You've got my attention at "lo-fi hip-hop," to be honest, but when you add "...in 5/8 time" then yeah... I'm curious. Newcomer AlmightyArceus (Jordan Wynne) hits us with exactly that, arranging the "Route 209 (Day)" theme from Pokémon Diamond in a dusty, warbly, & uniquely syncopated fashion, featured on Insight: Lo-fi/Chillwave Vol. 3:
"Hey, OC ReMix, it's been a while! I'm coming at you with what I call a lo-fi "complexhop" remix of the classic Route 209 theme from Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum. This ReMix borrows a lot of its EQing from lo-fi techniques, giving it a worn and vintage feel, which leans into the classic/nostalgic feeling this theme evokes. However, by tempo and feel, it is much more rapid and active than a typical lo-fi piece, and contributing to that in no small part is the fact that I arranged this piece in 5/8 time. This is how I arrive at the word "complexhop," but call it what you like, I'm not too keen to genres and I'm not so picky, so long as you enjoy what you're hearing. :)
This piece should impart a sense of majesty and nostalgia, but also energy and joy. Like a breeze in a way. I find the worn wash effect on some of the instruments, particularly the sampled chimes around 1:13 in, adds to this idea of a breeze, guiding you along on your excited journey as a Sinnoh Pokémon trainer. The chimes sway in this 5/8 breeze, and the drums keep you moving along (and with a little bit of punch!).
Since I last submitted a piece to OC ReMix, I feel like I have developed a lot as an artist. I feel like I have been developing a style of my own, and it's all thanks to the growth that the remixing community has brought to me. I'm hoping that this piece shows how far I've come as a ReMixer, incorporating some of my signature passions (odd time signatures) with my experience I have gained over the years. Hope you enjoy!"
I try to listen to mixes *before* I read the comments, and then of course after, and what strikes me is that the 5/8 time wasn't that jarring & felt relatively natural on first listen, which is possibly a side effect of the loose timing & overall relaxed vibe associated with the genre. As an aside, I'm glad Jordan's not too keen to genres and not so picky; I see folks who get way into the notion that musical genres represent some kind of pure taxonomy with clearly defined lines - "X is a medium, not a genre!!!", etc. - I just don't think it works that way. Things are blurrier than that... and in a beautiful way. Every taxonomy of musical genres I've seen has instances where music is categorized more for instrumentation, or tempo, or context, or usage, or cultural origin, or some combination thereof, and the idea that these could all be weighted equally/consistently is, at best, optimistic. Phrased differently: I love music, and I love words, but I would never ask one to completely define the other and expect complete fidelity. But I digress; AlmightyArceus has been around a while and it's fantastic to be posting a debut featured mix, and an unusual/memorable one at that. Rexy had a good arrangement play-by-play and final thoughts:
"The adaptation had a lot going for it right out of the gate - fitting the opening piano riff to establish an early groove, then the A section's melody at 0:44 and letting it shift among the soundscape. It relied on manipulated direct audio for 13 seconds at 1:13, which I can put aside as it's very brief - then building up more of the groove via variations on that intro riff. The break at 1:54 was welcome, allowing the bells to bring in the B section within the sea of gratuitous detuning - and once gone, there's this return to the established riff and some last-minute noodling on the top, before returning to melody A to close it out. It's one of those examples where not all resources got used, and those that did are some background ones hardly anyone would expect - but everything picked out appropriately fit this minimal lo-fi direction to a tee.
...Overall, I heard a creative take both on the arrangement and production side, with techniques that may throw the casual listener into a loop. I love the 5/4 and genre adaptations more than the presentation aspect myself, but I can see others appreciating it from different angles - and well worth making an impact on the front page. Great work, Jordan!"
Though far from a connoisseur/expert, I tend to experience lo-fi hip-hop as a "comfort food" genre that usually brings warm, vintage vibes and tempers any less orthodox elements with dusty, accessible beats, so the time sig is a nice changeup. It does take a moment or two to acclimate, but once you're good, you're good, and the rest of the ingredients Jordan's cooked up all ground the mix in delicious layers of character & flavor. Neat stuff - distinct, persuasive within the genre aesthetic, and a chill groove. Welcome aboard, Jordan!
Sources Arranged (1 Song)
- Primary Game:
Pokémon Diamond Version (Nintendo, 2006, NDS)
Music by Go Ichinose, Hitomi Sato, Junichi Masuda, Morikazu Aoki
- "Route 209 (Day)"
- Hip Hop, Trip Hop
- Chill, Mellow
- Bells, Flute
- Effects > Detuning
Effects > Lo-Fi
Time > 5/4 Time Signature
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- Size: 5,868,461 bytes
- MD5 Checksum: 0663a457584ca71317baabd5b42a04e2
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