Sweet

Have you released a new remix at Remix.Kwed.Org, AmigaRemix or somewhere else on the web? Tell the community about it here!
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Post by tas » 19/02/2004 - 12:44

actually i'd be really interested to know if "people think we went too far, or we found the balance right"...

mmm, guess i may never know :-/

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Post by Chris Abbott » 19/02/2004 - 12:51

I think there's been a bit of a lack of feedback on CDs: mostly my fault for not providing a mechanism. This will change :)

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Post by Chris Abbott » 19/02/2004 - 12:56

Anyway, at heart, this isn't a competition. You made a few hundred people happier. That's what it's all about, isn't it?

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Post by Larsec » 19/02/2004 - 12:58

Chris Abbott wrote:Anyway, at heart, this isn't a competition. You made a few hundred people happier. That's what it's all about, isn't it?

Chris
Indeed... Because that's the only prize there is ;)
<--- I went that way --->

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Post by tas » 19/02/2004 - 13:04

For sure chris. Thats what this malarky is all about at the end of the day mate. If its brought a bit of pleasure to some peoples lives then its worth much more than anything else. Same goes with yours, PPOT's, Reyn's etc etc...

Which incidentally is still my fave CD (nexus)

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Post by skitz » 19/02/2004 - 13:52

So, where does "Perhaps-a-Doobie - A Fistful of Splonge" fit into all of this then? :lol:
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Post by tas » 19/02/2004 - 14:07

Alternative comedy?

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Post by Chris Abbott » 19/02/2004 - 14:11

It gladdens the heart of millions, mate :)

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Post by Kenz » 19/02/2004 - 17:46

Just listened to the "sweet" mp3. Now that is what I call a beautifully produced bit of fun ... Class! :D

The track is sort of like the Xmas Chortles 2 DVD - Something professionally produced with time and effort poured into it - made just for a larf!

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Post by LaLa » 20/02/2004 - 7:32

Chris Abbott wrote:There's a subset of people who think we as a community are getting hung up on technical aspects (both sonically and musically), and aren't producing tunes any more which give them solid nostalgic happy feelings.
I think this is starting to become the real crux of some of the issues I'm having with recent remixes. Basically, it appears that most of the active remixers have really nailed down their techniques and have a good command of the technology available for them. They can produce exactly the sounds they need for their remixes, they can get the mixdown done very well, the end result sounds crisp and lively, etc.

However, I wonder whether this is starting to turn into a l'art pour l'art affair where remixers use technology for technology's sake. Are they losing the big picture here? Just what -DO- they want to achieve with these remixes? Are they just remixing any randomly selected, yet-not-covered SID just so that they can do a funny remix? Or are they consciously creating remixes because they want to -SAY- something? Having fun is one thing, being downright ridiculous is something else.

I really don't think it's a "purists" vs. "creativitists" issue, like somebody else mentioned it here. Personally, I have no problem with creativity at all, in fact, I'm all for it - if done right. And that's the real kicker, innit? How do you define what's "done right"? It's harder to define than you think. Purists want to see original arrangements kept intact - but not to the point where you just slam a drumtrack on top of the original SID and call it a remix. Creativitists want to hear lots of original ideas, and if those make the remix stray away from the original SID significantly, no problem - for them, as long as the end result is good, the means justify the end result. And that's fine, too, it's a perfectly valid approach to music making! But as you can see, the definition of "done right" varies on a very large scale.

What I don't want to see is this turning into a "whose remix is more clever", "whose remix can get the highest ratings" contest. Being funny and ironic and using self-deprecating humor is fine - if done tastefully. Being faithful to the original arrangement and musical structure is fine - if done with talent. A tune I may rate high may sound bad to somebody else and vice versa - but ratings shouldn't drive art, especially if it's not done for money, like in this community it isn't. Being clever is fine, too - if you want to show off. But is that what this scene has come to? Is this what we want this scene to be? I'm not saying it's good or bad, I'm not making judgements - I am asking questions.

But I think above all music in general was supposed to express and/or evoke emotions. We are human, that's what we do: we feel. But if a remix doesn't evoke any emotions, if it's dull and flat, if it's just -IS-, nobody will ever listen to it again, even if it's done superbly in the technical department. (Which, ironicly, is why Mahoney's "Sweet" is actually a positive example: it definitely evoked emotions in me! Probably not the ones Mahoney and Markus wanted to evoke, but I certainly don't feel indefferent towards it! Obviously, they touched a nerve with "Sweet" in me, because they happened to remix a tune that I have very strong emotional ties to anyway.)

If you want your music to be heard once and then discarded ("mental chewing gum") and that was your goal - fine with me. But do we really want to inundate R.K.O. with such tunes? If R.K.O. gets way too many submissions like that, people might eventually turn away from the scene altogether. There has to be a balance, and my worry is that I'm seeing the balance tip over too much to one side. If that's what people (the voters, the fans, the critics) want - that's fine, that's how democracy works, but it may make people like me turn away from it all...

Again, I'm not trying to judge "THE scene" here. What direction it will take is obviously totally, entirely up to the people who comprise this community. Those who don't like that direction will leave this bus, and new ones may hop on because of it. However, if I can have just a tiny little input into the direction this bus should take (since I still consider myself a part of this community), that is the reason I'm asking these questions. That is the reason I wrote my original post about "Sweet".

Having said all that, I just want to say that no matter what direction the scene will eventually take, I really appreciate the scene for what it is: a free flow of ideas and art, nostalgia and fun and everything that defined my childhood memories about SID tunes. I have immense respect truly for EVERYBODY who is willing to commit their own time and effort to create something that they give out FOR FREE for the rest of the world to hear. That to me is the most monumental achievement of this remix scene, a small chunk of utopia that is actually HERE...
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Post by LMan » 20/02/2004 - 8:48

LaLa, you said you were full of expectations when you read Mahoney's & Markus Schneider's names. But how could you expect a drop-dead-serious remix from Mahoney? If I read the name Mahoney on a new remix, I surely expect something "unorthodox", something wild and entertaining.

If there should be a discussion about whether the scene is heading in the right direction or not, "Sweet" should definitely NOT be the subject.

Has the scene really changed that much? I agree, balance is important. But the ever growing ammount of remixers brings along plenty of styles in which a remix may be produced. At the time I joined the fun (about 4 years ago), there were loads of "creativists" tunes (think of the Dead Guys, who were people's favourites then, too); and mind you, a lot of plain silly ones as well (think of May-be-bop). It's all part of the fun. There's so many remixes, all you have to do is pick out the ones that appeal to you and leave the rest.

How could anyone produce a piece of music that pleases everyone? It's impossible, and that's a good thing.

On a personal note:
I still produce pretty straight-forward remixes (like "Shape"), but they have a hard time even entering the top 100. They just can't stand up against creative pieces like "Sweet" in the overall rating. Personally, I don't really like listening to pure orchestral renditions of SID tunes, yet I have to admire the skills of remixers like Markus Schneider. And I usually don't hesitate giving such a remix a red smiley; even if I find more straight-forward tunes more enjoyable to listen to.

- Markus :)

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Post by Pex `Mahoney` Tufvesson » 20/02/2004 - 9:28

People getting on or off the bus, that's a good comparison. Now, please don't make people leave the bus just because they make remixes that don't fit your tastes - their remixes will surely fit another persons tastes. Tell them to stay on the bus, because their remixes will remind you about how good all the other 1200 remixes are! ;)
LaLa wrote:I have immense respect truly for EVERYBODY who is willing to commit their own time and effort to create something that they give out FOR FREE for the rest of the world to hear. That to me is the most monumental achievement of this remix scene, a small chunk of utopia that is actually HERE...
I agree with you LaLa, 100%.

My personal opinion (which you really should ignore, but I still want to write it... strange, eh?) is that making these messageboards a marketplace for "homemade" scene-CDs is much to my dislike. That is probably the only thing that would make me want to leave the bus. But, whenever that happens, I try to ignore the commercialism, and think of something nicer instead. But that's just me. So if you don't like my opinion, then please ignore it. What I do like with you guys here that we're all individuals, creating a niche, and it doesn't matter if you have your $100.000 studio or your $500 worth of music gear. So, please stay individual, all of you!

Now, enjoy yourselves! That's what we're here for! ...

L-Man: "The Scene", I've heard that word before. I just want to state that we don't have to agree on "which direction the Scene is going". Because we all have different ways of looking at it. So, basically if the Scene rocks, that's because you want it to rock. If it sucks, then you want it to be sucking. The Scene is dead, for those that want it to be dead. And it is more than alive for me. So keep rockin'! :D :D :D

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Post by wobbler » 20/02/2004 - 10:19

Uh... I dunno about the rest of you good people.. but I really think that some persons tend to take the new releases just too seriously (altho I do respect that LaLa expresses his personal thoughts about certain remixes).

But... I do get somewhat upset that Pex posted that apology regarding his co-op choon. I mean.. come on... remixing C64-tunes should be FUN! Not something that the arranger/remixer would be held responsible for in terms of 'oh why did you ruin my memories of this and that ol' sweet 6581-bleep'.

I for sure only do (did?) remixing because I feel that it's.. well... fun. And if someone else feel that my rendition of a specific remix was somewhat worth listening to for a couple of minutes.. well, that's all I'm asking for. I really think that it's great to have active arrangers & remixers that spend their valuable time creating remakes of old tunes. Let us all be careful not to scare them (and potential newcomers too!) away.

You can call the above my 2 cents =)

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Post by LMan » 20/02/2004 - 10:27

I fully agree, Wobbler.
Pex `Mahoney` Tufvesson wrote: L-Man: "The Scene", I've heard that word before. I just want to state that we don't have to agree on "which direction the Scene is going". Because we all have different ways of looking at it. So, basically if the Scene rocks, that's because you want it to rock. If it sucks, then you want it to be sucking. The Scene is dead, for those that want it to be dead. And it is more than alive for me. So keep rockin'! :D :D :D
That's basically what I intended to say. I used the term "scene" in reference to LaLa's post, I prefer the word "community", myself.

- Markus :)

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Post by Waz » 20/02/2004 - 11:23

Folks,

I'd like to start this post off by saying that from my own personal point of view, I agree completely with LaLa with respect to the Sweet remix. The orchestral parts are all very well, and would for me have made a great remix alone as it showed some really nice ideas. However, there are some SID tunes out there that just adding vocals to it really ruins the actual feel of the piece, and Sweet is one of them.

Now I appreciate that Mahoney usually has a fun element to his remixes (and indeed, I like quite a few of them). But for me it's a rare occurrence that I've felt so upset by having vocals added, but it was that this tune needed to be taken more seriously than others. But that's Mahoney's perogative, that's how he likes to work, and that's his own individual trademark. I don't want to stop him doing that (not that he'd listen to a whining old Mancunian anyway, hehe) but maybe it's a case of thinking about the original SID and seeing how people might be attached to it.

I'm probably the most attached person to this SID apart from LaLa, as it has bucket loads of feel and emotion. By all means, try listening to Glenn Rune Gallefoss' C64 cover in HVSC (/VARIOUS/A-F/Blues_Muz/Gallefoss_Glenn/Sweet_JB.sid) - although he did his own interpretation, it does actually convey the feel and emotion the original did - and that's what makes it work as a cover.

Having heard Lagerfeldt's version (which some of you will have heard on Tas' show recently), it'll very much divide the masses. Some will love it for being a dance mix with Cher-vocoder type vocals and a very differing interpretation from the original. Some however will exclaim that the emotion has gone and the feel of the song has been ruined. You can probably guess which category that I fall under, and that's with no disrespect intended to Lagerfeldt. If anyone had done Sweet that way, I'd have disliked it just the same.

Am I a purist? Partly. But I also like experimentation and variety as well. If someone does an experimental version of a tune but keeps the melody and feel intact (key words here), then I'm all for it. For example, Juha Kuanisto's Drive had experimentation and variety. He took on a PRI tune (kudos for that!), added parts where needed as the tune repeats quite quickly, but kept all the feel and flow of the original and developed it well. And that's one of the few remixes of late I've kept on my hard drive, if that tells you anything.
LaLa wrote: However, I wonder whether this is starting to turn into a l'art pour l'art affair where remixers use technology for technology's sake. Are they losing the big picture here?
That's a very tough question to answer, but I'll try. When I had my article published about progression not regression a few months ago, I was hoping for some positivity with regards to quality, variety and so on. For the most part, some remixers have succeeded more than most. LMan's Shape, for example. I love that. If Reyn hadn't have done his version then LMan's would have been my favourite rendition of that tune (as it is it runs Reyn's pretty close to say the least).

The established remixers are, understandably, occasionally trying to push their own boundaries and create more than just a straight remake. In principle, that's fine. In practical terms, it sometimes isn't. It all depends, to a degree, how much they feel the piece as the original SID. It doesn't matter whether it's an established SID tune, or if it's something that you've listened to in a recent HVSC Update and thought "wow, I really love that one" (and there's a few like that in the last update, believe me) - it's the remixer's attachment to the piece that can often inspire them more than anything. This is what I think LaLa's trying to convey. If you love the piece, no matter what it is, normally that love flows on to a damn good remix.
LaLa wrote: What I don't want to see is this turning into a "whose remix is more clever", "whose remix can get the highest ratings" contest.
I tend to agree with that. Sticking to your own ideals as a musician is far more important. For example, many people dislike my SID tunes. But I'm my own person and the way I compose is how I feel the piece when composing it. The remixer will probably feel the same, although when covering a tune, you already have the feel and emotion there to work with. The people who vote on it should be objective and fair with their judgements (most them usually are, to be honest) - do they really feel it's a good remix? Would it compare to the original SID fairly? Does it give you the sense of emotion? And does it inspire you? All things I consider when listening to a remix.

No matter, I am glad that there are enough people out there willing to give their time and effort for free to create something that may inspire or invoke feelings (as all musicians strive to do). And as things develop, they have to do so at a reasonable pace so it doesn't detract the listeners along the way. But please, folks, think twice about adding a vocal to a remix for the sake of it. The originals were instrumental for a good reason. Let's not forget that.
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