Thursday, August 18, 2011

Render Rodriguez

In celebration of People’s Remix Competition 200, the organizer Bundeslang discarded the usual PRC criteria by selecting a source tune that has appeared on OC ReMix in arranged form. The Ice Cap Zone theme from Sonic the Hedgehog 3 is notorious for being remixed countless times, most likely due to its distinctive riff featuring an octave-leap. beckett007 stated that the material reminded him of Steve Jablonsky and Hans Zimmer, and used this as the basis of his soaring orchestral rendition filled with choral harmonies. SubNormal J3 offered up a digitized smooth jazz take on the theme, punctuated by piano stabs and filter sweeps. Obtuse’s 80s-style disco arrangement emphasizes the bassline and incorporates drum fills to accommodate the dance floor. The titular kickdrum in V___’s entry doesn’t come in until about 15 seconds, soon after which the beat machine is joined by acoustic bass and voice samples. Finally Zerothemaster submitted a clash of multiple musical styles, along with various clips from Sonic games.

JHCompo on Tuesday featured “Train Ride” as its theme, and I recorded my spoken word intro shortly after disembarking a train myself. DJ_SOMBRERO inexplicably declared his love of apples in Spanish for his mariachi-dance hybrid tune coated with wub-wubs. nikola made use of train sound effects fully credited to the Freesound library, then starts up a majestic flaring of horns backed by strings and timpani. zebra offered up a miniscule entry containing a train whistle, vocal utterances and a lo-fi beat. MisfitBYTE’s deep bass tones are countered on the other end of the frequency spectrum with high pitched riffs. sci uploaded a self described “pain train that gets funky for like 10 seconds” admitting that he mostly wanted to play around with bassdrums in the limited time available. MandraSigma showed off his rhythmic chugging and headbobbing snare before declaring “Here Comes the Train!” Detective Tuesday’s piano jam and hip-hop backing rounded out the entries for the night.

Thursday's OHC featured a "Killer" theme coupled with dictionary definitions of the word. swordofdestiny followed my accapella with one of his own, offering his vocal track to those who could provide guitar for it. nikola submitted a heavy dose of cathedral organ, evoking "dark final boss lair music" by way of harmonies and silences. zorg insisted that his killer has a taste for trance, and thus went the four-on-the-floor route for his entry. Bren created a multi-part composition: first from the perspective of a victim and then to a deadly creature, all driven by his signature e-leads. The good Doctor Arcana took to the stage with a crying baby, bells and distorted bass. Fusion2004 submitted an electronic track and extended the deadline while the organizer starla was momentarily away.

Tomapella created an acoustic pop ode to a murderer, strumming along and including a keyboard solo. LuketheXjesse returned from OHC hiatus and brought in a full minute of metal ending with a cryptic spoken message. Forty-Two's hi-hats and bongos are accompanied by piano and pads as he hid in the "Grassy Knoll". CJthemusicdude also returned to compo with his funky synth-beat and a sudden cackle ending. Trollgate knocked down the OHC doors with his rock track "Death and Regret", adding an understated "Thanks" description. Usabell presented his subdued ambient piece and gradually raised the tension to complete the atmosphere. td244 suffered a computer crash during the round, but put up a dense cinematic orchestral track nonetheless. MandraSigma put in a cautionary voice clip to complement his brief rhythmic excursion.

cfx's tripped out track was apparently the result of "too much coffee" and includes a tail end of gated synth. DDRKirby(ISQ) warned others not to mess with him as he lurked in the chippy shadows. jarski's moody dance track was given the apt title of "the dark passenger" submerged in acid. sci made a funnie by setting the murder scene in a dance club and scratching the decks. At the end of the listening party, Suzumebachi plowed through a series of technical issues before ultimately delivering a rolling production, albeit with a clipped outro.

When I stumble upon an artist whose work inspires me, I try to learn as much as possible about that artist's background. I want to know how and why they make their art. My goal in doing this is to gain insight, in the hope that it would give me perspective regarding my own output. Among other things, compo provides an inviting way for artists to share their knowledge, and this is a blessing considering the many inspiring artists who participate.

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