ReMix: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow "In the Darkness of Time" 3:41

By Rize

Arranging the music of one song...

"Clock Tower"

Primary Game: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Konami, 2003, GBA), music by Michiru Yamane, Soshiro Hokkai, Takashi Yoshida

Posted 2008-04-30, evaluated by the judges panel

In one of our longest comebacks ever, Rize rises again with our first ReMix from CV:AoS and his first submission since November of 2002. To give you some perspective: some of you weren't even ALIVE back then. The Internet hadn't even been invented yet... we made submissions available via 8-track tapes and circulated these in an elaborate underground community, and the only game that was available to ReMix was Pong, so every mix sounded rather the same. 100% true. In other less hyperbolic words, Mr. Trammell certainly has vet status and credibility as one of the earlier rock/guitar artists on the site, and it's great to see him back. Rize writes:

"I recorded this for the October DoD competition where it got 3rd place. This version has an updated EQ and mix since I didn't have enough time to finish it to the best of my abilities by the competition deadline. I wish I could make the whole thing a tad louder, but I can't without distorting the hell out of it. As is, it's comparable to 80's era Metallica in volume."

Sweet. So the judges' thread tells the sordid tale of our initial grappling with the first version David sent in. Essentially, it borrowed rather extensively and verbatimally (poetic license) from a Megadeth intro, which in turn was loosely inspired by Bach's famous Toccata. Some argued that because Megadeth were arranging public domain material in the first place, it was fair game. Some argued that the Megadeth was almost identical to the Bach anyways, so it shouldn't matter. This was clearly a situation where I needed to step in and get my djp on, as any way you cut it, such extensive (and relatively unaltered) usage of non-game material wasn't kosher. Such a decision isn't really a reflection on Rize's decision to use it in the first place: it worked quite well, actually. It's just an artifact of our standards, which sounds trivial but ultimately is what the site is all about. Issues like these usually have one of two effects on people: they shake their heads in amazement at our anal retentive adherence to policy... OR... they accept that each site has its own thing going, that OCR has a definition in place of what it's looking for, and they resubmit a modified piece. Thankfully Rize fell into that second category, and I have to say, I think his piece works just as well without the extended MegaBach homage intro.

There's still plenty of homage going on, though, both to the original and to the 80's metal band of your choice. Rize certainly hasn't lost any of his original energy or chops, and both come shining through in this aggressive rock arrangement that takes off right out of the gate and never lets up. Malcos writes:

"The guitar playing is excellent here, and the arrangement is great. Production is good, I think any difference here from more a contemporary sound is due to the mixer going for an 80's sound. I don't feel that volume is an issue technically, only stylistically...I'm going to yes this as everything is above the bar for me. However if DJP feels that the use of the Megadeth track was too much, then I accept that."

... and I did. David actually sent in an edited version before we even asked for one, in an odd coincidence. Thanks to him for making such a badass mix in the first place and for modifying it a tad, and thanks to Larry for catching an issue with a judges panel decision that clearly required an intervention & standards clarification. We don't really allow mashups with non-vg material to the extent the original constituted; it's not that such concepts aren't interesting, musical, and worthwhile, it's just that OCR has always emphasized the arrangement of video game music specifically as our focus, and significant external sources dilute that emphasis and our definition of what a "ReMix" is. But I digress (and soapbox, too) - this is a great track that I actually prefer sans-intro and which firmly establishes that in six years Rize hasn't forgotten how to rock the hell out.



Latest 15 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2016-02-12 02:07:57

The percussion sounds a little too drowned out/in the background (mostly the cymbal hits). Not sure if that should change, though - I'd say it helps me appreciate the liberal change-up at 1:34-1:42, which is a fitting area to mix up and disperse more energy. Really digging the interpretations at 1:52 and 2:11, and it's fun to hear the highest guitar notes kinda screech/wail at the tails of melodic phrases (e.g. 0:52, 1:02, 2:41) - always a welcome bit of character.

Doesn't go a great number of places, but it's still a wild ride visiting them.

on 2009-06-03 11:22:38

I am really feeling this. I love that it totally could have gone cheesy, but didn't. The treatment of the theme is extremely well done, but then, Castlevania songs always seem like they were written with rocking solos in mind somehow.

I actually expected this mix to attract a fair bit more attention than this. I very much hope people aren't snubbing it just because it isn't from a NES Castlevania.

This is right up there with the best of the metal mixes on the site for me. It's not overplayed, it sounds like it put arrangement as top priority and overall, it just sounds masterful. Rize shows everyone how much you can improve if you just take a 6 year break every now and then.

Martin Penwald
on 2008-05-14 16:55:24

Nice, rocking arrangement that has "Castlevania" written all over it throughout the whole time. Great job at finding the pretty much perfect balance between the original and your own ideas.

on 2008-05-14 16:53:38

My only complaint is that my speakers are turned all the way up and I still don't feel it's loud enough. Other than that, solid on the arrangement and the killer guitar. Keep it up - I hear where you're coming from with the complicated life, but don't let it drag you down, alright?

on 2008-05-12 09:56:02

I rather liked the snares that loud. They may be a TAD too loud but not by much at all.

LOL I put this on my Sansa and blast it through an FM transmitter whilst driving from one location at my work to another, which would be quite a bit on monday mornings. Its already 10 til 10 and I'm still not done making my driving rounds.

I think it sounds simply devine in the car. Very solid and good'n LOUD, just like I like it.

Hey Rize.... Dude don't stop making the rock remixes of CV tracks. Rude awakening rocked my face off as well as this one. If you want a good simple track to remix do "Original sin" next. It's a simple tune DYING for a guitar in it. YOU'RE MY FREAKIN HERO!!!

on 2008-05-08 14:37:23

Thanks again everyone. I appreciate the comments. In fact, once a year or so I even check old songs for new comments, so feel free to leave them, even unto the end of time.

-- shameless attention whore

I only wish I could get a song out there more often. Actually, in time I hope to simplify my life so that I can do just that... but I'll probably just recomplicate it after a short period. What can you do?

on 2008-05-08 12:30:36

Great guitar work here. Really pumps me up.

As someone said, the track gets right down to business, and that really works. Not many pieces can do that well, and it does here to great effect. Nicely done.

on 2008-05-07 02:12:18

Great work Rize!! It's good to see a familiar face showing up on OCR finally :]

Awesome arrangement, and congrats on your big return!

on 2008-05-05 12:36:43

Great playing, there are some killer guitar runs in this, and some great riffing as well. I agree that the snare is a bit loud, and i'd have preferred a drier sound on the rhythm guitars to be able to hear the nuances a bit better, but it's still pretty hot stuff.

Arrangement is great, with a lot of great segue sections, and the textures are mixed up nicely with the organ parts.

Very rocking, i give it 4 miserable little piles of secrets out of 4!

on 2008-05-03 16:10:00

If you feel that you can pull off another masterpiece like this one so soon after, I think you should, Rize. But if it's too soon, wait 'til you can.

on 2008-05-03 07:09:47

nice work welcome back!

and i hear you on the monitor thing man.

I too iz in great need of a new system

looking forward to your next piece

on 2008-05-03 04:20:14

All this attention makes me want to do another track.

on 2008-05-03 02:03:28

That was bad. Unlike this awesome track. OHOHOHOHOHOHOHOHOHO!

on 2008-05-02 15:26:32

Loved it then, love it now. I guess you could say you "Rize" to the occasion, OHOHOHOHOHO~!

on 2008-05-02 14:45:05

I am a Bach lover.

And so seems to be the remixer. Like Bach used to do, he skipped the intro and went right down to business...

Really liked that start.

And the rest is pretty cool too.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Konami, 2003, GBA)
Music by Michiru Yamane, Soshiro Hokkai, Takashi Yoshida
"Clock Tower"

Tags (2)

Electric Guitar

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