A Guided Tour of Great Video Game Music Podcasts
A nostalgic adventure for your ears with a heavy focus on the early 8-bit and 16-bit era
One of the best rabbit holes I’ve recently fallen into is the world of video game music podcasts.
It all started with an episode of Twenty Thousand Hertz called Zelda: A Beep to the Past. The sounds of Zelda were an intoxicating hit of nostalgia for an old millennial like me, and Twenty Thousand Hertz knew exactly how to hook me.
I had to find more podcasts like this, and if there is anything I’m good at in this life, it’s finding more podcasts.
I listened to a lot of different episodes among many different shows and I’m here to share the very best. Podcasts about video game music are such an obvious and perfect use of the medium, and I had somehow completely missed this entire genre.
Such is the treasure of podcast discovery. You never know when you’ll stumble upon some island within the podcast landscape full of shows with years and years of episodes that happen to fit your exact interests.
So slip on your best walking shoes, grab some headphones, and let’s take a tour of great podcasts about video game music.
First up, be sure to check out Zelda: Tones of the Kingdom, the follow up episode to that linked to above, and also from Twenty Thousand Hertz. These two episodes make a great pairing to set the stage for the rest of your listening.
And then, you know what, go ahead and listen to another episode of Twenty Thousand Hertz. One of their very first episodes is called 8-bit, and it’s a great 12 minute episode. You’ll learn how the NES had spectacular constraints to how music could be made, and how this counterintuitively forced the tunes to be memorable and catchy.
The Super Marcato Bros
The most satisfying part of my research for podcasts about video game music was discovering The Super Marcato Bros. I found them via this Ars Technica article, and their 10+ years of past episodes is an absolute treasure trove. The hosts are brothers Will and Karl Brueggemann. They are both musicians who love sharing, creating, and dissecting classic video game music.