Favourite track: Highway Slicker
We reached out to Fat Bard to ask them about their work on the recently released Demon Turf! Here is what they had to say.
Q1: Your tracks on the Demon Turf soundtrack seem to have a funk / disco influence. Are there any artists from those genres that inspired you directly?
We’re big fans of the Japanese pop band, Sakanaction, so there’s no doubt some of their sound inspired the more traditional funk and disco tracks. Moreso we turned to a lot of 90s electronic and dance artists to give the soundtrack a bit of a club feel. Underworld was on rotation quite a bit, as were Goldie, Tipper, and Orbital. From there we thought it would be fun to branch out and include some varying complimentary styles; so we wrote a 2-Tone track and invited Skatune Network to play on it, as well as a hip-hop/synth funk track with vocals from Serengeti. The overall goal was to have a strong rhythmic component to keep the players engaged. So finding common ground between the various styles was a rewarding part of the challenge.
Q2: You have worked on several games with hand drawn art styles. Is there a tone or that you associate with that visual style?
Hand drawn games definitely had their glow-up in the 90s, so it’s hard not to find inspiration there. But generally we hope to find shared interests between our tastes and the developer’s tastes. It’s more beneficial to have unique musical discussions for each project, and go in with an open mind, rather than try to match a visual with its 1-1 cultural counterpart.
Q3: Can fans expect to see part 2 of your neoclassical chillwave project the "Tabard Series" anytime soon?
Ha! The Tabard Series will certainly return at some point. We’d like to put out something a bit more focused next time around since the songs in Series 1 were disparate singles, mostly of us experimenting with sounds we don’t normally use in our soundtracks. We do also have plans for original Fat Bard music. Although, it can be hard to find the time between our work projects, personal projects, and personal lives to see that stuff through. Hopefully we’ll have something fun to release in 2022!
Q4: How important is it for you to demo the games you are scoring while they are being developed? Is the general tone and aesthetic sometimes enough to work with?
It’s nice to have a build of the game, if possible, to run around in and figure out the mood and pacing. Although for music in many cases we’ve done fine working off GIFs and screenshots. As long as we have a fruitful discussion with the developer(s) about style and expectations we can usually hit the mark. For our sound design projects, being able to jump in and playtest our SFX is invaluable and can often make or break the quality of the sound implementation. So it really depends on the type of project, its scope, and our role in the audio experience.