These Banjo-Kazooie remixes are so playful
I’ve been listening to new takes on classic Banjo-Kazooie tunes from Grant Kirkhope, and I am beaming. The composer shared 10 new arrangements for the beloved N64 game.
The remix album is called Banjo Kazooie: Re-Jiggyed — I hope you didn’t get your hopes up with a hastily-read headline! — and it’s now streaming on Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music, and Dreezer. You can soak up the songs in this YouTube playlist, too.
These renditions of Mad Monster Mansion and Rusty Bucket Bay go pretty dang hard, but it’s tough to top Kirkhope’s chiptunes-ification of Click Clock Wood and the escalating feel-good nature of Spiral Mountain. Gruntilda’s Lair is super catchy, as always.
“Re-Jiggyed was supposed to be an 11-track album but I couldn’t include one of the tracks because of publishing issues,” Kirkhope tweeted. “Maybe I’ll find somewhere to put it so you can all hear it.” Presumably, he means Clanker’s Cavern — that’s the odd level out.
In a video message on Instagram, Kirkhope thanked fans for listening and admitted it’s taken “ages” to get the Banjo Kazooie: Re-Jiggyed album done. “I find it really hard to do it, I don’t know why. Remixing my own stuff was difficult, and trying to think of different things to do with it. I didn’t want to do just a straight remix, you know, note for note. I wanted to make it different, or fun, or different styles to appeal to everybody.”
“Who knows, I might do another one if I ever get the energy to do it,” he said.
Banjo-Kazooie is a top-ten game for me, and that’s due to numerous factors — the well-tuned stuff-collecting, the exploration in the individual worlds and imaginative hub, the fantastic music, and the vibes. It’s such a complete package. No matter how far removed we get from its original Nintendo 64 release, Banjo-Kazooie will always be timeless to me.
I’m excited to reunite with this duo on Nintendo Switch, no matter the cost.