Fan Art Fridays – Pekepeke0′s “Silent Hill”/Gamer’s Playlist – DigiE’s “Trance Turnabout”

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Happy birthday to me! To celebrate, I’m sharing a fan art I recently fell in love with, as well as one of my fave remixes! Woo!

Pekepeke0, also known by her first name Ami, was last seen here during the Metroid Fan Art special. This morbidly perfect rendition of Heather from Silent Hill 3 astounded me with how wonderfully apropos it is. Dark, moody, sinister, and hellish; a fantastic interpretation.

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The Ace Attorney series has some great music that has been radically improved by remixers. Case in point: DigiE’s splendid mixing of the ‘Gyakuten Saiban 3 · Trial’, ‘Pressing Pursuit ~ Cornered’, ‘Questioning ~ Allegro 2001′, ‘Questioning ~ Moderate 2004′, and ‘Turnabout Courtroom – End’ themes. This is amazing music that takes the limited GBA sounds and gives them a richness that the handheld could not replicate in its wildest dreams. It’s quite danceable, too!

Music Wednesdays – Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “So Long, Farewell”

I actually wanted to post “Pacific Coast Highway” by The Beach Boys, but it wasn’t on YouTube. Still, this seemed appropriate. :)

Song Highlights – Silent Hill’s “Silent Hill”

Silent Hill – Silent Hill (Intro Theme, PS1, Konami, Akira Yamaoka)

Ah yes, it’s been all too long since we’ve talked about Akira Yamaoka. He almost landed a spot on Tunage this year, but I wanted to do some more obscure musicians. Anywho, this introduced gamers to the world of Silent Hill back in 1999, and what an intro! Beautiful instrumentation, Yamaoka’s amazing guitar work, and unsettling melodies combine to define the ominous feeling the series would become famous for. Stunning work.

There will be no Music Wednesday from me this week; sorry!

Music Wednesdays – Tears for Fears’ “Head Over Heels”

Though probably best known for “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”, I’ve always been more partial to this, the single released just after the aforementioned song.

This is my foooooour leaf clover.

Fan Art Fridays – “Odin Sphere” by hf-zilch/Gamer’s Playlist – “Wetgrass Inspired” by AmIEvil

Odin_Sphere_by_hf_zilch[2]

I may not have liked Odin Sphere as a game, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t like its character design. hf-zilch has done a splendid job re-imagining Gwendolyn in their own style, which has a nice dark edge to it. Very nice piece!

gamersplaylist2012

Tristam Village is one of my favorite gaming tunes for a town, and AmIEvil graced it with a relishing remix that capturing the melancholy and malice lurking within. The remix takes Matt Uelman’s original notes and amplifies the emotion tenfold, taking the single guitar and wails the original featured and expanding them with a wide array of instruments, giving it a grander quality. Well worth a listen!

Song Highlights – The Last Story’s “Theme”

The Last Story – “Theme” (Title Screen, Wii, Nintendo/Mistwalker/XSEED, Nobuo Uematsu)

I’ve been greatly enjoying my time with The Last Story. Every time I start it up I’m greeted by this delightful, emotional piece. It fits the mood of the game pretty well, methinks. Uematsu did a pretty solid job on the overall soundtrack, so expect some more Last Story picks down the road.

Music Wednesdays – Ellegarden’s “Fire Cracker”

What little I’ve listened to of Ellegarden has really impressed me. This is another standout track from “Eleven Fire Crackers”. If you want to know one of the key bands that is defining the character of Shi in my webcomic and elsewhere, look no further. I really do like the band, and would love to actually own their CD’s someday.

Tunage – Minako Hamano

Minako Hamanohamano

Minako Hamano joined Nintendo in 1993 and has become a major part of the sound of Metroid, composing tunes for Super Metroid, Metroid Fusion, Metroid Zero Mission, Metroid Prime 3 and arranged one of the Metroid selections in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. She also very nearly provided Samus Aran’s first voiceover in Super Metroid! Yoshio Sakamoto determined that it was too “sexual” and cut it out of the final game (apparently he still has a beta that contains a nude sprite of Samus’ dying animation with Hamano’s voiceover still intact). She also has been involved in the Legend of Zelda (Link’s Awakening), Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong Country Returns), Wario (Wario World and Wario Land: Shake It!), Mario (Mario Kart: Super Circuit) and Pokemon (Pokemon Puzzle Challenge) franchises. She’s also one of the key musicians for the Brain Age series as well. Amazingly, despite involvement in nearly every important Nintendo property, Wikipedia denies her a page on their site due to not being notorious enough.

LVLs. is honored to put its spotlight on a talented woman who has been a massive part of Nintendo’s audio history. We hope you enjoy discovering the talent of Ms. Hamano.

Note – I’ve done what I can to decipher Hamano’s contributions off of these soundtracks. Due to Nintendo’s relative lack of proper discography information, however, I may be selecting tunes that were performed by her fellow composers. I apologize if I have done so.

Complete Discography (newest to oldest):

Brain Age: Concentration Training (2013, 3DS, Nintendo, Music with Shinobu Nagata, Megumi Inoue)

Wii Play Motion (2011, Wii, Nintendo, Sound Engineer)

Donkey Kong Country Returns (2010, Wii, Nintendo, Music with Kenji Yamamoto, Masaru Tajima, Shinji Ushiroda, Daisuke Matsuoka)

Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008, Wii, Nintendo, Composer of “Sector 1 – Metroid Fusion”)

Wario Land: Shake It! (2008, Wii, Nintendo/Good Feel, Music with Tomoya Tomita)

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (2007, Wii, Nintendo/Retro Studios, Music with Kenji Yamamoto)

Tetris DS (2006, DS, Nintendo, Music with Akira Fujiwara)

Brain Age²: More Training in Minutes a Day! (2005, DS, Nintendo, Music [Japanese version; the European release features music from Eri Yasuda, Ryoue Takagi, and Hirohito Tsujii])

Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day! (2005, DS, Nintendo, Music with Akito Nakatsuka)

Daigasso! Band Brothers (2004, DS, Nintendo, Sound with other composers)

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes (2004, Gamecube, Nintendo/Retro Studios, Special Thanks)

Metroid: Zero Mission (2004, GBA, Nintendo, Music with Kenji Yamamoto)

Wario World (2003, Gamecube, Nintendo/Treasure, Music with Norio Hanzawa)

Metroid Fusion (2002, GBA, Nintendo, Music with Akira Fujiwara)

Mobile Golf (2001, GBC, Nintendo/Camelot, Music Programming [Motoi Sakaruba was the actual composer])

Mario Kart Super Circuit (2001, GBA, Nintendo/Intelligent Systems, Sound with Kenichi Nishimaki, Masanobu Matsunaga)

Pokémon Puzzle Challenge (2000, GBC, Nintendo/Intelligent Systems, Music with Taishi Senda)

Famicom Tantei Club Part II: Ushiro ni Tatsu Shōjo (1998 [port], Super Famicom, Nintendo, Special Thanks)

Game Boy Camera (included Games) (1998, GB, Nintendo, Music with Hirokazu Tanaka, Kentaro Nishimura)

The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening DX (1998, GBC, Nintendo, Music with Kazumi Totaka, Kozue Ishikawa)

Galactic Pinball (1995, Virtual Boy, Nintendo/Intelligent Systems, Sound Assistant)

Teleroboxer (1995, Virtual Boy, Nintendo, Special Thanks)

Snoopy Concert (1995, Super Famicom, Pax Softnica/Nintendo/Mitsu Fudosan, Music with Hirokazu Tanaka)

Super Metroid (1994, SNES, Nintendo, Music with Kenji Yamamoto)

The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening (1993, GB, Nintendo, Music with Kazumi Totaka, Kozue Ishikawa)

Mario & Wario (1993, Super Famicom, Nintendo/Game Freak, Special Thanks)

Examples of her Work:

Super Metroid

Maridia Drifting Sand Underwater Area

(more…)

Fan Art Friday: Kula Diamond – Blow Kisses by Nick-Ian/Gamer’s Playlist: Tweex’s “Holiday Frappe”

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Nick-Ian is incredibly good. For my pre-Xmas pick, I had to go with his fantastic Kula Diamond sketch. He nails her character design perfectly AND brings something unique to the table. Great stuff.

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For some more authentic Christmas cheer, here’s a cameo rich Mario Kart 64 cover by Tweex from OC Remix. It’s originally Frappe Snowland, but there’s a bunch of clever nods to holiday song standbys like Frosty the Snowman buried in there, too. Enjoy!

Music Wednesdays – Grace’s Christmas Favorite for 2012

I was just telling my wonderful husband that my grandparents listened to Joan Baez when my mother was little, and she hated it. Then when she grew up and had kids, she made them (me and my sister) listen to Joan Baez and they hated it. Now I listen to Joan Baez and I don’t hate it. :p  This is one of my favorite songs from the 1966 album “Noel.” I hope you like it, and have a great Christmas!!!

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