It would appear that a couple of the major YouTube sources for the music on this website have gone dark. If you happen to find any dead links, please let me know here and I will fix them. I just fixed Over Horizon and a couple others. What a shame!
In my first post, I discuss the issues surrounding arranging game music for our instrumentation as well as the considerations I made when covering “Ground Theme” from Super Mario Bros. Please check it out- ARRANGING VIDEO GAME MUSIC FOR A VERY BETA CHRISTMAS – PART 1.
Hope to see some of you there this weekend!
So today is my birthday!
I’ve decided, as a birthday present to myself, to post 5 of my favorite video game tracks of all time… or just 5 really awesome tracks that come to mind. And of course, they are mostly battle themes. But what do you expect?
Track 1: ”The True Mirror” - Baten Kaitos – by Motoi Sakuraba
Motoi has always turned up the intensity to 11… sometimes to a fault perhaps. Still, this used to be my favorite “getting onto the subway” music when I was doing my MMus.
Track 2: ”Feldschlacht I” - Saga Frontier 2 - by Masashi Hamauzu
Part of Hamauzu’s 4 “Feldschlacht” set for Saga Frontier 2, not including the orchestral “Feldschlact V”. I had trouble picking my favorite- I or IV. I love the part where the bass just rocks out for a while at 1:15. As a bass player, very satisfying! I spend a lot of time trying to play that line as a kid, with very little success. Really fun though!
Track 3: ”Intrude Upon Happiness, Plunder the Future” - Wild Arms XF - by Junpei Fujita
Probably wasn’t expecting to see something that’s just straight-up electronica here. This theme plays during some of the most intense battles in Wild Arms XF. The bassline and chords at 1:40… well, it’s probably one of the best 10 seconds I can remember in a battle theme. The rest isn’t… that innovative. Honorable mention from this OST: “Twilight of the Anti-Hero”. If you haven’t heard the OST to this game, you probably should go listen. It’s pretty ridiculous.
Track 4: ”Fighters of the Crystal” - Final Fantasy XI: Rise of Zilart - by Naoshi Mizuta
For those of you who don’t know me well, I used to be a pretty active member of the Final Fantasy XI community. I played on Quetzalcoatl as “Valus” and eventually “Zalus” (long story)- here’s my old FFXIAH.com profile. Gross. At any rate, I was a BRD and DRK for a big endgame linkshell. This theme ALWAYS got to me… it played during a very difficult and desperate battle against the Crystal Warriors. To win, you needed 18 people…. perfectly organized for a massive fight. Oh yes, the ol’ “wipe and reset” strategy of the level 75 days of FFXI. I raise a glass to old friends and the memories of Vana’diel.
Track 5: ”Armed Boss” - Super Mario RPG - by Yoko Shimomura
Don’t judge! I’ve always liked this track. Yes, it’s not really Shimomura’s best work… but it’s always got me pumped for battle. It’s short and simple and utilizes a lot of the tricks that can be produced with the playback from the SNES.
Anyhow, thanks for listening!
Sorry guys! It would appear that MANY of my embedded links for music have gone dark or are messed up due to changes in the way YouTube embeds into WordPress. I’m going to spend the day looking through old posts and trying to fix it. I’ll post an update below! Thanks for pointing it out!
UPDATE: Okay, I THINK everything is fixed now. Let me know if you find any broken/mislabeled links!
This is essentially the culmination of a long life dream. And a dark alliance between myself, Ellis Jasenovic, and Doug Laustsen. Well, that sounds a bit more epic than it is, really.
For years, I’ve criticized live performances of video game music. While I “liked” the older recordings of the Orchestral Game Music series, they always seemed clunky, mistaken ridden, and ultimately lacking in the spirit of the games. I haven’t highlighted many of these… adaptations (mainly because I’ve been so busy lately) but I plan to do so in the future. In most cases, the simplicity of the original music is lost and the character of the music decays. I’ve always wanted to bring some legitimacy to game music- an academic treatment rather than a Hollywood treatment… if that makes sense.
So, naturally, when Doug Laustsen mentioned to me that he would be interested in possibly putting together a group that performs new music, video game music, TV show themes, etc with proper artistic treatment and imagination, I had to jump onboard.
I need to tell the truth and say this has been a life long ambition of mine so I’m very excited about the project. I plan on highlighting a lot more of who we are and what we do in the future. For now, check out our Facebook page at: facebook.com/BetaTestMusic . We’ll have a good, proper website soon.
If you’re in the Philadelphia area on May 6th around 7 PM, we will be performing our first show at Book Space. The Facebook wall has all the info. I hope you can come out