ReMix:Tetris "Piano Concerto in A minor" 6:05

By Jeremy Robson

Arranging the music of 2 songs...

"A-Type (Korobeiniki)", "B-Type"

Primary Game: Tetris (Nintendo , 1989, GB), music by Hirokazu Tanaka

Posted 2005-10-09, evaluated by the judges panel

Jeremy Robson writes:

"Here is another classical-oriented submission of mine. It's a concerto for piano and orchestra based on two of the Russian folk songs from Tetris. It's not exactly a piano concerto, but it's written much in the same way as one from the classical-romantic era. It's written in a kind of condensed sonata-allegro form with several key modulations and some motivic technique I attribute mostly to Beethoven and Mahler. The tonality, however, is mainly Russian folk song-sounding, along the lines of Tchaikovsky or Rachmaninov. I don't claim to be the cleverest in writing for the piano, so it's all in good fun."

Good fun indeed - a little lighter than Jeremy's previous mixes, compositionally and thematically, this is nonetheless a treat for fans of falling slavic geometries the world over. I'll be frank in saying that, along with the Pokemon games, Tetris is a title that we recieve a disproportionately high number of less-than-stellar arrangements covering. For me, the definitive version of the game was the initial release for the original Gameboy, and I think that's where a lot of the momentum behind the phenomenon picked up, and thus what's inspired so many mixes. Robson brings something new to the act, however, with an arrangement that while light and fun, gives a little more weight to the themes by providing an orchestrated rendition, led largely by piano, as the title would suggest. John Burnett, who likes to place SF2's Zangief in compromising positions when creating animated GIFs for his forum signature, writes:

"This is a delicious feast for the senses. An orgasmic journey through time and space, where Jeremy holds the key unto new worlds, and in those new worlds, we are born anew in his image. There, under the watchmaker's delicacy of his mind and betwixt his strong and tapered fingers, music become wonder, and wonder becomes something beyond the human capacity to embrace, let alone understand. When we listen to his music and we unite, not just as a nation, not just a people, but as living creatures. As entities. As souls, balanced on the fragile edge between existence and Jeremy's heart."

...We keep him around because he has no place else to go, as the above should indicate. Whether Beethoven and Mahler would be proud to have their names cited as influences or not, this is a fairly mature and well-planned arrangement of extremely familiar source material. One issue that judges GrayLightning and zircon both cited was the "machine gun effect" common to earlier or less expensive sample libraries, wherein the repeated, consecutive attacks of a given instrument playing the same note give away the synthetic nature of the sample through the extreme uniformity of the sound. GL, who refreshingly chose to actually describe the music a bit in his decision, writes:

"I don't think most people would notice it anyway. It's noticeable, but it's not a huge deal ultimately. Now as far as this mix, really great arrangement. The orchestration is wonderful. All the different instrumentation, change ups, pacing and articulation usage is used expertly. Production values are generally excellent. I thought the dark sound here is perfect. It's got the perfect european sound. I would not like it any brighter."

Either way, it's a bit of a change of pace for Robson, but also for Tetris, which tends to garner more electronica attention than suitors from other genres. Enjoyable and also mature, but not so much so as to take itself too seriously or not have any fun with the inherently energetic slavic folk tunage.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2022-01-29 17:05:41

This is incredibly satisfying to listen to. It’s nice to hear an orchestral ReMix explore several avenues of speed and complexity in it’s performance, and makes it almost as fun as more cinematic orchestral songs, but in a different way. Certainly a mix where the arrangement of the sources shines for me.

on 2013-02-11 14:39:42

What a grand, impressive feeling! And how you made Tetris music sound grand, I'll never know.

Simply marvelous! :3

on 2010-02-05 20:44:43

I'm a fane of classical music very much so and this fit my mood and mindset very well right now (being have-cut on the evening before a weekend off having nothing to do with it at all of course...), made my day. Thank you friend!

on 2009-11-28 00:28:21

I'm glad OA commented on this, otherwise I never would have listened to this.

All I can say is "Incredible" after listening to this.

on 2009-11-27 17:50:24

When i heard the name I was thinking "oh, it's going to be the tetris theme song, but on a piano", and while it does include such a thing, the level of arrangement is such that it really feels like an entire new piece. The intro begins in a pretty liberal manner before getting to the specific apparent part that is so familiar to the original game boy owners. The orchestral backing was nice, and has a very classic sound to it, arrangement-wise. Nice work there, and a very nice arrangement overall. If this arrangement could get an actual orchestra behind it, we'd be well on our way to getting game music out and about into the world beyond it's current scope. I could even see this appearing on a Christmas album without much fuss.

on 2009-06-19 05:49:48

This sounds like a master having a lot of fun with a good piece of music. Filled to tbe brim with some very effective ideas and intelligent exploration of different melodies. The arrangement side of this is absolutely top-notch, and just keeps hitting home runs one after the other, success after success.

However, as some have pointed out, each success exists within its own little section of music, so when streamlining it, things do sound slightly stilted. In no way does this sound like a bunch of ideas thrown together, but there is a noticeable stop-and-start mechanic that could have possibly been filed down. I can't decide if the piano was too close, or the strings were too distant. I think the strings may be a little too obscured.

Not flawless, but the flaws are at least easy to swallow, especially when the mix is this high-end. Good stuff.

on 2009-02-01 21:13:30

This is something I'd love to hear live. :-P

It is kind of strange though to hear a Russian folk tune played by a classical orchestra. Still, this is good.

It's so beautifully arranged and orchestrated; the two themes blend so well together. Awesome stuff is going on here, and this is worth listening to.

lady zelda
on 2006-01-16 22:10:51

After hearing this, I was like, I always sort of knew at the back of my head that Tetris Song B was meant for a concerto, or any orchestral arrangement for that matter. Well, that's exactly because this remix just owns! It pulls off perfectly as a classical orchestral piece! Now this definitely needs to make it into a concert hall's enough to make Mozart jealous! Hahahahaha!

on 2005-12-07 14:49:30

Ah.. Superlative. Could do with an encore if I do say so myself. As to the regional direciton this comes from.. I have no clue.. lol.

on 2005-11-16 01:09:25

It's very nice.

on 2005-11-04 23:30:10

I would also love the sheet music. does anybody have it yet?

on 2005-10-29 00:37:28

Indeed, very nice work. Oftentimes when playing the game I would pick this as the music over the typical theme. The speed and movement of the melody made for more of a frenetic play, especially once ya hit the higher levels and those pieces just kept getting faster, faster, faster...

I was impressed. Very nice pacing, and - as has been said - it definitely felt like a story amongst itself, and that's a very good thing. Excellent orchestration, good variety in balance as to who had the melody vs the accompaniment, and so on. And definitely a great original theme to apply this style too. Good work.


on 2005-10-14 12:33:04

Korobeiniki theme

I can't remember if I ever heard those grace notes used elsewhere, because they give it a very Chassidic sound as opposed to Russian, especially when the clarinets play them. But yeah, this arrangement is entirely my own, especially considering the syncopation in bar 5 in the file above, which occurs throughout the entire piece in one form or another.

Thanks for the comments, guys.

on 2005-10-14 12:00:48

Can someone give me the piano sheet for


I really like that part

on 2005-10-14 11:27:53

This is certainly my favourite song from Jeremy Robson. Everything here sounds clearly romantic if considered with the famous Russian Arrangements.

Sources Arranged (2 Songs)

Primary Game:
Tetris (Nintendo , 1989, GB)
Music by Hirokazu Tanaka
"A-Type (Korobeiniki)"

Tags (4)

Time > Duration: Long

File Information

5,929,978 bytes


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