Hang on, how did I not know about this? Red Bull have commissioned a documentary series, called Diggin in The Carts, which is all about the history of Japanese video game music. This is most definitely relevant to my interests.
They have already popped the first (quarter hour) installment up onto their website, but if you want to avoid clicking through I have embedded it below too. Is it any good?
Well, as with all of these things, the narrative is a little forced. As the focus for the early years is entirely on Namco, there is no mention of some of the interesting sound engineering found in the arcade cabinets released by the competition. When you consider that, in the period covered by this episode, Sega released the first game to have a licensed soundtrack (Super Locomotive, which used Yellow Magic Orchestra’s hit Rydeen,) this seems a bit of a shame. In fact, there is no mention of Yellow Magic Orchestra whatsoever so far. A massive oversight considering the massive influence their sound had on early chip music.
It’s not all bad though. In fact, I would argue its worth a few minutes of your time just to see Junko Ozawa’s show-stealing original wave form sketches, so why not give it a watch below?