Video Game Music of the Week - 300


Psychonauts (PC, Xbox, PlayStation 2)

vgm300

Tracks:
Title & End Credits, The Catwalk Phantom, Whispering Rock

Composer(s):
Peter McConnell


Psychonauts is a Platform game developed by Double Fine Productions and well-known game designer, Tim Schafer. The game released in 2005, with a sequel currently in development.



Title & End Credits
This theme plays during the title and end credits. The song has very cartoonish elements to it with its wild orchestration.




The Catwalk Phantom
This cunning theme has obvious elements of deviousness and trickery. It jumps from low-key moments to grand, quick-hitting sections.




Whispering Rock
This western-style theme has a very gentle and harmless melody. It has some assorted guitar moments that remain unique as the song progresses.






Written by - Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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Video Game Music of the Week - 299


Beyond Good & Evil (Various)

vgm299

Tracks:
Home Sweet Home, Hyllian Suite, Violent Jade Suite, Funky Bar

Composer(s):
Christophe Héral


Beyond Good & Evil is an action-adventure game that released over multiple home consoles and PC's in 2003. The game received quite the cult following and a sequel was finally announced at this years E3 expo.



Home Sweet Home
This song features a very enticing opening with its strange background sound and core piano line of music. The theme suggests an adventurous setting with some elements of mystery and grandiose layered within.




Hyllian Suite
Hyllian Suite features a very tribal and natural sound. The flute-like melody brings a sense of wonder to the theme, with the songs string instruments giving it a more ambitious feel at the same time. The xylophone segment is also one of the themes more memorable moments.




Violent Jade Suite
This theme is immediately noticeable as a very action-oriented and tense piece of music. The main section of the theme is extremely fast, delivering an almost agitated sound.




Funky Bar
This track has a great jazz feel with it's cleverly delivered trumpet solo. The beat box-backing only helps to deliver one of the games truly unforgettable themes, proving the unique qualities that the game possesses.





Written by - Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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Video Game Music of the Week - 284


Age Of Empires II: The Conquerors (PC)

vgm284

Tracks:
Pork Parts, The Bovinian Derivative, Pudding Pie

Composer(s):
Stephen Rippy
Kevin McMullan


Age Of Empires 2: The Conquerors is an expansion to one of the most beloved Real-Time Strategy games every released on the PC. The expansion was the only addition to the game until 2013, when the HD version of Age Of Empires II received another expansion. Two more expansions have also been released since then.



Pork Parts
This track delivers a very steady melody that creates a relatively tense feeling. It expresses notions of the unknown and is a really great introductory theme to the ideas presented in the game and the series.




The Bovinian Derivative
This song is yet another slow-moving theme that focuses on atmosphere building. The string instrument that appears just before the halfway mark plays the songs most ominous section of music, also being the songs only true core melody.




Pudding Pie
This song begins with another mysterious section of music that introduces the themes slow melody. This melody itself repeats a few times, managing to deliver a feeling of being surrounded by the unfamiliar.






Written by - Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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Video Game Music of the Week - 283


Age Of Empires: The Rise Of Rome (PC)

vgm283

Tracks:
Tangon Alpha Brava, Polyester Jammy, Medieval Melody Mix, Mean

Composer(s):
David Rippy
Stephen Rippy


Age Of Empires: The Rise Of Rome is an expansion to the smash PC game Age Of Empires. The add-on featured a completely brand new soundtrack, that then replaced the games original music, making it feel entirely fresh at the time of its release.



Tangon Alpha Bravo
There is a unique diversity and authenticity in the
Age Of Empires: The Rise Of Rome soundtrack. Although this is present in most of the series itself, its diversity truly shines in this specific soundtrack, and song.




Polyester Jammy
The guitar and wind instrument are the two shining sounds found in this track. There are some unique percussions and other various instruments and sounds that assist in delivering a very distinct track.




Medieval Melody Mix
This track is very much a percussion based theme that features a notable plucked string instrument, standard string instrument sound and a consistent xylophone progression.




Mean
After the songs intro, an authentic string instrument delivers an almost chilling opening melody. The song features various different moments of music, making it one of the soundtracks most diverse themes.






Written by - Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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Video Game Music of the Week - 252


Die Hard Trilogy (PlayStation, Sega Saturn, PC)

vgm252

Tracks:
Garage, Dulles Airport, Runway, Central Park

Composer(s):
Stephen Root
Neil Palmer


Die Hard Trilogy released in 1996 on PlayStation and Sega Saturn & PC in 1997. The game features a distinct gameplay style for each of the three Die Hard movies that the game is based on.



Garage
The track Garage is filled with many 90’s sounds and ideas. It’s electro/house style sets the game apart from the movie trilogy, with the game itself only being loosely based on them.




Dulles Airport
This track is a relatively slow theme that actually feels like an 80’s song with its unique synth sound, pacing and late-track percussions.




Runway
Runway quite clearly begins with the famous 20th Century Fox tune, paying homage to the movies distributor. The song itself though features a distorted guitar riff that repeats through most of the song and there is a brass, almost marching band sound towards the end of the theme.




Central Park
This theme plays during the Die Hard With A Vengeance segment in the game. It has a pulsing synth melody with an echoing backing that gives the theme an almost retro sound.






Written by - Michael Villalon for ‘The VG Island’.

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