Newcomer Neon X (Martin Höglund) brings us a unique chill-but-energetic synthwave take on Super Mario World's "Underground BGM," jumping into a more active, double-time pace at the midpoint:
"Arranged by ear in Reason Studio version 5 using only PC mouse, no external/physical instrument were used. All sounds are self-produced or original synthezisers modified directly in Reason.
During the ongoing worldwide pandemic, I was drawn to music production and wanted to brand myself as a synthwave producer with strong links to the video game music universe. Since this summer (2020), I've produced many arrangements from a variety of games, especially from the SNES.
An originally simple song which gave me free hands experimenting with it. This is the underground theme from Super Mario World on SNES but in a very unique setup and arrangement. I hope you like it! I'm happy how it turned out. :D"
Good stuff; judges did disagree a bit, with some feeling it was a hair too short/repetitive over its three minute duration, but most giving Martin the nod for an engaging adaptation that delivers a chill first half and then a more pulsing drive afterwards. Liontamer writes:
"Not a close one for me. Great variations throughout. prophetik laid out a lot of the interpretive aspects of the piece that really shouldn't be undersold; this is a different genre, lots of additive writing including original countermelodies. I'd even argue that the areas referencing the "on Yoshi" drums aspect of the source aren't even copying those patterns, so it's like getting wholly original writing inspired by the Yoshi drums. Gario had a valid point on the repetition of the melody from 1:54-2:39, sure, but it wasn't long overall and that part was really a brand new rhythmic idea after everything prior to it; really, the offending repetition was only from 2:16-2:39; some doubling/chorusing of the lead there and/or varying the beats more from 1:30-on would have been a subtle way to differentiate from the first iteration at 1:54, but it was brief, the repetitive section was already meaningfully interpretive, and it's a nitpick."
New judge DarkSim agreed with some of the critics that the arrangement ended up feeling a tad short/incomplete, but focused more on the positives:
"Right off the bat I’m feeling this one - I love these slow, pulsating synthwave tracks, and you’ve got the feel for that down. The percussion is serviceable, although I would have liked some groovier open-hat hits in there from 0:22-0:57. The glitchy arp that’s oscillating round the space actually does a great job of layering the bass and providing more interest to the groove in lieu of some more detailed percussion.
The best part of this is 0:57-1:20 where you can really hear the underground theme working well as a little bridge section. I love the chord progression here too, it fits the genre amazingly well."
I was hoping a judge would cite this specific section; things really do click wonderfully at 0'57", where the genre adaptation to synthwave delivers in full. This mix could, and arguably should, have been a minute longer, and with some additional variation/differentation injected into its synthwave bloodstream, but that's not a dealbreaker, just a coulda-shoulda-woulda of sorts. Neon X still delivers a strong debut that puts a satisfying synthwave spin on a familiar classic; would love to hear more!
on 2023-01-04 10:00:35
Shades of 1990's X-Com geoscape music here, especially in its reimagined form in the most recent expansion for XCOM 2. Love it.
on 2022-02-09 04:40:35
Hi, great work with this musical materpiece!
I really liked the 80's style instruments. Thanks for your work!
on 2022-02-08 08:36:08
Nice, finally got one posted! I've been listening to the WIP posts and liking what I've been hearing. Keep them coming!
on 2022-02-04 10:24:56
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