BANFF – Hold on to your butts; a link has been made between classic video games, blockbuster movies and one local musician’s newest material.
Nostalgic tunes from fan favourite franchises such as the Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, the Lord of the Rings and Jurassic Park were re-imagined on Adaptations; a five-track instrumental EP released for free this week by Banff fingerstyle guitarist Kasey Nolan.
“[The sound on the EP] is video games and nerdy stuff,” Nolan said. “Most of them are recognizable tunes – if you know them then you know them, but there’s a little bit of my own interpretation and my own writing in certain parts.”
Recorded in Banff and produced by Matt Homeniuk, Adaptations also features covers of Somewhere Over The Rainbow, and Shoreless, originally performed by Calgary band Numenorean. The band got its name after Lord of the Rings middle-earth mythology.
With free time on Nolan's hands, he started playing role playing games and watching larger than life movies during the pandemic lockdown. With many popular franchises comes the time-honoured symphonies, which helped inspire the ideas around the Adaptations, available on kaseynolan.bandcamp.com. Adaptations became a passion project between Nolan's debut album No Words Needed, released last fall, and his sophomore album that’s expected to come out sometime this winter.
Nolan said that when recording, he kept it simple and wanted the EP to have a one-track, live feel, while still paying tribute to the influential music.
“I was just having fun with the songs during lockdown and people really liked them, so I decided to record them,” Nolan said. “I want to be a guy known for his originals and not his covers, but every successful songwriter does have a few covers that they’ve done in the past and these ones mean something to me because I’m a gamer and like movies.”
Getting straight into the "nerdy" stuff, the opening track called Breath of Hyrule is a Zelda-inspired melody that’s a moody and dark interpretation of what’s usually triumphant heroic tones that franchise is known for.
This song, along with the EP's third track, the big-ticket movie inspired Six Scores of Hollywood, were the original centre pieces around the EP, said Nolan.
He added a few more songs with more time; keeping a video game feel to it with the Pokémon-inspired fourth track, which GameBoy users will remember from the Red and Blue versions while inside the hospital, the Pokémon Centre. It's called We Hope to See You Again.