The Advantage - Elf Titled (Cover Artwork)

The Advantage

Elf Titled (2006)

5 Rue Christine

To put it simply, the Advantage is a four-piece instrumental band that covers tunes from games featured on the old-school, gray-box Nintendo Entertainment System.

To put it in a bit more detail, the Advantage is a talented quartet of musicians who skillfully manage to capture a handful of memorable melodies from old Nintendo games on this album (their second), converting the primitive pulsings of an 8-bit sound system into a dynamic sounding, toe-tapping instrumental soundtrack for people who grew up using controllers with less than ten buttons. There are many fine selections on this album from classics such as Mega Man II, Wizards and Warriors, Contra, Metroid and The Guardian Legend. As a hardcore NES fan and collector for nearly twenty years, I can testify that these new versions of insanely catchy NES tunes are 99% spot-on, with intricate, multi-layered guitar work and precision drumming. While I enjoyed this entire album, my favorite tracks are the Moon theme from Duck Tales, the Woods theme from Castlevania II, the entire montage from Air Fortress and the alien's lair theme from Contra.

Some may dismiss this album as a novelty item that won't hold interest after a few spins. However, for people like me, it's a fun slice of nostalgia that warms my cold, cynical heart. The Advantage have stated that their goal is to cover every song ever played in an NES game, so I'll be looking forward to their next installment sometime in the future. If you like this, be sure to pick up their first album too.