San Francisco-based composer and pianist Aivi Tran certainly came upon an unlikely genre when choosing to tackle the realm of video game music, but you know what? It works for her, and it is simply one of many of her quirks of her musical stylings that make Aivi Tran, Aivi Tran. According to her official website’s “About” page, she began playing piano at only five years old and has since acquired a BA in Music with honors, having specialized in composition, meaning that she is a professional musician and composer who most certainly knows what she is doing. It just so happens that she’s professionalized specifically within the realm of video game soundtracks, and there is nothing wrong with that.
The world first got a taste of Tran’s musical talent circa her waltzforluma YouTube account, which has since acquired the attention of such renowned online gaming entities as IndieGames.com since its inception four years ago. At this current moment, Tran is working as lead composer on the upcoming game, “Cryamore”, and is taking to her YouTube account in order to provide followers of her and the in-progress title with updates on its official soundtrack. To this day, she has uploaded six “Cryamore”-related compositions to her YouTube account, amongst them its impeccable main theme. Many times, when it comes to her “Cryamore” soundtrack, she collaborates with chip-tune artist surasshu, which makes for a combination of the sophisticated sounds of her piano and orchestral compositions and surasshu’s own retro stylings, which hark back to the heyday of gaming back in the 80’s, with blips and bloops being set down in a specific way in order to create music.
Surprisingly enough, her collaborations with surasshu, no matter how radically different the two actually are in sound, just work. It is pleasing to the ear, and to the open-minded, the duo’s music they have created together can even be enjoyed frequently outside of the realm of gaming. Amongst other highlights of the “Cryamore” soundtrack and what we’ve been permitted to hear of it thus far is the sunny track, “Daybreak at Ghilchrest”. Tran and surasshu have also collaborated on covers in the past, such as “Mabe Village” from “The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening”.
Also worthy of note are Tran’s more “traditional” takes on classic video game hits. These include, but are most certainly not limited to her beautiful takes on “Comet Observatory Medley”, harking from “Super Mario Galaxy”, “Green Hill Zone” from “Sonic the Hedgehog”, and the Main Theme of “The Legend of Zelda”. With all of these videos, she imbue a truly professional grace into each song she performs; it just so happens that they are songs from or related to video games. With any luck, Aivi Tran will continue to take on this unique facet of the industry that honestly needs to be more respected than it is, with such legends of the specific profession as Nobuo Uematsu and Michiru Yamane deserving of worldwide acclaim, not to mention Ms. Tran herself.
To keep up with Aivi, make sure to subscribe to her before-linked YouTube account and to follow her official website mentioned above. Also make sure to like her official Facebook page here. You can follow her on Twitter here.