The Legend of Metal: A Link to the Blastbeats
Hey you nerds. Occam’s Razor Ramon and I are just betting you like video game inspired metal. Know how we know? Because we like video games and you us are we us, so 69, dudes! But seriously, we’ve had a lot of fun rounding up video game related metal, so here’s another heapin’ helpin’ to hold you over.
First up is a little known one-man band by the name of Artificial Fear. This Georgia composer has been churning out albums of metal video game covers since at least 2010. Featured here is his Legend of Zelda album. What Doom did for chainsaws and all around demon ass kicking, The Legend of Zelda did for heroic quests and chicken assault. I’m pretty sure everyone here remembers their first Zelda game (Oracle of Seasons, COME AT ME NERDS) [W.: Link’s Awakening, you whippersnapper] and the sense of adventure and wonder that accompanied it. Except for the Water Temple. The Water Temple is the videogame equivalent of getting stabbed in the prostate.
I appreciate the fact that Artificial Fear integrated some of the in-game sounds and iconic songs from the beloved series directly into his compositions. Check out that cover of the perennial favorite “Gerudo Valley.” How awesome would it have been to charge Epona across the broken bridge in Ocarina of Time while this guitar-heavy tune blazes in the background? Really awesome, I know. Stream the LoZ Metal album anove. You can also check out a Final Fantasy inspired album at Artificial Fear’s Bandcamp. [W.&ORR]
Now why restrict yourself to the music of just one game when there are so many magical scores out there to be dipped into a vat of steel and shined up with some wicked shredding? Well motherflusher, Armcannon was apparently asked that question and said “I don’t know, so let’s do that awesome thing you just said with the steel and whatever” (Probably not an actual quote) and now I’m here to tell you about it.
Their first album, LegVacuum, may not have any of the super obscure videogame songs that you find yourself begging for (My dream of a Crash Bandicoot metal album continues to slowly fade) but what it has are some classics and they are done up in style. Everything from Super Metroid to Final Fantasy VII. They’re all given a nice little heavy metal kick in the pants while retaining some of the 8-bit parts that made us nerds fall in love in the first place. My personal favorite is Tecmo Super Bowl because come on! IT’S TECMO SUPER BOWL WITH GUITAR SOLOS. If you can’t appreciate that, then I don’t appreciate you or your existence. Check out ArmCannon’s LegVacuum here and jam it while trying to find your NES. [ORR]
Next we’ve got something that isn’t entirely metal. Back in 2011, Metroid fans were flummoxed over the fact that Nintendo seemingly overlooked the 25th anniversary of the Metroid series in favor of creating a massive fanfare for the 25th anniversary of the Zelda series. Unwilling to stand by while the stoic bounty hunter Samus Aran was left in the shadows of the Elfy McLongshanks, a number of musicians from disparate disciplines gathered together to release a fitting tribute to the excellent soundtracks that have enhanced Samus’ adventures throughout the cosmos. This Shinesparkers project is not specifically metal, but there are definitely some heavy tracks in the mix, alongside gentle piano ballads, stirring orchestral pieces, thrumming techno beats, and even some funk. So pleased was the Shinesparkers team with the first Harmony of a Hunter collaboration that they rejoined to release another collection in 2012, Harmony of a Hunter 101% Run. The music follows similar trends, but if you’re a fan of the Metroid series, you owe it to Samus to download these free compilations. The Shinesparkers team are currently hard at work on a Super Smash Bros. tribute album, so keep your eyes peeled for Harmony of Heroes. [W.]
Nothing But Zero
Doom holds a very special place in my tiny, blackened heart. It taught me reloading is for idiots. It taught me that chainsaws are every man’s go to weapon. It taught me to love… double barreled shotguns. It was the first game that let me kick copious amounts of demon ass while only having to worry about a horizontal plane. While all of those are amazing in their own right, there’s one very integral aspect of Doom that tends to get overlooked as we fondly reflect on frags gone by: The heaviest freaking 8-bit soundtrack you’ve ever heard in your life. Who hasn’t found themselves YouTubing E1M1 and jamming the hell out to the most metal videogame song to ever exist in 1993?
THE SOUND OF CRUSHING DEMON BALLS [UNDER VIDEO COMMENT]
Now what the hell does me rambling about the granddaddy of First Person Shooters have to do with you, metal blog aficionado and porcelain throne enthusiast? Well I’m glad you asked you wonderful weirdo! A fine gentleman going by the alias Nothing but Zero has decided that Doom’s metal as fuck soundtrack NEEDS MORE METAL, so he has taken it upon himself to record some excellent covers of music featured in both Doom and Doom II. The crunch of a real guitar and the addition of some real ball pounding double bass take some great music and make it greater. Here’s a compilation of all of his Doom covers in one convenient YouTube link (Be sure to check out the Black Metal version of Halls of the Damned at 21:43). [ORR]
Level 70 Elite Tauren Chieftain
This last item is an oldy but a goody. Younger toilet dwellers may be unaware that before World of Warcraft, Blizzard released three (plus several expansions) excellent real-time strategy games in the Warcraft universe. The last of these, Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, had a fantastic ending credits sequence where a fictional band called Tenth Level Tauren Chieftain hammered out a traditional metal song about slaying the enemies of the orcs called Power of the Horde. With the popularity of WoW, Blizzard rebooted TLTC into Level 70 Elite Tauren Chieftain and made a music video using in-game footage from Wow. The song in question isn’t exactly great, but for anyone who fondly recalls Warcraft III before neckbeards ruined the Warcraft franchise, cherish the memory of Power of the Horde. [W.]
(h/t Occam’s Razor Ramon)