The Last Ninja

Have you ever wondered what your favourite 8-bit video game soundtrack would sound like if it were performed by a live band? Local group Satan’s Cheerleaders may have just have answered that question with their third release Satan’s Cheerleaders Perform The Music Of The Last Ninja.

This album is somewhat of a departure from the norm for a group whose original material, drawing from influences such as Mr Bungle, blends the likes of metal, rock, jazz and pop into a delicious progressive narrative. The technical skill and attention to detail implicit in producing such music has gone a long way in doing great justice nonetheless, to a visceral and affective video game soundtrack. 

The Last Ninja (1987) was one of the most successful video games to be released on the Commodore 64, pushing the boundaries of the available technology in every way possible. Its music was no exception. Here Satan’s Cheerleaders have re-imagined every piece of the game’s soundtrack (loading screens included) into a powerful rock band experience.

Careful attention has been made to establish a poignant aesthetic appeal for each track as all manner of effects and timbres are on display. Across the thick, crunchy guitars, octave laced saxophone lines and hazy synthesisers the dynamic shifts drastically from one track to the next. The quality of the production matches the high standard of the music, engulfing your ears in an ocean of activity. It was mixed and mastered locally at Wizard Tone Studios by the band’s drummer, just by the way!

With this release the cheerleaders have done more than just pay tribute to some fantastic music, they have most importantly brought a unique flare to the compositions that speaks to the qualities and moods of the original works. This album will take you on just as much of a journey as the game does.

Satan’s Cheerleaders Perform The Music Of The Last Ninja will be launched on September 29th at Nexus Arts where the band will be supporting Japan’s Shonen Knife for the Oz Asia festival. If you’re a fan of the game or any 8-bit music of the period you don’t want to miss this show.