Metroid Prime 3 - Bryyo (PRC111)
Jan 12, 2008 Hylian_Lemon
Nutritious's entry is the most well-EQ'd. It has a great adventurous feel (though I don't think any of it really sounds unfriendly). However, I feel like the source is kind of taking a back seat, if you know what I mean. Strong entry, but not much is done with the source, and it's not as prominent as it could be.
Flexstyle's entry is really energetic. I like it a lot. Cool ideas, but it just doesn't have as much development as the top two. The remix could have had some more internal variation to keep things interesting. Also, nice acronym-unraveling. ;)
AlexSmith's entry has a very interesting sound…almost like aborigines in space, or something. XD Parts of it are pretty cool, but parts of it are kind of empty. It strays a little too far from the source. The percussion could have been cleaned up a bit; it's a little muddy (or whatever people call it).
Chickenwarlord has some cool interpretations going on, but it just feels too sparse for its own good. Also, the source isn't very recognizable. I like that bassy thing going on in the background (or whatever the heck it is).
Jan 12, 2008 Flexstyle
The Bleak Mid Summer
Another Hostile Planet
Nothing much happens here
Second place I chose Nutritious, because of the cool blend of the synthetic and the orchestral. Production was pretty decent too, although I did feel the some of the sound choices (the kick and the 303 particularly) could have been better made and/or processed.
Third place I chose Chickenwarlord's mix, because even though it was short and sparce it seemed to convey a good feel. It was also decently produced, no clipping or anything and a good mix of frequencies. The melody was well translated too, I think.
Jan 13, 2008 bundeslang
Flexstyle - Funny beginning, I like it. The noisy bassline is good, but it misses variation. Absolutely not bad for your first entry, hope to see more of you.
Alex Smith - The intro is too long, after 0:40 still nothing happends. The change at 1:31 is a bit too big, but I liked that part. The end is good and interesting.
Chickenwarlord - I like the lead you used for the first part. The song is too short, but I like what you have done, except that background sound.
Nutritious - Exciting beginning. It's very interesting, the last part of the first minute is a bit too much of the same, but I like the next part. After a while, the bass gots boring. The ending is too long.
Jan 13, 2008 kylenin
Jan 14, 2008 Chickenwarlord
Nutritious brings in his regular epic orchestral styling. I enjoyed the beginning quite a bit. It could've used a little more energy towards the end, but on the whole the description delivered.
Rexy's piece is decidedly more retro-feeling. That sits well with me. Instrumentation choices remind me of vintage ZUN (though I would have liked a different flute-ish sample). Good arrangement and cheerfully relaxing.
Alex: good work with the mood creation. 1:59 feels very sudden and not a very good transition at all. A little more presence of melody would be nice, but that's just my personal preference.
Flex: The drumloop in the background is a little too start-stop for my liking and takes up probably too much space in the overall mix. Work on making some of those dynamic changes a little smoother (something I neglect to do in most of my submissions, heh).
Jan 14, 2008 Nutritious
Rexy - probably developed the source the most out of everyone. This has much happier feel than the other entries. I liked most of the instrument choices, but I think the drums could use some help. Hihats are very rigit and machine-gunnish (especially when it goes double-time). Liking the bass you've got here, pretty good movement/writing on it.
Alex - Good synths, though the levels seemed a bit low, perhaps even lofi. Had some good ideas flowing, but needed some production help on sample quality and balance in instruments.
Jan 15, 2008 Rexy
But still, there can only be one. And here's how I made my vote.
Nutritious got a first place vote from me. I dig the atmosphere that was brought into it; the fusion of orchestration and electronica works surprisingly well and adds a good dynamic touch when required. It tends to get a bit liberal after the first minute though, but it's still identifiable enough to see as a passable interpretation of the theme. There's not much to fault with the production though - we see something well balanced in terms of the instrumentation brought together. I would think some more time could be spent with the electronica processing in comparison to the orchestral channels but that's probably just a nitpick.
Flexstyle surprised me with his first mix - we've got a well polished Drum n' Bass interpretation, and there's absolutely nothing I could find to fault with the production. What kept it from a first place finish though was a conservative arrangement; I appreciate the bold effort in putting everything together though, and that's more than enough that can be said for a first attempt at the contest.
It was a toss-up between Alex and Chickenwarlord for third; both had elements of dissonance in their work, higher levels of liberal interpretation and some sloppy audio mixing. But I favored Alex due to some of those aspects working more into his favor; given the atmosphere of the overall mix the dissonance at the beginning could be seen as intentional, and the level of interpretation is just about higher than what was witnessed from Chick. When it comes to the sloppy audio mixing though, I am of course referring to two things - elements of clipping (which can easily be done by turning down the output into the mixer) and some bland sounding drums in comparison to the rest of the instrumentation (which could be approached by dealing with further experimentation with the sound processes; I was almost expecting something like 80s drums myself). It's not bad though.
I already went into detail on what happened with Chick's work - the melody could barely be heard at all, and the dissonance doesn't seem to cater towards the feel too well. Production wise, I know why you wanted the instruments to be sparse but there could have been more time spent trying to experiment with your samples to come up with some more unique textures here. In earlier days of the competition I'd criticise everyone who used FL defaults but I know some good stuff can be done with the free sounds if approached well. Don't be discouraged.
Now that I'm done, I'll see you with the results in 25 minutes. ;)