Animation and Music: Modern Television

Posted: May 3, 2010 by RacattackForce in Animation, Animation Editorials, RacattackForce

With the (uncredited) musical stylings of Frank Churchill!

Ever since 1926, with Fleischer Studios’ attempt at synchronized sound with the little-known short “My Old Kentucky Home,” music and animation has gone hand-in-hand to entertain the masses. From comedy to action, music helps drive the story any animated piece is attempting to tell. Hello, my name is RacattackForce, and this article will focus on some of my favorite cartoon composers of the modern age: from 2000-onward.

Casey James Basichis

Casey James Basichis currently works as the composer for Cartoon Network‘s “Adventure Time with Finn and Jake.” He leans towards a mix of  electronic/synthesizers and acoustics which gives the things he works on a bit of a retro, 16-bit video game feel. Sadly, “Adventure Time” is the only major composing job on his resume.  But don’t let that stop you from checking out some more of his awesome stuff over here.

Kevin Manthei

Kevin Manthei has worked on several animated series, from the cult-classic Nickelodeon show “Invader Zim” to Cartoon Network’s “Generator Rex,” and has produced wonderful pieces of music for all of them. Working in the entertainment industry for over a decade, its pretty likely that you’ve heard his work, even outside animation. He can do pretty much any type of music asked of him, and all with amazing skill, but I find myself gravitating more to his rock/metal and electronic music. However, that isn’t to say that all his other stuff isn’t as good, if not better. Check out more of his compositions here.

Patric Caird

There is little information I can find on this man, but a majority of his composing work had been on the long-running animated series “Ed, Edd n Eddy.” The music for the series employed a lot of Mickey-Mousing, a term using to describe music that mirrors the actions of the characters. This composer even goes as far as to give nearly every character on the show their own special musical string, which I find breathes more life into the characters. The soundtrack for the show employs several different instruments and sound effects, some of which I’ve never heard of before or since.

The Track Team

Consisting of Jeremy Zuckermann and Benjamin Wynn, most of the Track Team’s work can be found in the breathtaking OST of “Avatar: The Last Airbender.” Channeling various types of music from all over the world, and employing dozens of great techniques, I find it surprising that this duo hasn’t found more work on other series or films. This is simply one of those cases where I have to let the music speak for itself: check them out here or here.

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  1. qbcomics says:

    Great post Racattack! I love the music shown here, especially Patric Caird’s music. So unique. 🙂 I would love to hear your opinions on music from animated movies.

  2. toonfaithful says:

    Yeah, that was a nice review. Casey James Basichis composes some great music for Adventure Time. The song from the episode “Evicted” was great. We had lyric problems such as the “sexy” controversy on YouTube but other than that this guy is awesome.

  3. AnimatEd says:

    Nice post! I’m familiar with/love the first 3 musicians, but I had not listened to the Track Team before. Very interesting…

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