Composer Lee Jackson's legacy in the world of game music includes the theme song for Duke Nukem 3Dcalled “Grabbag”. Lee talks about writing music for Duke Nukem 3D and other Duke projects, as well as how quickly he wrote music for Rise of the Triad, and how he made sounds for Balls of Steel (all games from Apogee Software / 3D Realms). Lee also takes commissions to write new music, and his albums on Bandcamp include music he wrote inspired by Duke Nukem, and other Duke projects. No video for this interview, but please do head over to the Level with Emily YouTube channel to find our newest videos - and subscribe! You can find a playlist and support Level with Emily on Patreon.
You’ve probably heard DB Cooper's voice at some point in your gaming life. I first heard her in BioShock 2 as the voice of the PA system. Most recently, she cast and directed the voices in Lake (in my intro to the episode, I mention she voiced characters in Lake, which is incorrect). And she is one of only two who voice ALL of the characters and sounds in the strategy roguelike deck builder Monster Train. And there have been many, many others. Currently, DB is on the Voice Over Team at ZeniMax Online Studios, the makers of The Elder Scrolls Online. You can support Level with Emily on Patreon.
One of my favorite soundtracks from 2021 came from Neil Bones (a.k.a. Corey Jones) for Twelve Minutes, a creepy time-loop game from Annapurna Interactive. Corey’s music caught my attention for its simplicity and beauty. Find it on Bandcamp and all the places! You can find a playlist and support Level with Emily on Patreon.
Maclaine Diemer talks about his music for the newest expansion for Guild Wars 2 called End of Dragons. The music is inspired by traditional Korean music and instruments, a much needed educational dive into a rich tradition! Emily and Maclaine talk at great length about the special instruments he chose to use and the beautiful music for GW2: End of Dragons. You can find a playlist and support Level with Emily on Patreon.
Ego Plum talks about his music for The Cuphead Show, a new animated TV series on Netflix based on the 2017 game Cuphead. The music Ego composed for the TV series is inspired by the early jazz that accompanied cartoons in and around the 1930s, and that you heard in the original score for the game itself (props to composer Kris Maddigan and here is his interview about Cuphead). Netflix recently announced that The Cuphead Show is renewed for two additional seasons with Ego as the composer. You can support Level with Emily on Patreon.
We’ve talked with composer Chase Bethea in the past about his music for the game Aground, but this soundtrack release is different, so we talked again. The Aground Deluxe Edition includes nine more tracks, and piano sheet music for three of the tracks. This interview took place on December 30th in 2020. You can support Level with Emily on Patreon.
Hear a conversation with Inon Zur about his music for Syberia: The World Before. The game comes out in February 2022, but the soundtrack came out late last year. That gave me the chance to speak with Inon about all of the music, and the music in this game is special for several reasons. One of the main characters is a concert pianist and part of the game is set in 1937 with clear parallels to World War II - all of this sets the stage for some great music. You can support Level with Emily on Patreon.
Erik Desiderio is composing music for Last Epoch, an action RPG from Eleventh Hour games. Erik just released a music video with the performers from Last Epoch's Main Theme and you can view it here! Last Epoch has been in early access for quite a while, and Erik is busy filling in the music - 4+ hours of music, to be exact. He used the Scandinavian instrument called the tagelharpa (which you see in the video link above!), and he used fretless bass in a great way. You can support Level with Emily on Patreon!