Pixelated Audio joins the many podcasts participating in the Masters of VGM (@MastersofVGM) event organized by bedroth, host of Very Good Music and BGMania. Masters of VGM is a month long event of participating podcasts and their own take on who they think are the best of the best!
We picked 8 veteran VGM Masters and aimed for a good blend of well known and lesser known tracks to keep things interesting. As always we hope you enjoy!
We’re joined today by another amazing and prolific guest; composer Jeff van Dyck. Instead of focusing on a specific game we take a tour through Jeff’s entire career from Skitchin’ all the way to recent games like Unpacking. Jeff began his career in 1992 with EA (Electronic Arts), working on games like the FIFA, NHL series, and Need for Speed 1 & 2. He went on to do music for many of the major games in the Total War series, starting with the original Shogun: Total War, and continuing with the Medieval and Rome Total War games. In recent years, Jeff has written music for a number of indie titles like Assault Android Cactus, Hand of Fate 1 & 2, Submerged, Forts, Paint the Town Red and Unpacking.
In this interview we talk about a great many things; working in a constantly shifting industry, evolving as a composer, writing music for AAA games as well as indies, a bit of light hardware discussion, and just life in general over the last three decades. 2022 marks 30 years for Jeff in the games industry, a landmark achievement for anyone, and he’s still going strong. We crammed in as much music as we possibly could, and we hope you enjoy listening to some lovely selections of music that Jeff has written over the course of his career.
We had a great time at VGMTogether presenting our talk on game audio logging and the dedicated communities around the world that have spent years archiving music as accurately as possible. It’s a commonly overlooked topic that nevertheless supports a lot of activities in the game music scene.
You may have heard it referred to as “VGM ripping”; logging is the process of accessing, capturing, organizing and ultimately archiving game music in more accessible ways. There are a few ways that game music is stored in data, and a few ways that game music is captured for easier access. It’s a time-consuming but rewarding process that requires some computer skills and a decent amount of patience.
In addition to the tracklist we’ve included a number of other resources: links to some of our past shows with a focus on logging and preservation, links to some of the more prominent game and computer music archives, and some other relevant talks. To all of those involved in VGM logging including our good friends ValleyBell and ctr, as well as the many folks we didn’t mention, we thank you for all of your hard work and for everything you’ve done for the VGM community over the years.
Today we’re joined be returning guest Jesse Bishop aka Street Cleaner to talk about Roadkill! It’s an Amiga and Amiga CD-32 top down combat racing game released around early 1995, developed by Vision Software and published by Acid Software, both New Zealand based studios. The game’s music was written by Blair Zuppicich, a composer and demoscene artist that went by the handle BaZ.
Jesse fills us in on some cool discoveries he made ripping the sound and music, along with some technical discussion on how Blair and his team implemented it all in the game. We talk 90s ‘tude, combat racers and butt rock (yeah!) in this short but fun episode.
The 8-Bit Big Band is a 30-65 member Jazz/Pops orchestra (led by Charlie Rosen) that formed to celebrate and realize some of the best musical themes written from various video games. The members of the 8-Bit Big Band come from all around the world, but most reside primarily in New York City, and are some of the most highly sought after musicians and performers, all gamers at heart who enjoy playing their favorite games of all time!
Charlie Rosen is extremely talented; he’s a composer and arranger, professional bass player and multi-instrumentalist and does just about everything involved in producing the 8BBB albums. He’s been playing professionally for years and has orchestrated and composed music for television, film and over a dozen Broadway shows. He’s well-versed in all manner of Big Band and Jazz, and his expanded arrangements give new life to old classics.
Together with Charlie we cover a selection of tracks from 3 full-length albums and an EP. We talk music theory, arrangement, our favorite pop cultural references and so much more in this densely packed show. It was a blast start to finish and as always, we hope you enjoy it as much as we do!