Adam WarRock’s Ghostal EP Out Now


Comic book/hip hop extraordinaire Adam WarRock has recently released Ghostal EP as a homage to Adult Swim, dedicated to all things Space Ghost:

Hey there. Adam WarRock here, again. The guy that made that Browncoats Mixtape thing, or the Parks & Rec EP thing, or I dunno, that guy who hates mayonnaise. I just finished a month and a half straight of traveling, and I got on this kick of watching old Adult Swim shows to fall asleep, when I was in hotel rooms or curled up on someone’s couch or sleeping in a dumpster (finding dumpsters near AC adapters…. The worst). It’s funny, because I think ever since Adult Swim was ubiquitous in the geeky scene, it’s always been a weird comfort in every phase of my life, from college, to grad school, to work, and now, to touring as a musician. So I just spun a few tracks off of Space Ghost: Coast to Coast, and wanted to make a little homage to Williams Street, for being that kind of comfort. Thanks guys. You rock.

We were pretty worried that his recent return from tour would hinder this release from being as rad as the recent You Dare Call That Thing Human?!? album release, but we have to say… WarRock absolutely kills it once more with his seamless lyricism, especially punctuated by insane, head-bobbin’ tracks like “Full Brak” and “Williams St.”. If you haven’t had the pleasure of listening to any of the amazing production quality that this awesome emcee is known for, we suggest downloading Ghostal EP immediately (it’s free!).

Benjamin Briggs’ Diddy Kong Racing: Bootleg Circuit Just Released

Remember when chasing intergalactic pig wizards was the right thing to do? Or how about collecting those elusive amulet fragments? Don’t mind us over here, just fondly reminiscing about Diddy Kong Racing.

Benjamin Briggs has us at ‘hello’ with keen memories of DKR. While we’ve gone on and on about his expressive talents as an upcoming artist within the VGM scene, Briggs’ Diddy Kong Racing: Bootleg Circuit has finally inspired the creative juices in us once more to gush about his latest endeavor with smooth house and disco influences. Even as his first-ever sampled game audio album, Briggs really takes the time to both highlight and complement Dave Wise’s original  arrangements that most gamers have come to know and love about one of the fastest-selling racing games within video game history. For example, “Hi There! (Lobby)” evokes sentimentality of Wise’s thumping cadences but efficaciously transitions into what we’d call a classic “Briggs-esque” twist, leaving the listener with toes tapping and heads bobbing when noone is looking… or when they are. Who are we kidding? “Hot Pockets (Hot Top Volcano)”, another favorite, encourages a major chill-out mood with entrancing rhythms while bringing about nostalgic yet gut-wrenching feelings for that damn volcano stage.

Did we mention that all the tracks have been mastered by Dj CUTMAN? Released exclusively from Dj CUTMAN’s new music label Gamechops, Brigg’s newest EP gives us an exciting preview of what we should expect from this group of artists who are driven by the simple passion of creating music. Diddy Kong Racing: Bootleg Circuit is available on Bandcamp now, which you have no reason NOT to download because it’s free!

 

Shnabubula Releases NES Jams, Brains Melt

The story picks up immediately where Game Genie ends. A young boy, Tommy, has just defeated his Game Genie, and in its place is a mysterious NES cartridge. Upon placing it in his NES, something wondrous occurs; the message PREPARE TO JAM appears and Tommy approaches his brother’s keyboard. Suddenly, the game and his fingers begin to play music together! Now, this is just a brief summation of the album’s story; the real beauty is the album itself. Just read with me as I take you on an aural tour through the 11 tracks contained on this album. Let us begin.

1. Underwater (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)     2:51

Starts out calm and aquatic sounding… 0:20 brings in some piano work. 0:40 brings in a nice little jazzy part. Pretty nice track; great way to kick the album off. 1:09 kicks off a bit of a calm section, and 1:18 or so is where it really kicks off with some nice arrangement. The piano and the NES accompaniment work phenomenally together. 1:56 or so brings in a series of crescendos. 2:10 is where you can tell the end is coming. Everything keeps on getting better and better until the finale begins at 2:44.

2. Temple (Zelda 2)     3:16

Source kicks off right away, of course. Sam keeps it simple, sticking to the source pretty tightly with minor changes with the accompaniment. 0:29 is where the accompaniment takes off, and the keys follow shortly after. The source is held tightly for the first minute, and then some nice arrangement comes in at 1:09 or so. This is probably one of the best renditions of this theme I’ve heard, and I’ve heard a few. 1:52 brings a breakdown, and it starts to pick up once again at 2:04 or so. 2:16 is where some real awesome piano comes in, and it only gets more awesome from there. The source is loosely held throughout this segment, and comes back in full force with crazy accompaniment at 2:56 or so. Final at about 3:09.

3. Alien Lair (Contra)     3:06

This one starts out kinda tense. 0:17 changes that in an instant; some big stuff is going down somewhere. 0:37 brings even more tension in, with force put into each and every piano note. 1:06 brings a very brief break. This song definitely has a nice feel to it, one that captures quite a few intense emotions in its many layers. 2:04 brings this point home, and even moreso at 2:15. The accompaniment goes pretty nuts from here on out. The end is definitely near at 3:01.

4. Night Sea (Little Nemo the Dream Master)     3:45

And now a well-placed calm spot; don’t be fooled, it’s just the calm before the storm. Shnabubula actually released a video of this track on his Youtube channel as a teaser for the album; it was the second such teaser. 0:32 brings in some nice bass. Nice work on the keys at 0:56 or so, and great accompaniment at 1:04 on. This song definitely has a great flow, one that makes me just want to sway back and forth to the rhythm. Some nice solo at 1:55 or so; back to the source at 2:10 with some embellishments. Naturally; wouldn’t be a Shnabubula track without them. Okay, so maybe not so calm; 2:40 or so brings some pretty crazy piano, and it calms down at 2:56. Very calm at 3:10 or so; it remains this way until the end of the track. The true finale begins at 3:34.

5. Dwelling of Doom (Castlevania 2)     3:16

Funky, just the way I like it! It starts getting even funkier at 0:22 or so. Even crazier parts begin at around 0:56; this song is focused mostly on the keys and the accompaniment only adds to the experience. It starts getting pretty crazy at 1:30 or so; breakdown at 1:50. It really picks back up at 2:07; signature Shnabubula insanity comes in not too long after. I’m still amazed that he can moves his hands as fast as he can; seriously, he must be part machine or something, because this skill is near-inhuman. The finale begins suddenly at 3:10.

6. Kung Fu Alley (NES Original)     4:42

This is completely original, and completely lacks the keys of all the other tracks. Fitting that it’s the middle track; five are before it and five are after it. Very nice rhythm, and very nice to listen to. Apparently, the track was supposed to loop at some point, but it wouldn’t. Ah well, it’s a great song nonetheless. Pretty nice part at 1:32 or so. Short breakdown at 1:58 or so, that goes into another great part; sounds like it could be a stage set atop some cliffs or something. 2:28 brings in some nice duality between dominant parts in the track, and 2:42 brings in some nice backing effects. 3:06 adds in a whole different part that fits in perfectly. Again, the song has some great flow and rhythm to it. Everything fits together perfectly, and it sounds phenomenal. There’s a feeling of something coming at 3:56 or so; probably signaling the finale. And the finale does come in at 4:28 or so.

7. Title (Double Dragon)     3:34

This was the first song Shnabubula released as a teaser on his YouTube channel. Source comes in at the ten-second mark. Very fast-paced, and great to listen to. 0:32 brings a slightly slower part. 0:54 kicks off more source usage and also signals the beginning of some awesome arrangement; check out 1:24. Just when you think the source is gonna kick off again at 1:38, Shnabubula switches it up with a rather beautiful breakdown. It starts picking up again at 2:02. Everything that follows is just pure greatness and insanity, especially at 2:32. Source leaps back in at 2:43, maintaining the same speed from the insanity. The finale kicks off for this song at 3:14. Yes, a 20 second long finale. Great work though.

8. Gemini Man (Megaman 3)     3:57

This is probably one of the more underrated MM3 tracks; let’s see what Shnab can do with this one. Some nice flair comes in at 0:12 or so in the form of source usage. More source usage at 1:06 or so. The accompaniment on this song works so well with the keys, and really helps to set the mood. 1:38 kicks off a nice arranged section. 1:59 brings in a breakdown, and it starts to come together once again at 2:17. 2:51 brings the source usage back into full force, with the usual additions and arrangement. 3:08 is where the accompaniment really adds a feeling of finality to the track; the end is definitely near. 3:24 on reinforces this point, and the finale finally begins at 3:48 or so.

9. Stage 1 (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2)     2:59

This kicks off instantly with a great speed and feel. 0:27 makes you just want to yell out HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL! TURTLE POWER! 0:52 has a pretty nice section of keys. 1:12 has the HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL part once again. 1:28 signals the start of a pretty sweet section, focusing on keys with some great accompaniment. 2:14 keeps the speed going with some awesome section, building and building until 2:35 when the finale starts with the HEROES IN A HALF-SHELL part and truly ending at 2:55. Such a great fast song.

10. Area A (Shatterhand)     3:25

In comparison to the previous track, this song is rather slow. But it’s still great; it picks up at 0:17. Okay, maybe it’s not slow; it’s pretty nice. A really smooth section begins at 0:47; 1:14 or so signals another pretty nice section. 1:38 has some more arrangement, and everything’s put together in a wondrous fashion. A sense of finality almost comes in at 2:17 or so; a small breakdown at 2:24 or so also sounds like it is leading up to the end. Some really awesome piano comes in at 2:46 with great crescendos on the accompaniment. The end is near at 3:10, and the song ends at 3:23.

11. Wood Man (Megaman 2)     3:37

Here it is, the final track on this album. Sticks to the source pretty strictly at the start, then takes off at 0:32 with the accompaniment first, and then it really begins with the piano at 0:42. There’s a great breakdown at 1:14, and it continues for some time. This part loosely adheres to the source, keeping the same rhythm but adding in many many more parts. Great work on the keys from 2:00 on. 2:19 keeps the insanity going. I’m surprised his hands aren’t on fire by now; this is such an insane speed. Some source resumes at 2:42 with more crazy piano playing; it normalizes at 2:55 or so. Some nice accompaniment effects begin at the three-minute mark, really adding to the sense of finality. They pick up even more at 3:22 or so. The finale begins at 3:32, and the end of the album is shortly after.

To help publicize the release of the album, Shnabubula organized a listening party on 3/15, hosted on Noise Channel Radio. The show, run by virt’s wife Truestar, peaked at 100 listeners, and the album is currently at #5 on the Bandcamp top sellers list. It’s actually pay-what-you-want, so if you want it free, you can get it for free. But I’m sure that Shnabubula would appreciate some payment on it; he certainly deserves it. The album can be found both on Ubiktune and Bandcamp; it’s well worth the download, and the money if you choose to actually buy it. Stay tuned for an interview with Shnabubula, among other things. Until next time, game on!

Retro City Rampage Soundtrack On Sale Now

Coming at you with fast-paced arcade action, Retro City Rampage is an upcoming cross-platform parody of epic proportions that promises to “take modern game mechanics and mash them into an authentic 8-bit experience”. Although the trailer for the game marks intrigue here at ThaSauce (preorder Retro City Rampage here), we’d like to focus attention to the #1 selling album on Bandcamp that has just been released, the Retro City Rampage soundtrack, which features phenomenal music by what may be one of the best collaborations in the VGM scene right now. Award-winning artists like 2011 OSV Composer of the Year  virt (Jake Kaufman), Norrin Radd (Matt Creamer) and Freaky DNA (Leonard J. Paul) have come together to form an ultimate trifecta for the sake of high-quality chiptunes in the style of the original Nintendo Entertainment System.

The Retro City Rampage soundtrack showcases the best of what these composers have to offer, starting off with virt’s “Retro City Rampage Title Song” that reminds us of hard-hitting chip music at it’s finest with frenetic chords and frantic transitions. Norrin Radd’s “Renegade” thoroughy brings us back to the ‘badassery’ that has since delineated fighting arcade games since the ’80s while Freaky DNA’s “Half Steppin'” just rules overall with rugged, catchy beats, adding to the coarse, yet contemporary take on NES-dependent chiptunes.

While the full digital Retro City Rampage soundtrack is available on Bandcamp for a paltry $8, you can also elect to buy an individual limited edition hand-numbered vinyl that retains high-quality tunes for something more special. Order now, and you’ll also receive a poster of the cover album art by Maxime Trépanier and a CD case.

 

halc Continues to Defy the Chiptune Genre

 

Even though he is known to reign within OverClocked ReMix’s judges panel, halc is definitely on a roll. Following his January release of the wonderfully ambient album Zer0-G that could single-handedly define the chiptune genre even further, halc has bestowed upon us yet another EP chock-full of electro-house goodness:

No Song Left Behind is a collection of newly polished and remastered chiptune-house style tracks produced over the course of 2010-11. These were all written for various albums which never saw the light of day (a testament to my inability to write house music, and more importantly, to stick with it :P).

Rather than let them continue to stagnate on my hard drive, I’ve decided to release them together as a free 3 track EP. A token of thanks for the amazing support and response towards Zero-G. As always, all donations are lovingly appreciated! Enjoy!

Previewing some of No Song Left Behind briefly, we have to say that halc’s work takes the ‘chiptune-house’ style to another level, proving how much he has progressed as an independent artist over the course of the last few years. Although deviating from Zero-G’s chill vibes and Trending Topic EP‘s dubby in-your-face presence, halc’s unassuming yet fluent transitions in “Bicycle Rights” get will get your head bobbing involuntarily. As you preview some of the EP below, you can get No Song Left Behind for free on halc’s Bandcamp (be sure to check out his other albums while you’re at it!).

TheGuitahHeroe’s Step Back Will Get You Groovin’

 

Although only eighteen years old, Jamison Randell is definitely no stranger to video game music. With several comprehensive VGM reviews and over 1,000 subscribers, it has been made clear that Randell’s heavy VGM presence on YouTube is a force to be reckoned with. Under the guise TheGuitahHeroe, Randell’s distinctive work has also been accepted into several VGM communities such as OverClocked ReMix and ReMix: ThaSauce.

To our surprise, TheGuitahHeroe’s newest EP deviates from his standard VGM practice, yet has us shooting eargasms of euphoria nonetheless. Step Back assuredly marks TheGuitahHeroe’s adept ability to adapt to varied styles while staying in touch with his roots within the VGM community. For example, “Chip Monster” hits those characteristic ‘womp womp’s without over-the-top distortion effects characteristic to the dubstep genre while “My Fax Machine is Broken (What in the Hell)”‘s smooth transitions from chiptune to hard-hitting basslines pay homage to TGH’s playful take on pop culture dub references (Hank Hill on dubstep, anyone?).

While you get a chance to preview some of TheGuitahHeroe’s EP below, Step Back is available for free on TheGuitahHeroe’s Bandcamp page.

beek’s 7bit date: robot love Released Just In Time for Valentine’s Day

Fresh out of Ubiktune, classic tracker composer Chris J. Hampton has just released a new album just in time for Valentine’s Day. Also known by his alternate moniker beek, this 8-bit veteran has appeared in various Ubiktune releases such as Around Past and Wintertunes for a while now. beek’s 7bit date: robot love sacrilegiously pushes the chiptune genre over the edge, in a frenzied flurry of chip sounds that manages to make our ears happy. Marked by retro influences from the ’80s and ’90s, beek’s work is a total blast to the past, actively transporting the listener to a time when chiptunes were prioritized as primary sources of composition and arrangement.

Describing 7bit date: robot love as a  “a varied collection of chippy goodness”, beek relates his own experiences with the album with special attention to resisting traditional chip sounds:

7bit date: robot love is a collection of chips I began tracking in 2008, with one song reaching as far back as 1998. In 2008, having recently graduated from university, I reexamined my chiptune past and decided to get back in the game. Life carried on, and years later, I remembered my original goal of a new chipdisk release.. Here we are today, 2012!

For 7bit date, I didn’t limit myself to traditional chip sounds. I make use of Amiga ST-XX samples in a few tracks — a process which rekindled some of my imagination, as I remembered this or that MOD from back in the day with each Amiga sample I came across. Another characteristic of my chips is to use no external/post-processing effects, just some occasional Schism filters, so the original .IT files will reproduce pretty close to the MP3.

While 7 bit date: robot love is available on beek’s Bandcamp, we’ve also included a few tracks to preview for you below. Go and get some chiptune lovin’ today!

A_Rival’s Newest EP TMNT 2012 Does Not Disappoint


Okay, so maybe we’re not as on top of it as we’d like to believe. How we could miss hip-hop/electonic producer A_Rival‘s newest EP is beyond us. Just like channeling his magical Bay area powers by garnering an entire room full of people at three in the morning (in an unannounced performance, by the way) at MAGFest X, A_Rival really knows how to get the crowd pumped up. And pumped up we were when we gave TMNT 2012 a listen. The  remixed “TMNT 2012” really highlights an eargasmic drum n’ bass take on the original theme, while A_Rival’s sassy rhymes in “I Wanna Be a Ninja Turtle” make us reminisce about the times we really just wanted to tout purple eye bands and brazen weaponry.

We should probably be apologizing to A_Rival, since we didn’t know how awesome TMNT 2012 would really be. But we’d like to think we’re making up for it by telling you that you can download his latest EP on Bandcamp by naming your price. We’ve also included “I Wanna Be a Ninja Turtle” from the TMNT 2012 EP below.

 

 

Benjamin Briggs’ Snake Man vs. The World EP Just Released


Hot snake man action. Only Benjamin Briggs would use these four words to describe his newly released EP, Snake Man vs. The World. Since taking the time out to review his last big release, we know that Benjamin Briggs really shells out big on his releases. This EP is no exception. Initially byproducts of Darkesword’s team-based competition Wily Castle Remix Gauntlet 2011, Mr. Briggs has stuck with a solid Snake Man theme that has remained delightfully consistent throughout the album. Released as-is, we would definitely compare these four new Mega Man remixes to a sexy, hyperactive electronic smorgasbord of awesome beats that we simply can’t get out of our heads.

Snake Man vs. The World is available now for free on Bandcamp, but feel free to donate to Mr. Briggs as a token of your appreciation. We’ve also included a few of our favorites from the EP for your aural pleasure below.

 

 

In Retrospect: Mirby’s Year in ReView

As another year comes into place and the one we just finished slowly slinks into the past, so too comes the time when Mirby must stop being lazy and start writing articles again instead of letting the release dates of albums fade into the obscuring mists of time. With a new year comes new articles, and there’s no better article to bring it in than a retrospective of 2011. A lot of things happened this year, even more than in 2010, so I’ll keep it brief. And so, here begins the retrospective.

ReMix: ThaSauce kicked things off on January 4 with three mixes; two from the Sonic games and one from Super Metroid. OverClocked ReMix posted their first mix of 2011 on the following day; this one was a mellow rock track from ilp0, remixing “Gold Mine” from the SNES game Wild Guns. With the mixpost came a call from djpretzel. “If there’s one theme I’d like to personally endorse for 2011, it’s ReMixing unmixed games.” We’ll see if his endorsement held up through the year. And then, on the tenth of January, the world got… The Answer.

THE ANSWER: An Armored Core Tribute Album by Mattias Häggström Gerdt

No, not the self-help book, the Armored Core Tribute Album. Mattias Häggström Gerdt headed up this album, featuring Jillian Aversa and DragonAvenger as well. And then, on January 27th, SEGA called OCR out for having zero SEGA Pico remixes.

On February 3, OCR posted their first Pico remix courtesy of zircon; it was a mellow mix from Tails and the Music Maker. Just four days later, Heroes vs. Villains was released. Pitting the Bad Dudes against OCR regulars, it took hero themes and villain themes from various franchises; OCR took the heroes and Bad Dudes took the villains. The result was a delight; the pairs of tracks work well on their own, but combined creates a melodious melee, one where each track plays off its companion. Near the end of the month, another original soundtrack was released on OCR, this one for Missile Master Episode 1: Invasion; it was composed by Kunal, one of the Bad Dudes. Fitting for the other album release that month.

March started off immediately, with the long-awaited Pokémon album, The Missingno Tracks, dropping on the first. Paying tribute to music from the series so far (except for the then-unreleased Black/White), it was two discs of remixes ranging various styles. On the 25th, OCR released another pure Joshua Morse album, this one for the Mega Man series. Entitled The Robot Museum, it took a single track from each of the first 8 games (along with the Data Base Accessed theme from Mega Man and Bass), and got the JM touch applied. Finally, on March 29, Benjamin Briggs released his Attention Deficit EP, an eclectic mix of styles all containing his chippy touch.

April started off with another OCR prank, this time a “reveal” of the full year’s album lineups, totaling thirty-eight new albums. Some gems included “Hers – Female Character Themes by Female Artists,” “Up, Up, Down, Down Lower – Porn Grooves of Game Tunes,” and “Beyond the Beyond – Beyond the Beyond the Beyond,” among others. Alongside the revelation of all of OCR’s albums for 2011, ThaSauce released the soundtrack for Fasto the Speedhog 2. The long-awaited follow-up to the original Fasto the Speedhog, it blew away listeners, many preferring it to the soundtrack for Sonic 4: Episode 1. In more realistic news, Sonic the Hedgehog: The Sound of Speed was released on the twelfth, completing the trilogy of Sonic albums on OCR. Though it was a single disc, the entire album was full of gems. Or should I say… emeralds?

May was a relatively quiet month. Support OCR Month, which usually happened in April, got off to a late start and carried into May. Though the goal was set at $5,000, people went abobe and beyond to bring the total for 2011 to an amazing $7,514! Incredible rally from supporters to get that much to OCR in just a month. halc released his Pixel Perfect LP on the 16th, which fit perfectly with his EP from the previous year. Together, the two create a complete album, and a good one too!

Malcos releasing his It Started in 2012 album in June. Equal parts orchestral and electronic, the album takes the listener on a quest as it details future events that will occur in a universe separate from our own. And while not strictly music-related, everyone’s favorite person to blame Liontamer AKA Black Dynamite and his long-time girlfriend Paige became engaged this month as well. WillRock also released his own EP on the 19th, entitled Refractions of a Dream. Loosely inspired by Lewis Carroll’s classic “Alice in Wonderland” and possibly also “Through the Looking Glass,” the album is comprised of some pretty trippy songs. Seriously, I blame this album for all my sleeping problems (not really). Also of note was the general public’s introduction to the OverClocked Plaid Muffins, through the mixpost of “Ska Buffet (All You Can Eat: Clean Version)”, a clean cut of their track on the upcoming Milky Way Wishes album.

July may not have kicked off with a “Four for the Fourth” as in 2010, but it give us NiGHTS: Lucid Dreaming on the fifth. Worked on with love for the game, Stevo Bortz, aka Level 99 or he of the awesome beard, the track featured two discs that took the listener on a journey through the game. Except guided by music instead of some flying jester. This was also the first album I reviewed without being familiar with the source material; doesn’t really matter, as the album is fantastic either way. Also in July, YouTube favorite FamilyJules7x began a hiatus from his weekly game music guitar covers; after a year of releasing a song weekly, he felt the need to relax. He ended Year 1 with a cover of the Super Mario 64 Credits theme.

August happened to be Metroid’s 25th anniversary, so a bunch of Metroid music was released. First it was Harmony of a Hunter on the 7th, and then Theophany’s Crystal Flash EP later that same day.Shnabubula and a friend also made a tribute song for the anniversary along with a video, which was later featured on IGN. The song itself was posted on the 12th. On August 14, Mazedude revealed his self-proclaimed opus American Pixels, the long awaited follow-up to 2006’s American Album. It will remix a bunch of songs from American composers, including Jake Kaufman and Danny Baranowsky. August 15th brought the release of Amphibious’s debut EP, Oceans. A soothing aural trip into the ocean, through its deeps, and back out once more, it was an excellent effort. Nario released an EP on the 19th, entitled More of Me. A chippy mix of a bunch of different songs, it’s a rather nice listen on the whole.

Then in September, Danimal Cannon released a video. It was a rather hilarious video (explicit too, I think), but it led to a bunch of people calling him out as racist and homophobic. The best part about all the hate? The video itself was making fun of rap, and thus was created specifically to mock those who’d complain. On the 7th, an album that often had questions about its status asked was finally released. No, it was not FFV: The Fabled Warriors – WATER. Instead, it was Mega Man 9: Back in Blue. The song arranged the majority of the soundtrack. Unfortunately, all the songs on a Mega Man soundtrack are rather integral, especially the stage themes. And this album completely neglected to have a Concrete Man remix. Sure, there were two Jewel Man mixes, but no Concrete Man.

This was even referenced in the album’s trailer, and remedied shortly thereafter with Rockin’ Sockin’ Cinder Blockin’ – A Concrete Man Remix EP. Spurred on by this grave injustice to the most concrete of ‘bots, DarkeSword arranged an emergency mixing round. Calling on all mixers via the forums, DarkeSword challenged everyone to make a mix in one week’s time. The album was posted a week thereafter, album art and all. A great tragedy was indeed averted (and the also neglected Castle of Evil got a mix from Jason Covenant, formerly known as Prophecy.) Jimmy Hinson, aka Big Giant Circles, also released a chiptune album on the 12th, entitled Impostor Nostalgia, with virt’s Bloodrayne: Betrayal Official Soundtrack released through Ubiktune the following day. Shnabubula also released his Game Genie album, a marvelous collection of original songs. The Binding of Isaac was also released at the end of September, with a soundtrack by Danny Baranowsky. The style was similar to his Super Meat Boy soundtrack, which is to say it, too, was excellent.

October was nowhere near as busy as the previous month (though that was mostly due to Concrete Man’s omission), but it was a good month nonetheless. The tenth heralded the release of Super Dodge Ball: Around the World, another of OCR’s albums that had been in the works for several years. It’s never planned that way, but there’s a few where that has happened (such as 2010’s Threshold of a Dream or 2009’sSummoning of Spirits). A lot of great tracks were to be found here, including two mixes of the Versus Play theme (appropriate for the 2-player motif of versus play itself). And on Halloween, the oft-loved Castlevania mix “Juese Belmont” finally made it to OCR. Albeit it was by Shael Riley and the Double Ice Backfire (who covered the song as part of the Kickstarter campaign for their album “Ultimate Songs from the Pit”) and not the original Disk Mastah Smokabitch. Longtime OCR members may say otherwise though, and for good reason.

November kicked off with “Cover Your Light,” a remix of the main theme of the Commodore 64 game Deflektor. OCR had been holding it for the German hard/glam rock band Zero Division since August of 2010, wishing it to be released after their latest album was released. However, since that took longer than expected, this mix sat around for 15 months. It’s fantastic, and sounds just like it was ripped from the ’80s. The 6th heralded the release of Ultimate Songs from the Pit, the album of which the Kickstarter campaign that produced the “Juese Belmont” mix mentioned above was for. I hope that made sense…

The first R:TS mix of the year saw release as an OCReMix on the 17th, giving JH Sounds his first mixpost and Cyril the Wolf another one; the mix is an emotional acoustic rendition of Final Zone from Sonic 1, entitled “Finality (Radio Edit).” It’s an edit from JH Sounds’s album Hedgehog Hysteria, releaed in 2010. On the day of release for the latest Zelda game also came a surprise album: 25YEARLEGEND: A Legend of Zelda Indie Game Composer Tribute. Released on the 22nd, the album took composers of various indie games and mixed them with songs from across the entire franchise and its 25 years of captivating minds of all ages.

Roots by Danimal Cannon

Danimal Cannon started December off with the release of Roots, a collection of chiptune originals. He was even nice enough to include the project files so that others could experiment with them. OCR released BadAss: Boss Themes on the 6th; this album was just boss themes from a bunch of different games, mostly rock and metal but with a great orchestral track and a couple others too. This is also only Volume 1; the Volume 2 thread’s already up and running in the projects board. The Bad Dudes released another album on the 20th, the Metroid Arrange 25th Anniversary Album. I’m working on getting a copy of this to review with the other two for a Metroid Triple Review, don’t worry. Also released on the 20th was the long-awaited Wild Arms: ARMed and DANGerous. This album took the the soundtrack of Wild Arms and arranged it in a multitude of styles, all of which worked wonderfully for them. And on Christmas, ProtoDome released his album BLUESCREEN, a follow-up to June’s BLUENOISE. This begs the question… is this the dangerous formula he saves Christmas with? Possibly, but it’s awesome regardless of that. As for the theme DJP set at the year’s start… I think that with all the albums released, it was more than met.

December also happened to be Reviews Month at OCR. The premise this year? OA had attained the Power of the ReMix and was poised to destroy OCR. Thus, King djpretzel and his ReMix knights had to review mixes to deal damage. Each remix dealt 50 damage to him, but each remix OA wrote healed 50 HP. Rexy and Bahamut annihilated OA, with a lot of help from many other members. However, that was but OA’s first form; the ground began to rumble… and then his true form awoke. A tentacled beast bearing the facial likenesses of other judges (including Jooj-cat) revealed itself and challenged the community to review 200 tracks to finish him off. Everyone kept doing their best, and I even got involved, doing 16 reviews a day on the 23rd and 24th, and then 16 more on the morning of Christmas. By Christmas night in my time zone, Final OA was down to needing a mere 20 reviews to finish him off. So I took the initiative and reviewed 20 more songs (bringing my total to 36 for that day alone; 78 total) to finish him. What were the spoils of battle, you ask? Well for every review written, a raffle ticket would be entered to win one of three $35 eStarland gift certificates or one of three custom avatars on the OCR forums. Rexy finished the month with a grand total of 200 reviews, and Bahamut with 118. It was a noble effort from all!

And now we find ourselves in 2012. The final tallies for the previous year are 206 mixposts and twelve albums on OCR, and thirty-nine mixposts for ReMix: ThaSauce. That’s twenty-one more songs and four more albums than 2010 for OCR, and nineteen fewer for R:TS. Regardless of that, there’s plenty more to come, just as there is plenty I’ve missed (I know for a fact there’s stuff I haven’t mentioned here). If you know of something else great from 2011 that wasn’t mentioned here, just post it in a comment! It was a wondrous year for the community, and I know that 2012 will be even better! So until next time, game on!