I am very happy to inform you guys and girls that I had the great pleasure to do a Q&A interview with Nino MegaDriver just recently. And this morning I recived all the answers, so please enjoy my interview with MegaDriver =)

Robin TGG
We always start off our interviews with a little introduction of the person whom we´re interviewing. So, please go ahead =)

Nino
Well, I’m Nino, a Brazilian guy who as a frequent player in arcade shops in earlier 90ies and that lead me to being a huge Sega Genesis fan and years later helped me get the courage to create MegaDriver, a video game music band.

megadriver top gear

I think it´s safe to say that Nino´s Sonic guitar is way cool.

Robin TGG
Megadriver was founded in Brazil by you back in 2003 right? How did that happened? And did you at that time think that Megadriver would become as famous as the band is today?

Nino
Nope, not all, I have never imagined that MegaDriver would be well-recognized in a video game music scene, and have never imagined that such scene would ever exist one day! Haha!

My story with video game music started much earlier than 2003. Since I was a kid in the 80ies, I was not only a video game fan, but also a Heavy Metal fan. In earlier 90ies when I started learning how to play guitar, I was always playing or at least trying to play songs from the games I like. In almost every garage band that I have played when I was a teenager, I tried to impose the idea of playing video game tunes. But, being a “gamer”, a “nerd” or a “viciado” (the Brazilian word for “addicted”, a street slang for the one who plays video games like hell) wasn’t a cool thing as it is today… So, when I’ve said that I want the band to play the Ken stage theme from Street Fighter instead of a Metallica song, for instance, the answer from my fellow band members always was like, “what the girls will think if we play that? We won’t get any girls playing that!”.

So in the 90ies I have terribly failed to form a band to play game tunes. Around 1999, I’ve decided to follow the steps of one of my favorite bands, Bathory, and do all by myself, and that, for me, is where it all started. I’ve founded a personal website, called “nino.com.br”, and I started uploading there my home-made covers of video games songs, with all the instruments done by myself, a traditional one-man-band. With time, the general “hate for nerd stuff” started getting lower and lower, and the popularity of the website getting bigger. Then, in 2003, I’ve decided to resurrect my idea of forming an actual band, and that’s when I’ve created MegaDriver. The band’s name is a tribute to my favorite console, the Sega Genesis, which is known if Brazil as “Mega Drive”. With only a few months of age, MegaDriver was already in the front page of every gamer website in Brazil and that indeed was a surprise to me. A few time later, I was already getting booked to perform shows in many important conferences here.

nino megadriver mega drive guitar

It´s a picture of Nino MegaDriver´s Mega Drive gutiar.

Robin TGG
How did the Sonic the hedgehog and Mega Drive electric guitars happen exactly? And whose idea was that? (I love them both!).

Nino
Haha! The Genesis Guitar was a actually a trip of mine, like … what the hell, I play video game tunes in my guitar, but I want to play the game tunes in the console somehow! So what I did was trying to merge the two things that I loved the most, my guitar and my very first Sega Genesis console. It wasn’t easy for me to ”destroy” them both, but I was actually pleased with the results! Haha! So, that was just for fun, but people loved that, and It got somehow popular. Then, some time later, with MegaDriver getting booked everywhere, I’ve decided to create a ”proper” guitar, something that I could actually play comfortably live. And that was when I’ve decided to create the Sonic The Hedgehog guitar, which is today is like a symbol of the band.

Robin TGG
I would love to hear which bands and games that have inspired you and Megadriver the most. Another question, are you a Sepultura fan by any chance? Because some of your songs sound a bit Sepultura:ish (like the “Tr00ibe” Blanka theme song).

nino megadriver golden axe guitar

“Golden Axe” was one of the games that inspired Nino to create his band MegaDriver.

Nino
I think that one of the games that first inspired me to create MegaDriver was Golden Axe. That, I think, was the first game that made me thought “Hey! That music sounds so much like Heavy Metal”, “Golden Axe could have a soundtrack by Iron Maiden”, if you get what I mean…

I listen to a lot of different styles within Metal, from Black to classic Metal. When I was a Kid was a huge Iron Maiden fan, however, as I’ve said before, Bathory was always a great inspiration to me. King Diamond is my favorite artist, but regarding guitar playing, I believe I have strong influences from the first Blind Guardian albums. And when it comes to drums composing, I’m always inspired by bands like Dimmu Borgir. With my metal head, sins confessed, I must admit that one of the guys that made me love video game music was Yuzo Koshiro, with games like Streets Of Rage and The Revenge Of The Shinobi.

And hey! That’s electronic music, something that I just hated at that time. Nevertheless, I thought, “Wow! This guy must be good. He has his name in the title screen!”. He’s a genius! I’m also a Sepultura fan, but limited to the earlier formation, with Max and Igor. Tr00ibe was indeed a reference to the Roots song! We can argue about which is the most popular metal band from Brazil, but when it comes to which band has a unique style, that would be Sepultura. If you think of a “Brazilian Heavy Metal” style, that would be the Roots album. So, when I did the song for Blanka, I’ve decided to follow an original Brazilian metal style. However, if you ask me, which is my favorite Brazilian band of the moment, I would say Korzus is the one I listen the most today 😉

megadriver old band

MegaDriver has gone through quite a few line-up changes since 2003.

Robin TGG
Megadriver has undergone quite a few lineup changes since 2003. So, is it like they say? You know. That sometimes it´s necessary to inject some fresh blood into the band, in-order to keep the sound relevant and exciting? (Dave Mustaine stated something similar to that during the 90s).

Nino
Well, MegaDriver is an independent band, and we face the same problems as any other band. There’s ‘n’ reasons why people came and go, even odd reasons, like “I don’t wanna be a rock star. I want to be a normal guy”. Haha! That’s actually the reason that one of our ex-members gave us. Like, we were getting booked more and more, getting larger tours, and he decided that he didn’t want to be a “rockstar” and, like Guile, just “be a family man”! Haha! One of the main reasons for people leaving the band is the tour trips, long travels, and so.

Some people usually get tired, but yes. Brand-new members actually bring fresh ideas, which was the case with Allan, our vocalist, that brought the band to a whole new level, composing original songs and so. We have a strong and stable formation today, with great guys in the band. Especially when it comes to stage performance, which is an important thing. Being a good musician is always important, but having a great stage presence is also one of the most important things for a band.

Robin TGG
Which of Megadriver´s albums and songs do you like the most and why?

Nino
Dude, that’s so hard to answer. I have many favorites, and we have a policy in MegaDriver to only cover games that we actually enjoy, so, that would be a very difficult question. However, I can name some songs that are very dearest to us, like “Mad Racer” from Top Gear, one of the songs that the audience like the most in Brazil (Top Gear is a very popular game here). MetalHog is very special for me also, not only because it’s a tribute to one of my favorite games, but also because it’s the most popular album of the band. And as my personal favorite, it’s something seasonal! Haha! My favorite song and album are always the last one 😉 So, I guess my preferred album now is the one that will hit the Internet in a couple of weeks from now 😉

street fighter

Nino is a huge fan of “Street Fighter”.

Robin TGG
If I´m not totally wrong now, you´re a big fan of Street Fighter right? If so, have you been playing a lot of Street Fighter V yet? And what do you think about the game so far?

Nino
Yes, I’m a huge Street Fighter fan! I was an arcade guy. I wouldn’t be lying if I say that I’ve spent exactly the same amount of time playing arcades and console games. I’m playing SFV since the beta, and I’m having mixed feelings about it yet. I think that it’s clear that Capcom wants the game to be accessible for newcomers. It’s cool to have more people playing, etc. But it’s also somehow frustrating. I mean, one of the things that were incredibly cool about Street Fighter is exactly because performing a combo was not that easy. Like, if anyone could do what Daigo did on the famous Evo Moment 37, it would have never become so special, right? Furthermore, why is it much cooler to watch an e-sports match of USFV4, then it is to watch Mortal Kombat 9?

Because in MK9, it’s more like, “the guy who hits the first combo wins the round”. I’m having that kind of feeling with SFV right now, some old combos that are now extremely easy to perform are taking so much damage. Ok, Capcom perhaps wants the players to be more offensive, but being technical was also a cool thing about Street Fighter. Like, I have that feeling that “button smashers” are being compensated. Like, if you wanna win, you’ll have to smash the buttons too. Haha! Any ways, I’m enjoying the game, a little frustrated sometimes, but it’s very fresh/raw yet… We’ll not only get more used to the game engine, but Capcom will make many improvements over time…

Robin TGG
To this very day, Megadriver has released nine studio albums and three EP´s. And just recently you released the MetalHog 2.0 album to celebrate Sonic the hedgehog´s 25th anniversary. So my question would be this, does Megadriver have any plans for a brand-new studio album at this time? If that´s the case, is it then possible for you to share any details about the new album with us?

Nino
I can say that 2016 is a year of releases from MegaDriver. In the past years, we’ve dedicated ourselves to touring, and that left us a gap of many years without an album release. So this year we’re fully dedicated to studio recordings. We’re not only re-recording old songs with our current (and better) rig but also working on new studio albums. We’ve already released a compilation album called “Gaming Hell”, and a RPG album called “Role Playing Metal”. And we are going back to our roots, working on a series of albums dedicated to Sega Genesis games and the first one should be out in a few weeks from now. For this particular album, we are focusing on famous games of the past that are now somehow in the oblivion… so, it’s time to rise them from their graves! Haha!

video games live logo

MegaDriver “might” play at some VGL events this year (most likely in Brasil). If you´re reading this Tommy Tallarico, make it happen!

Robin TGG
Does Megadriver have any tour plans for 2016? If so, what´s the band´s plans? (Video Games Live?, E3? Pax? Blizzcon?).

Nino 
As I’ve said, this year we are dedicating ourselves to new album releases. We need to freshen up our set list. So, we are stepping out a little from smaller conferences and gigs for a while, and keeping only shows in larger conferences/festivals. Video Games Live is always a possibility, but I don’t think that we’ll be able to return to US in 2016, for instance, but it’s in our plan for the years to come. Playing at MAGFest was like presenting the candy to a kid for the first time, now we’re addicted to it! Haha!

Robin TGG
Megadriver has done Metal covers based on songs from games such as Diablo 2, Super Castlevania IV, Road Rash, Megaman, Donkey Kong Country and Street Fighter. So I think it´s safe to say that you´ve done quite a lot of songs from a wide range of different games and genres. So my question would be this, how does Megadriver pick out which songs that should be a part of your albums, music videos and such? (do you cast votes within the band?)

Nino
There’s one basic difference between MegaDriver and, for instance, many other artists on Youtube: We only cover games that we actually like. I personally just hate the idea that most people cover some games just because they are popular, and that will get him/her popular. One of the reasons that I’ve started MegaDriver in the first place was actually to bring back the great and forgotten games of the past. It was like this with Top Gear. It was like this with Altered Beast, etc. So, there’s also some sort of discrimination against famous games in the band! Haha!

How many Mario songs we did in the past? Well, that’s why. Does Mario need some extra support? Isn’t it famous enough? Haha! Any ways, for MegaDriver to cover a song, one of us, if not all of us, has to be a fan of the game. We actually do open polls, like on Facebook, on our mailing lists, but you can be sure of one thing, even if we follow a suggestion from the fans, we’ve played and enjoyed the damn game! Haha!

Megadriver metalhog 2

Will we ever see a “best of collection” MegaDriver album? Time will tell.

Robin TGG
And since Megadriver has released quite a lot of songs over the years, I have a follow-up question on the same topic. Have you ever had any thoughts about making a “best of collection” Megadriver album? (a signed and limited collector’s album perhaps?).

Nino
I’ve never thought of that… it’s a cool idea. However, I tend to like more the idea of grouping games with similar genre together. Like, doing an album for race games (it’s on our list), for beat’em up games, shumps (probably the next one!), etc.
Robin TGG
Which games did you enjoy the most last year? And which games do you look forward to playing this year?


Nino
My favorite game of 2015 was, by far, The Witcher 3. I’m a huge fan of Geralt of Rivia. Even so, one of my top picks would also be Oni And The Blind Forest. I don’t usually like games with “beautiful” story concepts. Like, I rather play a tough character who kills everyone in cold blood than a nice sweet creature that looks like a Koala saving the world! Haha! Nevertheless, Oni is a challenging game and a “must play” for Castlevania fans. Also, speaking of which, “Axiom Verge” is another “must play” for Metroid fans, and I’m enjoying it like hell. It’s strange to think that indie games are being more enjoyable to play than AAA titles lately. One of my top anticipated games for this year was SFV, which as I’ve said, I’m having some mixed feelings yet. Another game that I want to play, but I haven’t had the chance yet is Rise Of Tomb Raider, but I’ll do it as soon as I have the time.

doom

Sadly enough, MegaDriver hasn´t made any Metal covers for “Doom”. Well, at least not yet (Nino is not a big fan of FPS games, but he likes old-school “Doom” though).

Robin TGG
I could be wrong now, but hasn’t Megadriver made very few covers of the Doom library? I would love to hear you do a cover of the theme for the new Doom game =)

Nino
You are right. Unfortunately, the thing is that I’m not particularly much of a fan of PFS games, so I’m always skipping or giving it a low priority to games like that… There are just a few first-person games that I have actually enjoyed, the first Doom would be one of them.

Robin TGG
I don´t know if it´s just me, but I would love to see a Megadriver documentary happened (kind of like the official Sepultura documentary).

Nino
We actually do have many backstage stuff recorded from our tours. The thing is that the material on that tapes could break some marriages! Haha!

megadrive crew

Will there ever be a Megadriver documentary? Maybe, maybe not.

Robin TGG
Last question, do you have anything you want to say to our readers and fans?

Nino
I always have to say thanks to all the people who support MegaDriver and especially the games that we cover. We must never forget that much that we have today is because of that games. Be proud of being a gamer, and be a real gamer and don’t let the good old games fall into oblivion. And to the younger fans, hey! Play the damn games, don’t be satisfied only by watching videos on Youtube 😉 And to the people who complained that MegaDriver was leaving Sega Genesis aside lately, you’ll be surprised soon \m/

tgg author avatar robin ek
Robin “V-Act” Ek
The Gaming Ground
Twitter: @TheGamingGround

More by Robin Ek:

Tags: , , , , ,

Nutaku booty calls 728px 90px banner

Save 3$ with our Play-Asia coupon code "thegg"

0 Comments ON " MegaDriver interview with Nino MegaDriver, old mem... "

TGG categories

Advertising spot

Help us stay alive

Patreon logo

Paypal

Patreon logo

Join our server on Discord

Discord

Google ads (please turn off your adblock)

Advertisement

 

Play-Asia.com - Buy Games & Codes for PS4, PS3, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Wii U and PC / Mac.

 

 

nutaku booty calls 160 x 600 px banner

Recent posts

The dark fantasy action game "Bleak Sword" is soon coming to Apple Arcade

The dark fantasy action game "Bleak Sword" is soon coming to Apple Arcade

Press release: More8Bit and Devolver Digital are today very happy to announce that their dark fantas[...]
Double Eleven has just partnered up with Mojang and their upcoming DCAA game"Minecraft Dungeons"

Double Eleven has just partnered up with Mojang and their upcoming DCAA game"Minecraft Dungeons"

Press release: Teesside, United Kingdom -- September 17, 2019 -- Developer and publisher Double Elev[...]
"Narcos: Rise of the Cartels" is coming to PC, PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch in late 2019

"Narcos: Rise of the Cartels" is coming to PC, PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch in late 2019

Press release: London, England, September 19, 2019 - Curve Digital and Kuju are proud to announce "N[...]
The Orwellian adventure game "Beholder 2" is coming to the PS4 on October 22nd 2019

The Orwellian adventure game "Beholder 2" is coming to the PS4 on October 22nd 2019

Press release: London – 19 September 2019 - Independent games publisher Curve Digital and developer [...]
The cute third-person action-adventure game “Tamarin” is coming to PC and PS4 in Q4 2019

The cute third-person action-adventure game “Tamarin” is coming to PC and PS4 in Q4 2019

Press release: London, United Kingdom - September 18th, 2019 - Chameleon Games announces the launch [...]
"Terminator: Resistance" is coming to PC, PS4 and Xbox One on November 15th 2019

"Terminator: Resistance" is coming to PC, PS4 and Xbox One on November 15th 2019

Press release: London, 19th September 2019: UK video game publisher Reef Entertainment is proud to a[...]

Google ads (please turn off your adblock)

Our sponsors

Kinguin
Booty calls via Nutaku
TGG v2.4 © 2014 - 2019 *The Gaming Ground* all rights reserved
twitch icon youtube icon google plus icon twitter icon facebook icon rss icon
alexa
Privacy policy
TGG ethics policies