Play Video Games
Music to play video games celebrates video game music in all of its forms
featuring artists like
Carpenter Brut, Timecop1983, Ghost, Prince, Monster Magnet, Electric Six
Video game music has come a long way since the primal 8-bit grunts of Pong and Space Invaders. Music to play video games celebrates video game music in all of its forms. It features some of the most important tracks in gaming history and also spotlights more recent music that has captured the imagination. Music to play video games crosses boundaries of genre and style without compromising on its overall sense of direction and flow. Music to play video games represents the standout moments in video game music, from the familiar mainstream songs that have popped up in AAA titles to those pieces of experimental and electronic music that score a new wave of indie classics. It also celebrates innovation in video game music showcasing some of the tracks that have helped to drive innovations in game audio and music technology.
22 May 2018
More original instrumental music from really good independent games this week. We’re going to have a look at some atmospheric and experimental sounding electronic music. The Glasshouse with Butterfly by Tomáš Dvořák is a track from Amanita Design’s Machinarium…
15 May 2018
I’ve been playing a game called Stories Untold. It’s a text based adventure but with with some really great and atmospheric world building going on. It’s a horror game technically but it’s that kind of “exciting not scary horror” that was in last year’s remake of Stephen King’s IT or Netflix’s Stranger Things, with which, by the way, it shares a common nostalgic 80s aesthetic.
7 May 2018
Alright. Remember Video Game Music? Music composed specifically for games? We were going back to it this week. That was the plan. The past few posts were more mainstream tracks that ended up in games but now we were supposed to get back to take a look at some tracks written specifically for Video Games.
23 April 2018
I’m a huge Prince fan. I’ve got memories of The Most Beautiful Girl in the World being on heavy rotation on MTV one summer during my youth. I was also enthralled by his album covers when I came across them in my dad’s vinyl collection…
16 April 2018
My oh my how time flies. Track 15 already.
Monster Magnet are a great band. I have yet to listen to their most recent album, which I hear is great, but I plan to spend this coming weekend doing just that. They’re a kind of enigma. Like last weeks featured track-wranglers Electric Six, they’ve got a sense of humor about themselves…
9 April 2018
Now I know I promised this week we’d be sticking with indie games but something came back across my radar and I had to find a crappy game it featured on in order to wedge it into the list. So here you go…
3 April 2018
We’re getting back to our indie roots this week and we are staying there for a while. After a foray through some of the bigger artists to ever grace a video game soundtrack I need a breather. I’ve enjoyed the trip and I’m sure we’ll visit some other big names again but right now we need to change gears…
26 March 2018
In a recent interview the ever elusive virtuoso guitarist Buckethead put to bed a debate that has raged amongst his fans for years. That question was why exactly does Buckethead wear a KFC bucket on his head? And why does he wear that mask over his face? When did he decide on the bucket mask combo? What motivated him? He told the Coming Alive Podcast:…
20 March 2018
In 1996 legendary developer id Software released Quake. The game borrowed the first person shooter mechanics introduced in Wolfenstein, perfected in Doom and lampooned in Duke Nukem 3D and injected imagery and stylistic flourishes from H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulu mythos. The dark and menacing world conjured in the game was brought to life with an original soundtrack by Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails (NIN) acclaim. It represented Reznor’s first soundtrack work and he would later win an Oscar for his work alongside Atticus Ross (the recently announced second member of NIN!) on The Social Network soundtrack…
13 March 2018
Jimi Hendrix fiery interpretation of Bob Dylan’s All Along the Watchtower, from Hendrix’s classic Electric Ladyland struck a deep and resonant chord on its release in September 1968. According to Dylan, Hendrix “could find things inside a song and vigorously develop them” and with all along the watchtower he found something which spoke to the frustrations and confusion surrounding US involvement in the Vietnam War in both the pro and anti war camps.
6 March 2018
Carpenter Brut’s Roller Mobster appeared on the soundtrack for Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number an ultra-violent top-down shooter that balances rich and nuanced storytelling with quick and gruesome gameplay mechanics, all rendered in an 8-bit pixel art style…
27 February 2018
Something Beneath, written by Douglas Holmquist and featuring a haunting vocal performance by Susanna Lundgren, is a track from Mediocre’s mobile masterpiece PinOut! for iOS and Android. PinOut! puts a beautifully designed new spin on the old arcade classic pinball, turning it into a race against the clock through a seemingly infinite range of intricate and varied pinball tables…
20 February 2018
This week we are continuing our exploration of recent classics from indie games with a track from Supergiant Games’ first outing: Bastion. In Case of Trouble was composed by Supergiant’s in house audio and music mastermind Darren Korb who has produced similarly superb soundtracks for the company’s more recent releases Transistor and Pyre. Music and sound are integral to Supergiant’s expertly crafted game worlds. This appreciation for sound is on full display in Bastion, an isometric action rpg that follows a silent but deadly protagonist: ‘the Kid’, as he navigates his way through the myriad of dangers brought on by the apocalyptic calamity that has befallen his beloved native city of Caelondia…
13 February 2018
Big AAA games studios have money. They can afford to hire big name composers, who produce hours of music, that’s recorded by world class musical outfits like the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra. This has never been the case for indie developers who are charged with the herculean task of creating meaningful music that will elevate their game’s visuals and hopefully continue to engage their audience long after the credits roll… and all on a shoestring budget…
9 February 2018
Track 5 on the playlist is Koan Sound’s remix of Neil Davidge’s epic theme for Halo 4. This playlist celebrates video game music in all of its forms, and while the first tracks explored songs in video games, the playlist will mix things up by embracing some of the all time classic instrumental pieces that have appeared on video game scores.
9 February 2018
Syd Matters 2005 album Someday We Will Foresee Obstacles borrows its title from the poignant lyrics of it’s 2nd track: “Obstacles”. The intricate but carefully articulated guitar patterns weave through layers of reflective vocals to perfectly capture the feeling of early Autumn in the Pacific Northwest…
9 February 2018
Although he’s probably best known for his 2003 cover of Swedish electronic music duo The Knife’s “Heartbeats”, it’s José González “Far Away” that wins him a place on this playlist. Written exclusively for Rockstar San Diego’s open-world wild-west epic: Red Dead Redemption, “Far Away” has become something of a classic example of video game music done right.
9 February 2018
Track 2 is “Short Change Hero” by The Heavy. The track featured on the band’s 2009 sophomore release The House That Dirt Built. The Heavy are one of those bands whose name you might not know but you’ve probably heard their music because it seems to turn up everywhere…
9 February 2018
“Runnin’ Down a Dream” from Tom Petty’s solo album Full Moon Fever was featured to excellent effect in Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. Although only a moderate billboard success on its initial release in 1989, it had become a staple of classic rock radio stations by the early 1990s. Reflecting this trend, the song appears on the in-game classic rock radio station “K-DST The Dust”.