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BadAss: Boss Themes
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Final Fantasy V
Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
Donkey Kong '94
The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
Final Fantasy VIII
Mega Man 3
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia
Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance
Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Shadow Hearts: Covenant
Final Fantasy X
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time
Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VI
Kirby Super Star
Microsoft Xbox 360, NES (Famicom), Nintendo DS, Nintendo Game Boy, Nintendo Game Boy Advance, SNES (Super Famicom), Sony PlayStation, Sony PlayStation 2, Sony PlayStation 3
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Dec 5, 2011 07:24 PM
Dec 15, 2011 07:07 PM
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BadAss: Boss Themes
Comments from album director David L. Puga (The Joker) & assistant director Pieter van Os (pu_freak)
Album freely available at http://badass.ocremix.org
BadAss. Hardcore. Asskickery, if you're dirty. These are the words I used when I officially announced BadAss back in March of 2009. The origins of BadAss begin a few years earlier. It was 2006, and a guy named Pi_R_ed decided he wanted to make a project that was nothing but boss themes. Kanjika joined up as the co-director and they made a good push with it. I eventually joined up, as did Pieter van Os (pu_freak). This incarnation was called Crescendo to Chaos, and while it was a great concept, it still felt like something was lacking. I always felt that it needed to be harder, grittier, and simply more evil than it was, you dig? The concept of an album made up entirely of Boss themes conjured up a certain feeling; a certain state of mind, and this wasn't delivering it.
Crescendo to Chaos eventually went defunct. Where many saw a loss, I saw a glimmer of awesomeness. With the encouragement of Kyle Crouse (KyleJCrb) and the support of my assistant director, pu_freak, I re-launched the project with new guidelines: "Everything must be BadAss! Can you hear me, damn you?" The album needed to encapsulate the idea of Bosses by featuring dark, visceral, and aggressive tracks. The name was changed to BadAss for obvious reasons, and here we are today. I'd be remiss not to thank KyleJCrb, evktalo (Eino Keskitalo), and everyone else at the KNGI boards for all their contributions, so thank you guys! To every artist, ReMixer and graphic artist alike, I salute you! You all indeed are BadAsses.
We're unleashing hell on an unassuming populace! Can you feel it?! Can you hear it?! That's the sound of ass-kickery of a magnitude previously unheard of. We're not just gonna win, we're gonna change the game! We are BadAss. Hope you enjoy the ride!
- David L. Puga (The Joker)
BadAss is a project that started under the name Crescendo to Chaos way back in early 2006. Both The Joker and I were part of that project as artists. It was one of the first things I did when I joined OverClocked ReMix. However, the project director vanished from the face of the Earth, leaving the work unfinished.
Not wanting to let the creative idea behind the project die, The Joker picked it up and transformed it. The goal now was to create rearrangements of boss themes in a very special style: raw, dark, and heavy. In one word: BadAss. I became assistant director shortly after BadAss was started, and together we searched the planet for the most BadAss of artists to contribute. I have grown enormously in rearranging music since the end of Crescendo to Chaos. In that time, the entire project has become much more cohesive and professional. BadAss, as an album, is really something to be proud of. I think everyone with a taste for BadAss music will love the result of our effort!
- Pieter van Os (pu_freak)
01. Gilgamesh (Final Fantasy V) - Master of the Blades
Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
Source: Clash on the Big Bridge
Director's Note: From the first note in the album opener you can just hear the aggression in that low bass intro transforming as it turns into a choral pad with a beautiful, yet ominous music box. The piano that comes along is soothing yet haunting. If there was ever a track that set the tone for the rest of the album, this would be it, and so it is. Hope you're comfortable, 'cos this'll be a hell of a ride. Welcome to BadAss!
02. Vergil (Devil May Cry 3) - The Curse of Yamato
Composer: Tetsuya Shibata
Sources: "Devils Never Cry (Staff Roll), Vergil Battle 3
Director's Note: When I first asked Roe if there was a boss theme he wanted to remix, he said, "Hell yes there is! Devil May Cry, you dig?" Well, maybe he didn't say it quite like that, but you get the gist. Devil May Cry seldom gets remixed, if ever, so I was excited. Roe's known for making beat-thumping orchestral tracks mixed with electronica elements. If that's what you expected here, then, by golly, you got it! Roe took Vergil's DMC3 theme song & kicked it up into ass-kicking action movie territory. Bombastic horn staccatos, slick synth licks & beats to make your booty quake... if listening to this track doesn't make you want to fight some undead monsters, then I just don't know who you are anymore.
03. Laughing Octopus (Metal Gear Solid 4) - Routine of War
Arrangers: The Dual Dragons
Composers: Nobuko Toda, Shuichi Kobori, Kazuma Jinnouchi
Source: Laughing Octopus
Director's Note: This track almost didn't make it to the project thanks to my old crappy headphones. Soundtrack to my life, if my life was as hardcore as my more aggressive dreams... which sadly they're not. Alas, we can live vicariously through the Dual Dragons' awesome music. "Laughing Octopus" is a track I wouldn't have thought could make a good remix, but they done gone and did it! What was once a simple, almost ambient electronic tune has now become death, as well as metal masterpiece!
04. Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong [Game Boy]) - Duel of the Apes
Arranger: Big Giant Circles
Composer: Taisuke Araki
Sources: Stages 9-5, 9-6, 9-7; Stage 9-8; Stage 9-9
Director's Note: BGC was one of the first, if not the first, completed tracks we had. When I first heard it, it sounded good. Damn good, in fact. It was smooth, epic, and full of just that good ole fashioned swagger. I told Jimmy to make it darker anyway; he delivered. If the first half got you ready for adventure, then the second makes you fight for your ever loving life. Your life, damn you! If you wanted big, sweeping, smooth, choral rock, then by Crom you got it.
05. Luca Blight (Suikoden II) - To Slay a Butcher
Composer: Miki Higashino
Source: Cornered (Battle BGM ~ Luca Battle)
Director's Note: Arcana had started this track back when Off Topic was still around. If I remember the story correctly, they had a boss album that never went anywhere, so he put it on hold. Then we had to come along and poke the beehive with a stick. So he blew off the dust, and found an evil relic ready to unleash its wrath upon the world. Upon us. Industrial electronica with some of that good orchestral awesomeness!
06. Nightmare (Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening) - Lights Out
Composers: Kazumi Totaka, Minako Hamano, Kozue Ishikawa
Source: Shadow Battles
Director's Note: Straight up instrumental metal. Pro-tip: Secret to beating Shadow Link, head banging. Also, moshing.
07. Ultimecia (Final Fantasy VIII) - All Existence Denied
Arrangers: Skummel Maske, LuIzA, pu_freak
Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
Source: The Extreme
Director's Note: That intro right there, man. Skummel, a well-known Dwelling of Duels artist, made this track for one of their monthly contests. He wanted to do some more work on it, make it rock even harder. So I said, "if you can make it rock thrice as hard as that, you're in." So he did. LuIzA lends her voice to the track, while pu_freak provided some tweaks to the piano and harp to give the track some more muscle.
08. Dr. Wily (Mega Man 3) - A Daring Escape
Composer: Yasuaki Fujita
Source: Dr. Wily Stage 2
Director's Note: A little change of pace here, though don't expect us to go soft on you. While not as evil as the tracks before, Jago made sure this track is still just as foreboding as those before. Big orchestral kick-assery right here, player! Jago delivers us some of that cinematic flair, giving you just enough hope that everything will go smooth and evil scientists will be slayed, just to squash them dreams with some of that symphonic kick-assery. Hope you enjoyed that, it only gets darker from here on out.
09. Dracula (Castlevania series) - The Belmont Revolution
Arrangers: Chernabogue, NintenJoe 64
Composers: Michiru Yamane (Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia / Castlevania: Symphony of the Night), Ken-ichi Matsubara (Castlevania II), Soshiro Hokkai (Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance), Masahiko Kimura (Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow)
Sources: Dissonant Courage (Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia), Last Boss (Last Boss BGM) [Castlevania II], Incarnation of Darkness (Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance), Evil Invitation (Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow), The Horde's Festival (Castlevania: Symphony of the Night)
Director's Note: Son of the Dragon indeed. Chernabogue and NintenJoe give us some of that good old symphonic rock. Keeping with the sound that the Castlevania series are known for (and using themes from almost every game for good measure), this duo gives us a gritty medley filled with guitar shreddage, pausing just long enough to get that blue-blooded orchestral that all us miserable pile of secrets could only hope to achieve one day. The rock intertwines more and more as the track goes on, the nobility still apparent as the guitars bare their sharpened teeth. One more orchestral break, to get you complacent, then bam... What a horrible night to have a curse.
10. Astaroth (Shadow Hearts: Covenant) - Astaroth's Awakening
Arrangers: The Dual Dragons
Composer: Yasunori Mitsuda
Source: Astaroth (Fallen Angel Battle)
Director's Note: The Dual Dragons are back doing what they do best. Making awesomeness! Much like they did with Laughing Octopus's theme, the Dragons take a song that's not rock, and make it rock bigtime. What was once a more Middle East-influenced track, becomes a friggin' heavy just, just... a legendary beast of an arrangement. Hard rock with a bit of orchestral (because that's how this project rolls), make for dark, just ominous as all get out sounds that get the heart pumping.
11. Cobra (G.I. Joe) - Real American Hero
Composers: Nobuyuki Shioda, Yusuke Takahama
Sources: Cobra Vehicles, Mission 6
Director's Note: You may think we're going symphonic on your ass, and we are. We just like to mix some of that electro rock in there for good measure. Next level electro, 'cos we mix genres like most people mix... stuff. For a game that hasn't ever had a remix, to my knowledge, this is one hell of a first. I heard this on the WIP boards, and had to get it on the project. Luckily, Nutritious said yes, and we had another high octane killer of a track.
12. Ridley (Super Metroid) - Dragonfood
Composer: Minako Hamano
Source: Big Boss Confrontation BGM (Ridley, Draygon)
Director's Note: Keeping that old school Metroid vibe is nice and all, but then we said it wasn't hardcore enough, and Rozo added some steroids to the mix. Digital steroids. As dirty an electronic song as you'll find outside of dubstep, yet still haunting in that future way we love so much. Synthetic epicness at its finest. That outro is nothing short of chilling.
13. Saren (Mass Effect) - Saren's Prayer
Composer: Jack Wall
Director's Note: What do Mass Effect and Sully Erna have in common? Mazedude, that's what. Maze came in late into the project, but finished really quickly. He had Sinner's Prayer on the mind, and, in odd ways that us mere mortals can't fathom, thought, "this screams Saren." Emulating that track, then going insane on it in that way that only Mazedude can, he made this mystic sounding journey of a track that leads us straight into hallucinations that are sure to scare us straight.
14. Jecht (Final Fantasy X) - Dreams of Death
Arranger: Brandon Strader
Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
Director's Note: Keeping the original genre intact, yet taking it to heights of badassery, Brandon gives the track an aura that is just evil and nasty. Growling death metal vocals, angry double kick stampedes, and next level guitar wankery, you can't get much more death in your metal without straight up dying. Music to mosh to, if you were so inclined (answer: you are).
15. Shredder (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV) - The Shredder
Arranger: Sixto Sounds
Composer: Mutsuhiko Izumi
Source: Technodrome ~ The Final Shell-Shock (Stage 10 BGM)
Director's Note: Sixto does what he does best, taking old favorites and adding a generous heaping of awesomeness to it. If there was a song that lives up to its name, it's this one. Juan's guitar shreddage is insane here. Those nostalgic notes are giving new life with energetic rock'n'roll! You think, Sixto's finished with this lesson in badassery, then he comes in with that final attack, and you're left asking, "Please, sir, may I have another?" You may, hater, you may.
16. Sephiroth (Final Fantasy VII) - BadAzz
Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
Source: One-Winged Angel
Director's Note: With the exception of one letter, we present you our title track. I first heard this track on Soundcloud and instantly knew we needed it on the project. Raptor agreed, and so it was done. Some said "One-Winged Angel" was a track that was untouchable. Well, we touched it! Raptor gives it that high energy, dirty, gritty electro he's known for, and the end result speaks for itself.
17. Kefka (Final Fantasy VI) - The Sound of a Thousand Voices Screaming in Unison
Arranger: Kidd Cabbage
Composer: Nobuo Uematsu
Director's Note: Nihilistic. Anarchistic. BadAsstastic. These are the words that this track screams. Screaming in a thousand different voices, from a thousand different directions, all at the same time. If you didn't understand the tracks name, you do now. Kidd Cabbage has made, in his own opinion, the heaviest song he has ever made. I'm hard-pressed to disagree with that statement. We're almost there, the ending is in sight. Hopefully you've not gone insane yet. We got one more in store.
18. King Dedede (Kirby Super Star) - The Last Dance
Arranger: The Joker
Composer: Jun Ishikawa
Source: Great King Dedede's Theme
Director's Note: I'd been listening to Dedede's theme, the Smash Bros. version to be exact, and thought it'd make a great downtempo, trippy, ominous track. I figure, anyone who's king of a bunch of cutesy things has got to be going insane little by little, and I wanted to convey that in the track. pu_freak and I thought it sounded like a good ending track, so here it is. Congrats, you made it to the end. Hope you enjoyed this ride, and hope that you feel a little more badass because of it!
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