Nintendo Metal Covers – A playlist for maximum NEStalgia

I’ve been slowly maintaining this playlist of Nintendo Metal Covers for quite a while. In fact, I even posted a playlist on Mixcloud back in 2010, but I’ve had Winamp playlists going back to the days. I was 10 years old in 1985, so it goes to say that the 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System had a big impact on me. I put this playlist together largely for nostalgia reasons, highlighting some of my favorite NES games from that era.

Listen to the playlist

Support the artists on Bandcamp

Yeah, it has a lot of the same artists

Normally, I make a concentrated effort to not use the same artist more than once per playlist with a few exceptions. This playlist is a bit different in that it is held together by a few of the same artists over and over, with a smattering of unique artists here and there. A lot of these are artists I discovered back in the days. In fact, I started discovering some of these Nintendo metal bands, like The Minibosses and Vomitron, back then, right after I discovered the amazing world of Nintendo emulation. Yay for NESticle and *.nes ROM files. It was nostalgic bliss. I could play old games and listen to bands rock out the themes, it was amazing.

Look, I played a lot of NES when I was a kid

A lot of my favorite games came out in the late 1980’s, like the Castlevania series, Ninja Gaiden, Zelda, Mega Man 2 and Metroid. I put in a lot of hours playing through some of those games. Some were fairly trivial to get through like Castlevania, but I remember the absolute and utter rage playing through Ninja Gaiden 6-2.

Ninja Gaiden level 6-2 deserves its own section

Off and on through my life I have had periods of intense gaming(something of which has massively slowed down since I had a stroke that affected my right hand). For a period of time I was playing World of Warcraft in a raiding guild that was knocking out realm firsts with competitive US rankings. That shit was hard. There was a certain wildness to fighting a raid boss at a worldwide competitive kill time, and dying when the boss was at 1% life and almost dead. Look, that shit even happened more than once.

But nothing was as infuriating for me as Ninja Gaiden 6-2. I’m sure there are worse levels in other games but I didn’t play them.

There were these birds, and the way they flew, their speed and flight pattern… it was tricky. I think I spent the greater part of the summer coming back and trying to get through that level. This game didn’t have save states at all, so when you were done and shut off your NES, you had to start over at level 1-1. Eventually, I could breeze through to 6-1 with no effort. I’d bet even 30+ years later, if I tried to play through those levels I’d still have muscle memory guide me.

I banged my head on that wall that was level 6-2. Eventually, I got through it and graduated to level 6-3. This level was hard, I remember it taking some time to get through it but I did. THEN, you got to the end boss. There were THREE end bosses! That was hard! And if you died, they sent you back to 6-1! Which means you had to get through 6-2 again. Ugg. Fortunately, by then I had gotten a bit better at it and eventually beat the game, but I wanted to take a minute to reflect on that moment of gaming frustration that has haunted me for over 30 years.

Ninja Gaiden's Bird Level


I need to mention this project because their music is amazing, and I put some of their Nintendo covers in my playlist from my local drive, but they aren’t on Spotify. And you’re really missing the star jewel here.

Curiously, their Bandcamp profile describes them as a “486DX-33MHz-64MB“, which is exactly the same kind of machine I started writing music on back in the day. Anyway, download these files and put them in your Spotify local files, and download them to your phone. Really, not only do I encourage you, but I insist. They show up in the Youtube playlist I made, but for people on Spotify, do yourself a favor.

This playlist of Nintendo Metal Covers is available on these platforms

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2 Thoughts on Nintendo Metal Covers – A playlist for maximum NEStalgia
    16 Oct 2023

    No Zelda theme by August burns red? Possibly the best NES cover I ever heard.


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