Directed by OC ReMix Judge and ReMixer Andrew Aversa (zircon), Final Fantasy VII: Voices of the Lifestream is the ninth album from OverClocked ReMix, and the first to arrange music from Square Enix’s legendary Final Fantasy series of games.

OverClocked ReMix is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the appreciation, preservation, and interpretation of video game music. Founded in 1999 by David W. Lloyd (djpretzel), it has grown into a large online community of talented artists who arrange game music and make their arrangements available freely.

A Note from the Director...

When it comes to video games, I've never been on the cutting edge of technology. For example, not only do I not own any next-gen consoles, but I'm still catching up on PlayStation 2 and Game Boy Advance games. Ten years ago, as a ten year old kid, things weren't much different. While I was still renting an SNES and Chrono Trigger from the local video store, several of my friends had already picked up a shiny new PlayStation. Given that I was always slightly behind the times, I was still enjoying Final Fantasy 4 and 6 when the ads for Final Fantasy VII started rolling out.

Frankly, I couldn’t have been less excited. I remember seeing a huge ad with Barret in front of a “Funcoland” and thinking, “That doesn’t look like the Final Fantasy I know.” Guns? Motorcycles? Dark, futuristic cities? I scoffed and ignored all things Final Fantasy VII until a friend of mine invited me over a week or so after its release to play it for the first time. I don’t think I’ve ever been more enthralled with a video game than I was when I first saw my friend moving Cloud through the slums of Sector 7.

I was immediately hooked. Between the dark, detailed atmosphere, incredible graphics, fluid battle movement, sharp sound effects, and incredible music, every aspect of the game was exciting and captivating. However, I didn’t really get to experience the game myself until the next year, when it came out for PC – of course, my own computer was too underpowered for it, so I played it every day at my neighbor’s house. To this day, I have nothing but fond memories of the countless hours I spent playing through Final Fantasy VII and experiencing its story and music with wide-eyed amazement. I’m sure tens of millions of other people share a similar history with the game.

So, as you might imagine, nostalgia was partly what motivated me to start Voices of the Lifestream eight years later in January of 2006. I had already participated on the Kong in Concert project and thoroughly enjoyed Chrono Symphonic , which had been released just a week or two prior. I was perhaps also influenced by my re-playing of Final Fantasy VII when I first arrived at Drexel University in the fall of 2005, this time on a computer more than fast enough to actually handle it. I set to work contacting dozens of ReMixers from the OCR community and beyond, started a private project forum, and assembled a track list.

Fast forward to now, over a year and a half later. There is no question that Voices has been a massive undertaking, far beyond what I could have ever imagined. I had anticipated six months – at most – and a mere 20 or 30 mixes. I could not have expected the motivation and enthusiasm of all the remixers who had accepted my invitation, nor could I have expected the countless people asking me to come on board to help complete tracks that no one else had taken. I admit that at first, I was unsure of taking on some remixers who I had never heard of and who had not even been posted on OCR yet. But as it turns out, these individuals have been vital to the project and produced some fantastic arrangements.

In the end, Voices of the Lifestream has forty-five arrangements from Final Fantasy VII , and features the talent of forty-two ReMixers. A huge variety of genres, from soft, acoustic guitar duets, to heavy metal, smooth jazz, Broadway-style piano solo, drum n’ bass, hard trance, film score-style orchestral, and more, has been represented.

I would like to thank every single one of the forty-two talented musicians who contributed to the music on this project. Without your hard work, this project would simply not exist. After seeing people stay up until 6AM mastering a WAV to get it in to me on time, I think I can finally forgive some of you for making me nag about deadlines. ;)

Additionally, I would like to give a special thanks to Jillian Goldin (pixietricks) who has been continually supportive of me throughout the life of the project, despite its burdensome nature – especially towards the end – and who was responsible for formatting, collecting, and editing the vast majority of the content you see on the “Artists” page, as well as providing feedback on a number of project details that has been invaluable to me.

A big special thanks also goes out to djpretzel, who has been rooting for Voices from day one and has contributed a great deal of time in promoting it, designing the website, CD art, and giving the project its actual name. Yet more people also deserve extra praise; Larry Oji (Liontamer), for assisting with countless details and naming numerous remixes, Jon Titterington (JigginJonT) who assisted Larry in determining the final tracklist, Will Roget (bustatunez), Cain McCormack (Fishy), and Mattias Häggström Gerdt (Another Soundscape) for helping myself and others shape our remixes, and anyone else who I may have neglected to mention who has gone above and beyond in helping this project become what it is now.

It has been over 20 months since I first announced on Larry’s “VG Frequency” radio show that I was starting this remix project, torturing FF7 fans every day with my refusal to release all but the smallest of tidbits of information and previews. Now, the wait is finally over.


-Andrew Aversa (zircon)

Voices of the Lifestream Project Director