Posted 2021-12-08, evaluated by Liontamer

No matter who you are & where you are, you can *always* use some lo-fi Zelda funk in your life, and Spaceroast (Zach Schumacher) returns to OCR after a 17 (!) year hiatus to bring us just that:

"I wanted to do something upbeat and funky as a callback to the old Jet Set Radio remix I submitted years ago as a young lad, and for some reason, "Tal Tal Heights + Jet Set Radio" immediately came to mind. The initial inspiration was to do a remix faithful to the original but in the style of Naganuma's work on Jet Set Radio, but as I was working on it the vibe sort of shifted towards this gritty fusion of old 70's funk anthems and 90's hip hop, with maybe a smidge of what people call lo-fi nowadays. The solo section in the middle was especially fun to work on. I had an absolute blast working on this, and I hope you enjoy this as much as I enjoyed making it! Thanks for listening!"

Zach had our first featured ReMix of Jet Set/Grind Radio back in 2004 under the name HappyBivouac, and that makes him a VIP in our book. He's upped his game in the many years since, and I think his own description does this blend justice - a little bit of lofi, most noticeably with the warbly acoustic piano prevalent on the intro, a little bit of hip-hop on the beat, and a whole lotta funk, everywhere. Great rhythm guitar, clavinet, and especially organ, which gets an extended, delicious solo. Liontamer evaluated:

"Cool approach to the source, a VGM arrangement community favorite for sure. The adapatation to some funky jazz with other influences and a cool, comping-style middle section are easy winners here, and I'll just say "I see what you did there" regarding the mix title. ;-) I'll leave it to djp to summarize the strengths (especially since he's had his eye on arranging this classic theme... c'mon, Dave!) while I pick some nits. On the production side, there was background hiss that awkwardly cut out at 1:15 and again at 2:50, which were seemingly outside of the purposeful lo fi sounds/effects; it seems like it was attached to the bass as it faded to 0, but whatever it was, make sure to fade out the noise/hiss earlier. Maybe it's part of the aesthetic, who knows. :-)

On the arrangement side, 1:50-onward was an unrealized chance to throw some more ideas and variation into the equation, which was mainly done with very subtle some organ doubling. The final minute essentially repeated the same as the first and felt like it was coasting, so if you're going to keep the same energy level and tempo, I would loved to have some other points of contrast (e.g. melodic variation, percussion pattern changes, other instrumentation changes/additions) to give the final minute a less repetitive, more developed feel before the close.

Critiques aside, that doesn't take away from this being a fun, funky, and inspired spin on "Tal Tal Heights." It's indeed been a long time since Zach submitted something, which even predates my joinging the judges panel in summer 2004, so it's great to hear him back in the community and in our inbox. Welcome back, and keep 'em coming!"

I actually have zero ideas for arranging this theme myself, but some part of me still just really wants a mix titled "Tal Tal Bachman" to exist in the universe. For because. The "lo-fi" aesthetic does kinda provide cover for production irregularities/artifacts, but nothing stood out to me as pushing the boundaries/good faith of that umbrella, and while Larry picks some production & arrangement nits (agreed on the ending/repetition), ultimately this is working for me - theme is identifiable, has been clearly bent to the will of the genres at play, and (most importantly) Zach gets the funk flavor *right*, with a great groove & some mighty fine soloing. Wouldn't have seen it coming, but very glad that after seventeen years Zach's debut mix has some wonderful, deserving company - excellent stuff, enjoy!



Latest 2 comments/reviews; view the complete thread or post your own.
on 2024-03-31 19:18:24

That detuned piano threw me for such a loop, I had a physical visceral reaction to it lol, the piano was not for me but I appreciate the style that it brought. In stark contrast, around 1:10 to 1:50 was so incredibly cool and swaggy that I had to stop and make sure I was listening to the same remix and then play that part again. One thing is for sure, this was very well made. Kudos.

on 2021-12-07 14:03:38
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Sources Arranged (1 Song)

Primary Game:
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening (Nintendo , 1993, GB)
Music by Kozue Ishikawa,Minako Hamano
"Tal Tal Heights"

Tags (9)

Funk,Hip Hop
Clavinet,Electric Guitar,Organ,Piano
Effects > Lo-Fi

File Information

4,788,336 bytes


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