The transition from 2D to 3D in the 90’s wasn’t a pretty one. At least the PlayStation and Saturn had the benefit of CD quality sound but Nintendo held onto the cartridge format for the N64. This meant musicians needed to code their own music into the game which resulted in a lot (a LOT) of forgettable, sub-par soundscapes of squeaking, squirting ear noise.
Nintendo’s first-party soundtracks obviously benefited from their expert understanding of the hardware but there were plenty of other memorable and enjoyable scores. One of those shining gems is Extreme-G 2, co-composed by Simon Robertson and Steve Root. For a game where TRON-inspired bikes routinely shatter the sound barrier (a cool effect in its own that strips away the music), the music is surprisingly chill. I’d always thought of it back then as drum ‘n bass but nowadays I’d call it more lounge, maybe? Chill, for sure.
However you classify it, it’s good. So I spent part of the weekend recording each of the game’s twelve courses (some races went better than others) and setting them to their matching songs. There’s also an intro track and menu music. Oh yeah, it’s a new videOST.