Posted 2015-10-31, evaluated by djpretzel

Sam Dillard doesn't "do" mediocre - every ReMix I've heard from him oozes with atmosphere, art, & craft. We end our Vampire Variations: Volume III mixflood with an appropriately epic & sinister orchestral/cinematic arrangement of his that is no exception to this rule, conjuring the gothic horror & Transylvanian ambiance the Castlevania series is known for. Album series director Chernabogue writes:

"This is probably my favorite track on the album, and one of the first to be completed, setting the bar quite high, actually. Sam really captured the essence of the final battle against Dracula himself in his remix. His choice of focusing only on Dracula's theme and not adding Simon's (like in the game) was a very good idea. You can really feel some hatred in this track, but also some sadness/melancholia, and that blend of emotions really worked well to me. This track still give me chills when I listen to it, and I'm pretty sure it'll keep doing this for the years to come."

Ditto all that; I sometimes talk about mixes being "transporting," and this is one of those times ;) For me at least, when listening to this track, it's impossible not to mentally travel to a landscape that mirrors the audio, with darkness, chill air, & a sanguine moon hanging low over the twisted spires of old-world architecture. Sam writes:

"I always thought this was an interesting song, with a unique mystical and almost sad feel to it. The idea here is an epic showdown with Dracula on top of his ancient castle in the middle of a violent storm with howling winds. I considered transitioning to Simon's theme as happens in the game, but I decided to keep the focus on the Prince of Darkness himself the whole time, with a dangerously powerful yet beautiful quality. Or something like that... anyway, it was a fun track which let me play around with doing pretty dramatic stuff."

Indeed; a fitting conclusion to our six-mix exploration of a powerful, dark, & blood-soaked album, the last in a trilogy of works paying tribute to the lord of vampires and to the talented composers at Konami, who've defined the "sound" of Dracula in the land of VGM for many decades. Bravo to Chernabogue & all the talented artists who contributed to this latest incarnation focusing on Super Castlevania IV (my personal favorite!) and to the first & second volumes as well, and HAPPY HALLOWEEN from ALL of us at OCR!



Latest 9 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
Sam Dillard
on 2018-04-03 12:03:24

Thanks Crulex!

on 2018-03-31 20:02:41

So fitting for the finale struggle against Dracula himself, with the sound FX and climatic percussion over the powerful, yet almost sad choir. Excellent mood setting, with the arrangement driving home the emotions. Some powerful cinematic magic in this ReMix indeed, splendid work man.

on 2016-02-23 03:11:41

Agreed, this definitely cranks up the sinister tension of the source into levels of cinematic awesometude. Highlights:

0:52 - Soft and sad choir marks the presence of a lonely moon, Simon's only source of illumination (as well as hope and determination).

1:14 - I like to imagine the battle arena is being revealed by parting mists at this point.

1:28 - A simple shift to slightly lower notes (while still rather high) acts like a warning: "Watch your back, Simon - Dracula's no pushover."

2:07, 3:51 - The battle's getting intense...

2:18-2:24, 4:02-4:09 - ...and the choir punctuates it by crying out in poetic and melodic anguish. Seriously, these are my favorite parts. I often stop what I'm doing and let myself feel the raw emotion and energy here.

4:33 - The lingering string makes me want to cry - for Simon's struggle, Dracula's defeat, the sun about to rise, anything.

Would've liked a different wolf howl sample the 2nd and 3rd time around (making it the same each time kinda detracts from the soundscape's impact). Regardless, this mix is so many levels of addicting.

on 2016-02-07 12:08:20

I'm guessing people haven't commented much on this because they're left stunned by it. It's an amazing track which truly fits the idea of going up alone against Dracula himself. Fantastic work by Sam Dillard, as always.

on 2015-12-28 12:24:27

The original battle theme for Dracula is one of my all time favorite SNES tracks. So I had high expectations going into this track already. And man does this deliver. The original track was more ominous than anything else. This track retains that ominous feeling, but adds that “cinematic confrontation” vibe which not only creates more tension when thinking about Dracula, but creates a wonderful sense of drama that you’d expect in a final battle. Rarely do final battle themes sound as climactic as they do in this track, and I love it so much.

on 2015-11-20 15:25:00

This is probably my favorite track from VV3. Can't say how much I love this track, which represents everything VV is to me.

Sam Dillard
on 2015-11-20 14:24:42

Thank you Timaeus222 :) And here I thought nobody liked it heh.

on 2015-11-18 21:09:57

This is excellent. Why hasn't anyone said anything?

This is at once cinematic but not generically so. The fight sounds like it starts at 1:35, but everything else around it was leading up to it. This really conjures a "finale" atmosphere, like something that is certainly fit to be near the end of the album. Almost sounds cathartic at 3:55. Appropriate last track to the mixflood, because this is (deceptively?) great!

on 2015-10-31 07:34:41

What did you think? Post your opinion of this ReMix.

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Super Castlevania IV (Konami , 1991, SNES)
Music by Masanori Adachi,Taro Kudo
"Dracula's Room (Final Stage BGM)"

Tags (13)

Brass,Choir,Orchestral,Singing,Strings,Vocals: Female
Usage > Halloween

File Information

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