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That Sound


Hawkz

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Hi everyone,

 

Got a few questions for you all.

 

So basically, I was listening to the OCRemix Temporal Duality release last night and after finishing it, I decided to listen to Project Chaos because I was in the nostalgia zone. Hard. Apart from having, in my opinion, the most varied and diverse remix, Project Chaos has another thing going for it. It has one of the most iconic OSTs to base itself off. And after that convoluted intro, I get to the main point of my topic.

 

So S3&K has a baller of a soundtrack, no one is going to deny. But there is one particular part of it that appeals mainly to me and I was wondering if anyone musically inclined or familiar with the process of the games production would be able to point out or identify the attraction that I cannot quite explain that well.

 

The part or theme of the OST is what I sloppily refer to as "Angel Island Twang". Now I'll let that settle in while I post a few links that will outline what I mean. Now it's mostly (VERY) prevalent in Sonic and Knuckles, but it rears it's head in Sonic 3 a few times and once (to my knowledge) in Chaotix, I'll try and post the ones that stick out.

 

Sonic 3

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=df3X_yJs24E - Endless Mine

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Qw10LYqye4 - Marble Garden

 

Sonic and Knuckles

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YF99oeiaznk - Mushroom Hill

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_T7hdIh-gtw - Flying Battery

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7R3i6yEwRE - Sandopolis

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wo_4R17gYSY - Lava Reef

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=noxyx2_Wew4 - Hidden Palace

 

Knuckles Chaotix

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sk_5LyHvVfo - Isolated Island

 

You get the idea.

 

So as in the above examples, there is a MIDI sample somewhere in there that carries across as almost a universal theme/chord, to me, that best exemplifies Angel Island. You can identify the music from that era/storyline/game more so from the MIDI style rather than acknowledging: "Oh, that's Mushroom Hill Zone from Sonic and Knuckles". You can hear the MIDI style is exceptionally, for lack of better words in my very limited Australian vocabulary; sloppy, twangy, boppy etc.

 

Anyway, is someone here able to explain to me the process or style that was employed in this era that contributed to "That Sound". The twang is very mysterious to me and it instantly nostalgia bombs my brain the moment I hear it, be it in the original OST, remixes or in general music. It's sort of sentimental as well because it recalls a period in my life that was heavily Sonic focussed and has some great memories attached to it. 

 

Any help anyone can provide would be fantastic. Thanks in advance.

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Don't take my word for it but I'm pretty sure the effect you're referring to is mostly just a cause of the way the system outputs the sound. Most of those instruments derived from the chip have been easily emulated in a plethora of other sound banks including The Ultimate Genesis Soundfont, and while the instruments sound identical the output obviously has a lot more clarity to it.

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TBH, took a few read throughs to wonder what you were going on about but finally caught on LOL. So yeah there's that stringy sounding "twangy" as you put it, sound kinda underlying the leads to make up the rhythm in most of those songs you posted.

 

It's probably just something your brain really latched on to in terms of the sounds used on the Genesis when playing the game. The sound itself and possibly the notes/chords they play in sang really nice in your ears and like how most our memory works, you applied this sense with the fondness memory of playing S3&K. I don't think it's actually much more than that, maybe discovering there's a certain sound/note/chords you like, but if I were you, I'd go find some straight up MIDI rip and look at them with some Digital Audio Workstation/DAW like Fruity Loops, Reaper, etc. This way you can look at what's happening for yourself and see what appeals to you so much. On top of that, I know somewhere on the great wide web lies something called the "Genesis soundfont" that more than likely has /the/ exact sound you're looking for. You could throw it on that MIDI track or even play with it yourself and make wonderful things.

 

EDIT: Damnit Carbo, >:U

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Don't take my word for it but I'm pretty sure the effect you're referring to is mostly just a cause of the way the system outputs the sound. Most of those instruments derived from the chip have been easily emulated in a plethora of other sound banks including The Ultimate Genesis Soundfont, and while the instruments sound identical the output obviously has a lot more clarity to it.

 

I first thought that as well but the fact that Sonic 1 and 2 don't have this sound made me reconsider it. But I don't know that much about how the soundchip in the genesis works, so I'll take your word for it. Thanks for the input smile.png

 

 

TBH, took a few read throughs to wonder what you were going on about but finally caught on LOL. So yeah there's that stringy sounding "twangy" as you put it, sound kinda underlying the leads to make up the rhythm in most of those songs you posted.

 

It's probably just something your brain really latched on to in terms of the sounds used on the Genesis when playing the game. The sound itself and possibly the notes/chords they play in sang really nice in your ears and like how most our memory works, you applied this sense with the fondness memory of playing S3&K. I don't think it's actually much more than that, maybe discovering there's a certain sound/note/chords you like, but if I were you, I'd go find some straight up MIDI rip and look at them with some Digital Audio Workstation/DAW like Fruity Loops, Reaper, etc. This way you can look at what's happening for yourself and see what appeals to you so much. On top of that, I know somewhere on the great wide web lies something called the "Genesis soundfont" that more than likely has /the/ exact sound you're looking for. You could throw it on that MIDI track or even play with it yourself and make wonderful things.

 

EDIT: Damnit Carbo, >:U

 

Yeah I agree I have created a connection between the sound and my memories spending countless hours in my youth right through to now replaying the S3&K game across multiple platforms. I thought it might be more to it though. I thought, perhaps in some rose-tinted fashion, that it was a noise created specifically for those games like a moniker or tag, sort of like how certain locales in movies have little motifs in the musical score whenever they are on screen. Probably romanticised the music a little too much by thinking that, but hey, one can always dream. Thanks for the advice, I will look into that when I get home this evening. Cheers!

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