Posted 2018-03-19, evaluated by the judges panel

Start your week with some vocal disco-jazz-fusion as GCJ (Caleb) debuts on OCR with an upbeat, jazz-hands, singin' & rappin' take on Sonic CD's (JP/EU) "Cosmic Eternity" (using veteran MIDI arranger Monster Iestyn's work as the foundation):

"I thought some of the chords in this song were really jazzy, so I made a jazz remix. It's my first time mixing vocals that aren't super heavily processed, and basically my first time mixing in this genre. It was made in anticipation for Sonic CD's anniversary.

I'm happy to give credit to Monster Iestyn. I do remember using MIDI files for remixes I made around the same time, since I was very new to this whole thing."

I'd hesitate to describe this as a straight-up jazz arrangement, as there's definitely some funk/fusion/disco going on, some of which is also present in the source. If you're not into scoobidy-bee-bop sing-raps about believing in yourself to get respect from your friends, you probably won't be about either the original or this interpretation, but if you dig the source tune I think you'll appreciate what Caleb's done here, dialing the vocal kitsch down a bit and classing things up with some pianos & jazz flourishes. This was resubmitted with some tweaks to vocal processing as well as the ending; of the revision, Jivemaster writes:

"I like the vocals more now than before, especially, during the chorus portions. I do feel they have become too dry during the verse sections, but overall a solid improvement - they no longer feel like they've been dropped on top of everything and no longer overpower other portions of the mix anymore. I can also make out a lot more of your vocal articulations in this mix, which make your vocals easier to appreciate."

Vocals are definitely stronger during ensemble/chorus portions; the initial submission had a weird DSP going on, which the resubmission removed, which was an improvement overall but left the verses feeling less integrated. Liontamer adds:

"To me, this was a mixed bag production-wise. The vocals were too dry, and the chorused ones were mixed in a way where they felt pushed into the background and didn't sound clearly pronounced. That said, this was a creative, interesting, and understated arrangement approach. Some strong vocal production could have lifted this up more, but the overall presentation was solid enough and this gets more right than wrong."

In addition to being somewhat polarizing among fans of VGM arrangements, vocals are just plain old HARD to execute, introducing a unique & formidable set of production challenges. That being said, singing & rapping were fairly integral to the source tune in question, and simply by having a single voice instead of a male/female ensemble, Caleb changes up that vibe and brings something new, along with the jazzier treatment. As with many Sonic vocal cuts, you have to embrace the lyrical cheesiness & "feel the sunshine" to get into it, but that's just as true of the source tune as it is this ReMix. The verses here didn't hit me quite right, but the intro scat singing, the harmonized vocal bits, and the overall EP & piano work throughout saved the day and had me noddin' along, especially on repeated listens. Fun & funky take on an enthusiastic & "of the era" vocal VGM cut - challenging stuff to tackle & kudos to Caleb for revisions that resulted in a stronger mix. Looking forward to future work from him!



Latest 3 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2018-04-27 03:02:11

good tune but never been a fan of lyrics, would be good to see this without it

on 2018-03-20 20:26:48

Kudos for covering a catchy little number that rarely gets mixed. I dig it, altho it's more straight-forward than I would normally like.

on 2018-03-16 13:10:29

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

Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
Sonic CD (Sega , 1993, SCD)
Music by David Young,Mark Crew,Masafumi Ogata,Naofumi Hataya,Spencer Nilsen
"Cosmic Eternity - Believe in Yourself"

Tags (12)

Electric Piano,Piano,Singing,Vocals: Male,Vocals: Rapping
Lyrics > Lyrics: Existing
Time > Tempo: Fast

File Information

5,201,171 bytes

Teleportation, yeah! Zah-bah-doo bah-bah
Teleportation, yeah! Shoo-bee-doo boo-yeh

In the end, who's on your side
Who can you trust, in the middle of the night
Where will you be, if ya can't find you
There's no place to go, nothin' to do
If ya gotta do somethin', gotta do somethin'
Believe in yourself - yourself - yourself - Hey!

Extraordinary things can happen if you believe in yourself
You've got to have some faith in yourself if you want
respect from your friends

Don't re-arrange - No need to change
Stay like you are - Keep it all the same
But as you move along in your life
Keep an open mind and don't forget
that if ya gotta do somethin', gotta do somethin'
Believe in yourself - yourself - yourself - Hey!

Extraordinary things can happen if you believe in yourself
You've got to have some faith in yourself if you want
respect from your friends

[Chorus x2]
When you feel tight, look at yourself
Inside your heart you will find
a special place to unwind
When you feel right, look at yourself
Inside your mind you will see
Cosmic eternity


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