ReMix:Star Control II "Lightyears Away" 4:24

By Mark Vera

Arranging the music of one song...


Primary Game: Star Control II (Accolade , 1992, DOS), music by Aaron J. Grier, Dan Nicholson, Erol Otus, Kevin Palivec, Marc Brown, Riku Nuottajärvi, Tommy V. Dunbar

Posted 2006-06-14, evaluated by the judges panel

Finally saw Nine Inch Nails live, with Bauhaus, at the Nissan Pavilion last night. With the exception of 'Sanctified', they played every last song I was hoping for - show was amazing. As a fan from the early PHM days, before they became huge, it was great to finally catch them live; they're able to recreate their album sound amazingly well. Right then... Mark Vera hits it up yet again with more Star Control 2 mixage. Jouni writes:

"Even though I have lots of hardware synthesizers in my studio today, the only one I used for this remix is my beloved Juno-106, which took the honor of playing the bassline. Most used software synths are Pro-53 and WaspXT. Arrangement done in Orion Platinum. The arragement is partly based on midi patterns I made for the first Hyperspace remix already posted here on OCR."

So, yes, more Star Control 2, and specifically, more Hyperspace. While the arrangement here is actually closer to its source, the production has been bumped up, with a strong Pet Shop Boys/New Order 80's groove. Larry writes:

"I'm sure people can put up a fairly fine argument that there's enough expansion here to make it a pass on the arrangement level, but this was still nagging on me quite a lot. Does a good job of filling out the original though and adding new parts, though the structure being so similar was a big turnoff to enjoying the track. The question is weighing whether it passes the test as an expansive-enough cover that distinguishes itself enough from the original."

It's somewhat befuddling why someone with Jouni's talents would revisit a piece rather than exploring undiscovered county from one of the other Star Control games, or branching out to other series like he did with Laser Squad and Wizardry, but each mix is evaluated on a case by case basis, and clearly this is a theme the ReMixer is enamored of. One of the highlights for me was the tom rolls towards the end; nothing like a high-to-low fill to round out a four-bar pattern. Fans of the Star Control 2 soundtrack and Jouni's work should definitely dig; anyone into 80's music or just a good synth pop/rock groove is invited, too.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2013-06-19 01:53:07

Nice work, mr vera

on 2009-11-01 01:51:42

This mix really moves, mostly due to the very tight, very abundant drumwork that drives it. Energy levels are constantly in the danger zone, which is exactly where I like them to be (Kenny Loggins reference unintended.)

And speaking of things that are painfully 80s, I get that vibe here. This really channels those 80s synth-based bands like Depeche Mode, which is good and bad on different levels. It can be bad because there are a lot of not-so-flattering connotations that come with the territory, so instead of conjuring images of a retro sci-fi universe, it may result in images of Corey Haim. Never voluntarily, might I add. But on the flipside, connotations or no, the music is still good. There may be a confusion of contexts for me, but I still appreciate the hell out of how this sounds in a standalone way.

Melodically, it's a one trick pony. But I think the magic in this is the fact it doesn't once even teeter on the edge of becoming stale. As my favourite of Vera's Star Control 2 remixes, this seems to incorporate the shining elements of the past mixes to the greatest possible effect. It's catchy, versatile fun and a superb end to Mark Vera's series of SC2 submissions.

on 2008-02-13 14:25:53

This reminds me of the song at the end of Revenge of the Nerds... ONLY IN SPACE!

Catchy 80's goodness with creative synths and lots of drum fills, it is super retro, and works really well with the source. The backing synths switch up [retty frequently, keeping it fresh, and the percussion is punchy and varied. No auto-pilot on this one.

In some ways though, the sounds are too married to a specific era, as I can easily imagine this as a soundtrack to a high school movie set in the era, but not really anything else. Still a nice track though.

on 2006-08-23 07:31:55

This is an awesome job Mark and thanks for working on the Ur Quan Masters as well. It was great to play Star Control II again.

My favorite track out of that game is the Vux theme. Maybe you can remix that next when you have time if you like it.

Keep up the great work!

on 2006-07-12 21:10:24

Nothing makes me happier than seeing a new SC2 remix up. It's always good to give such a fantastic game some more publicity. PLAY STAR CONTROL 2 NOW AAAA

Aside from that, I love this rendition of Hyperspace to death. So good.

DJ Magotrox Brazil
on 2006-06-30 02:13:55

I've played this game. The remixer work was very good. :lol:

Surely, the "hyperspace" song is the best of the game. Really Cool!!! 8)

Keep it up! :wink:

on 2006-06-28 22:09:24

wow.. this is amazing work.

Martin Penwald
on 2006-06-27 09:01:47

The 80ies grab you from the very first second, and they don't let you go until the song is over.

Wonderful, innovative, catchy stuff.

on 2006-06-21 10:22:03
There is a free clone of this game called The Ur-Quan Masters if anybody cares. It's a pretty fun game actually. And the hyperspace is one of my favorite tracks! well done.

This is no small coincidence. You see, Mark Vera is a member of The Precursors, the group responsible for remixing the Star Control 2 soundtrack in order to be used in The Ur-Quan Masters. :)

on 2006-06-21 09:29:47

There is a free clone of this game called The Ur-Quan Masters if anybody cares. It's a pretty fun game actually. And the hyperspace is one of my favorite tracks! well done. I totally agree with Geoffrey. :lol:

Geoffrey Taucer
on 2006-06-15 20:45:33

Holy. Fucking. Shit.


That is all.

on 2006-06-15 15:54:38

Thanks for making this. I like it a bit more than the first one you submitted, which had really piercing treble at points. I had to turn the volume down in my car to like 12 instead of 20. The best thing about it is I could never get this melody out of my head when I was listening to the original songs a long time ago. It's like part of my brain now, and a piece of its history. It's a simple progression that repeats, yet pleasing to my ears. Plus there's a ton of varying and accompanying percussion and...stuff so it doesn't get TOO repetitive.

on 2006-06-15 15:13:18

Hmm...synth pop, always goes down smooth

Very well done in all aspects, the samples are wonderful, production is top, and most importantly it's alot of fun to listen to (something remixes today are lacking)

Mark Vera
on 2006-06-15 04:24:47

Thanks. I almost forgot I had sent this song to ocr. Sorry that the mix is a bit thin on bass side, but hope you guys like it regardless of that. :)

on 2006-06-14 22:15:41

Mark Vera is one of the best spacesynth producers out there. Like all of his spacesynth tracks, this one does not disappoint. Great work!

Also check out for more info on this great music genre..

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Star Control II (Accolade , 1992, DOS)
Music by Aaron J. Grier,Dan Nicholson,Erol Otus,Kevin Palivec,Marc Brown,Riku Nuottajärvi,Tommy V. Dunbar

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