It's safe to say that when Sonic Superstars came out back in October this year, it recieved a pretty mixed reception. One of the biggest things people seemed to complain about was the music. The soundtrack was composed by Sonic music veterans Tee Lopes & Jun Senoue. While this would have been an exciting collaboration to see the two working again, sadly at SEGA the creative direction for these games, especially the 2D ones, always seem to be quite limiting. Jun doesn't mix well with 2D Sonic games, let's be honest. Just check out the soundtrack to Sonic the Hedgehog 4 - Episode 1 & 2, for example. Sadly, they decided to go down this route again for Sonic Superstars, but this time much worse. Jun's compositions aren't even melodic and are just 20 second loops filled with overused Genesis- style snare drums and ear shattering synths. Tee Lopes' songs which usually are Act 2, are just as forgettable. Some have a Sonic Mania style feel but the enjoyment just isn't there. The soundtrack feels rushed and incredibly lacking, and there are no guitars at all, especially for a $90 AUD game. We should have deserved better.
Enter this guy. Cameron Hons. An independent comedy rock musician from Sydney, Australia. He also is an instrumental composer as well, and has done many instrumental albums & even some video game music arrangement albums of his favourite games over the years from Sonic, to Mario & even once Animal Crossing.
"I made this album because I was very disappointed with the soundtrack to "Sonic Superstars"' says Cameron. Music Inspired By Sonic - Volume 2 was released back in late August 2023, even before Superstars was released. "I was watching everyone complaining about the Superstars soundtrack and had to agree. I took down notes that it needed more guitar and less Genesis drums". The album, was recorded with real guitars and keyboards in my home, where I usually record music. Despite the "stage titles" being mostly joke names like "Insider Trading Zone Act 1" and "Big Sonic Zone Act 2", don't let that fool you. These songs are actually very good. The SEGA Genesis (or Mega Drive, as we call it here) sounds were actually based on real sounding chips and not random synths, and no Genesis snare drum was used on the album once. I promise!"
"I should have done more guitar themed tracks" laughs Cameron. "But I really enjoy doing the SEGA inspired music too, as I grew up playing these old SEGA games as a kid. So I know how it is, and I know how people felt.. I really hope you enjoy it."
Cameron Hons - Music Inspired By Sonic - Volume 2 is available to stream or download now via his Bandcamp page which you can check out here.
If you enjoyed this, a first album of the Music Inspired By Sonic series was released by Cameron Hons back in 2019 - long before Superstars existed, and you can check that out here. You can also find Cameron on the VGMDB.
In our review of Sonic Superstars, we gave it a 2/5, calling the game unpolished and frustrating, while questioning the need for a highly expensive price tag, and criticized the soundtrack and boss battles.. You can check out our review here.