Newcomer Tikaal (Corentin Rahil) makes a memorable debut with this downright joyous explosion of new-meets-old genre-bending rock/pop/chip, arranging several themes from Gold:
"Hello! I'd like to submit a song to you guys.
I wanted to see what it would look like after I remixed it in my style, 15 years after playing the game for the first time, hence the title: "Past Meets Present." The title is also a nod the city description of Ecruteak City which reads: "A Historical City Where the Past Meets the Present." It also has references to Azalea/Blackthorn city themes, National Park, and the main theme from the series.
Hope you'll like it! :) Thank you."
Corentin's style is extravagant, energetic, emotive, & most of all FUN with a capital F - judges kept mentioning this, and I wholeheartedly concur. The first minute or so is half-tempo and absolutely enjoyable in its own right as a 17-bit slow-jam, but it segues seamlessly into the double-tempo, buoyant bonanza of beats it ends up sticking with, throwing some spunky electric guitar in & eventually channeling legitimately epic levels of POSITIVE VIBES. Seriously hard to listen to this without feeling at least a TINY spark of... something... and of course I'm tappin' right along; reminds me of some of the more exuberant j-pop anthems of anime yesteryear. Helluva first mix/entrance, and Emunator was feeling it:
"This reminds me of UV Sir J in the absolute best way. I thought I had this arrangement pegged from the first minute, but you managed to throw something unexpected in at every turn, and I couldn't help but smile as I listened through and heard everything you had to offer! I always found the original Ecruteak theme to be somewhat melancholy, but this amplified a level of playfulness I didn't know was there! The vocal harmonies at 1:15 were a standout moment, and I can't go through a vote without mentioning that kickassguitar solo that follows. The rest of the arrangement retreads many of the same ideas, but never in a way that overstays its welcome, and finds a lot of ways to keep it fresh til the very end through additional layering and some clever cameos."
Yes to ALL of that; could have written it myself, except Wes did so I don't have to, which is better. "Fun" is accurate but "playful" is indeed more specific; there's a compositional touch here that knows just how to transition & to fit high-energy puzzle pieces together in a continuous stream, and it's quite the ride. Rexy adds:
"The choice of sound palette is also very charming - starts with dry percussion and synths, then evolves with richer textures, significant guitar/keyboard articulations, and attention to fun effects when necessary. The live vocals have a pristine recording quality, as do the guitars, and no part is interfering with another in the mixdown."
Bev did proceed to echo other judges' comments regarding the mastering being a touch hot & the dynamics a wee flat, but not as a dealbreaker, especially relative to the agile, effusive arrangement. Maybe a lighter hand on the dials next time, but I'm definitely looking forward to it, since so many things are clicking & working so well here - truly hoping to feature Tikaal's work again soon; fantastic stuff!
Sources Arranged (3 Songs)
- Primary Game:
Pokémon Gold Version (Nintendo
Music by Go Ichinose,Junichi Masuda
- "Azalea Town"
- Chiptune,Electric Guitar,Electronic,Singing,Synth
- Time > Tempo: Fast
Time > Tempo: Variable
- 6,306,144 bytes
- Size: 6,306,144 bytes
- MD5 Checksum: d2846cae1772ddee5137455d18a962c6
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