Ah yes, Donkey Kong Country 3. The last entry in the series, and one of the best looking games on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. And, much like the other games in the series, this one got its own remake on the Game Boy Advance. However, unlike the previous remakes, this one had its own unique soundtrack by series composer David Wise. It also had a new world called Pacifica with unique level layouts. It was a fun remake, and added a lot to the already stellar original.
Why is this important, you ask? OverClocked ReMix has albums for both the original Donkey Kong Country, entitled Kong in Concert, and for DKC2, entitled Serious Monkey Business. So when the time came to complete the trilogy, there was a question to be asked. Should they stick to the SNES original, or take on the GBA remake’s soundtrack as well? The answer was actually quite simple: why not remix both? As a result, this is the largest OCR album to date. 77 tracks spread across 5 discs comprising nearly 5 1/2 hours of music… this is quite the gargantuan album. As usual, you can grab it for free right here!
Now if you’re familiar with my past album reviews, you should know the deal already. If not, here’s how it goes. My reviews are on a track-by-track basis, inspecting each track and writing out my train of thought as I listen to each track. Ordinarily this wouldn’t be an issue, but for some reason I said I would review this album in one sitting. And I did just that… well almost. I took breaks between each disc. Regardless, here it is: my review of Donkey Kong Country 3: Double the Trouble, done in one night. Enjoy~
Editor’s Note: Although the daunting task of completing this massive review was completed in one night, an editorial decision was made to divide the full review into five separate posts (one for each disc). This way, it will be easier for you to follow the details on each disc reviewed, without fatigue. This is part two for disc two- But make sure you read all five! It’s definitely worth it.
Disc 2 (Krematoa)
1. K’ReMispheric Pressure (Northern Kremisphere, Krematoa Koncerto) – halc [3:47]
On to disc 2 of this compilation. We kick things off with some more halc, who creates quite the atmosphere until 0:33, when the bass drops yet again. Seriously, this album just can’t hold onto that bass; it just keeps dropping! This starts out pretty relaxing until 1:28 when we get to Krematoa Koncerto’s part in this remix. There’s some fun arpeggios in this section. Northern Kremisphere returns at 2:28 or so. There’s some nice bass here too, and then 3:11 gets chippy as the end begins.
2. Wonderfall (Cascade Capers) – mv [4:50]
mv is great at setting a beautiful natural feeling, stimulating the imagination into seeing what he wants it to. I immediately feel like I’ve been transported to the middle of a forest, creek trickling nearby. The nearby waterfall fuels the motion of the creek, and animals are chattering all around me. Source comes in at 1:18 as the creek’s sound fades away. Something’s going on, and I must’ve left the creekside to find out what it is. Suddenly I find myself on a journey to find out what it is. I’m climbing hills and making my way through the forest, never sure what I might find on the other side of a tree. It feels like I’m not straying too far away from the creek, as I can hear it faintly in the distance. Something big is going down at 2:57, as I near my ultimate destination. I find some ruins, eroded by the passage of time. They’re not too big, so I explore their crumbled interior. It’s not long before I find an ancient guardian inside the ruins. I fight it, but it quickly overpowers me. I have to flee, and I take off running; I follow the sound of the water and end up on top of the waterfall as the song ends.
3. Winter (Frosty Frolics) – GSlicer [3:56]
This song starts out nice and relaxing before getting into the beat. I can’t help but groove a bit to this song; it’s quite nice. Definitely a more mellow take than the one on the previous disc. There’s a bit of a solo at 2:10 or so. The end is near at 3:37.
4. Low Life (Treetop Tumble) – The Vagrance [5:16]
This is intense right from the start, thanks in part to that strong bass. A drumbeat kicks in at 0:30 or so; a vocal sample at 0:58 is followed by growing bass until 1:11 when the main rhythm begins to build. This reaches its climax at 1:27 when the drumbeat returns. We have some wubs at 1:58 or so. There’s a breakdown at 2:57 or so, as the dubstep fades away. Something is still building up, and the source can be heard in the background of this part. The wubs return at 3:23. The end is near at 4:49, as everything glitches to the finale.
5. Blast Beatdown (Nuts and Bolts) – tefnek, zircon [3:42]
I remember the first time I heard this source track; it took me completely by surprise. I can already tell this one is coming to a beatdown, judging from the harsh buildup of the first minute. 0:55 begins a buildup the source’s intro to the main part. 1:18 has some fade out, but the main rhythm explodes into action a few seconds later. This remix takes the industrial atmosphere of the stage and applies it to the remix, creating quite the song. 2:30 brings in another blast of power before returning to the rhythm at 2:54 or so. The end is foreshadowed with wubs at 3:14 or so.
6. Intoxica (Pokey Pipes) – Radiowar [3:34]
Radiowar always creates some beautiful songs, and the atmospheric feel of this source was perfect for him. It’s quite faithful to the source too, but it really expands upon the feel. The main beat comes in at 0:23 or so, adding to the main rhythm perfectly. More of the source comes in at about 0:44 or so. Strong source usage at 1:10, really emphasizing the wondrous feel of the original before returning to the main part at 1:34 or so. There’s a breakdown at 2:19 or so, that really builds up to the inevitable finale; quite a lovely song this is. Source returns promptly at 3:00, setting up the end of the song, which begins at 3:24.
7. Water Warped (Water World) – GSlicer, The Scarborough Joker [3:08]
Let’s go underwater again! Some really fun sounds here, with a prominent bass. The source is quite evident too, coming in at 0:35 or so. It takes on somewhat of a background sound until 1:10, when it leaps to the forefront of the soundscape. There’s a breakdown at 1:54 or so that gives way to the source again at 2:09. A vocal clip plays at 2:24 that transitions into the meat of the song once more before ending.
8. Can’t Boss Us Around (Robot Anarchists from Hell Mix) [Boss Boogie] – HoboKa, Flexstyle [3:28]
Finally, the boss theme remix! Oh dear, this is gonna be big, judging from the intro. This is a pretty interesting track. 0:52 brings in some source uages, building up the feeling with some nice record scratches. Big source usage at 1:10 really sets the stage for the beatdown occurring to this music. This is a very fun energetic song. There’s a breakdown at 2:00 which uses the other part of the source, the part that sounds like building tension. After a breakdown, there’s some more fun source usage at 2:52, and the finale begins at 3:07 with some glitching.
9. Krematoa Inferno (Mill Fever) – Mattias Häggström Gerdt [3:58]
This is quite the relaxed take on the theme… until 0:20 when it becomes all about the dubstep. The source track is quite evident in the sounds of the track, really coming into action at 0:54 or so. It gets pretty mellow at 1:20, retaining the feeling of the remix but taking it down a notch. It gets reset at 1:44 and brings the wubs back in. Some nice backing rhythms at 1:59 precede a breakdown at 2:10. The source returns at 2:39, complete with some intensely dropped bass. Piano comes in at 3:10, completely replacing everything else in the song, giving a very soothing finale to the song that’s both completely unlike his other work yet remains great all the same.
10. Wrinkly’s Nightcap (Wrinkly 64) – Doc Nano [4:00]
Wrinkly Kong had three themes in this game. This is a game where the main characters don’t get their own theme, but she gets three. This is a very soothing take on one of those themes, which played as advertisement for the then-new Nintendo 64. Apparently Nintendo characters get their own copies of the systems they may appear on at some point (despite the fact she would appear on it as a ghost). Some beautiful piano here, I must admit. I feel so classy listening to this. The end is evidently near at 3:17.
11. The Mighty Junglol (Chase) – Jason Covenant [3:47]
Beginning with a hilarious sample of who I can only presume to be Jason himself, this song takes on the music that plays when you’re on the elephant running like mad through a jungle. I still have trouble collecting everything in this stage on one go. This has quite the driving rhythm, I must say. There’s also gratuitous use of monkey sound effects. The end is near at 2:47 or so, and gives way to another silly vocal clip at 3:10. This is the Mighty Junglol. Also more music after that, but not for long as the end of the song is near.
12. X-Y-X-X, B-A-B-Y (Crystal Chasm) – Ross Kmet [4:21]
Clever song title here, I have to say. The grottoes have always had a feeling of their own, something that Ross Kmet’s style is quite well equipped to take on. 0:35 brings in some beeps right out of the game; no clue what pattern the game is trying to show based on these beeps. 1:28 brings in the meat of the track, which is quite nicely done. This is a pretty fun song to listen to as well. There’s a very deliberate rhythm in this song; 3:21 brings in a calmer sound that sets up the finale. The beeps return throughout this part, only to vanish with the rest of the song at 4:11. Yay we got the Banana Bird!!
13. Breaking the Crystal Key (Mama Bird) – Theophany [4:14]
The Mama Bird was always one of the strangest things about this game, in all aspects. The music was always relaxing though. Theophany takes that and gives it a feeling worthy of the final status she deserves as the story’s trump card. After all, she’s integral to getting 105% or whatever the maximum was. There’s plenty of samples of bird chirps being used throughout this. The main drumbeat comes in at 1:30, accompanying the already present rhythm. There’s quite the glitchy breakdown at 1:58, only to add source at 2:28. Everything calms down at 3:01, slowly preparing for the ending. More breakbeat drums at 3:25, with some soloing on the chimes, take up the track here as it reaches its conclusion at 4:08.
14. Afterburn (Rocket Run) – Sole Signal [3:10]
Let’s jump in a rocket fueled barrel and make our way through a series of narrow crevasses! 0:30 brings in the main source. This stage was always stressful and intense, because if you hit the walls once the whole thing explodes. There’s a breakdown at 1:48 or so, followed by a buildup to the end of the song at 2:10. 2:39 brings in some rhythm that gives way to the source at 2:48 or so. The end of the song at 3:04 matches the relief of finishing the stage successfully.
15. Bring the Noise (Big Boss Blues) – Blue Magic [3:12]
The main rhythm of the source kicks right in as the song begins, matching the gravity of the big boss the source plays in. It’s intense, and quite serious. 1:04 brings in a slight breakdown, but the source returns 1:20 or so. The main thing about the source is how it builds up; nice laugh at 1:38. There’s definitely a buildup unique to the source at 2:00, vaguely reminiscent of Crash Bandicoot 2’s sewer stages. This remix keeps building and building; it’s gonna explode at this rate. Instead it just stops at 3:02.
16. Friendships Through Dark and Light (Crazy Calypso, Crystal Chasm) – Vampire Hunter Dan [6:18]
And now for some orchestral work, conducted by the maestro Vampire Hunter Dan. As with most of his works, this builds up slowly. At 1:00, the source of Crazy Calypso becomes immediately apparent. This is quite energetic, and really counterpoints the intensity of the previous song. Just as that one was somewhat dark, this one creates a light heroic feel despite being busy itself. There’s a slow reprieve from the source at 2:28 or so, only to give way to Crystal Chasm at 2:48. This sets the stage for a buildup to a greater part of the song, which grows in intensity at 3:48. There’s quite the dramatic driving feel here. 4:28 brings in some urgent strings that build up until 4:55 when it all calms down. 5:13 brings in quite the victorious feeling with the overall instrumentation, and sets up the finale of this glorious piece, which is a brief reprise of Crazy Calypso.
17. Return to Kong, Bye-Bye Baddies! (Baddies on Parade, Crazy Calypso, Pokey Pipes) – Josh Whelchel [5:12]
An atmospheric ambience starts this track off quite wondrously. Some beat comes in at 1:04, bringing some rhythm in the form of synths at 1:20 or so. This song uses some energetic synths, that’s for sure. The feeling changes at 2:10 and progresses the track nicely. Crazy Calypso comes in again at 2:48 or so. There’s a slight breakdown at 3:15 or so, only to be followed by a synth solo at 3:50. The end begins at 5:00.
18. ‘Til We Meet Again (Game Over) – DCT [3:43]
And here we are, at the end of disc 2, and who better to send this one off than DCT himself! This has quite a deliberate pacing, and has a nice feeling of finality. It’s also classic DCT, fitting in place with his other works. I’m really digging the clapping samples. There’s a slight breakdown at 2:18 that sets the stage for the finale of the song, which slowly proceeds until 3:38, when it all starts dropping away.
Editor’s Note: This brings us to the conclusion of disc two. *Hurrah!* Now, kick back and read the rest of the reviews (that means all the way to disc 5!) for full impressions and concluding statements!