You’ve got to admire Bit Brigade’s painstaking attention to detail. With “Ninja Band,” they’ve recorded note-for-note covers of the soundtracks from the NES Ninja Gaiden games.
Tecmo’s series of side-scrollers were notorious for two things: their brutal difficulty and their excellent, high-energy soundtracks. So having a four-piece rock band reproduce the music from the game almost seems like a no-brainer.
“Ninja Band” is the third album from Bit Brigade. They previously recorded covers of the soundtracks from the Castlevania and Mega Man series of NES games. The thing with NES music is that the sound was limited to only four channels. So to keep things interesting, the material was fairly melodic and for the most part very technical.
Bit Brigade’s approach has always been extremely faithful to the source material. They take very few liberties and they’re able to play with enough precision to bring these old chiptunes to life. At their live shows they have an additional band member who performs a speed-run of the game their set revolves around. As the member plays through the game, a video is displayed via a big screen or a projector and the band plays the would-be soundtrack. It’s a blast to watch and makes for a truly authentic Nintendo/rock experience.
Highly recommended for retro game purists.