Posted 2020-07-01, evaluated by Rexy
While I'm not sure I agree with the mix title assertion, this intense, high-velocity rock/metal mix from StormSkuggan (Joakim Stenmark) makes a compelling case & contributes some shreddage to Golden Sun: A World Reignited - he writes:
"This was the initial song that I worked on for this album and I chose this theme because I had such a clear idea of what I wanted my remix to be. As I worked on it, I got this image in my head of Karst, one of the antagonists of the game, standing at the aerie of Jupiter Lighthouse, her scythe tightly gripped and her face seething with rage because of our protagonists betrayal.
This song was a challenge musically. I have a mission to make rockin' tracks without electric guitar. So, since I wanted the track to be this heavy, I knew I had to experiment with playing style and mixing a lot to get there. Arrangement-wise, this song really escalated in length and density beyond what I initially intended because I had a great beginning to it and a great ending, but no good way to tie them together. So, I used a second song from the soundtrack called "Karst's Appearance" which helped greatly to the piece it all together and give it the kind of prog metal arc that I wanted."
Prog metal - with fakey-guitar?!? Surely THAT is treason!! ...is what I suppose SOME folks might say/think, but not me. Joakin makes it work, mostly by applying a heavy gating & quick release to some of the guitar-like components... but hey, that intro wah lead is hot, and - unlike vegan cheese, which is the most disappointment you can put in your mouth - the substitution is generally pretty damn satisfying, buttressed by a spiraling, bold arrangement. Hot synth leads, too. Album director TSori writes:
"My absolute favorite thing about this track is the contrast between it and Bluelighter's "Hand of the Fire Clan." Bluelighter's mix is a sinister but refined orchestral take on the theme of Saturos and Menardi, the antagonists of the first game. They are revealed to be dedicated soldiers fighting to save their homeland (albeit with questionable methods). There's a nobility to Bluelighter's mix that fits them very well.
StormSkuggan's "Treason Deserves Death" is the theme of Karst and Agatio, antagonists of The Lost Age. It takes all the nobility of Bluelighter's mix... and just chucks it out the window. What we get instead is a wicked rock remix that sounds just a bit unhinged. It couldn't be a better fit for the violent and revenge-obsessed Karst and Agatio. Karst and Agatio's theme is pretty minimalist... and their battle theme differs only in that the tempo is a little faster. Yet, somehow, StormSkuggan managed to craft a nearly 7-minute epic out of it. It constantly reinvents itself, but maintains a sense of dread the entire way through. There's one particular moment starting at 3:20 that always makes me imagine our heros and villains facing off on the Jupiter Lighthouse aerie surrounded by dark clouds, howling winds, and lightning: all of the elemental fury the lighthouse can muster. Good stuff."
At almost seven minutes, it's a humdinger, but it almost feels longer (in a good way) due to all the changeups and, as TSori writes, reinventions. I especially dug the 3'22" bass & thunder duet - had me smiling. Joakim debuted back in January of last year with an excellent Chrono Trigger mix , and I'm thrilled to see his Golden Sun contributions following that up. Enjoy!
Sources Arranged (2 Songs)
- Primary Game:
Golden Sun: The Lost Age (Nintendo, 2002, GBA)
Music by Motoi Sakuraba
- "Agatio and Karst"
- Metal, Progressive Rock
- Aggressive, Energetic, Epic
- Choir, Electric Guitar, Synth
- Arrangement > Extended Soloing
- 11,588,798 bytes
- Size: 11,588,798 bytes
- MD5 Checksum: efcddc64ca80c15857e207f81effb7d8
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