Donkey Kong (Amiga) – “Bonus Stage” (Christian Blaha)July 1, 2010
Admittedly, the background ‘music’ to the extra stage in Donkey Kong on the Amiga (1993) is pretty awful – let me just put that out up front. While the track follows the mix and DJ scene of the early 90s and integrates game sound effects with the beat (that crying is the Game Over SFX), it’s not really that interesting. In fact, most of the work of Chistian Blaha (aka The Fox) seems to be straight-up ports of existing songs (the soundtracks to Donkey Kong and Frantic Freddy/Fast Eddie). As a result, the song is really more important for its context rather than its composition.
Back in 1993, a shareware company called Bignonia ported Donkey Kong from the Commodore 64 to the Amiga. The final product closely resembled the arcade original in terms of graphics and levels (it includes the elusive pie factory stage). While the game is missing the between-level “How High Can You Go?” screens, it did add an extra stage that seemed to make some decent use out of the game physics. It also included this mix track that in some ways prefigures Hirokazu Tanaka’s better version from Super Smash Brothers Brawl. Anyway, this video includes a full playthrough. This was pretty cool at the time because it was not until Donkey Kong 64 that it was possible to play the complete version of the arcade original on a home console. You see, there were many perks to owning an Amiga!
There is, however, one good original piece in the game, and that is the ‘cracktro’ screen that plays when the game loads. It creates a C64-esque chiptune aesthetic, which makes sense given the game’s context as a port. Nice bass feels a little Donkey Kong-esque.