Man, why didn't anyone tell me VGMix
was back up? I've been waiting for two years
Thanks, VGMix! Now I don't have to go to OCRemix
and wade through pages and pages of TidusSephyroth213's First MIDI Trax (LOOK I COVERED SUPER MARIOS 1-1 PLEZ B GENTLE I AM 13 LOLZ) to get some professional-sounding video game cover music. Right now I am listening to a Brazilian band called 8-Bit Instrumental VGM (most confusing vgmixer artist name ever)--they have a recording of a medley of the entire soundtrack of Super Mario World
played with real instruments, played live, in concert. In front of hundreds of screaming fans. Replete with drunken cheering from the audience when they pick up the trombone for the ghost house theme.
Of course, they're not the first to try this exact idea. Not even close.XOC
covered every single song in the Super Mario World OST in 2005 using dozens of different instruments, including, and I quote: drum set, electric guitar, acoustic guitar, electric bass, upright bass, cuatro, banjo, melodica, accordion, Groovebox, PSS-270 keyboard, coconut thumb piano, shakers, tambourines, triangle, maraca, casaba, slide whistle, turkey locator, bike horn, cowbells, ribbon crasher, woodblock, tacklebox, antique pickaxe, xylophone, school bell, Canon Powershot, refrigerator door, ceramic toilet mug, asscheeks, and vocals. (THIS IS HIS GUITAR.
YOU CANNOT DENY THE AWESOME.) And they're certainly not the first or most notable live video game cover band--who holds that title is contentious, but they follow a long tradition of convention concerts by the Minibosses, the Neskimos, the Advantage, and my personal favorite, the One-Ups. What's notable about this particular cover is that it is both extraordinarily true to the source material and fucking rocktastic. They've also got a great swing/rockabilly cover
of the versus mode theme from the Super Nintendo version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time, a game that sadly has been largely ignored by the fan community. And they have the most sincere cover of Okkusenman/Dr. Wily's theme
from Mega Man 2 that I've heard since Eric Barker's soulful piano arrangement at the Cat
I also really, really recommend Bladiator's "Chopinesque Kirby."
(Yeah, I know, that's a OCRemix link; Bladiator hasn't reuploaded it to VGMix yet.) It's a piano arrangement that is, well, exactly what it says on the tin.
On a snake-eating-its-own-tail note, I've also learned that virt, the founder of vgmix.com and a major figure in the admittedly frivolous video game tribute music scene, was commissioned by the American developers of the Nintendo DS tribute-sequel Contra IV to do the music for that game. As Contra IV is essentially a love letter to fans of Contra on the NES and Super C on the SNES, and they wanted someone who would hit all the right nostalgia buttons yet still put out really bitchin' tracks, I can't imagine a more appropriate (or more fanservicey) choice.
Oh man. Video game cover music has come such a long way.