Games and metal have collided, friends, and no, I am not talking about Guitar Hero XXI or a portalable version of Rock Band (though that could be cool in a drunken karaoke kind of way). But as G4 broke to you back in March, Powerglove scored the biggest coup that a band who plays only video game theme covers could get; an opening slot for Dragonforce!
Powerglove are playing that very concert with the gods of power metal tonight up in Oregon, so to celebrate lets take their latest album for a spin. “Metal Kombat for the Mortal Man” is a must listen if both head banging and button mashing are your regular pasttimes. Now there a bunch of bands out there who play video game theme covers, but Powerglove blows all of them away, plain and simple (except of course for Nobuo Uematsu’s Black Mages, who are on a totally higher musical plane).
Powerglove gets metal-meets-games right in more ways than one. First off, they are ass-kicking musicians with some very Dragonforce-esque guitar runs. Next is their choice of material to cover. The obvious ones are there (Mario, Final Fantasy) but they even take on music from less likely sources including Duck Hunt. “The Duck Grinder” is highly recommend listening if you ever threw your Nintendo light gun at your TV in frustration at that damn dog laughing at you for missing.
The best number here is “Power, Wisdom, Courage,” a medley of different themes from the Legend of Zelda series. With an ocarina and electric guitar intro, the song quickly builds steam into a full out metal gallop that remains respectful to the source material. “Mario Minor” rocks out in similar fashion, even throwing in a couple samples from Super Mario Bros. to great effect. The band’s metallic refinishing of the techno-based Mortal Kombat theme should seriously be used as the theme music for the third MK movie should it ever get made.
The other games that get the heavy metal treatment here include Sonic the Hedgehog, Castlevania, Mega Man, Killer Instinct and Guilty Gear. “Omnishred (We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Sword)” is Powerglove’s spin on music from Final Fantasy and gets the award for best song title on the disc. You can buy the physical disc from the band’s website or download it via iTunes. Just don’t try to head bang while wearing a Virtual Boy.
--Rick “This game goes to 11” Damigella