Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Orchestral Game Concerts

Between 1991 and 1996, 3 Japanese orchestras performed 5 amazing concerts featuring arrangements of famous video game music.

I've just discovered a website that is hosting complete music files for all 5 concerts. Check it out and download some of these wonderful tracks. Need some help getting started? I've included a few direct links to some of my favorite songs below:

Super Mario Bros - Medley (Classic)
Legend of Zelda - Main Theme (Rivals any John Williams theme)
Kirby's Super Deluxe - The Gourmet Race (Better than the SSBB arrangement)
Visiting the Harbors of the World (Wonderfully varied, like a trip around the world)
Donkey Kong Country (Becomes surprisingly sad and beautiful)
Theme of Chrono Trigger (Adventurous, Reminds of Johny Quest)

While I'm on the subject, I recently listened to some music from the critically acclaimed video game "Psychonauts" and was greatly annoyed at how blatantly the composer borrowed from Danny Elfman's Beetlejuice theme. The fact that no one else out there on teh internets has made the same accusation angers me further. It's so obnoxiously obvious, like James Horner's theme from Honey I shrunk the Kids. (Powerhouse, for comparison)


SuiginChou said...

Soooooomething tells me that a site like that is going to be shut down pretty fast (i.e. in the next year or two). Unless the Tokyo Philharmonic has earnestly told the public, "We don't hold the license to the original pieces of music and any licenses that may have been held by the individuals who wrote them or the companies for which those individuals worked will have long since expired." Or something. O_o

The Mario theme song I inherited from Ben many years ago (I want to say it was 1999) when he lent me a CD that had all manner of funny flash files, short video clips, and a few songs here or there that he thought I may enjoy. This was one of them. Never knew what it went to. Pretty crazy!

I apologize in advance for sounding so cynical, but *sigh* the first concert is so much better than the remaining four. Maybe I feel that way because I don't care much for FF or DQ. I dunno. The first concert's the only one which had more than one song I would have been interested in. Even the tip of the hat to DKC sadly went to its water stage (I've always hated water stages in video games! Always!). Then again, DKC didn't exactly scream "awesome music," did it? lol

Thanks for sharing this with us, Jay! :)

Jay said...

I'd say my favorite concerts are 1, 2 and 5. You're right, most of the obscure Japanese titles don't do it for me. But some are pleasant surprises!

fulleju said...

where's the final fantasy 7 music at?