It’s been way too long since we featured some original music on the site, but luckily Nova Maru is here to deliver! In what feels the perfect application of Mike’s skills and experience, he has a remix of Street Fighter II music to share.
This track was actually submitted to Red Bull's Street Fighter II remix contest about one year ago. Mike’s been touching it up and just recently got around posting it. So get ready, fighters. Face it straight!
Oddly the Red Bull contest provided a somewhat bizarre set of samples taken from only the original SF2. For example, they had the announcer saying "One" and "Round One Fight!", but not "Two", or "Three", or "Perfect", or anything else. They included a few sound effects (notably most of the punch and kick sounds), and very small snippets of music, but they did not include music from all the characters—Ken and Chun Li samples were inexplicably missing. And the music snippets were so short that they seem to have gone out of their way to make sure that you couldn't recreate even a section of the song, let alone the whole thing. So these weren’t exactly stems for a remix; more like short samples for sample-based music. Perhaps the contest organizers were trying to spur creativity, but Mike was surprised that it was so limiting for a lot of things, especially for an actual remix.
In true Nova Maru style, this track is basically a chill mashup of Ryu's theme music on top of the base line from Zangief's theme. As the intent was to use the provided samples, Mike used parts of the theme music from Ryu, Guile, E. Honda, Blanka, and Dhalsim—see if you can pick out the Dhalsim samples—as well as some sound effects.
The shakuhachi flute, added midway through the track, truly nails the vibe of Ryu’s unending quest for martial arts mastery, and is also strongly reminiscent of the classic 1994 film, Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie. The yell of “Ryu!” at the 0:48 mark also feels like a callback to the anime, but it is, in fact, Mike’s deviously clever use of the original “shoryuken” sound effect. So awesome!