no musical expert, therefore i can't give you the techincal jargon of it al, but i think there is something in the the horns/strings combo, and the way that it's played, combined with the mexican like trumpets, that give the music a greater feeling of "honor" then it should! When i hear the original tune, i think "Starwolf! Scum!" but when i hear this remix i think "Starwolf! Good Guys?!"... Asides from that the whole makeup of the song is pretty good kudos on that...if only you'd have chosen another song of Starfox and present it with the same instruments... well...

Another thing: Mercenarios de Lobo means Wolf's Mercenaries in portuguese! im portuguese, so i deduct one thing: You inserted Wolf's Mercenaries into a translation program and it gave you that! well i think that, in order to make the title sound betterm it should be either Mercenarios do Wolf ou Mercenarios do Lobo. Not mercenarios "de" but mercenarios "do"!

Overall: good mix- B+!

on 2005-09-24 17:23:48

I'm listening to the song as I type this, and I have to say, it does a damn good job in capturing the esscence of the "Starfox" feel- the thrill and the heat of the battle, specifically. I happen to think the military-style drums could've been a bit louder throughout, but who am I to complain when something this wonderful is executed so well? I give props to the composer, as this is a work of art, and deserves the praise it will undoubtedly recieve.

on 2005-09-24 15:26:14

It was a game in developent for the SNES. More of the story is in the mix's blurb.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Star Fox 2 (Nintendo , 2017, SNES)
Music by Kozue Ishikawa,Yumiko Kanki
"Star Wolf's Theme"

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