Every week, the Rocksmith 2014 team is proud to offer fresh playable tracks from the biggest names in music. In the last two months alone, the at Ubisoft Studio San Francisco featured music from huge artists like No Doubt, Lamb of God, The Doobie Brothers, Deftones and Duran Duran. This week, however, we went back a bit further – like, to the 1700s. The result is Bachsmith – five classical music masterpieces custom-built for modern guitarists and bassists with some surprising twists. Roll over, Beethoven.
For Bachsmith, our notetrackers selected five familiar melodies but rearranged them in clever, unexpected ways. Wagner’s epic “Ride of the Valkyries” delivers the elements any 80s metal fan craves – filled with crunchy riffs, searing leads, thunderous drums and shifting time signatures. The stirring, emotional interpretation of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” helps reinforce the importance of phrasing and making each note meaningful; it’s trickier than it sounds. There’s a deliciously distorted interpretation of Bach’s “’Little’ Fugue in G Minor,” featuring intertwining guitar leads and two basslines. Grieg’s “In the Hall of the Mountain King” begins with a funky Latin groove that will keep you chasing the beat, slowly accelerating into a dramatic, roaring finale. Last but not least, a bouncy, gypsy-jazz version of Mozart’s “Rondo Alla Turca” provides some precise, speedy runs that we think Django Reinhardt would appreciate. Plus, it’ll get stuck in your head for days.
From conception to arrangement to rehearsal to recording to notetracking to release, Bachsmith is the result a six-month labor of love. The final tracks were recorded at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, California, home of Green Day’s “Dookie,” Santana’s “Supernatural” and countless other classic recordings.
Suspecting we were on to something special, we started documenting the process on video, and the result is a fun three-part look behind the scenes at exactly what it took to bring this material to Rocksmith 2014.
If you want to listen to these custom-made recordings outside of Rocksmith 2014, we’re thrilled to announce that the official Bachsmith soundtrack is available on both iTunes and Spotify right now. Take these tracks with you outside of the game and study them – the deeper you dig, the more you’ll get out of them when you play them in Rocksmith 2014.
But wait, there’s more! To celebrate the release of Bachsmith, we’re happy to give you a chance to win an Orange Micro Terror stack, courtesy of our friends at Orange Amplification. You’ve seen their legendary British gear in the game; now, maybe you can own some of it for yourself. Full instructions for entering the giveaway are in our forums.
As always, we want your feedback, but even more so when we do something a little unusual like Bachsmith. Swing by the official Rocksmith forums, drop us a note on Twitter at @UbisoftStudioSF, or just comment below. And, as always, rock on.
For more on Rocksmith 2014, take a look at these posts: