It’s no secret that Comix Zone‘s Sketch Turner was design around a grunge rock musician. Grunge music started in the mid-1980′s in Seattle and slowly spread thanks to labels like Sub Pop. It didn’t become commercially successful until the first half of the 90′s thanks to Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, and of course Stone Temple Pilots.
Howard Drossin, the composer behind the soundtrack for Comix Zone put a band together called ‘Road Kill’ (named after Turner’s pet rat and humble side kick).
Tonight’s tune is from Shinobi 3, one of the best games on the Genesis. You should check it out if you haven’t already. It’s got a lot of great action and an awesome soundtrack. Idaten comes from a stage anyone who’s played the game will surely remember: the one where you ride the horse and kill flying ninjas. Doesn’t this just make you want to play it again?
Also, just for the hell of it, I stuck something else below the fold, a little tune called Whirlwind. Take a listen.
After Burner’s soundtrack ranks among the most iconic in the games industry. We’ve already featured two versions of After Burner’s main theme on a Tuesday Tunes a few years ago, so today we’ll be showcasing something a little more obscure: an unused track from Gunstar Super Heroes. Released for the Game Boy Advance in 2005, GSH was originally supposed to include numerous tracks referencing classic SEGA titles, including Altered Beast, Galaxy Force and of course After Burner. Unfortunately, all of these tracks were cut at the last moment, but some hackers managed to pull them out of the ROM and slap them onto the internet.
If the Gunstar Super Heroes rendition of Final Take-Off isn’t your cup of tea, I’ve also included the original version of the track from the SEGAAGES Album. Check it out after the break!
The question of “What makes a SEGA game a SEGA game?” is often debated amongst fans of the company. Some believe it is as simple as looking at the package and spotting the SEGA logo, others believe that there is a magical mix of various elements that give that true “SEGA feel”. While I’ll admit that I believe any game funded by and owned by the company qualifies, I can’t help but feeling that some games have a certain je ne sais quoi (or is that je ne sega quoi?) that elevates them to another level.
Jet Set Radio is one of those games. It is a game that oozes style, featuring unique characters that are adventurous and edgy. The game puts a unique spin on established concepts, and pays tribute to the company’s arcade past by featuring fast paced gameplay. Most importantly of all, the game carries on the grand SEGA tradition of memorable music – so much so that I’d argue that Jet Set Radio is one of the greatest SEGA soundtracks of all time.
Hatsune Miku and friends have sung many songs throughout their history, but none are more exciting than the SEGA inspired tunes that are featured in the franchise’s games. The 2010 arcade game Project DIVA Arcade featured the MEIKO Vocaloid voice (a voice provided by the Japanese female singer Meiko Haigō) singing lyrics over the theme to After Burner – a SEGA arcade classic. The video above features Hatsune Miku, despite the MEIKO voice. But can you blame us? It’s Miku! But in fairness to Vocaloids everywhere, we’re featuring MEIKO after the break. Happy listening!
Like my previous Tuesday Tunes entry, which focused on the music of Ghostbusters, this week’s tune comes from another favorite SEGA Genesis game from my childhood: Dick Tracy. Like Ghostbusters, Dick Tracy has the unfortunate distinction of being one of those awful titles… for the Nintendo Entertainment System. The SEGA Genesis version is a completely different game developed in-house by SEGA, and bears several similarities to the popular Shinobi franchise, which leads me to believe that the game was developed by the same team. But enough about the gameplay, I’ll save that for my eventual review, let’s talk about the music.
Ghostbusters for the SEGA Genesis is a game that holds a very special place in my heart. During Christmas 1991 I received my Model 1 SEGA Genesis with Sonic the Hedgehog bundled in, and from that point forward I was a SEGA fan. Owning a Genesis also meant that a whole world of games opened up to me, and since the console was a little over two years old, I spent much of 1992 buying up games I had missed out on. Buying games in the early ’90′s was tough. Nowadays we have instant access to the internet, so it’s easy to spot a game on the shelf, Google search reviews, and make the decision to purchase. Back in ’92 all I had to go by was the box art and the few screenshots provided on the back. Being a huge fan of both Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Ghostbusters, it only made sense for me to seek out the Genesis titles those franchises provided, and boy did I strike gold.
As some of you may remember, we’ve covered Sakura Taisen on Tuesday Tunes before, featuring music from both the game itself and its stage show incarnations. As a musical theatre buff myself, I am extremely jealous of Japanese fans for the dozens of Sakura Taisen related stage shows they’ve had over the years. After all, the closest thing us westerners have gotten to a proper SEGA related stage show is that awful Sonic musical from Australia.
A Sakura Taisen stage show is rather fitting though, given that the game itself stars performers who actively sing and dance on stage. The above video is from the 2003 Shichifukujin show, which features all the voice actors from the Sakura Taisen video games and anime reprising their roles on stage. From what I’ve seen of the show it looks pretty cool, and the performers themselves are definitely talented.
The song “Kimi Yo Hana Yo” was originally composed by Kouhei Tanaka for the end credits of Sakura Wars 4. The stage version features all of the games voice actors reprising their roles as members of Flower Division, including Akio Suyama as Captain Ichirou Oogami and Chisa Yokoyama as titular character Sakura Shinguji.
Check below the fold for the version of the song featured in the game!
Planet Sonata is probably my favorite stage in Ristar. The first stage has you carrying metronomes to song birds and gradually activating the instruments for the stage’s background music. It all culminates in the stage’s boss fight, which attacks you to the rhythm of this theme! Planet Sonata is a perfect example of what makes Ristar special: it’s creative, unique, and introduces gimmicks and elements that are then discarded for the rest of the game in favor of other gimmicks.
If the early stages of Ristar don’t grab you, I would encourage you to at least try to stick around until Planet Sonata
I really wanted to feature a track from an Ecco game this week. I thought about featuring tracks from the Genesis or Dreamcast games, but I’d really like to save those for something else later in the year. So I’ve decided to go with something from the SEGA CD!
The Ecco series is renowned for its amazing, atmospheric soundtracks and the SEGA CD tracks from Spencer Nilsen are no exception. These tracks are absolutely beautiful and go so far as to sample sounds from actual aquatic animals to compliment the game’s atmosphere. The quality of this music should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with Nilsen’s work on SEGA CD. He was the same man who produced Sonic CD’s spectacular soundtrack.
To make up for a few weeks of inactivity, I’ve decided to feature another track from the game below. It’s too short to warrant its own Tuesday Tune, but serves as a nice compliment to Motion E. It’s called “The Machine”. Check it out below the fold.