It’s been a covers heavy week with classical performers taking on metal and alternative rock. Video games have been a subject too with the Monad designed 2 string violin. But here we have a fantastic performer who does more than play the theme song: he plays the music and effects as they happen in real-time, alongside the 8-Bit Nintendo game Super Mario Bros.
This game brings back all sorts of memories, and musicians have been playing the theme to it for decades. But what musicians are not incorporating in their rendition are the subtle intricacies that make the gameplay music so interesting. When Mario jumps and opens a brick that gets him invincibility, the music changes and so does the sound effects when he hits the turtles. When Mario drops into the pipelines, the music changes again. Power-ups and extra lives have effects that are heard on the game but often left out when musicians take on the sound of the game. Not here.
The full experience of the original Mario Bros game is all of the small features that come with Mario jumping through bricks, battling owls and turtles, diving into drain lines to battle a dragon and save a princess. This violinist gives us the best version of that experience to date, using his instrument and not merely computer effects.