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Zel - Diamond Caves (Spadezer Remix)

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Hey Newgrounds! Here's my remix made for Zelazon's Great Caves Remix Contest
https://www.newgrounds.com/bbs/topic/1438823

First shot at doing a remix and I had a bit of fun. For those out of the loop, the stems came from the song linked below. The goal was to take midi stems and make the into a cave themed song.

https://www.newgrounds.com/audio/listen/805827

My main inspiration that's introduced in the song was the triplet polyrhythm the bass stem was using, which laid the foundation for the song. I used all 3 stems in mostly their untouched form. The bass and harmony stems were original and show up at ~1:20, and the lead stem I adjusted to fit more my style, but is still basically the same.

For more arrangement details, there's the cave intro from the beginning to 0:22 to play around with cave sound effects. The song intro starts next that gives the inspired polyrhythm from the bass line, and a different take on the lead stem.
0:56 is the drop that features a rock out dubstep section focusing on the bass sound design inspired by the bass. The chord progression being that it doesn't progress lol. 1:22 is the original song in it's truest form. The breakdown from 1:47-2:24 is two different chord progressions and takes on all of the original stems.
The intro and drop from 2:25-2:54 revisist the original polyrhythm triplets with a fresh retake, leading to another breakdown hybrid intro for more experimentation with note rhythms. This leads to the climax chorus at 3:08 which circles back around to the original melody but a fresh chord progression incorporating augmented and diminished chords (I think. If the judges desire more exact chord progressions I can edit those in).

More details below:

DAW FL Studio

BPM 150

VSTs:
Massive
FL 3x OSC
Air Hybrid 3
Sytrus

Various percussion and sound effect samples both free and paid from Cymatics
And samples from AU5 Freefall sample pack with a synth fead through Granulizer

I hope you enjoy

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Cool white noise at the beginning and sound effects that sound like water dripping. I like the catchy bass riff that starts at :36. The progression is really nice and anticipatory. The drop was cool, but I think there's a bit too much reverb in the texture for my tastes. I'd prefer the breaks there to sound sharper, and the reverb gives off a more atmospheric vibe. The ghostly melodies at 1:55 were nice, and I like the steady undercurrent of bass that's maintained throughout this section. Later, the bass gets even heavier, which is definitely a highlight, but the final melodic refrain at 3:10 or so definitely hits this piece home. The texture is very busy and maybe even a little bottom-heavy throughout, but the production quality is still really good. Impressive work here, Spadezer! Keep up the great work. ^_^

Spadezer responds:

Thanks for the feedback TL! I could see what you mean about the reverb, and even since I've uploaded this, listening to it again I think I'd agree and change up some of the mixing a bit. Like the kick needs trimmed up, and some of the bass I let get a little messy. I'm also really glad you like 3:10 section!

Hello Spadezer!

This is my review for your GCRC submission:

Mixing

Is the song constructed well or avant-garde?

I was almost taken aback by how exceptional the song construction is with your remix. The simple stems given you’ve taken and ran with the idea, exploring depths that I didn’t even know was possible with the song. You went towards the dubstep genre and approached it with an expertise that I find very few could achieve. Socks did fly with this remix.

Has balancing between each part allows for the listener to understand the song well?

The balance is perfect. Sounds blend perfectly and bend and weave though each headphone and speaker perfectly. The bass is smooth, yet powerful, and defining itself with a heart and shows, and it really demonstrates that you took care in crafting this remix.

Does the song contain two of the three required stems as stated in the rules?

The song uses all three stems as required but deviates in a way that keeps the parts interesting. This is very good and a testament of the creativity that the audio boards can achieve.

Total score for mixing: 20/20

Mastering

Is the song clean to listen to upon export?

The master is clean. I hear no noticeable differences between the headphones I’m using and the surround sound that I change to for balance purposes. It is clear with this remix that you have been working with the mastering process and it shows. I believe this song demonstrates a level of mastery with the mastery process that other artist should take note of.

Are sound level balance across as many devices as possible?

As suggest above, the song is perfectly balanced.

Is the song clipping? (Clipping will lead to a loss of 5 points)

The song is not clipping.

Total score for mastering: 20/20

Percussion and Drums

Are the drums and percussion, if used, varied?

The drums and percussion in this song is strong and varied in a way too keep the song fresh and interesting throughout the entire duration of listening. The drums play at necessary parts and feel fluid in ways that are both professional and stylish. Additionally, it feels like a beat manipulator like Gross Beat was utilized to ensure that the listener has an interesting break from each part, which is commendable.

Does the percussion and drums add anything?

The percussion and drums add a significant portion of the song, from the intro to the main melody itself, the percussion and drums represent a significant awareness of the potential of an effective bottom line that holds the song together like no other. While other may have opted for the most basic drum pattern, this song seeks to expand and exceed on the traditional ideas of percussion and drums.

Could the song use more percussion or drums?

This song has enough amounts of percussion and drums.

Total for Percussion and Drums: 20/20

Bass

Is the bass more than whole notes?

The bass is simply mean in this song. The bass is the right kind of hard while maintaining a smoothness that ensures that the listener feels the bass as well as enjoy the usage of the stems provided to have that perfect level of balance in a way that both admirable as well as enjoyable. Some artist lack an awareness that bass can extend beyond the whole notes, which the stem does provide, but this song ensure that the bass stands out and is its presents of its own.

Does the bass add anything to the song?

The bass in a certain perspective is the soul of this song. From being strong to fading back with the adequate sub bass, the song projects itself in a way that allows for the listener to be as aware as possible about the potential of good bass. To say that the bass adds anything is a significant understatement as the bass is its own presence.

How does the bass sound in relation to the song?

To put it quite simply, the bass is wonderful in this song.

Total for Bass: 20/20

Melody

Does the melody utilize the stem in interesting way?

This part was outstanding as well, thought I’m going to really get into the weed with this section of the review. What I’m noticing with this melody here is that significant focus on the bass and percussion and bass tend to lead itself to a melody that seems to be in the background more so than the forefront. While this is not necessary a bad thing, what I tended to notice on two particular section, mainly 1:45 – 2:12 is that the melody used there as an intermittent didn’t quite hit the mark as well as some of the other parts did.

Additionally, the end with the chord changes affect the song around 3:22 that really seem to affect that final presence that the song had been doing perfectly for most of the song. In this way, it may have been advisable to have the chord changes happened at earlier parts of the song or be given its own section in its entirety to get the listener used to that chord. Additionally, the chord seems to not quite mesh together as effectively as it possibly could have worked. While these critiques didn’t quite bring down the score dramatically, it should be noted that careful attention to chord usage should always be strived for when working on a song of this quality because it becomes easily noticeable when something is not quite right.

How creative were you with the melody given?

The creativity was massive in the areas that were being utilized within the melody. You took a simple melody that was given from the stems and really expanded it in a way that keep it interesting throughout the song. While there were a few hick-ups in the section that I noted above, that does not understate the level of creativity that was exhibited by this song.

Total for Melody: 15/20

Summary:

A song that demands respect and admiration, this song packs a punch that, as the author would say, will knock your sock off. From a mean bass-line to melody that weave in and out so perfectly, this song should command the respect of individuals who might stumble upon a work of this caliber. While some portion of the melody did not quite mesh as perfectly as they could, this song comes very close to achieving a level of perfection that is outstanding and appreciated.

Final Score: 95/100

Spadezer responds:

Lol, "This song has enough amounts of percussion and drums." I'd see it as an understatement.

I appreciate the kind words and I found them very encouraging. I can see what you're saying about the melody particularly in the second drop...well chorus I guess. I kinda threw some chords together to see if they'd stick and they weren't necessarily simple chords either. I've been experimenting with abnormal chords to expand my composition skills.

Man you're listening to this with surround sound?! What an experience that would be.

Again thanks for the review. I like to hear what you're paying attention to and I'm glad to know I ticked the right boxes for what you were hearing.

Credits & Info

Spadezer
Author

Listens
296
Faves:
5
Downloads
6
Votes
14
Score
4.57 / 5.00

Uploaded
Feb 24, 2019
7:44 PM EST
Genre
Dubstep
File Info
Song
4.2 MB
3 min 43 sec
Tags

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