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Daniel K Nov 9, 2009

So, we all know that VGM composers often employ sound libraries when they need ideas and sounds, sometimes making the same sounds appear in widely different games. Nothing new, but I recently found another example while listening to the Myst III OST (which by the way is a real snooze-fest, and not recommended by yours truly).

Check out Yasunori Mitsuda's "Chronopolis" (track 2, disc 3 on the Chrono Cross OST), then Jack Wall's "The Airship Chasm" (track 17 on the Myst III - Exile OST). Its the exact same "electronic undercurrent" sound (although more pushed into the background on the Myst track). I'm kinda disappointed by this, as it seems to suggest that its taken from a sound library, I love that sound, and I thought that Mitsuda came up with it himself. And if he after all did, then Wall must've stolen it, as Myst III was released two years after Chrono Cross (although I don't think that's very likely).

While we're on the subject, what other such uses of the same sounds are there in the VGM world? I'm not talking about outright plagiarism or copying, but the same sampled sounds used by different composers in different songs (most probably without any connection to each other).

The first one that comes to my mind is what I call the "ominous rumbling ambient sound" that's appeared in some dark/atmospheric soundtracks during the 2000s. The first usage I know of was in Akira Yamaoka's Silent Hill 3 OST (track 9, "A Stray Child", just a few seconds in), but it also makes an appearance on the Shadow Hearts 2 OST (Yoshitaka Hirota's track "In Darkness of a Labyrinth", track 10 on disc 1, at 0:55 and 1:58). I know I've heard it in at least one more soundtrack, but I can't for the life of me remember which one right now (grrr!). Another example is the infamous rap on track 22 of Kenichiro Fukui's Einhänder OST, "Shudder", which also appeared in it's original, non-sped-up version on some obscure Japanese soundtrack that I also cannot remember at the moment (yeah, I'm slipping badly). I think it was Side Pocket or some other pool game? We had a thread about it many years ago, IIRC.

Anyone know any other examples?

Eirikr Nov 9, 2009

Daniel K wrote:

Check out Yasunori Mitsuda's "Chronopolis" (track 2, disc 3 on the Chrono Cross OST), then Jack Wall's "The Airship Chasm" (track 17 on the Myst III - Exile OST). Its the exact same "electronic undercurrent" sound (although more pushed into the background on the Myst track). I'm kinda disappointed by this, as it seems to suggest that its taken from a sound library, I love that sound, and I thought that Mitsuda came up with it himself. And if he after all did, then Wall must've stolen it, as Myst III was released two years after Chrono Cross (although I don't think that's very likely).

This is the first one I ever noticed, except it was on a History Channel show instead of Myst III. At the time I thought it was just a sly bit of plagiarism, as who but a select few would recognize a sampling from a piece of video game music, especially in background music during a narrated documentary? VGM seemed a ripe field for the cable TV music composition pickings.

But now that I've typed that out, it seems ridiculous. The sound library explanation is probably much more likely.

Idolores Nov 9, 2009

Can it really be called "stealing" as you put it? That sounds simply more like sampling to me, though I admit that I'm not entirely familiar with the distinction.

Warpstar Nov 9, 2009

Daniel K wrote:

Check out Yasunori Mitsuda's "Chronopolis" (track 2, disc 3 on the Chrono Cross OST), then Jack Wall's "The Airship Chasm" (track 17 on the Myst III - Exile OST). Its the exact same "electronic undercurrent" sound (although more pushed into the background on the Myst track). I'm kinda disappointed by this, as it seems to suggest that its taken from a sound library, I love that sound, and I thought that Mitsuda came up with it himself. And if he after all did, then Wall must've stolen it, as Myst III was released two years after Chrono Cross (although I don't think that's very likely).

I'm pretty sure it's from a library, as I've heard that loop in a number of other pieces. The Zanarkand Ruins music from FFX-2 is the first one that comes to mind.

Boco Nov 9, 2009 (edited Nov 9, 2009)

Daniel K wrote:

Check out Yasunori Mitsuda's "Chronopolis" (track 2, disc 3 on the Chrono Cross OST), then Jack Wall's "The Airship Chasm" (track 17 on the Myst III - Exile OST). Its the exact same "electronic undercurrent" sound (although more pushed into the background on the Myst track).

A suspiciously similar loop can be heard in "Titus' Vow" from Goldenthal's Titus and "Zanarkand Ruins" from Final Fantasy X-2. Sadly, I can't take credit for noticing this, but more info can be found at the links below:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Titus_soun … X-2_sample
http://www.squareenixmusic.com/forum/sh … php?t=6515

Chrono Cross (November 1999)
Titus (December 1999)
Myst III (2001)
Final Fantasy X-2 (2003)

Judging by the number of places this loop pops up as well as the dates, I'd have to guess that it comes from some sort of loop / sample library. Not all that surprising really.

Also, sampling can indeed be stealing. It depends on whether or not the proper procedure is followed. Often times a blind eye is turned to illegal sampling as it's rampant and can be difficult to track down and prosecute. Some people mistake this laxness for legality, but that's not the case.

http://law.freeadvice.com/intellectual_ … mpling.htm
http://www.stoel.com/showarticle.aspx?Show=1877
http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/149083 … lines=true


EDIT: Warpstar beat me to the FFX-2 connection. XD

Sami Nov 10, 2009

Yeah, that sample sees a lot of use. I've heard in four places I think (Chronopolis included).

An Cinniuint also had a sample that I later heard in a commercial, the bubbly sound from the battle music.

Kirin Lemon Nov 11, 2009

I've heard the "Chronopolis" sound in a whole bunch of stuff through the years, including what's already been mentioned, an MTV commercial, and a couple other things I can't remember.  Definitely sound bank'd, but still an awesome sound.  I think of Chrono Cross every time I hear it.

Amazingu Nov 11, 2009

I don't think it needs restating, but that is a VERY common sample.

I even heard it in a commercial for some weird erotic phone service once...

Sami Dec 7, 2009

Magical Trick Society - Sign of the Time from "Shooting Game Tracks" fan arrange album...

TheGazelMinistry Dec 11, 2009

Incidentally, it's used in Chrono Crusade as well. (I don't have the OSTs, so I can't name the specific track.)

Zane Dec 20, 2009 (edited Dec 20, 2009)

I was just playing a little RE4, and when I stopped I put on some music and "Battle Drums" from the Silent Hill Zero OST came up on my playlist. And, lo and behold, near the beginning and around the two minute mark the samples of "Serenity" from RE4 makes its way into the end of the track. Strange, but awesome.

"Battle Drums" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=62ozL90Kbnw (intro, and around 2:00)
"Serenity" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bz5zgLj03Ic (around 0:30)

TheGazelMinistry Dec 22, 2009

Amazingu wrote:

I don't think it needs restating, but that is a VERY common sample.

Indeed. I have additionally heard it in Chrono Crusade and Batman Beyond.

Soto Dec 23, 2009

I do admit to some disappointment when I figured out that wasn't a Chrono Cross specific song and that the sample that formed most of the song was sound banked.  I bought the Titus OST not too long after the CC one.  No matter how common it is, it's a brilliant sample.  I wonder sometimes who actually composed it.

JBL Dec 25, 2009

Daniel K wrote:

The first one that comes to my mind is what I call the "ominous rumbling ambient sound" that's appeared in some dark/atmospheric soundtracks during the 2000s. The first usage I know of was in Akira Yamaoka's Silent Hill 3 OST (track 9, "A Stray Child", just a few seconds in), but it also makes an appearance on the Shadow Hearts 2 OST (Yoshitaka Hirota's track "In Darkness of a Labyrinth", track 10 on disc 1, at 0:55 and 1:58). I know I've heard it in at least one more soundtrack, but I can't for the life of me remember which one right now (grrr!).

Something very similar to the sound from "A Stray Child" actually first appeared in Silent Hill 2.

Watch this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Tw0EUV5AFU#t=7m00s

That is actually one of my most memorable Silent Hill moments.. that sound really fascinated me back in the day. tongue

Sami Dec 30, 2009 (edited Dec 31, 2009)

The Chrono Cross sample also appears in Shulman's Elements, where it's a major, ahem, element of the track.

Spotted another sample connection. In Banco de Gaia's Sakarya, the chant sample is pretty much the same as the one in Where A Full-Scale Battle Transpired (Fort El-Eal Ruins BGM) from Rhapsodia/Suikoden Tactics. I think Norikazu Miura utilizes it better, though.

Daniel K Apr 24, 2010

So, in this thread, we've discussed occasions where VGM composers sampled other VGM or sounds from sound libraries. But how about non-VGM artists sampling VGM in their music?

I was just listening to Gore Motel, the debut album by German "horror jazz"-band Bohren & Der Club Of Gore (check them out for some truly awesome instrumental jazz like nothing you've ever heard before). The last track, "Gore Musik", comes on and what do I hear in the background throughout the whole track? The Tourian theme from Super Metroid! Its mixed together with some electronic effects and slow percussion, but it basically forms the backbone of the composition. The "Gore Motel" album was released the same year as Super Metroid (1994), so I guess they were playing SM while recording it. smile

Idolores Apr 24, 2010 (edited Apr 25, 2010)

Don't know if this counts, but someone made a post about this in either the Open forum, or the Other Music one, about a rapper from the UK sampling Mitsuda's "Dreams of Another Shore Bordering Another World" from Chrono Cross. The song was about poverty, that's all I remember. I rather liked it.

EDIT: Found it.

Daniel K Apr 25, 2010

Idolores wrote:

Don't know if this counts, but someone made a post about this in either the Open forum, or the Other Music one, about a rapper from the UK sampling Mitsuda's "Dreams of Another Shore Bordering Another World" from Chrono Cross. The song was about poverty, that's all I remember. I rather liked it.

EDIT: Found it.

Thanks, missed that one the first time around! I like it as well. I find socially aware, intelligent rap much more appealing than the "gangsta"-cliches (unless, of course, its gangsta + VGM, in which case I'm all for it tongue).

Idolores Apr 26, 2010

Daniel K wrote:
Idolores wrote:

Don't know if this counts, but someone made a post about this in either the Open forum, or the Other Music one, about a rapper from the UK sampling Mitsuda's "Dreams of Another Shore Bordering Another World" from Chrono Cross. The song was about poverty, that's all I remember. I rather liked it.

EDIT: Found it.

Thanks, missed that one the first time around! I like it as well. I find socially aware, intelligent rap much more appealing than the "gangsta"-cliches (unless, of course, its gangsta + VGM, in which case I'm all for it tongue).

There's also this one, done by the cousin of Ice Cube. It blew my mind; He name drops Bernie Stolar, but no one really knows who that is, aside from a select few.

Daniel K Apr 26, 2010

Jay wrote:

Yeah, I posted the one by Devlin. [...] He's good. I like him.

Yeah, he seems pretty cool, I should check out his stuff. Thanks for bringing him to my attention!

Yuvraj Apr 29, 2010

Idolores wrote:
Daniel K wrote:
Idolores wrote:

Don't know if this counts, but someone made a post about this in either the Open forum, or the Other Music one, about a rapper from the UK sampling Mitsuda's "Dreams of Another Shore Bordering Another World" from Chrono Cross. The song was about poverty, that's all I remember. I rather liked it.

EDIT: Found it.

Thanks, missed that one the first time around! I like it as well. I find socially aware, intelligent rap much more appealing than the "gangsta"-cliches (unless, of course, its gangsta + VGM, in which case I'm all for it tongue).

There's also this one, done by the cousin of Ice Cube. It blew my mind; He name drops Bernie Stolar, but no one really knows who that is, aside from a select few.

Man, this track is tight! And props to the mention of Xenogears. It's very common in hiphop to make game/comic/cartoon references, but this is easily the best I've heard.

PS: a friend of mine just released his own album and one of the tracks samples Chrono Cross's ending theme. A really cool track, but it's in Dutch (plus it's the slang which makes it cool).

TheGazelMinistry Nov 2, 2010

Not that I want to resurrect an old thread, but I'm not sure if a similar observation deserves its own thread ...

While listening to the Front Mission 4 soundtrack, I noticed that "Beginnings" is nearly identical/similar to "Opening" from the Xenosaga Episode I soundtrack. Is this another stock piece?

SFLaValle Nov 2, 2010

Grab sample libraries from EastWest/Quantum Leap and I'm sure you'll have a flood of musical memories from video games as well as TV shows, anime, and some movies.

Xenosaga Ep I track "Song of Nephilim" and Xenosaga Ep II track "Nephilim," those haunting vocals are from such a library. Listen to the first couple of minutes of the movie "End of Days" and you'll hear it again. The aforementioned loop from Chrono Cross I've heard in countless stuff, including an episode of Samurai Jack on Cartoon Network. The heavy industrial hit loops in the middle of "Metal Gear Solid Main Theme (3)" I've heard a few places, but Harry Gregson-Williams is a master of manipulating whatever he gets his hands on to meet his needs and style. FFVII Advent Children track "For the Reunion," I'm sure anyone who has watched any Naruto episode in the first few seasons immediately recognized the loop that kicks in a little over a minute in.

It's just something to get used to. Loops can be troublesome to make when you have ones premade for you. There's a good chance any intricate percussion loop you hear is from a sample library when the album it's contained in is focused on something much more broad, such as soundtracks.

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