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Watch as Beck's 'Cities' becomes a video game level

July 20, 2012|By Todd Martens
  • A scene from "Sound Shapes," which features three new Beck songs.
A scene from "Sound Shapes," which features three new Beck songs. (Sony / Queasy Games )

Local rock hero Beck hasn't released an album since 2008, but his creative output hasn't slowed -- you just have to know where to find the tunes. After releasing an one-off single via Jack White's Third Man Records earlier this year, Beck will unleash more new tracks via exclusive Playstation game "Sound Shapes." 

Pop & Hiss received a glimpse of the music-based platformer at the recent E3 Expo in Los Angeles. The game creatively wraps a gamer's movements into the score. What in a more traditional game would appear as simple sound effects, in "Sound Shapes" are aspects of the song, as levels unfold as the track progresses.

"Sound Shapes" already has an impressive music team behind it. Electronic star Deadmau5 and Canadian composer Jim Guthrie also contributed original music to the side-scrolling adventure, which was developed by Queasy Games. The Guthrie tunes were developed with Superbrothers, who fashioned the acclaimed mobile game "Sword & Sworcery EP." 

Beck will unveil three new songs in "Sound Shapes": "Cities," "Touch the People" and "Spiral Staircase." A preview of "Cities was unleashed Friday via a promotional video with artist and level designer Pyramid Attack.

Aside from experiencing a uncharacteristically cheery -- and irresistible -- new Beck song, the video illustrates how the game plays as a musical instrument, allowing users to dictate some of the instrumental flourishes in the song.

"Sound Shapes" comes out Aug. 7. The game will be released for Playstation Vita and the PS3, and will be available for download for $14.99.

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