Peter McConnell's 1928 Banjo Gives 'Plants Vs. Zombies' A 'Down Home' Vibe

May 7, 2020

Plants vs. Zombies Battle for Neighborville screenshot
Credit ea.com/popcap

Award-winning composer Peter McConnell is no stranger to the world of Plants vs. Zombies. Battle for Neighborville is his third soundtrack for the series. He's also no stranger to the banjo! He's been playing since he was 13, but when he spied a gorgeous 1928 Gibson five-string in a music store he regularly haunts, he knew it would be perfect for the Cheese Mines levels in the game.

Peter gave the whole soundtrack a real roots feel, also using a slide guitar. He even wrote his own, in his words, "earnest" folk song, Where Have All the Plants Gone, inspired by legendary folksinger Joan Baez, who's actually a neighbor.

Because Plants vs. Zombies Battle for Neighborville is a science fiction game at heart, Peter also added plenty of classic synths. He says the developers at Pop Cap also suggested the sound of the score for The Time Machine, based on the novel by H.G. Wells.

Peter says getting the right emotion in his music for a game keeps the writing interesting, whether it's the feelings of a human or a pickle!

Episode tracklist: 

All tracks composed and performed by Peter McConnell

Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville: (in game production titles) Loading B; Dreadwood Washer Fight; Cheese Mines TTA extended; Dreadwood Turf Takeover Waiting; Cheese Mines Interior complete; Dreadwood Explore; Where Have All the Plants Gone; Flying Imps; Cheese Mines TTB  extended

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Thanks to Dick Roberts for production assistance and Greg O'Connor-Read, Top Dollar PR