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 SOUNDTEST
Carnivorous Carnival February 18, 2005

Rexy ?Judge? RedBeastMage Total Score
Remix
31
29
32
92/105
Creativity
43
40
46
129/150
Production
11
12
13
36/45
Total
85
81
91
257

Rexy

Remix

The faithfulness towards the source is all there, although for some listeners it can be seen to be a bit more liberal than once thought to begin with - mind, a fair chunk of the song contains strong references to the original, so all's good. The piece is shown to be very well executed for an electronica track, and for that I have managed to appreciate the general progressive nature while maintaining the dramatic nature behind the original. I can't say I heard many Suikoden related arrangements prior to the competition, but from what I've seen this has made a good start to be introduced to the contributions behind the series, and for that it has provided a good amount of strength to stand alone. There's also variance left right and center, from variance across the second half to some brief rhythmic alterations in comparison to the original, so I have seen this to be an enjoyable effort all around. Usually the structures are shown to provide a good set of ease towards the audience, although I am not really too sure about the major key segment from 2:15 onwards. And I am not sure about the choice of closing scenario - a bit irrational given the chord progressions there. Personally I would have thought it would end better on a D5 chord, but that'll probably be me. Nonetheless I really appreciate the remix aspect of the arrangement.

Creativity

There is a lot of life breathed into the mix through a lot of variance upon the theme as stated in the above paragraph, as well as some strong alterations on the accompaniment and technical settings to be able to produced a very lively setting all around. The links between the sections are very clean and precise and have broken out of the scopes of the original too; I did notice a few quirky spots within the second half relating to the major key portion and the closing sequence but it's still very good regardless. The piece has managed to provide a fresh pace throughout and has managed to generate a strong adapted area for fans of the genre. This in turn has managed to clear out most of its repetition problems all at the same time; mind, if any were still involved I feel that some of the drum progressions seem to get a bit tiresome after a while. But otherwise it has still provided a generally enjoyable track for fans of the genre; it may bring in the attention of people outside of there too, but it'll depend on their tastes in music at that moment in time.

Production

The samples chosen are very clean and precise for an electronica piece, and are actually pretty strong sounds considering he used Fruity Loops to put everything together; I still feel he could have opted for some better drum elements though, but this is still fine. The sounds are shown to be a little bit dry in places, however I am fond with how he managed to establish the EQs in this as well as a few hints of sustain - very thoughtful processing all around. I can't comment too much on any recorded portions, so for now that aspect is not applicable. The sound levels are very well balanced as they are; even though the mastering was thought to be a little bit on the quiet side through my speakers, it has still worked in providing the basis of a firm performance all around. I can say the panning is well polished for a hybrid mix, and has worked well upon providing a realistic performance all around. Given what I've seen this is pretty impressive production stuff considering Trenthian has used FL, so well done.

?Judge?

Remix

Great feel and style, repetitious but refreshing each time.

Creativity

A lot of variation throughout, but generally stays well within limits of excessive variation; one of the more impressive 'house' remixes I've heard.

Production

Generally great samples (with some exceptions--i.e. trumpets); no noticable flaws in production.

Redbeastmage

Remix

I'm gonna come right out and say this; I had a miserable time giving this piece a remix score, if only because I'm unfamiliar with the source, and with the game series (shame on me). However, after listening to the source material and speaking with my resident suikoden analyst I can say this song does an excellent job portraying the original. My only problem is with the ending, because without having actually played the game, it seems very slapped on, and contrived. It seems like the listener really has to have played the game to understand what you were going for there.

Creativity

While I just said this song accurately represents the source material, man does this piece separate itself from the original with creativity. I love the style, and it takes a lot for me to really get into a song of this genre. You avoid gratuitous repetition, something that is very hard to do, and you keep it funky fresh the whole way through. I think the best thing about this piece is the choice of instrumentation. When you say carnival, you really get that across with your choice of instrumentation. Excellent work, and a pleasure to listen to.

Production

Nicely done, although I would have liked to have heard some more creative panning, some bouncing around the field, etc. Also, the trumpet sounds rub me the wrong way at times. But those are just nit-picking complaints. And also, I must say that is the TIGHTEST snare sound ever, at the beginning of the piece. Really sounds like I'm listening to a snare played outside on a field. Overall, solid production.



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