So, we all agree that Mega Man X music kicks ass right? I mean, how can someone think otherwise. I’ve already talked about Spark Mandrill’s theme from the first Mega Man X, but it’s the Christmas err fuck, I mean holiday season, and I am totally being forced to say “holidays” instead of Christmas against my wishes due to political correctness gone mad and not just poking fun at an overused joke. Yeah yeah I know, no one actually cares which one I use except for the easily offended MAGA fuckboys and Trump himself, which makes me want to keep saying holidays in and of itself. Unfortunately even I can’t manage THAT level of contrarianism when I actually do celebrate Christmas.
Anyway, i just put that tangent there because I need enough content before I put the “read more” break in. This week’s VGM is Blizzard Buffalo’s theme from Mega Man X3, just because it needs to be ice or winter themed… themes. A simultaneously chilling yet serene and warm track, yes that is somehow possible.
The music that I always find the most soothing and warming tends to not follow the standard of your typical “relaxing” song, in that there usually is a fast pace or a strong percussion presence. If the drums were not present in this track, the song would not be nearly as soothing. Instead of sounding harsh or abrasive, the bass and drums harmonize with the entrancing melody and create a sensation that I imagine as similar to getting a massage. There is a light feeling of force but it helps you loosen up and untense.
And the melody is something truly surreal. I don’t know if anyone else gets this feeling, but I sometimes perceive some video game instrument samples as if they are human voices instead of musical instruments. The melody of this track is one of those instances due to the abstract nature of the sound made by… whatever instrument this is supposed to be, I think it is a bell of some sort, or possibly even an organ, this track instantly pierces my soul from the moment it starts. Maybe the whole “perceiving a human voice” thing could just be when a track harmonizes very well since you won’t just hear one instrument, but instead will hear everything come together.
I can definitely say that this song harmonizes very well, which is not always the case with Mega Man X tracks since they tend to prioritize melody and catchiness above harmony. This makes Blizzard Buffalo’s theme a standout track in the series where most of the music emphasizes 16 bit synthesized guitar and badassery, while still sounding actiony enough to fit with the rest of the sound track. The only real downside is that I’m not too big on the brass notes in the second half of the song as they tend to be rather jarring. But wait, there is another arrangement, this one from the PS1/PC version of the game.
While I do think this is alright on its own merits, I do prefer the original track. The melody is nowhere near as captivating and the slower pace of the track causes it to lose its edge. The benefits are the higher quality instrumentation and the fact that the second half is better, but I’m still just more in favor of the SNES version.
Anyway, that’s it for this week and see you during the next of those things.
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