Welcome to our new series Arrangement of the Week. Every Friday we will take a quick look at an arrangement, remix, or cover of a videogame track. For the most part, we’re going to try to focus on some more obscure or lesser known creators for this series. We hope to share and examine a wide variety of genres, artists, and arrangement styles. With all that said, here’s this week’s track.
Our first Arrangement of the Week is “Sub-Zero” by artist Emunator. The selection is based off of the “Phendrana Drifts” track from Metroid Prime. The opening of the piece emulates the acoustic/synth hybrid sound of the original Metroid track. Ambient atmosphere effects can be heard in the back of the mix, and the piano plays the same material from the original soundtrack. However, about a minute and a half into the track, the piece transitions into something a little different.
At the 1’28” mark the piece launches into a chill dance version of the Metroid Prime tune. Many of the icy and glassy synth instruments from earlier remain, but a handful of upbeat dance beats and bass patterns kick in to give the music energy. I actually like that there’s not a big build up to the dance portion of this track. The transition is quick but smooth, and helped by the fact that the ambient/house portion is not much more intense than the mix’s previous section.
Another aspect that I enjoy about the track is the last section featuring Ergosonic on the acoustic guitar. This comes in after a wind down of the main dance mix. It’s a simple solo guitar part, with some of the atmosphere effect returning to help tie it into the rest of the arrangement. It’s a cool little surprise to the end of the track. Overall “Sub Zero” is a nice little arrangement of “Phendrana Drifts” that captures the tone of the original source material, while still transforming the track into an interesting house/electronic piece.
Are there any cool game music mixes, arrangements, or covers that you’ve heard this week? Let us know in the comment section below. You can listen to and download “Sub-Zero” on Emunator’s Soundcloud or at OC ReMix.