The String Arcade: A Retro Gaming Album Open for Pre-Orders!

TheStringArcade_Cover_Art_72
Have you heard of The String Arcade? If the name rings a bell, it’s probably because of the Kickstarter campaign they ran that finished at the end of August 2013. The project was pitched as “A recording of video game music, spanning 8 bit games to the present, arranged & enhanced for string quartet”, and thanks to their talented and hard-working crew they were able to surpass their initial goal of $6000!
StringArcade_bw
The group is composed of four excellent musicians who play through music that spans multiple decades of gaming history. The track list includes themes from  The Legend of ZeldaMinecraft, Portal 2 and Altered Beast, among others (check out a full track listing here). The music is arranged by Dren McDonald and Jasonn Poss, who worked on Ghost Recon Commander and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, respectively, among a variety of other projects. If that’s not indicative of the album’s high quality, you can check out a FREE sample track right here: https://soundcloud.com/dren-mcdonald/plants-vs-zombies-from-the
StringArcade_Phil_Jason_Celia_Emily_Robin
Enticed? Craving more? Unfortunately, the album doesn’t launch until February 11th, but you can pre-order your own copy on iTunes (for $7.99, 20% savings!) or BandCamp (for$9.99, $2 savings!). The best part is, all profits will go towards supporting the Alameda Music Project, an after-school program launching in September that aims to give K-5 children a chance to experience music education free of charge, and regardless of their life’s circumstances. You could help fund the next generation of musicians!
Check out the full press release below:
Classic video game music reimagined in The String Arcade, now available for preorder
String quartet album releases February 11; all profits support Alameda Music Project after-school program
ALAMEDA, Calif. – January 28, 2014 – In August, Bay Area composer Dren McDonald led a successful Kickstarter campaign for The String Arcade, a recording of classic video game music reimagined for string quartet. The finished recording was distributed to backers this month and is now available for preorder to the general public from iTunes and BandCamp (see below for links). The String Arcade will officially release February 11 for digital download and CD.
About The String Arcade – http://www.thestringarcade.com
The String Arcade is a well-curated collection of music arranged for string quartet by Dren McDonald (Ghost Recon CommanderRavenwood Fair) and Jason Poss (Lord of the Rings film trilogy, World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King). The arrangements go far beyond chamber music emulations of the original themes, with each piece creatively interpreted, embellished, and reimagined to capture emotions evoked by the games. In conceiving the project, McDonald was inspired by John Lurie’s Stranger Than Paradisefilm soundtrack (1984), which featured a moody, string quartet score.
Besides giving gamers a new way to enjoy beloved classics, The String Arcade is also poised to inspire young musicians to pick up a violin, viola, or cello. Several tracks were specifically chosen from games popular among kids, and all album proceeds will be donated to the Alameda Music Project (http://www.alamedamusicproject.org), a tuition-free K-5 after-school program launching in September.
About The Music
The String Arcade‘s 15 original arrangements (plus 2 CD bonus tracks) were inspired by games from Galaga to Minecraft and performed by local musicians, with a special appearance by the Boston-based Videri String Quartet. One preview track, Plants Vs. Zombies‘ “Grasswalk,” has been released as a free digital download: https://soundcloud.com/dren-mcdonald/plants-vs-zombies-from-the
The String Arcade spans a few decades in video game history, from stand-up arcade classics (GalagaTRON), through the 8- and 16-bit eras (Legend of ZeldaSonic the HedgehogAltered BeastEcco the Dolphin) and the golden age of 1990s adventures (Monkey Island 2Outlaws), to more recent hits (Portal 2Minecraft), indie favorites (FTL — Faster Than LightScurvy Scallywags), and mobile/social games (graBLOXPettington ParkRavenshire Castle). For a full track list, visit http://www.thestringarcade.com/#!about/c10fk.
Preorder Details
Until the album’s February 11 release, The String Arcade digital download can be preordered from iTunes for $7.99, a 20% savings over the normal $9.99 price: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-string-arcade/id805763356
The CD version, which includes two bonus tracks not included with the digital download, can be preordered from BandCamp for $9.99 (regularly $11.99):http://thestringarcade.bandcamp.com

About the author:

When Alex was young, he used to cry whenever his parents tried to hand him a game controller. Having complete control over the life of a red-clad Italian plumber was just too daunting to him. Nowadays, he only cries when the controller’s taken away.

Hailing from the frigid tundras of Canada, Alex plays video games not only to entertain himself, but also as a source of warmth to get him through the winter. He loves all genres of video games, the more difficult the better. Some of his current favourites include VVVVVV, Pikmin 3 and Rayman Legends.

Alex – who has written posts on NintendoFuse.