Having officially wrapped up their Kickstarter with 6.3 million dollars in funding, it is now assured that Shenmue 3 is going to happen. When and in what form it’s released will be closely watched and reported on over the next two years. But for today I’d like to take this time to celebrate the crowdfunding success, and the history of the series, with some great and peculiar tribute music.
We’re all familiar with the likes of Humble Bundle and the Game Music Bundle but there are a handful of other bundling sites out there. Groupees is especially noteworthy as it regularly bundles games, music, graphic novels and digital art collections. Sometimes it’s a game and its soundtrack, other times the collections are curated by a game’s creator or even left to you to pick and choose individual items.
Debuting this week is the Badass Banana Bundle curated by eccentric electronic musician, Remute. The bundle includes nine games, five albums and access to a livestream on July 13th where Remute will mix a bunch of his favorite 16-bit game music. Giving the bundle its name is You Are Not a Banana, a humorous, pixelart audiovisual experiment that includes its own chiptune soundtrack. Other highlights include Remute’s 2009 album Grand Slam, a collection of Frederic “Elmobo” Motte’s demoscene tracks from the late 80’s/early 90’s and his entire soundtrack to the Amiga game, Fury of the Furries.
You can get all of that for a minimum donation of only $2.00 but you can give as much as you’d like. The bundle is scheduled to end on July 15th.
The game prototypes created from Double Fine’s Amnesia Fortnight 2014 are now available on the Humble Bundle store. As with other bundles, this one also includes the soundtracks for the games. The games include Dear Leader, Mnemonic, Steed, and Little Pink Best Buds. These are not full or complete games, but prototypes that were created during this year’s Amnesia Fortnight.
For those of you not familiar with Amnesia Fortnight, it’s a two week long event held within Double Fine. The company selects a handful of game pitches from company employees. Once the projects are chosen, the employees who came up with each selected pitch is made the leader of a small team. These small teams spend the next two weeks building a prototype of the game idea. It’s a chance for employees to gain some experience designing and creating a game, and it allows them to see their own ideas being formed into an actual game.
This year’s Amnesia Fortnight included guest team lead Pendleton Ward, the man behind the TV show Adventure Time. The two week event was also recorded and broadcast as a documentary series by 2 Player Productions, that you can watch on Double Fine’s Youtube channel. It’s an interesting set of game prototypes and it’s also a great way to grab the soundtracks to these unique games. For those of you interested in trying out some interesting game experiments, this may be worth a look. The Amnesia Fortnight 2014 Bundle will be available for the next few weeks on the Humble Bundle store.
The sole (lyrical) vocal track from Module’s original album Imagineering (released last year, reviewed here), entitled “The Pieces Fit,” now has a music video. I am psyched out of my mind to watch it.
For those who don’t remember, Jeramiah “Module” Ross is the New Zealand-based musician who was also responsible for the hit soundtrack for the game Shatter. If you’ve never seen it, that soundtrack also has its own music video, for the song “Amethyst Caverns.”
Our “Other Release” category — a catch-all miscellaneous category for stuff that isn’t technically game music, but close enough that you all probably know about it — had some great nominees. There were plenty more than six albums to choose from. But we narrowed it to six, and now we’re going to give the bronze / silver / gold medals. Well, digital medals. Still pretty sweet, though (thanks Connary!).
So, in case you’ve forgotten our nominees for Best Other Release:
Black Ocean (IMERUAT)
Indie Game: the Movie (Jim Guthrie)
Make Music, Throw Music (SleepyTimeJesse, et al)
SOUNDSHOCK 2: FM FUNK TERRROR!! (Various Artists)
And the winners are… (more…)
Welcome, dear readers, to OSVOSTOTY 2012! This year is our craziest year yet. Every day this week, we will reveal the nominees for seven separate categories. The categories are:
Best Other Release
Best Re-Issue Soundtrack
Best Arrange Album
Best Sound Design
Best In-Game Soundtrack
Best Soundtrack (Overall)
Composer of the Year
After the first week is over, we will announce the winners for each category each day of the following week.
We’re starting with “Best Other Release.” This miscellaneous category covers any original music not written for a game. In this way, we’ve collapsed previous categories such as chiptunes or film soundtracks into this category alongside the usuals: original concept albums. Our nominees for “Other” after the jump!
The Terms & Conditions to Unconditional Love is the debut full-length album, and an intensely personal project, from Simon “Sitorimon” Smith.
I’ve known Smith, the blogger behind Higher Plain Music, for quite some time. We have similar tastes in music. We both love VGM, Celtic/World music, Tori Amos, Derek Webb and many others.
So when Smith told me he had his own album coming out, completely about and inspired by his former significant others, I was psyched.
I want to tell you what I think about this album. So join me after the jump for the Bandcamp embed and my thoughts on this 15-track vocal album from a fellow lover of … well … *good* music. (more…)
That was supposed to be a pun.
This marks the end of “baiyon week.” We hope you enjoyed it, learned more about this particular artist, and perhaps scouted out a few more tunes for your musical library.
But we didn’t get to everything baiyon has ever done. So we just wanted to point out here that baiyon does have plenty of other work out there, if you’re willing to look for it. Some of those items include:
Evening Glow of a River – an EP released around the same time as In The Collaborations 04, you get the title track (10 minutes long), a remix of the track by photographer/musician/producer Eamonn Doyle, and a B-Side “Lupe.” For my money, “Lupe” is the better track.
Dejerabi – a techno/electronica/Arab-ethnic single from Ryoma Sasaki. Buy it, and you get the B-Side (baiyon’s remix of Dejerabi) too.
Vibes Against Vibes (Vol. 1) | (Vol. 2) – Almost everyone that worked with baiyon on the various “In The Collaborations” singles, and plenty more, release their own singles on these two “various artists” collaborations. Vol.1 has two tracks where baiyon collaborates with another artist, and Vol.2 has a baiyon solo track.
Have any more hot baiyon leads? Feel free to leave them in the comments section! Thanks again … and now, let’s go clubbin’! (Seriously, I gotta go to a decent club sometime … just, please, no designer drugs … )
Last night I had a chat with baiyon via twitter about his 2006 album “Like a School on Lunch Time.” I learned some cool things that I wanted to share with you. For example, the video above is a music video that covers two songs from the album and features incredible visuals by catchpulse. The footage is of the elementary school baiyon attended in his youth. In fact, that’s also where a lot of the sound samples come from.
Yes, baiyon revisited his school to get some field recordings. He told me that of the musicians that use this technique, he was most inspired by Aki Onda’s Cassette Memories series. As I mentioned in the album’s review, I’d heard the technique used prominently on Michael Bross’ Subway Meditations.
Finally, for those of you that can read Japanese (or who are okay with a rough translation provided by google), you’ll want to check out this 2006 interview with baiyon from Jet Set. It provides more background and insight on that full-length album; a little something to help you appreciate it more.
So baiyon released a series of four singles between December ’09 and April ’10, each one had him working with different artists. Of note to the VGM community was his “Hue / Saturation / Brightness” single (vol. 03) where he collaborated with Hip Tanaka.
The series seemed be over after the fourth volume. Nothing happened through the rest of 2010 or any of 2011. But then, in June 2012, baiyon surprised everyone by dropping vol. 05, “Take Away My Eyes,” a track that sounded so thoroughly like a PixelJunk Eden tune that one cannot help but wonder if this track was an outtake from PixelJunk 4am (a game whose soundtrack I’m still anxiously waiting for…).
After the jump, we’ll be exploring all five “In the Collaborations” singles and speculating on what might come in volume 06. (more…)
And by “The Outer Limits,” I’m talking about the outer limits of OSV’s scope of coverage.
Generally, we cover game music. We also, on occasion, cover other media score such as film, television and animation. How about a soundtrack for a fake/non-existent indie film that delves into topics including futurism, transhumanism and religion?
Yeah, I know, I’m stretching it. But this album is just that good. Learn more about SOLA-MI after the jump. And if you want to listen along with the review, grab the album here: it’s completely, and legally, free. (more…)
Eirik Suhrke might not be a name that rolls off the tongue, but for many years, this young man has been a central part to the chiptune community. In his early teens, Suhrke traversed the internet as Phlogiston, one of the brightest new minds in the chiptune scene. His style was indescribable, his passion undeniable, and his dedication unmatched, within just a few years, Suhrke had been one of the youngest to receive a release on 8bitpeoples, launched his own successful chiptune/video game soundtrack label service and performed live at Blipfest.
Today, he has taken the proper step into video game music, responsible for the music in Derek Yu’s smash hit Spelunky XBLA. So it is for that reason that we took the time to catch up with an old friend, and talk about his rise to fame, and his current projects.
Check out the interview after the jump (more…)