Over 200 artists and groups, including a good chunk of the VGM and chiptune scene, have gotten together with Bandcamp and are donating all profits from their sales today to the American Civil Liberties Union. The act is a response to current political strife, with Bandcamp donating 100% of their profits to the ACLU, and a large amount of musicians and music labels making additional donations of their profit cuts.
We hope that, as you listen to these albums, you’ll not only discover some great new artists, but will also gain a further appreciation and understanding for the way music transcends all borders, and remember that, even in the darkest of times, there is more that unites us than divides us.
Several video game cover bands and arrangers have thrown their support behind the movement. If you’re looking to purchase new music, beyond the Bandcamp portion, many of the following are making extra donations towards the ACLU:
Regardless of your affiliations, we suggest checking out these and several other VGM artists and bands today for the simple reason of expanding your library of awesome video game tunes.
Secret of Mana composer Hiroki Kikuta has released two original albums to fans in the form of ANGELICFORTRESS and ANGELICFORTRESS DOUBLE HELIX. ANGELICFORTRESS is an album series created to combine Kikuta’s love for progressive rock, jazz fusion, and game music as well as to say thank you to patrons of music in general.
“I was exposed to an endless catalog of awesome progressive rock and jazz fusion albums throughout high school. It had the biggest impact on the formulation of my view of the musical world. Now I want to mix up these genres with modern day videogame music.” – Hiroki Kikuta
You can also keep on top of Kikuta’s other upcoming works and news by following him on his official Twitter.
What do Secret of Mana composer Hiroki Kikuta and the development game RPG Maker have in common? Well, an art contest evidently. Degica, the publisher of RPG Maker has announced a collaboration with the legendary composer involving art and music.
This exciting collaboration will bring two of Kikuta’s incredible music albums to RPG Maker – as DLC to complement your project or to give rise to your next grand game! Inspired by both classic and modern fantasy, the two albums feature Hiroki Kikuta’s memorable style and flowing melodies.
The contest starts on 16th Dec 2016 and ends 16th Jan 2016. Winning art will be used as both cover art and feature art for the albums, and winners will receive a physical copy of the albums – signed by Hiroki Kikuta himself!
Not a bad gig for those more artistically-inclined than musically. The contest also offers monetary prizes for the top three winners. You can check out the details on the RPG Maker Contest website.
“This album was a true labor of love, taking over two years to complete. Personally, this has been the most rewarding project I’ve ever produced and engineered given my childhood affinity for the game and its’ memorable soundtrack. The underlying goal with Hero Muzik Vol. II was to showcase the breadth of amazing music and musicians featured.” – K-Murdock
Source: Scarlet Moon Productions
If you’re a Jimmy Fallon fan, you probably caught Shigeru Miyamoto suddenly pop up with hip-hop group The Roots to play the theme from Super Mario Bros., and if you didn’t you can now!
To help showcase the Nintendo Switch being debuted on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, the Mario legend was the night’s musical guest along with The Roots, strumming away as Fallon acted appropriately.
Next month marks the 15th year of the main iteration of MAGFest; the music and gaming festival that started in 2002 and has blown up into a series of multiple nerd music culture events since. Returning to Nation Harbor to the Gaylord National Hotel from January 5-8th, the event is expected to sell out of badges, so if you were waiting on the full announcements of who will be performing this year before jumping on registering, we’ll help you out.
Last week marked the final music performance announcements for MAGFest 2017. Over the past month, video game artists and bands, chiptune artists and nerdcore performers have been steadily revealed for the upcoming event. If you hadn’t been keeping up, here’s the full lineup:
I’ve been playing a lot of Dragon Quest Builders lately and while the music is delightful — especially for fans of the series with loads of rearranged themes from previous titles — it’s kind of killing me. Most sandbox crafting/survival games follow in the Minecraft mold with minimal and atmospheric soundscapes, if they incorporate music at all. Spending hours meticulously placing blocks and scavenging for resources doesn’t require a galant fanfare or sugary melodies with short loops. Without the distraction of life-threatening combat these tunes have quickly invaded my consciousness and I find them banging around in my head for hours after I’ve stopped playing.
I know what you’re going to say, “Shawn, just turn the volume down”, and in any other game that would totally work. But, you see, for unfathomable reasons you can only turn the music in Dragon Quest Builders down, never off. It’s kind of become a sticking point for some of us on the game’s subreddit and the only consolation I can think of is to ask for similar stories from our dear readers here at OSV.
Are there any soundtracks that started out great but quickly got on your nerves? A town tune or shop music that sent you running for the overworld map? Maybe a main menu theme that you left idling for too long? Share your pain in the comments below.
Happy Halloween (to those who subscribe to the holiday)! We’ve shared some of our personal favorites over the past weeks and years and now we want to hear some of your own. Truly terrifying or playfully macabre. Squirming out of ancient PC sound hardware or freshly
released deceased. Or anywhere in between.
Share some of your favorite spooky game music in the comments below and if you need a little inspiration here are a few of our recent and popular Halloween themed features:
Available at: http://www.randombeats.io/
Saturday Morning RPG, the original soundtrack by Transformers composer Vince DiCola and his partner Kenny Meriedeth which features a bevy of guest musicians, will be receiving a limited release on vinyl as of today! The limited pressing will be available exclusively from Limited Run Games to be sold in two batches on September 16, 2016 at 9:30am Eastern and 5:30pm Eastern.
“Growing up as we did in an era when it was the main and most popular format in which to purchase our favorite music, Kenny and I are excited that our Saturday Morning RPG soundtrack is being released on vinyl. Special thanks to Jayson Napolitano at Scarlet Moon Records and Josh Fairhurst at Mighty Rabbit Studios for making this happen!” – Vince Dicola
If you’re familiar with Alex “Roetaka” Roe, you’d know he’s been a artist in the arrangement scene for a while, dating back a good decade. Almost two years ago, he released an album inspired by the FromSoftware game Bloodborne, which at the time was not quite released but Roe loved the concept enough to create ‘Borne in Blood’ to celebrate it’s upcoming debut.
Evidently the game made such a lasting impact on Roe, he decided to make a second original album inspired by Bloodborne (Not that I blame him; Bloodborne’s music is some of my favorite of recent years and was my OSVOSTOTY pick for 2015).
‘Night of the Hunt’ is my new original album inspired by Bloodborne. When I made ‘Borne in Blood’, I was writing it not knowing a lot about what the game actually was or what its music was quite going to be like. Now that I’ve played the game a ton and my skills have increased so much since that album, I was quite excited at the prospect of returning to the world of Bloodborne and writing something which is both fitting and quintessentially me. – Alex Roe
‘Night of the Hunt’ will be released on August 15th on Roe’s Bandcamp, as well as Spotify, iTunes and Amazon.
Special thanks to Shnabubula for the heads-up on this album. From what I’ve heard in the trailer, it sounds exactly what you’d hope for some a Bloodborne-inspired album – gothic, orchestral goodness.
Ever want to really turn up the immersive experience with your tabletop gaming? How about having custom soundtracks to provide background sounds to your RPGs? That’s the focus of Syrinscape – a sound design app that adds a variety of background sound to your tabletop gaming.
Syrinscape uses a powerful audio engine and complex algorithms to produce ever-changing soundscapes and rich encounter specific music. SoundSets are made up of numerous independently controllable ‘elements’, each representing a component of the audio environment. Each ‘element’ distributes randomly chosen samples into the 3D environment surrounding the listener. All this works together to create immersive sound with no annoying repetitions or patterns.
As the product’s website and the introductory Youtube video highlight, you can use samples from a variety of landscapes and settings including fantasy, gothic, cyberpunk and more. The Syrinscape player itself if free to download, and you purchase individual soundsets in their store or purchase a monthly subscription to access all soundsets in their library as well as any future releases as they come out. Some soundsets are for specific tabletop games, as their most recent release, A Song of Silver SoundPack, is the “complete audio solution for the fourth chapter of the Pathfinder RPG Adventure Path: Hell’s Rebels.”
The app can be run on PC, Mac, tablet or even smartphone and custom tailored for specific sound experiences within individuals tabletop games. You can check out more on their website or Facebook page.