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Ancient rock band Powerman 5000 have accused MMORPG Final Fantasy XIV of flagrantly stealing their music, an accusation which has been greeted by skeptics as little more than a plea for attention.

The disgruntled band made the comment on their official Facebook page, prompting Final Fantasy XIV producer and director Naoki Yoshida to post a response denying the accusation:

I have read through your comments concerning the BGM for the 2nd phase of the Containment Bay S1T7 battle with Sephirot, and I would like to personally explain how the track was conceived.

As most FINAL FANTASY fans already know, Sephirot (the Fiend) is a legacy boss character who originally appeared in FINAL FANTASY VI.

When considering how to portray Sephirot’s return in FINAL FANTASY XIV, we decided to pay tribute to FFVI by working VI’s “Battle to the Death” track into the Containment Bay S1T7’s first phase, while opting to create an FFXIV original for the second.

Building upon the motif of Sephirot as a representation of the World Tree, to create this FINAL FANTASY XIV original track, we further incorporated story-driven themes of death and a warped obsession with life, all while utilizing a musical genre─industrial rock─which we believed would provide substantial emphasis to the message.

Industrial rock is a popular genre that can be further divided into numerous sub-genres. Countless songs from these genres have been released worldwide, and I have been made aware of an allegation regarding similarities between an existing track and the track created for the 2nd phase of Containment Bay S1T7.

However, track composer Masayoshi Soken, has also stated to me that he was unaware of the track in question while working on this FINAL FANTASY track.

We hope that you continue to enjoy FINAL FANTASY XIV battle content.

The allegedly infringing piece can be heard about 5 minutes into the video, when the music transitions:

The Powerman 5000 song that they claim was “ripped-off”:


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    Avatar of Palmtop Twintails
    Comment by Palmtop Twintails
    05:23 01/03/2016 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    They should just issue a DMCA claim through youtube, Square's videos will quickly be taken down by youtube's efficient and fair automated copyright claim sysem.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:24 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Oy Vey! muh copyrights!!!

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:05 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    You're so right that you can't be wrong.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:53 01/03/2016 # ! Good (+0.8)

    "The drum track? Different tempo, different instruments, different pattern, different beat. PM5K sticks to the 4x4 pattern of Kick | HiHat | Kick+Snare | Hihat | Variating every so often but very little. and the XIV track seems to ignore anything not producing bass for most of it, using more loose and open hats. sometimes at 4x4 sometimes 2x2 sometimes otherwise.

    The guitar? The only similarity if you can even call it that is the 2 chord progression (lol)

    The intros? XIV is more bass, PM5K is more treble.

    The vocals? XIV is more lower range hz and spread out, PM5K is more higher range and closer together with screaming, the only words the two songs share in common are "World's" "Taking over" nothing else.

    The song overall is a different tempo, the XIV track is deeper and has more of an industrial feel to it.

    I've been a fan of PM5K for a lonnnnnnnnng time, but this is making me have serious concern for their hearing abilities.

    Personal conclusion: Calling this a "Rip off" of PM5K is like calling Gangnam Style a ripoff of Baby. LOL"

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:17 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    All I heard from the song was, blah blah blah then BLAH BLAH BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!

    Avatar of dukemagus
    Comment by dukemagus
    06:40 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Anon, if you're right about what you're saying (i don't understand jack about music), you should make a full blown analysis and post somewhere! Worth sharing to most people

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:00 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Found the analysis on reddit, though even without any experience it isn't too hard to pick apart some of the similarities as superfluous at best and the result of people not affiliated with Industrial music hearing two songs for the firsttime and deciding they're similar. If you played two different classical pieces for most people they'd probably say one composer ripped the other off.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Uhm, what, no, the lyrics and tempo/beat are very clearly structured similarly. The XIV sounds honestly like they took part of WWC, isolated it, and then wrote similar lyrics over that before attempting to drown out the most obvious parts of the similarities in their mix.

    XIV:

    "What is it like when you pull back the curtain,"

    WWC:

    "What is it really (pause) that is going on here?"

    The similarity in the sentence structure and rhythm is clear. The XIV song eventually gets to draw (or rip off) other musical styles, but the verses very clearly ring the same.

    This is the same thing as that artist from Bungie saying he didn't know what the F2000 was when they made Halo's assault rifle. You know, I'm sure they didn't know what the MP7 was when they made their submachinegun for that series, or the NTW-20 for their sniper rifle either.

    It's one thing if they at least admit they were inspired, very heavily inspired, by Powerman 5000, but this: "However, track composer Masayoshi Soken, has also stated to me that he was unaware of the track in question while working on this FINAL FANTASY track." just reads like a damn lie no matter how you spin it. The superfluous amount of words added reeks of having to exert conscious effort to make the statement (i.e., lying)

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:13 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Your "most obvious" similarity is three words?

    Well Damn. That totally puts to rest all of that other guys detailed musical analysis.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:37 05/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Do you really know what you're talking about when you talk about sentence structure?

    Avatar of Blazenwhiper
    Comment by Blazenwhiper
    07:02 01/03/2016 # ! Good (+0.4)

    The only thing that is really similar is the tone that is used in the vocals.
    But even that is pretty iffy.

    Avatar of Wilhem
    Comment by Wilhem
    17:17 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    It does sound similar to be honest...

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:59 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Clearly biased, aren't we? Whether or not it was the intent, the track is clearly similar enough to raise flags.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:46 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Fuck it.
    How much would it cost to pay off PM5k for this just to make em happy?
    10k?
    Lifetime subscriptions with full retainers?
    There you go.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:21 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    For me it is obvious a tribute! include make me remember this band how I forget a lot time ago inside my memories...

    If I'm a musician, and someone make a tribute like that, I'll be happy. Probably I'll include just for fun a cover of this song on my album or maybe in a live concert.

    Avatar of Riiku
    Comment by Riiku
    02:07 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    That some shit band

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:03 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    So this one raised flags, but not Good King Moggle's theme song which is based (just BASED) on The Night Before Christmas..? This is why people hate the copyright system: any fool can claim "ownership" over any little thing and somehow get away with it because nobody understands how it actually works.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:10 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    I would never play a rpg online (mmrpg) cause it consumes a fucking lot of time!

    Comment by Anonymous
    16:22 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yeah no one asked you anything about that.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:26 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    umad

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:29 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Obvious ripoff is obvious.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:40 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Most of FFXIV songs are basically from something else lol, I noticed long ago, that a section of Limsa Lominsa's theme music is the theme music for old "Beef it's what's for dinner" commercials.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:40 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Man, if I didn't know any better, I would have assumed they just asked PM5k to do the song for them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:11 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Just the bass line and the mood, plus a few of the lyrics. Personally I believe the only time a copyright should come into question is when the complete package is being mimicked and sold, not just a piece.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:09 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, there's also the case of "Ice, Ice, Baby" vs "Under Pressure" to think about. Sure it's not "exactly" the same, but seriously? You straight ripped them off.

    This feels more like they're ripping off Powerman 5000 with a cover band that can't quite get it right.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:20 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    It's called sampling, you fool. Unlike Vanilla Ice, you clearly know nothing about hip hop.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:35 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    cherry pop baby

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:15 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    SO if you were to right a popular song and I just used, say, the guitar riff, you would be ok with that?

    Avatar of Dan
    Comment by Dan
    10:31 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    A guitar riff is a pretty big piece, what they used in this was some similar vocals and that's about it. It shouldn't be a big deal. It's definitely different enough in my opinion.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:41 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Alleged nothing, that's a pretty blatant rip off of it. Like they said its one thing to use it as a inspiration another to straight up rip it off as your own.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Clearly it's not a rip off. The guy who did the song claims he has never heard of the original, I mean the OTHER song that sounds so very like it. They'd never steal music or lie about these things. Especially not the guys at Square. It's not like Robo's Theme from Chrono Trigger ripped off "Never Gonna Give You Up" rather flagrantly. Or the non-stop ripping off in Earthbound. Nope, never heard of those other songs.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Come on everyone has heard worlds collide. Its been in friggin movies. Thats lie right there unless he hasnt seen any action american movies.

    Im not saying its a rip off or not. its not my job to judge that. and the analasyse from another person on here anon is pretty accurate, but to say you havent heard the song atleast once is far fetched. and given squares history... it is questionable.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:32 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I had never heard it before this incident. Then again, I don't give a crap about industrial rock.

    Avatar of Canadane
    Comment by Canadane
    08:18 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    PM5000 had already taken back any accusations. Probably because his lawyers told him to do it.

    https://www.facebook.com/officialpowerman5000/posts/1164522363559770

    "UPDATE on the Final Fantasy music controversy.

    Fascinated by the level of interest in this. Opinions range from total agreement to extreme hatred towards the subject (and me apparently)

    So crazy.

    The original post was a two sentence observation about a piece of music that was way too similar to be coincidence.

    Since then it has been taken as some sort of declaration of war. Oh, internet...

    Anyway. There's no lawsuit, there's no cry for attention or publicity. Just an observation.

    Going back to my normal M.O of not participating in social media. Thanx for the fun!

    See ya on the road in March/April

    -Spider"

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:34 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    Hah, they must be new to interwebz.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:53 01/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    This is super late reporting, shit. Pm5k already redacted and claimed that no lawsuit or rip off happened after flak from both sides.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:58 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    I can see why this might be confusing but after listening to both songs I can't see this as a rip-off.
    Similar yes.
    After all you can only make so much music before a songs start sounding familiar.

    Omg, we're running out of music.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:31 02/03/2016 # ! Neutral (0)

    They changed it enough to avoid being sued, but clearly used the Powerman 5000 song as the staring point.

    Plagiarism doesn't seem to be viewed as negatively in Japan as the West. This is just a another in a long list, I still remember how disappointed I was when I realized my favorite track from one of the animes than first interested me (Record of Lodoss War) was a note for note rip off from the Leviathan soundtrack. Magical Power of Evil Mage Wagnard = Too Hot.




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