Kecak chants + VGM

This was a weird little trend in Japanese videogame music.

Secret of Evermore’s ('93) theme for the Dark Lich is the first time I know of it being employed.

The most explicit usage of it probably comes from Power Instinct 2 ('94), composed by Toshikazu Tanaka.

Another fighting game, The King of Fighters '97 ('97, duh), makes pretty abrupt use of chant samples.

You can hear it in a track Hitoshi Sakimoto wrote for Kingdom Grand Prix ('94). Sakimoto used a similar vocal effect for parts of his Vagrant Story soundtrack ('00).

I’ll probably find a few more examples later.

A lot of Japanese videogame composers had exposure to YMO’s music, so it’s plausible that they also first came across Kecak chants while listening to YMO’s 1981 album Technodelic.


From the beatmania IIDX Archives:

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the most pop cultural course for kecak reaching video games is probably through the Akira film, which had Geinoh Yamashirogumi’s heavily kecak influenced sound.


Technodelic still sounds a helluvah lot newer than '81, what an album

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NiGHTS into Dreams (1995)

chants begin @ :32

When I first heard 2:39, I thought of Dark Lich and though they were perhaps cover-referencing that. These dudes were eclectic enough to be a little videogamey sometimes.

Way later I learned of the Balinese Monkey Chant and such, blew my mind. And vocal cords when imitating.

I’m struggling to remember one other game I heard using this; gonna have to dig deep and maybe share later.



(by Shinji Hosoe, for Wii game Let’s Tap, 2008)


edit: ost is better than arrange in this case


(no chanting, but thought to put it in here because it’s gamelan)