Bad, vile and meaningless: Problem in SID music from Alan's clob

The fundamental problem in remakes of sid music

The problem is that authors of SID tune remakes can never shed the skin of the original implementation too far: they want to remain faithful to the original sound of the SID because to them, that original sound is as much part of the music as the real instruments that were approximated. One of its lacks has turned into virtue by the romantizing eyes of a generation of then-young children. That's nostalgy for you.

But enough with nostalgy. There's serious art hidden behind your soft spots that waits to be discovered. Take Monty On The Run from Rub Hubbard: this tune, this best song in the whole Universe, (save with the possible exception of Hawkeye from Jeroen Tel) pleads to be played using a small-scale classical orchestra. The SID music so obviously approximates a violin, xylophones, cellos, some brass instruments. And then there's the electric guitar. (Man, this Hubbard guy is really into guitars. There's virtually no SID without a respectable guitar solo.)

No-one, to date, seems to have implemented this music orchestrally. It's always synth voices, even on Back In Time 1. (And that's with Rob Hubbard himself if I'm reading this correctly. Rob, how could you!?)

I'm in an endless valley of sorrow until someone, or me, takes up the task, gets some musicians or synthesizers together and does this thing right. Damn, but does it really have to be me? The tune seems so frighteningly complicated on the surface that I'd rather not spoil my love for it in endless repetitions trying to decipher why this melody doesn't quite work, or what's wrong with that bass figure. And should I try to play the guitar bits myself? There's a bit of honky-tonk in the Back In Time version that's easy enough, but the end parts require finger dexterity that I do not possess. And of course, the real instrument is that gypsy violin, which is so amazing, and so utterly out of reach. <Sigh>.

Please, the whole Universe, hear my plea: someone take up this beautiful song and give it the modern form.