ReMix:Secret of Mana "Dueling Consoles" 5:33

By Shnabubula

Arranging the music of one song...


Primary Game: Secret of Mana (Square , 1993, SNES), music by Hiroki Kikuta

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

Shnabubula offers:

"Okay.. I think it's necessary that I give an explanation of this song. The idea is this... an NES and a Sega Genesis meet in appallachia and start a musical duel. At first they compete, but then they decide to work together. At 2:00... the synergy is so great that the two FUSE to become something new.... basically the same NES and FM sounds but now featuring effects processing [this was especially helpful with the noise/PCM] So that's the story. The title and intro melody is a reference to "Dueling Banjos" from deliverance.. since it's the same scenario except, instead of the product of inbreeding and a city slicker jamming, it's two different soundchips. I've learned a lot about writing NES chiptunes since "Figaro Chiptune" but it's stuff that most people probably wont care about.

SOOOO it's all made from chiptune sounds but it's not purely chiptune, since it does things that neither chip would have been capable of.... hopefully that'll make enough of a difference for this to be passable. The song being remixed is Danger! from secret of mana.. great song with lots of themes rolled into one short two minute piece [Kikuta rocks.. not as familiar with him as I should be, B1itz Lunar has inspired me to check him out more]. Roetaka pointed out that the theme entering at 3:33 sounds like a quote from FF7 battle theme. Totally unintentional but true none-the-less, guess that's what happens when you listen to too much Uematsu."

Highly conceptual Deliverance-meets-Mana chiptune(ish) piece that came on the heels of one of Shna's rejected pure chiptune mixes. Since then he's submitted another pure chiptune mix which was also rejected - our standards do weigh BOTH arrangement and production - but with this Mana composition, as he mentions, he treads outside the limits of what either chip would be able to do, creating a chimera. As a Genesis fan, I'd like to think that, were this an actual dual, my beloved Mega Drive would be the Burr to Nintendo's Hamilton, but it's more of a mind-meld. JJT writes:

"Again, very impressive, very challenging stuff from Sam. The opening section is definetly the most "out there," but I disagree with the assertion that it's chaotic. The chromatic interludes don't sound particularly pretty, but they're a deliberate choice, and Sam stays within the confines of the harmonic strucuture he lays out. Yes, there are a lot of notes, and it does modulate very quickly at times, but it makes sense. There's no chaos here. Once 2:00 hits, awesomeness ensues. At 3:25 when it shifts into...what is that, 13/4? That's just really great writing."

TO adds:

"...this one moves beyond the limitations of a simple chiptune, similar to the Mazedude Earthbound mix that was passed recently. It takes the good parts of a chiptune and translates them to a better soundscape to give a proper audio experience. Everything flows together pretty smoothly. The arrangement is dysfunctional, but it always comes together in the end. There's no real "climax" to the piece, in actuality it sounds more like Shna is taking the listener on a very intense drug trip, so the piece is one whole orgasmic climax."

I think it's important to mention Mazedude's EB mix as TO did, as it similarly overcame some potentially limiting chiptunish elements via arrangement and also enough attention to production to tip the scale in its favor. You have to love the rather classic and audacious concept of an NES and Genesis dueling it out, Deliverance style; the piece wins bonus cajones points on the rarity of imagination of involved in its conception. A very different, very singular piece that stands out not as Sam's best arrangement, but as one that highlights his skills while at the same time fulfilling the very particular idea his mind unleashed.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2015-12-31 01:27:55

This mix MAGNIFIES the expressive potential of every part of Danger, so naturally there's lots to appreciate here. For me, that includes:

0:48 - Fitting spot to express tension between the NES and Genesis - they meet and are working together, but don't fully trust each other yet.

1:52-4 - The whole ritardando note descent is neat, but the tail end is full of suspense the way it slowly rises back up...

1:59 onward - Not only is the fusion dance complete, the main melody is now bent on fully exploring its body like it's blasted through puberty at terminal velocity.

3:32 - Unconventional time sigs are fun, here helped by the smoothly gliding lead.

4:26 - By this point, the mix is reaching beyond the cosmos, finding sublime meaning in things we humans can't begin to comprehend.

When it's all over, I'm left satisfied and out of breath. Makes sense, since others have said this is like sex/an orgasm/a drug trip.

on 2014-10-28 17:12:44

I always turn it up when this one comes on.

on 2011-11-03 21:46:15

I never commented on this? I remember when this mix was originally posted. Instant awesomeness, it made me seek out the other chiptunes too. My favorite of the trio of chiptunes is the Terra one to be honest, but this one is a close second. Definitely captures the chaos in the original song.

on 2011-07-18 13:24:41

Years after first hearing this song, I still come back to this whenever I think of OCremix. And when I heard dueling banjos for the first time, I realized that the opening melody is from there.

Amazing remix.

on 2010-08-16 15:12:57

Pretty cool stuff. The hard panning helps sell this one.

on 2010-06-09 15:00:32

It's an interesting specimen, I'll give it that. How it started, I really thought of it as average, interesting, but not particularly memorable. However that wasn't the case when it hit the 2:00 mark, that's when it exploded into something awesome, full of manic energy. It worked for a good portion of the song, but as the song progressed, it lost quite a bit of that energy that snagged me in the first place and it ended up sounding tired at the end. I have a difficult time thinking on whether or not I would recommend it to my friends, but I tip my non-existant hat to you for trying something so daring. A fairly decent job. I certainly enjoyed it

on 2010-05-29 18:21:34

I lol'd at the beginning. An awesome, sometimes interstellar sounding remix that is worthy of praise for it's chiptunish sounds and energy.

on 2010-04-09 14:48:36

Easily the best remix ever.

on 2009-06-26 12:11:22

*Mentally slaps self for not checking SoM remixes more recently*

Mind Blowing. I'm going to get my headphones. If I'm not back in an hour someone send an ambulance.

on 2009-04-22 07:09:16

can't stop listening to this .. it's freakin' unbelievable

on 2009-04-19 17:57:54

Favourite ReMix - just so awesome and hyperactive! Love it love it love it!

on 2009-01-19 00:41:05

Around every corner at OCR, there's always something new and different to jump out.

I'm still having a little trouble mentally reconciling the NES and Genesis soundchips intertwining and interweaving. It sounds so bizarre.:shock:

I like how at 1:59 both just explode into the rest of the mix.

This mix is definitely worth listening to for the experience of how unique this mix actually is.

on 2007-12-22 00:09:19

I can't believe I haven't reviewed this yet...

This is, hands down, my favorite OC Remix. It is utterly amazing. The concept is brilliant (I have this idea in my head of some fantastic music video featuring the NES and Genesis in their epic duel and then coming together to fight some ridiculously easy Secret of Mana boss, like Mantis Ant) and the song is absolutely wonderful. This has given me a tremendous appreciation for the original song. I never previously cared for "Danger," considering it one of the lesser pieces on the soundtrack, but hearing this remix has given me a new respect for the complexity and fascinating nature of the piece.

Thank you, Shnabubula. This is freaking awe-inspiring to me.

on 2007-11-17 00:07:07

Just like you said! The first feeling to mind is the sega genesis and nintendo competing against each other, then finally they put competition aside and work together in a very energetic way. Sure it drags on a little near the end, but who cares! This is such a great piece with so much effort into put into it that im sure no one would mind!

Also, I just have to go along with what Radical Dreamer said :mrgreen:

on 2007-07-31 00:39:32

This is probably the single most creative OC Remix ever. Or at least that I've heard. If you haven't already, DOWNLOAD IT.

Shnabubula is my hero.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Secret of Mana (Square , 1993, SNES)
Music by Hiroki Kikuta

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