Debut album of retrogame inspired metal 'Collateral Jammage' by The Tiberian Sons

I can't say enough how much I love the title of this debut album. Not only are there some great game covers, but also some classic Cheap Trick, and TV shows like Goosebumps and sports.

The year is 2030. War has desolated much of the Earth. From over the distant hills comes the deafening shriek of a thousand decibels of pure, face-melting, torso-destroying, jimmies-rustling metal. At the center of the sound are four sentinels of destruction, bathed in amber light and wielding instruments of sonic decimation: The Tiberian Sons.
— The Tiberian Sons

Stirring orchestral tribute to Skyrim by Rozen 'Keizaal: Journey to Skyrim'

An enticing trip through the sounds of Skyrim thanks to Rozen and the Materia Collective. Such perfect Winter music. This is the type of album I have to keep in my back pocket for when the desert heat rises to temperatures so high that the only respite is trying to think as cold as possible.

Let the chilling winds of Skyrim take you back to where the snow is thick and dragons abound. From musical storyteller Rozen comes an experience out of the coldest corner of Tamriel, awaiting your discovery in this orchestral and cinematic rendition of some of Jeremy Soule’s masterpieces.

Discover more at keizaal.com

Full credits: www.materiacollective.com/music/keizaal-journey-to-skyrim

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and related Skyrim properties are © 2011 Bethesda Softworks LLC. Materia Collective and Rozen are in no way affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any way officially connected with Bethesda. Musical compositions are © 2011 Bethesda Softworks LLC and are used with the permission of ZeniMax Media Inc & PEN Music Group, Inc.
— Rozen

Ryan Stunkel's 'make-believe RPG' album Echoes of Adventure

Listen for adventure.

This stuff is so soothing. We all know that I love them funky rhythms and in your face hip hop jams, but growing up as a Square fanboy, and also a fan of lighthearted games like Kirby, Chibi Robo and Animal Crossing have given me a soft spot in my heart for the light and fluid melodies such as 'The Princess.' One of the opening tracks on Ryan Stunkel's latest, Echoes of Adventure. 

Stunkel is releasing music at a surprising clip, and I'm glad to hear it. The quantity hasn't affected the quality though, as EoA seems to be the fullest album to date. Ten tracks of wonderful RPG fare that would make a Square Enix fan of any era get sucked into the swelling horns and drums on the more epic tracks such as Kidnapped, and Beneath the Shadow.

Ever since I started ending SUBCON with OST ending themes, I've become far more attentive to ending themes in general. "Friends Forever" is the closing track to the album, and although I know nothing more about the protagonists of this story beyond the evocative artwork, the heart of the track seeps through, and helps conclude the album with some surprising poignancy. 

Can Stunkel keep up the frenetic pace he has been composing at? While he finally release a few more VG covers? Find out whenever I review another one of Ryan Stunkel's videogame inspired albums. That day is certainly sooner than I think.

Echoes of Adventure is an album portraying a make-believe RPG soundtrack. All of the tracks are 1-2 minute loops inspired by classic RPG’s on all consoles dating all the way back to the Nintendo Entertainment System.
— Ryan Stunkel

Fate Tectonics OST - SNES inspired electronic music by Robby Duguay

Fate is calling. 

Robby Duguay had me at 'SNES-style symphonic mix.' Listening to the album helped a lot too of course. you might remember Duguay from my praise for his previous OST release. Much like We Are Doomed from earlier this year, Robby has taken one of his dynamic game soundtracks and organized them into a soothing trek reminiscent of classic 16 bit RPGs in his newest album.

I'm only describing half the album though. Tracks 10-18 of this 19 track album are collectively known as (Chaos) and feature a much heavier electronic vibe that gets surprisingly intense as Duguay's instrument choices vary wildly between tracks. So varied in fact, that before I looked at the track list I thought I was listening to a completely new set of songs. I can't help but be drawn into the synthy dubstep boss battle or whatever it is that is happening in the chaos version of "Pestilence," of course, the ominous squarewave wailing of the Serenity version has a place in my heart too.

Killer cut though? On first listen it was definitely "Fire (Chaos)" with that grinding march of an opener it's tough not to be immediately pumped before the song is even in full swing. As I listen again though, I am actually falling in love with the deep, driving sounds of winter in "Ice (Chaos)." In fact, I'm pretty sure I found all the background music I need for a future podcast thanks to these epic closing tracks.

Unlike many albums, Duguay closes with the titular Fate Tectonics, which comes as a restful reprise after the tracks I just mentioned. You can check out the Fate Tectonics game by Golden Gear over at FateTectonics.com and buy Robby Duguay's music on his Bandcamp music page.

I pitched the idea of dynamic music to the team and they loved it; it turns out that they already had a robust audio tool in place, so it wasn’t much work to get the first tests running. The 16-bit style really inspired me to reach for the kinds of sounds I loved hearing on Super Nintendo. After a few sound tests, I settled in on the voicing and the style, and the sound of Fate Tectonics was born. I’ve had to tweak the voices a few times to get the sound I want. The last additions were Fortuna and Ragnarosa, since their game mode was created fairly late in the development of the game. They are basically goth ravers dancing under a bridge, so I figured a layer of raver beats never hurt anybody…

When it came time to compile a soundtrack, it was actually fairly difficult to arrange, because the music only existed as stems – I had to imagine a story from the gameplay that I wanted to tell, and mix the voices in a way that would work as linear music. I decided that because there were so many options, I would give listeners a choice of whether they wanted to hear the symphonic style of Serenity, or the dance beats from Fortuna and Ragnarosa (distinguished on the album by the ‘Serenity’ and ‘Chaos’ titles in brackets on each track).
— Robby Duguay

'Balloons' Animal Crossing inspired orchestrations by Ryan Stunkel

Float away

Balloons is a relaxing acoustic album, inspired by the music from Nintendo’s Animal Crossing series. With this in mind, I had two goals. One, I wanted to make the style fairly minimalistic, while keeping it emotional. And two, I wanted to make each track represent different times of day. So, I based each track on a general time during the day, starting with “Wake Up” for the morning. I wanted to incorporate a lot of my own style and personal taste into the composition and arrangement of each track. Although the album is not particularly themed towards Animal Crossing, the games remained my source of inspiration and I created this album to sort of give them under my own interpretation!

There is a story to this album, but I don’t want to say what it is because I like hearing other peoples interpretations of a story for the music! So if you have any ideas for stories I would love to hear them.

The entire album was created using the following VST and AU sample libraries:

Versillian Studios - vis.versilstudios.net/hand-chimes.html
East/West Hollywood Strings
East/West Symphonic Orchestra
East/West Goliath
EZ Drummer

But thanks for coming by to listen to Balloons! And another thanks for if you liked it enough to download it. The support is greatly appreciated!


Feel free to contact me to ask questions or just say hi!

Website: ryanstunkel.com
Email: ryanwstunkel@gmail.com
Skype: stunkel2
Youtube: www.youtube.com/user/pianoatlarge
Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/ryan-stunkel
— Ryan Stunkel

VG orchestral rock band The Icarus Kids release debut Red Shell EP

icarus-kids-red-shell-EP-video-game-music-band

The Icarus Kids break out to a strong lead on the back of their debut EP, Red Shell. A small collection of live arrangements by this five piece Seattle based band.

Though the EP is small, the songs are big. Making the most of the limited track list, The Icarus Kids go right for the throat. The album opens with lively renditions of "Dark World" from The Legend of Zelda A Link to the Past, and Super Mario Kart classic "Rainbow Road". 

Besides the known classics, The IK close out the EP by digging deep for the obscure track Flandre from The Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, a Japan only vertical shooter released for PC in Japan.

Just the way I like my video game music, obscure and intense. Just for teaching me a thing about Touhou shmups is worth the $5 for the album.

Grab the EP now for $5 via the Red Shell EP page on The Icarus Kids bandcamp.

Over six hours of 16-bit love in SNES XX by Shiryu

SNES-XX-Shiryu-video-game-music

It's not easy to encapsulate six hours of music into a few sentences, but Shiryu's tribute to 20 years of Super Nintendo, SNES XX, has forced my hand.

To get a scope of this album, just know that the shortest track on the album, "Pilotwings Suite" clocks in at about seven and a half minutes.

So now you must be wondering what the longest song is. The albums grand finale is a nearly 40 minute long tribute to underrated SNES title Secret of Mana. This song alone could have been a full album release.

You can grab this collection of over 6 hours of nearly two dozen different SNES based medley for approximately $13 over on Shiryu's bandcamp page.

Watch La SÉGA's surprisingly atmospheric orchestral arrangement of Song of Storms from The Legend of Zelda

segalive.png

When it rains, it pours.

Check out this video by La SÉGA, the 'SÉGA' meaning "Société des Écrituristes Gamers Arrangeurs."

This Paris based society of composers gathers weekly to record incredible video game inspired music performances and music videos like the one below. The Song of Storms itself is a surprisingly great song to see performed.

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Arranged by Julien Giraudet
Composed by Koji Kondo
Performed by La SÉGA
Audio mix by Zgwyrt
Video editing by RobinHoodFR

Watch "The Ultimate Nintendo Medley" by The Mini Mario Orchestra

"The Ultimate Nintendo Medley"
Performed by THE MINI MARIO ORCHESTRA 
under the baton of THE CONDUCTOR
Arranged by STRING PLAYER GAMER (a.k.a. Diwa de Leon)

Composed by Various Artists

"All of NINTENDO's best classic music rolled into one epic, orchestral medley as performed by two dozen tiny Marios and one crazy conductor! I'm very excited with the result!

Major franchises are highlighted obviously while minor franchises get at least a shoutout."

Amazing orchestral medley video from The Mini Mario Orchestra. Zelda, Earthbound, Metroid, Starfox and plenty more are tossed into this megamix of classic game music.

the mimos - an unhealthy obsession with vast and empty places album

From the depths of the ocean, to the depths of possibly some other planets ocean comes the mimos. It would appear that the mimos seems to have an unhealthy obsession with vast and empty spaces. Reflect, meditate, and dance. Listen to this when getting involved in any adventure you may or may not have asked to be involved with.

<a href="http://themimos.bandcamp.com/album/an-unhealthy-obsession-with-vast-and-empty-places">an unhealthy obsession with vast and empty places by the mimos</a>

Theophany - Time's End: Majora's Mask Remixed album

theophany-majoras-mask-times-end-remixed-vgm

An incredible orchestral album of the beautiful themes found in one of my favorite games in all of gamedom. Majora's Mask and it's dark themes come to life in these haunting arrangements that portend the end of the world. Theophany produces an aural adventure that places you right below the clock tower, with only days left before Time's End.