Featured, Game Music, Indie Music


Tranfiguration (Review)

Email This Post Share on Facebook Tranfiguration (Review)Tweet This Post Print This Post 07.11.14 | | Comment?

I feel that I must get one thing very clear before you continue to read this review. My speciality is piano music. I am a pianist, I listen to a lot of piano music, from Mozart to Debussy, and I go to piano concerts in London. I’m also as close to an expert on the use of the piano in games as you might get, from the triumphant fanfare like riff from Halo 3 to the myriad of Final Fantasy Piano albums. As a result, my standards may be unrealistically high. I also have a confession to make: I’ve never played Journey! I know I know, it’s on my to-do list. This is particularly heinous of me as not only is the game supposed to be amazing, but the soundtrack is said to be excellent as well. However, this might not be a bad thing for this review, as I will not be influence by the game or the original soundtrack. I will take the music at face value, in its own right, separate from its related media.

It’s interesting to note that the composer, Austin Wintory, seems to have had little to do with this album. Transfiguration has been arranged by the Laura Intravia, the singer in the last track, and performed by Robert Thies. In general I think this is a good thing because, as a composer myself, I know how hard it can be to separate myself from my own compositions. I prefer to arrange for other people so I can focus on the advantages and disadvantages of the instrument, rather than being influenced by my own work. So with that said, let’s take a look at Transfiguration. (more…)

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Game Music


New Super Smash Bros. Arrange Album is Coming This Fall

Email This Post Share on Facebook New Super Smash Bros. Arrange Album is Coming This FallTweet This Post Print This Post 07.10.14 | | Comment?

If you’re a Nintendo fan, you probably can’t wait for the new Super Smash Bros. games that are coming out for the 3DS and WiiU this year. While you are waiting, you should probably check out this upcoming Super Smash Bros. arrangement album. To celebrate and pay tribute to the franchise, a new arrange album titled Harmony of Heroes will be coming to Super Smash Bros. fans this fall. The album is being produced by Shinesparkers, the group that brought us the Harmony of a Hunter albums, a set of arrange projects that were dedicated to the Metroid franchise. Harmony of Heroes aims to give the music from the Super Smash Bros. franchise a similar treatment.

The album will be covering pieces from across every iteration of the game series. There are over sixty different artists contributing to this album including Zack Parrish, Sean Haeberman, and Vomitron. There’s also some excellent artwork being made to accompany the project’s release. The collaborative project will feature over ninety pieces of music. This colossal arrangement album will be available for download on the Harmony of Heroes site this fall. Be sure to check the Harmony of Heroes Facebook page and the Harmony of Heroes site for more information.

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Chip Music, Game Music


Temporus Kickstarter Showcases C-jeff Chiptunage

Email This Post Share on Facebook Temporus Kickstarter Showcases C-jeff ChiptunageTweet This Post Print This Post 07.09.14 | | Comment?

If you haven’t heard, there’s this new little Kickstarter for a 2D platformer/shoot-em-up hybrid game called Temporus that’s currently seeking funding. Why that is relevant in this case is because Ubiktune founder Dmitry “C-jeff” Zhemkov is the one who will be composing for the game should it reach its goal.

Featuring a chiptune prog flavor inspired by the FM synthesis of the Sega Genesis era and retro NES 8-bit synths, C-jeff currently has a preview on his Soundcloud of what he plans to do with the Temporus soundtrack should it reach its goal.

“Think the ambient chiptunes of FEZ combined with the classic progressive rocky stylings of Transformers: The Movie (1986), and you’ll have the basis for Temporus. It’s this, and so much more.” – C-jeff

Beyond that, should the project reach its stretch goals, a remix album will be created featuring other names in the game music industry such as Jeff Ball (Tiny Barbarian, Globulus) and Mitch Murder (Kung Fury, Interception LP) and the one and only Mr. Vince DiCola! (Rocky IV, Transformers: The Movie, Saturday Morning RPG)

The Kickstarter has under 2 weeks left in its campaign and looks to have some interesting style in its construction that draws inspiration from games like Mega Man and Cave Story, so why not throw a few bucks at Temporus to help fund a fun-looking indie game that is sure to have some great tunes to enjoy?


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Chip Music, Featured, Game Music, Indie Music


New MAGFest 8.5 Event is Launching This September

Email This Post Share on Facebook New MAGFest 8.5 Event is Launching This SeptemberTweet This Post Print This Post 07.08.14 | | Comment?

The creators of MAGFest, the Music and Gaming Festival, have launched another event that will take place from September 12-14 at the Hilton Mark Center in Alexandria, Virginia. Unlike the regular MAGFest event, which takes place in National Harbor, Maryland every January, this event is taking place at the original MAGFest venue this fall. A few years ago, the main MAGFest event was moved to the National Harbor location, when the festival got bigger and required a larger venue. This new event aims to bring back the vibe of the early MAGFest days to current day festival attendees. Essentially a smaller and more intimate setting for game and music fans. MAGFest 8.5 will be happening in addition to MAGFest 13, the latter of which is set for late January.

For those of you not familiar with MAGFest, it’s a festival, as the name implies, dedicated to games and music. The event features tons of concerts from videogame cover/remix bands and guest appearances by some of the top videogame composers in the world. Past composer guests have included Nobuo Uematsu, Yuzo Koshiro, Chris Huelsbeck, and Tommy Tallarico.

Because of the smaller venue size for MAGFest 8.5, the tickets are going to be limited to only 2000 attendees. If you’re interested in getting out to this event, grab tickets and hotel reservations while you still can. Guests and music performers have yet to be announced. Information on hotels and tickets can be found at the MAGFest 8.5 website.

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Game Music, Indie Music


Dragon Fantasy: Book II OST (Review)

Email This Post Share on Facebook Dragon Fantasy: Book II OST (Review)Tweet This Post Print This Post 07.03.14 | | Comment?

If you frequent videogame news sites like Destructoid, the name Dale North is probably familiar to you. He’s been a contributor and editor for many news sites across the web. Currently he is the Editor-In-Chief at Destructoid.com, providing readers with insight on games and gaming events. But did you know that Dale North is also a talented musician and composer? Recently he was tasked with writing the music to the game Dragon Fantasy: Book II. North has done some work with music remixes, including work on Overclocked Remix, but this is his first time writing and releasing an official videogame soundtrack.

The game Dragon Fantasy: Book II is an indie title that pays homage to old-school RPGs. Everything from the combat system down to the SNES era pixel art is meant to evoke the games of the earlier console generations. For this project, North is tasked with producing original music that can engage the players and at the same time contribute to the sense of nostalgia that the game is aiming for. A complicated composition task to undertake. So does Mr. North rise to the challenge? Read on to find out. (more…)

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Featured, Gear, Music Production, Software


The Korg DSN-12 Synthesizer Will Be Released on the 3DS This Fall

Email This Post Share on Facebook The Korg DSN-12 Synthesizer Will Be Released on the 3DS This FallTweet This Post Print This Post 06.30.14 | | Comment?

Detune, the company which brought the Korg M01D to the Nintendo 3DS last year, is bringing another synthesizer program to the platform. This latest music program is the Korg DSN-12.

What on earth is the Korg DSN-12? Well, it’s a synthesizer program that allows you to assemble music patterns to create your own songs. There are twelve analog monophonic synthesizers, sixty four sequence steps for building songs, a series of effects that you can use for the synths, and the ability for users to exchange and share data between systems.

One of the main features is a 3D oscilloscope, which gives you a visual representation of the sounds that you are creating. You can see this used in the demo songs below.

Because this is on the 3DS, users can make use of the touch screen to configure note patterns, sequences, and other attributes. With these tools you can create real time changes in a live performance or simply build a sequence for a static composition. The Korg DSN-12 will be coming to the US and Europe on the Nintendo eShop this fall for the 3DS and 2DS. Be sure to check out Detune’s main site for more information.

Source: Detune

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Chip Music, Game Music


Shovel Knight OST Out on Bandcamp and it’s Awesome

Email This Post Share on Facebook Shovel Knight OST Out on Bandcamp and it’s AwesomeTweet This Post Print This Post 06.27.14 | | Comment?

If you haven’t heard, the soundtrack to Shovel Knight, one of the most anticipated games to come out of Kickstarter in the past year, has officially been released on composer Jake “Virt” Kaufman’s Bandcamp. Along for the ride is also a special arrangement album featuring several of the game’s tunes done by several artists in the arrangement scene.

They’re good. Really good. Currently-top-on-Bandcamp good. And at a “Name-Your-Price” dollar amount to get both albums, you have no reason not to get them. And to take it a step further, Kaufman has even released the .NSF original files for anybody to has a compatible player to enjoy!

We’ll no doubt be doing an extensive review of the albums in the near future, but until then, be sure to grab them and enjoy the awesome.

Shovel Knight OST

Strike the Earth! Shovel Knight Arranged OST

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Game Music


Viking Guitar Live’s Legion Album w/ Exclusive Track

Email This Post Share on Facebook Viking Guitar Live’s Legion Album w/ Exclusive TrackTweet This Post Print This Post 06.25.14 | | Comment?

If you were at this past MAGFest 12, you might have been lucky enough to see Viking Guitar Live perform a face-melting set in the wee hours of the morning that managed to kick of the festival in just the right way. If you didn’t, well you’re still in luck, because the band named after Erik “Viking Guitar” Peabody is releasing an entire album featuring the tracks played at MAGFest in full glory. It may not melt your face, but it will probably cause auditory hallucinations; of awesome. And fortunately, we’ve got an exclusive tidbit of the upcoming album “Legion” to share before it’s drop this coming Saturday, June 28th.


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Game Music, Indie Music


rePLAY: Symphony of Heroes Concert Tickets Are Now On Sale

Email This Post Share on Facebook rePLAY: Symphony of Heroes Concert Tickets Are Now On SaleTweet This Post Print This Post 06.24.14 | | Comment?

Are you a fan of symphonic game music? If so, you should check out the recently announced rePLAY game music concert tour. This concert series, titled rePLAY: Symphony of Heroes, features music from Halo, Guild Wars 2, Journey, Final Fantasy, Shadow of the Colossus, and many other great games. This program will be touring the US, Canada, Mexico, and England. The concerts will begin early next month in Houston, TX, followed by a concert in Los Angeles, CA.

The rePLAY: Symphony of Heroes concerts follow a format similar to shows like Video Games Live and Distant Worlds. A full symphony orchestra performing game music while footage of the games are shown on an overhead screen. This tour’s theme will be based around the hero’s journey, the monomyth narrative structure identified by Joseph Campbell. Each selection of game music will represent a chapter in the hero’s journey. The concert will also feature narration by Nigel Carrington, the narrator of the game Dear Esther.

The concert dates and locations are as follows:

Houston, TX (July 5, 2014)
Los Angeles, CA (July 6, 2014)
Toronto, Ontario (September 6, 2014)
London, England (September 26, 2014)
Montreal, Quebec (October 4, 2014)
Austin, TX (October 19, 2014)
Monterrey, Mexico (October 24, 2014)
Mexico City, Mexico (October 26, 2014)
Boston, MA (November 21, 2014)
Atlanta, GA (January 17, 2015)
Grand Rapids, MI (February 7, 2015)
Portland, OR (March 6, 2015)
Phoenix, AZ (June 5, 2015)

Tickets are currently on sale for most of the concert locations and dates. If you’re a lover of game music and symphonic performances, definitely give this concert series a look. More information on the rePLAY: Symphony of Heroes concerts can be found on the rePLAY website.

Source: rePlay Symphony

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Game Music


Scarlet Moon Brandishing BLADEMODE for free!

Email This Post Share on Facebook Scarlet Moon Brandishing BLADEMODE for free!Tweet This Post Print This Post 06.21.14 | | Comment?

If you weren’t at this past MAGFest (and shame on you if that’s the case) and you missed out on the merch area where great artists like Kris Huber were selling their musical ware, you are in luck! Not only can you still purchase physical copies of Huber’s album BLADEMODE that also features fellow MAGFest attendees and stage maestros Grant “Stemage” Henry, Sean” Ailsean” Stone and our own George “Norg” Nowik, but you can get it FOR FREE!

With the purchase of any physical copy of any Scarlet Moon Records album, you will receive a physical numbered copy of BLADEMODE for free while supplies last! With unique arrangements of music from Sonic the Hedgehog, River City Ransom and Shantae, it’s a pretty sweet deal. Previews of all of Huber’s music can be found on his bandcamp page.

More details can be found on the Scarlet Moon Productions Facebook page, along with links to their own albums Dragon Fantasy Book II OST and Monarch: Heroes of a New Age OST.

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Game Music, Indie Music


Come Join the Shovel Knight OST Release Party

Email This Post Share on Facebook Come Join the Shovel Knight OST Release PartyTweet This Post Print This Post 06.20.14 | | Comment?

On June 26th the new indie platformer game Shovel Knight will be released across multiple platforms. On that same day, Noise Channel will be hosting a listening party for the game’s soundtrack. The music for Shovel Knight has been composed primarily by Jake “Virt” Kaufman. A handful of tracks for the game were written by Mega Man composer Manami Matsumae. The digital copy of the soundtrack is set to be released on the same day at ‘pay what you want’ on Kaufman’s Bandcamp site.

To celebrate the release of the game and the soundtrack, the listening party will feature Jake Kaufman and possibly some of the members of the Shovel Knight development team, Yacht Club Games, talking about the game and its music. This is a good opportunity to listen to the soundtrack in its entirety and hear about its development from the main composer. The show will be hosted on Arecibo Radio and starts at 7:00 PDT, on June 26th. Noise Channel has created a Facebook event for the show to keep everyone updated. Be sure to mark your calendars and tune in for the event next Thursday.

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Chip Music, Game Music, Indie Music


MMMMMM (Review)

Email This Post Share on Facebook MMMMMM (Review)Tweet This Post Print This Post 06.16.14 | | Comment?

Back in 2010, Terry Cavanagh released a game titled VVVVVV, usually just pronounced “Vee”, for PC and Mac. The game is a 2D puzzle platformer that uses gravity reversal as its primary platforming mechanic. The game has seen release on several other platforms since and has earned a large following from the indie game fan base. Not only is the game engaging in its central mechanic, it’s also fairly difficult. The music of VVVVVV was composed by chiptune artist Magnus Pålsson, aka Souleye. If you’ve never heard the original soundtrack, fix that immediately. It’s easily some of the best indie chiptune music that’s been written in the past few years. Pålsson has also written music for a number of projects including Extreme Roadtrip, Drop Sort, and has even written an intro theme for Twitch caster MANvsGAME.

The original soundtrack, titled PPPPPP, has already received an arrange album in the form of PPPPPPowerup!, which featured arrangements by several indie composers and remix artists. This new album, titled MMMMMM, is a power metal re-imagining of the original soundtrack. This new work features a collaboration between Magnus Pålsson and music remix artist and composer Jules “FamilyJules7x” Conroy. As we covered recently on OSV, Conroy has been creating some impressive metal covers of videogame music for a few years on Youtube. His talent seems to have caught the attention of Pålsson, which has led to the creation of this new album. So how does this metal re-imagining of the music stack up against the original soundtrack? Read on to find out. (more…)

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