When it comes to video gaming music, there are people everywhere who will instantly think of the iconic Final Fantasy franchise as having one of the best array of soundtracks in gaming. I am a happy part of this collection of people who will always have a soft spot for the intimate works of Nobuo Uematsu. To pay their respects for the franchise, thousands of musicians around the world recreate and remix the many hundreds of songs in the series. One such remix label, GameLark, has brought together talented musicians across YouTube to release a brand new remix album called “Mog’s Mixtape: Final Fantasy Remixed”.
GameLark has been an avid participant in the remix label industry for a year and have helped to organize two albums already, Versus (which consists of remix tracks for fighting games) and Supersonic (which is based on tracks from the Sonic games). Mog’s Mixtape is the biggest undertaking to date, with a huge number of collaborators. This soundtrack features tracks from the entire main series of Final Fantasy games, as well as a sprinkle of tracks from Final Fantasy Tactics.
There are over 32 tracks in the album, with 16 on each ‘disc’. GameLark’s manager Allen Brasch mentions, “Given the sheer amount of music on the album, it made sense to separate this into two distinct musical journeys. Disc 1 is a more light-hearted affair with battle themes and beautiful soundscapes. Disc 2 presents a more arduous journey and ends with the Game Over theme. Each disc stands on its own and can be experienced individually or together. It’s really the listener’s choice.”
Given the chance to check out the entire tracklist before its release, this separation is reasonably apparent, but with a greater emphasis on the contrast between relaxed and serious. The first disc features soundtracks such as “Theme of Ul’Dah/Limsa Lominsa/ Gridania” from Final Fantasy XIV, which was the main ‘town’ themes for the three main cities within the game. Performed by Bassoonify, whose primary use of the Bassoon creates a beautifully calming rendition of the themes as he transitions between the three tunes in a charming way.
Another incredible track is the famous “Battle at the Big Bridge” from Final Fantasy V, which is performed by Triforce Films. The creativity of the acapella makes for a light-hearted, fun piece out of what would have been a serious battle theme. One other track that secured itself as my absolute favourite from the album is “The Sunleth Waterscape” from Final Fantasy XIII. This cover arrangement fuses the mellow jazz of insaneintherainmusic with gorgeous vocal singing by PyjamaPantsMusic, in order to create a truly soothing listening experience. As the mood of the tracks start to pick up, the end of the first disc is marked by the ever familiar “Prelude” melody by Charles Ritz, where the true journey begins in disc 2.
The second disc features the workings of remix artists such as “Within the Giant” from Final Fantasy IV, arranged by Schematist. This piece slows the tempo a touch from the original, in order to evoke a more pressing feeling, as the overworld theme from FFIV overlays the track. Another piece that is almost a staple to any Final Fantasy album is the familiar “One Winged Angel” from Final Fantasy VII, which is arranged by SwigglesRP and features the vocal talents of TeraCMusic. With emphasis on a more rock-centric tone to the piece, the duo pelts out a powerful rendition of the iconic theme, with the powerful latin chorus chants from both musicians.
Finally, the album concludes with the “Gameover” theme from the original Final Fantasy, as arranged by MyNewSoundtrack. With his specialty in converting tunes across other systems, his take on the original NES version of the Final Fantasy Gameover theme to an SNES soundboard adds a level of complexity. Building in his own touch to the melody, the tune transforms the somber, downtrodden piece to one that inspires hope for the future. Something this album seeks to portray for the future of all the collaborators within this very soundtrack.
This album was made entirely by men and women who loved their craft. With such a diverse range of styles, it’d be impossible for someone not to enjoy at least one track from the album. Above, you can check out crossfade previews for each disc in the album. The entire tracklist and their arrangers are listed below. While there will be other platforms to download the tracks from shortly, for now the digital album can be purchased from Loudr. Mog’s Mixture: Final Fantasy Remixed is available for purchase starting today, October 7th, 2016.
Track 1 – Epitaph (From “Final Fantasy VI”) || TeraCMusic [feat. Matthew S. Harrison]
Track 2 – Fight with Seymour (From “Final Fantasy X”) || SixteenInMono [feat. BlackearacheXD]
Track 3 – Breezy (From “Final Fantasy VIII”) || Stevie Pilgrim
Track 4 – Theme of Ul’dah, Gridania, & Limsa Lominsa (From “Final Fantasy XIV: Eorzan Frontiers”) || Bassoonify
Track 5 – Battle at the Big Bridge (From “Final Fantasy V”) || Triforcefilms
Track 6 – Desert Land (From “Final Fantasy Tactics”) || subversiveasset
Track 7 – Theme of Love (From “Final Fantasy IV”) || Steven Morris
Track 8 – Chocobo Theme (From “Final Fantasy II”) || NoteBlock
Track 9 – Battle 2 (From “Final Fantasy IV”) || Sad Toy Cats
Track 10 – The Landing (From “Final Fantasy VIII”) || Project Genesis
Track 11 – Memoria (From “Final Fantasy IX”) || RebeccaETripp
Track 12 – A Place to Call Home (From “Final Fantasy IX”) || Soundole VGM Covers [feat. TeraCMusic]
Track 13 – Battle (From “Final Fantasy VI”) || 130Grit Sound Studio
Track 14 – Eruyt Village (From “Final Fantasy XII”) || Hashel05
Track 15 – A Contest of Aeons (From “Final Fantasy X”) || SixteenInMono [feat. PyjamaPantsMusic]
Track 16 – The Sunleth Waterscape (from “Final Fantasy XIII”) || insaneintherainmusic [feat. PyjamaPantsMusic]
Track 17 – Prelude (From “Final Fantasy II”) || Charles Ritz [feat. Soundole VGM Covers, Toxodentrail, Bassoonify, and Matthew S. Harrison]
Track 1 – In the Garden Sleeps a Messenger (The Castle from “Final Fantasy VIII”) || BlackearacheXD feat. Ubaldo B & Jackson Alexander Parodi
Track 2 – Silverhook Showdown (Buccaneers from “Final Fantasy XI”) || Matthew S. Harrison
Track 3 – Birth of a God (From “Final Fantasy VII”) || Lord Bif Music feat. Dave Sheik
Track 4 – Terra’s Theme (From “Final Fantasy VI”) || Toxodentrail
Track 5 – Decisive Battle (From “Final Fantasy Tactics”) || Zurachi
Track 6 – Within the Beast (Within the Giant from “Final Fantasy IV”) || Schematist
Track 7 – Shattering Shards (Crystal Cave from “Final Fantasy III”) || Matthew S. Harrison
Track 8 – Battle 1 (Fanfare) [From “Final Fantasy III”] || A.J. Klaproth
Track 9 – Anti-Wither (Blitz-Off! from “Final Fantasy X”) || Jackson Alexander Parodi
Track 10 – Despair (Memoro de la Ŝtono) [From “Final Fantasy XI”] || Draskon
Track 11 – Listen to the Cries of the Planet (From “Final Fantasy VII”) || PyjamaPantsMusic
Track 12 – The Possessed King (Deception from “Final Fantasy V”) || Hyde209
Track 13 – One-Winged Angel (From “Final Fantasy VII”) || SwigglesRP feat. TeraCMusic
Track 14 – Against the Wind (From “Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward”) || NPC
Track 15 – Game Over (From “Final Fantasy”) || MyNewSoundtrack