Game Music

Arrangement of the Week: Seven Pipes to Heaven

April 15, 2016 | | Comment? Share thison Facebook Arrangement of the Week: Seven Pipes to Heavenon Twitter

Arrangement of the Week

Many of the acoustic arrangements that get coverage on Arrangement of the Week fall into the classical/orchestral genre of music. However, I do come across acoustic jazz covers that, while not as common, bring a welcome breath of fresh air to the usual collection of acoustic game music arrangements out there.

For this week, we have another piece from artist Nostalvania titled “Seven Pipes to Heaven,” a reference to a Miles Davis jazz standard “Seven Steps to Heaven.” The track is a jazz trio arrangement of two pieces, “Birabuto Kingdom” and “Muda Kingdom,” from Super Mario Land by composer Hirokazu Tanaka.

Nostalvania’s arrangement starts and ends with material from the game’s first level Birabuto Kingdom, while keeping the Muda Kingdom material in the middle. Despite altering the meter to 7/8, the melodic material is still quite recognizable. Improvisation sections also act as transitions between the two themes, providing some original material along with the Super Mario Land tunes. The Muda Kingdom music was actually a little harder for me to spot initially because it blends so well with the original improv material.

I like how the arrangement manages to capture the spirit of earlier Miles Davis jazz ensembles, even if the ensemble instruments are different. The material from Super Mario Land fits the genre well and the memorable melodies shine through as a result. The meter change is also a nice touch, creating an uplifting but slightly off-kilter sway to the music. Overall, it’s another wonderful jazz adaptation by Nostalvania of some great game music.

Have any favorite jazz covers of video game tunes. Let us know in the comments. You can check out Nostalvania’s “Seven Pipes to Heaven” on OC ReMix.

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