Stevo, who just recently became a homeowner (congrats!), sums this mix up best himself:
"Mega Man 2 is one of the most remixed games on OC ReMix. With 42 mixes, it stands as a classic example of a game soundtrack, made in an era still limited very greatly by sound hardware, that will remain embedded in many gamer's minds forever because of how catchy it is. It's all upbeat, active, and has the rare quality of conveying the levels and end-bosses associated with each level. Metal Man's stage, in particular, has an 8-bit factory feel, cold and mechanic in sequencing. I greatly enjoy the song, but I wanted to take it in a different direction.
It's no secret that I love my guitars, both acoustic and electric. Metal Man's track lends itself very easily to electronica, rock, and metal, even DJP saying himself that it would make an awesome Metallica-esque song. But an acoustic rendition that starts mellow and then switches to upbeat? Yeah, not the first thing that comes to mind for this source.
This one starts slow, with a small introduction to the style with three acoustics, using one of the three main "melody" parts from the source coupled with some original topping and low reinforcement. A much more somber rendition with a bit of original spinning on the lead, and there is a fourth guitar doing some low power chord support from here until the song changes styles. Since I love mental images, this is the kind of music that would play 50 years after Metal Man's factory has been shut down, and he's the only one left around the tattered remains of the rusted machinery.
And then the switch up. Less somber, more active, and a bit less folky. Only three guitars here until the ending where four pick it up. I've had people make comments that I should have added light percussion, and initially I had planned on it when it was in the WIP forums, but in the end I really wanted to do a mix with acoustic guitars only. I believe the playing style is rhythmic enough, though."
Actually, between Level 99 writing the above and my posting it, Willrock managed to sneak yet another one onto the site, so the total is 43, with this being the 44th. That mix was Metalman as well, so it seems like he's quite popular this year, but the two mixes really couldn't be more different, as Stevo's definitely gone for a mellower, acoustic vibe. I love his waxing poetic about the "tattered remains" and the "rusted machinery" and what not - sets the stage well, I think. Ultimately, though, the track creates its own imagery, with the layered acoustics really providing a lush, wide, warm sound. I love this style for Stevo - he can certainly rock - as he's proven - but this folksier, unplugged vibe resonates with me and brings something new to the thoroughly explored, classic territory he's arranging. OA says:
"Very interesting and cool way to arrange this classic track- Nice clean and clear recordings, and an almost Led Zeppelin ballad vibe in the first half. It's pretty obvious there is enough source here, and the arrangement is very personalized. I think it could stand to be normalized a bit, as it's slightly quiet, but this is a pretty easy call for me. I love the harmonized arpeggio at the end."
Yeah, good call on the Led Zep ballad thing; I hear it, and I like it. Also really dig the title. Acoustic guitar mixes don't get all up in your face often and can sometimes fly under the radar for some listeners, but I think we've been blessed on OCR with a fantastic selection of solo (or layered, if you will) VGM arrangements that really have depth, subtlety, and let the instrument shine. I'd love to hear more like this from Stevo, as he definitely displays a different side of himself in both arrangement & performance, and both are excellent.
on 2015-12-02 06:02:51
This one truly stands out in the vast sea of Metalman remixes, and is one of the songs that got me interested in remixing. Major props to Stevo for making my favorite acoustic guitar only- remix on OCR, which is saying a lot on a site like this.
First, I must commend the production side of things - the overall quality is great and the guitars have a lovely mellowwarm sound that make this song truly unique. It works so well. Usually acoustic guitars are made to sound so sleek and bright, but this song is a fine example of giving it all a personal feel with some careful mixing and mastering.
And what brings it all together, the superb arrangement, ranging from tender to upbeat and brings out the best of the legendary source melody. The backing guitars are perfectly executed and gel so well together, especially in the ballad-y first half. Such a great remix that continues to inspire me.
on 2013-11-08 17:02:05
I love the imagery evoked by this track, and I have a feeling it could work in a number of varied contexts. In a way, I'm slightly torn: I really like how there's no percussion in the arrangement, but a part of me wonders (and wishes) there had been some light percussion to go with the switch up. But, that lack of percussion might be what makes the track for me, the guitars do a great bit of work driving the track forward while still keeping it laid-back.
I think like a few others, I do get the feeling that this was feeling short but that might be because it almost feels like two songs tied together by one source (and an ending) to me. Sort of the same way a track plays along a scene in a movie and transitions with newly found resolve/motivation in the characters.
Man, the harmonized arpeggio at the end is dope. This arrangement is dope. What's missing is the monochrome shot of a wasteland rolling while a gruff voice narrates how the men who worked there had it tough but did it because they had pride in their work.
All in all, this is another great acoustic track, and despite my lack of familiarity with the source, a wonderful listen.
on 2012-08-28 10:00:46
I have to say it, the arrangement is the golden piece to this ReMix. The slow acoustic guitar intro that builds up into something a bit more upbeat is fantastic. And it's an interesting idea, using Metal Man for an acoustic ReMix is a nice little coincidence. Playing sounds clean and crisp, and all in all, not much I can find to nitpick here. Sweet ReMix.
on 2011-05-31 10:29:03
hi, i just want to say i love this song , you make a great job, its amazing! :grin: :grin:
on 2010-12-04 21:00:29
As much as I like this mix, I still have some mixed feelings about it though. For some reason the source isn't quite clear cut until the transition at ~1:30. Before then, the source feels really buried and not that recognizable. Also, the transition and ending feel slightly jarring. The ending especially feels abrupt.
Despite what I just said, I still really like the acoustic rendition of the theme though; it's a very fresh take on the theme. It just has this sense of finality/completeness to it and that it's ready to start the next chapter. I definitely recommend this if you're looking for something different.
on 2010-09-27 16:03:59
I'd have to agree with everyone's comments about this. It definitely deserves the praise, and I'd like to add that your playing is marvelously tasteful.
This is VERY high quality stuff, congratulations.
on 2010-06-21 04:46:31
I just wanted to say this is one of my favorite arrangements to be posted on this site in a really long time. Absolutely phenomenal!
on 2010-06-14 12:05:25
Very nice arrangement; I really like the direction you took with this. Somber, relaxed remix of a source that's usually associated with a rather rocking vibe. The second part picks up some speed, but it still feels laid-back.
Also, the warm guitar sound is awesome.
on 2010-06-14 02:57:41
Wow. This is really good. Excellent playing.
on 2010-06-08 15:15:02
To have taken such an active and busy song, and to have simplified it so majestically, it must have taken a lot of work! There is a passion to this song, not with sounds coming from all angles, but instead with a burning desire designed to test one's mettle. It's very focused, as I think accoustics tend to be, which is a good thing. The jaunty half later on gives it a good kick, as this is Metal Man after all, and he needs to have an edge. Level 99 you did amazing work here, such a change from the normal tone, but you wouldn't be Level 99 if you couldn't pull it off now would you?
on 2010-06-03 20:19:15
Have to say, this is a good example of what ocremix stands for imo. Taking a great source tune, and throwing it in a great and unexpected direction.
Probably the best remix i've seen from ocr this year.
Btw, Led zeppelin is one of those bands that you really can't get away with sounding like and hoping no one notices The part at 0:40 is basically stairway to heaven with metal mans melody over the top
I'm not criticizing btw, I think the fact you took metal man and was able to make it sound like led zeppelin of all things is one of the coolest things i've seen anyone do on this site
on 2010-06-02 01:18:34
I hart stevo bortz
I hart him too. This is some nice guitar action from the talented man. I can't wait until you guys hear his track for Wild ARMs. It's amazing.
on 2010-06-01 10:54:03
Thanks for the reply, Stevo. Keep it up!
on 2010-06-01 10:07:18
First, I want to thank everyone for the comments and feedback. It really means a lot, both praise and criticism. I'll take it all and do my best to learn and improve for the future. Also, a very big thank you to the folks from the WIP forums for giving me feedback on revision after revision.
Dafydd: For the final version of this song, I was using a MXL991 with a pop filter on-axis to my Hohner Acoustic HW300-TBK. Recorded through a Lexicon Lambda in Sonar 8 or 8.5 (I can't remember exactly which one). I had to EQ out some of the bottom end because of how it was aimed directly at the hole, but the pop filter helped a lot in reduction of that from the get-go. The result was a very warm sound. This is my usual method of recording acoustic guitar, though I'm now using a Focusrite Saffire 6 USB instead of the Lambda.
Stevo get LEVEL-UP.
on 2010-05-31 02:39:17
Really like the approach here, but if there's one thing I have a complaint about, it's that it feels too short. I would like to hear a longer version, although I don't know if that'll happen given all the project tracks and stuff Stevo has on his plate
Sources Arranged (1 Song)
- Primary Game:
Mega Man 2 (Capcom, 1988, NES)
Music by Manami Matsumae, Takashi Tateishi
- "Metal Man Stage"
- Acoustic, Acoustic Guitar
- Arrangement > Solo
- 5,424,153 bytes
- Size: 5,424,153 bytes
- MD5 Checksum: a40f1097eab76aa63f1f4abda639806c
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