Saturday, April 3, 2021

Soundtrack Saturday: Cuphead


In this weekly feature, I recommend game soundtracks. I share a few of my favorite tracks, talk about why everyone should listen to the soundtrack, and a little bit about the composer. This week's choice is Cuphead by Studio MDHR.


Name: Cuphead
Developer: Studio MDHR
Publisher: Studio MDHR
Release Date: September 29, 2017
Genres: Run and gun
Composer: Kristofer Maddigan


(The full list of tracks are linked below... and I highly recommend some good headphones to best enjoy all of the subtle elements of the music!)

Elder Kettle
(Length: 5:14) A fun little waltz featuring woodwinds and piano, letting their off-beat rhythms carry all of the percussive needs of the piece -- the lilting flow is enjoyable and runs away with the listener! (And does it remind you a little of the soundtrack for Up?)

Threatenin' Zeppelin
(Length: 3:28) This track COOKS! Major kudos to the musician on the xylophone in particular!

Treetop Trouble
(Length: 2:54) Forget Beethoven. You want to impress someone? Start banging this out on a piano, at the correct tempo. The insertion of dissonant notes and comedic percussion makes this so fun to listen to, also! (Have I used enough exclamation points yet?!)

Floral Fury
(Length: 3:45) This track breaks out the salsa. If it doesn't make you want to dance or fly to Rio for Carnival, then I call your taste in music questionable! 

Carnival Kerfuffle
(Length: 4:01) Know how to hook me into a song? Lean on the saxes. I know what kind of skill it takes to make a sax sing and wail like they do in this song! 

You can listen to the entire soundtrack here, courtesy of a bandcamp widget, or you can click this link to go visit the bandcamp page directly, or if you prefer you can acquire it over here on Steam. 


Do you like any jazz, swing, or big band music? Even if you say no, you should still give this soundtrack a try! It's PHENOMENAL. As someone who's been playing saxophone for 30 years (though a bit rusty in recent years), I can promise you that you are going to hear high quality compositions and love something in each. The soundtrack debuted at number nine on the Billboard Jazz Albums chart, if you're looking for some credibility!


I think I can safely say that nobody know about Mr. Maddigan outside of some classical music groups in Toronto until this soundtrack came along. Known as a jazz percussionist, it's easy to identify his talent in rhythms and catchy jazz syncopations (that's fancy music terminology for stuff that happens off-beat). I think it's fantastic that they got a talented musician like Mr. Maddigan to compose stylized music to match their 1930's style graphics of the game, because it renews interest in the "older" genre for newer audiences. 

Appreciate it, kids! *sashays off to the next soundtrack*

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