To say that Brave Wave’s astoundingly lush, 4-LP Street Fighter II vinyl release was “highly anticipated” is not a minor understatement. By the time I realized the albums were even on sale, they were sold out. The supply wasn’t necessarily limited either as the release jumped quickly to #1 on Bandcamp’s weekly sales charts. In response, Brave Wave has opened up pre-orders for a second pressing of the album but even by the time you read this post they may very well be gone again.
As a combination thank you and consolation for the amazing demand for the album, Brave Wave is offering 40% discounts on the physical CD versions of the following three fan-favorite releases, delivered in time for Christmas to boot.
Heart Beat Circuit is the solo album of Brave Wave’s composer Smoke Thief, featuring collaborations with industry veterans Manami Matsumae (Mega Man), Saori Kobayashi (Panzer Dragoon Saga) and Takahiro Izutani (Bayonetta series). Checkout code: hbc40
Journey is the band project of Saori Kobayashi (Panzer Dragoon Saga) and Yumiko Takahashi (Suikoden vocalist). The album features new original music inspired by the Panzer Dragoon series of games, compositions from Crimson Dragon, Crimson Dragon: Side Story, and a special appearance by legendary composer Nobuo Uematsu (of Final Fantasy). Checkout code: journey40
In Flux is an East-meets-West music album that merges the two oceans together, featuring the musicians of Evanescence, Mega Man, Ninja Gaiden, Silent Hill, Panzer Dragoon, Sworcery, Spelunky and many more. It’s an album that celebrates the joyous nature of video game-inspired music, not constrained by genres or languages. Checkout code: influx40
I’ll be back with more coverage of Street Fighter II: The Definitive Soundtrack soon including the music itself and the 3-disc CD release that will ship in mid-December.
Adding to your Black Friday Deals of the weekend, from now until Cyber Monday, the whole library of game music albums released under Scarlet Moon Records is on sale at the “Name Your Price” level. This includes Saturday Morning RPG by Vince DiCola and Kenny Meriedeth, the soundtracks to Silent Horror and Dragon Fantasy Book II by Dale North, and the original and arranged soundtracks to Monarch: Heroes of a New Age by Goomin Nam & several guest artists!
You can check out the entire catalog of albums on Scarlet Moon’s Bandcamp page and get in on the savings.
Here on the Arrangement of the Week we’ve had a lot of the metal rock entries. So this week I thought it would be a good change of pace to feature a cover from a different rock sub-genre. Enter our chiptune rock arrangement of the Donkey Kong Country 3 track “Hot Pursuit” from artists jmr and streifig, who make up the duo Marshall Art.
The soundtrack to Donkey Kong Country 3 has an interesting history. Most notably that it has two completely different soundtracks. The SNES version was mostly written by Eveline Fischer, while the Game Boy Advance version has a completely reworked soundtrack by David Wise. This arrangement of the DK3 track “Hot Pursuit” is from the former and is titled “My Monkey Drives a Maserati.”
The track takes off right from the start, evoking much of the same energy present in the original piece. At first the chiptune instruments dominate the track, but the electric guitar and drums steadily build a presence. At various points, like the 1’30” and 2’30” mark, the synth instruments drop out to allow the guitars to have the spotlight. In each instance they act as brief interludes that contrast well with the rest of the arrangement.
What I enjoy about the track is the overall blending of the chiptune sounds with the modern rock instruments. The track sounds like it could exist as an actual track within the game. As I mentioned, the chiptune elements start off as the primary sound source, but the guitars eventually find space to show off and really add to the piece. All in all, it’s a fun arrangement with plenty of energy.
Have you heard any good chiptune rock covers, arrangements, or remixes this week? Feel free to share them with us in the comments below. You can check out Marshall Art’s “My Monkey Drives a Maserati” on OC ReMix.
The Legend of Legacy is one the recent JRPG offerings available on the Nintendo 3DS. Released in January 2015 in Japan and just last month in North America, it’s touted as being the spiritual successor to the SaGa series. The soundtrack was composed by Masashi Hamauzu, and fans of his music will be happy to hear that this soundtrack comes with all of his usual flair and style.
Mexico’s premier video game event, VCONCERT (or VCON) is featuring a stellar lineup of performers this year, celebrating the anniversaries of some of the most iconic titles in gaming history!
Going on this weekend, VCON 2015 will celebrate the 25th anniversary of Star Fox, the 30th anniversary of Metroid and the 25th Anniversary of Street Fighter II be featuring renowned composer of Kingdom Hearts and Street Fighter II, Yoko Shimomura, who will be joined by top acts in the game music cover band scene including The OneUps (who will perform a special tribute to late Nintendo President and CEO, Satoru Iwata), Metroid Metal, and Royal Corneria Airforce. The fourth annual VCONCERT event is sponsored by Spotify and will take place in Mexico City, Mexico at the Plaza Condesa on November 28, 2015.
Past VCON events have featured a ton of fantastic guests and composers and is sure to be an amazing experience, so be sure to grab tickets if you’re available!
It only takes two to make a trend, right? If that phrase I just coined holds true then it’s been a trendy year for old school game composers making a return to form through the medium of Outrun-inspired mobile racing games. First it was Motohiro Kawashima — lead composer on Streets of Rage 3 — returning for the trippy PlayStation Mobile racer, Oh Deer! (also my first post on OSV). Most recently it’s Barry Leitch, composer of such classic racing games as Top Gear, Lotus Turbo Challenge 2, and the San Francisco Rush series.
Leitch has returned after years away from video game music to provide the soundtrack to — wait for it — a new Outrun-inspired mobile racing game. Horizon Chase has been out on iOS since August but it’s just come to Android which is where I discovered it and its fantastic music. Fans of Top Gear should be especially pleased both with the gameplay and soundtrack. Dodging competitors over undulating terrain and tearing through rolling corners, the music is perfect accompaniment. Leitch’s characteristic arpeggio melodies are updated with modern synths, tinny guitars and just a touch of dubstep. The pacing is perfect and the sound is both new and delightfully cracktro — err, retro.
Leitch sums it up in a recent Kill Screen article by saying, “the stuff I wrote now is the same as back then, but this is finally how I imagined it sounding in my head 20 years ago. Two decades later, you can finally get the music to sound like how you wanted it.”
It’s a bit of a shame that the races aren’t marathon length to give these songs more time to jam. Fortunately, there’s a soundtrack for that, created by Leitch himself and available in physical form from his site. With fifteen tracks and 59 minutes of music it’s one of the longest soundtracks I’ve seen for a mobile game and comes complete with full color liner notes and artwork for $20. I already picked up the game but I just might have to grab the CD as well to keep this fantastic music playing.
If you’re still on the fence about GameChop’s latest release — bLiNd’s Chozo Legacy tribute to Super Metroid — and our own review hasn’t swayed you, maybe some free tracks will. GameChop has just released Chozo Legacy: Free Missions on Bandcamp offering four tracks from the full album for whatever price you’d like to pay, including $0.00. The four songs are embedded below and when you’re ready for more you can pick up the full album for $10 on Loudr.
Dennaton Games, makers of the violently psychedelic Hotline Miami series, have put both games on sale for the weekend with all of the profits going to the game’s musicians. That includes contributing artists like MOON, Jasper Byrne, Light Club, El Huervo, Perturbator, Scattle, Mitch Murder and many more.
Despite the game’s strikingly gory and pulsating pixelart visuals, it’s the music that completely defines the experience. I haven’t picked up the sequel but the original was one of my favorite soundtracks from 2012, soaking with grungy EDM, glorious 80’s synth and eerie distortion.
The sale runs from now until Monday, November 23rd (10am PST) and includes the following discounts:
For this entry of Arrangement of the Week, we’ll be looking at an arrangement from a more recent game. The Last of Us, like many great games, boasts a wonderful score. The game’s main theme “The Last of Us” is a beautiful and mournful piece from composer Gustavo Santaolalla, that sets the mood for the game’s world and story perfectly.
The arranger for this week’s selection is nckmusic who presents his own acoustic interpretation of the main theme from The Last of Us.
Much of what nckmusic does with music isn’t too far from the tone of the original soundtrack. If anything, this version is much more solemn. The arrangement begins with the piano playing the opening arpeggios that were previously performed on guitar. When the strings come in to accompany, they create a haunting ambient boom in the lower register, helping build on the sorrowful atmosphere. At 1’37” a solo cello enters with another solemn presentation of the original melody.
What I like most about this arrangement is how small scale and intimate it stays. While later parts of the track do build up with percussion, and even a few siren effects, it maintains its haunting and somber tone throughout. Overall, a wonderful adaptation of an already excellent piece of music.
Have any favorite game music arrangements, remixes, or covers? Let us know in the comment section. You can check out nckmusic’s “The Last of Us” arrangement on OC ReMix.
On November 13, 2015, Cyan’s kick-started game Obduction, a spiritual successor to the hit Myst series announced on their developer blog that none other than Robyn Miller will be composing the music! Robyn Miller famously composed the music to the original Myst game, and its sequel Riven. In fact these were the first video game scores I ever owned on CD.
The blog also provided a shot of Robyn Miller’s work space where you can see he’s already begun writing the score. No samples of the music have been released yet but if you missed it, Robyn Miller re-mastered the soundtrack to the original Myst game which is still available for purchase over at Loudr.
If you want to be notified when pre-orders are available you can sign up with the Obduction team here. Keep checking back with us here at OSV for news on this soundtrack as I’m very eager to hear it!
Do you have any of the soundtracks from the Myst series? Is this a soundtrack you’re looking forward to?
Chozo Legacy is the latest release by music producer and game remixer bLiNd, released through record label GameChops. It’s a 10-track album featuring music from the SNES game Super Metroid remixed in a variety of electronic house, trance, and techno music styles. The album sets out to be more than just an assortment of remixed tracks though, and it achieves this goal quite well. If you’re a fan of the Metroid series or EDM, read on to learn more.
I have listened to the Shadowrun :Hong Kong at least 5 times since I received a digital copy to review. The soundtrack spans 28 tracks and is spread across 2 CDs in its physical release.
The music itself is very melodic, uses a variety of instruments combined with unique sounds, and overall presents a very engaging listening experience. Read on to see my thoughts about what I loved so much about this soundtrack and hear some must listen tracks.