Axel F

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Axel F
Composer Harold Faltermeyer
Released 1984-12-05
Title Origin Official

Axel F is the instrumental theme of all three Beverly Hills Cop movies, first viewed on December 5, 1984.

The song was so popular that several video game musicians arranged it not only for fun, but also used it in completely unrelated games. Barry Leitch's career started when a friend bet £5 he could not arrange Axel F in Electrosound 64.

Title

This song is named after the movie's protagonist Axel Foley and officially spelled without period.

Composition

The original arrangement is in F minor.

Games

Tron Construction Set (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Tron Construction Set (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Unknown
Released 1986-05-12
Length 0:10.45
BPM 94
Format SID
Loops Yes

In-game, the melody of Axel F plays on a sawtooth wave in C minor.

It sounds the same on every SID chip.

Rhythm Construction Set (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Rhythm Construction Set (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Unknown
Programmer Georg Brandt
Released 1986-06-13
Format SID
Loops No

In this example song, drums are arranged in Rhythm Construction Set, and the bass of Axel F on a sawtooth wave in Commodore 64 BASIC V2.

The cymbals sound different on every SID chip because they use SID's infamous high-pass filter.

Soundmonitor (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Soundmonitor (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Soundmonitor - C64 - Bar.png
Arranger Chris Hülsbeck
Programmer Chris Hülsbeck
Released 1986-09-19
Length 1:44.77
BPM 103
Format SID
Loops Yes

Hülsbeck was fascinated that a song could be composed only of bass, drums and melody, and spent a long time analyzing this.

In 1986, he programmed a music editor called Soundmonitor, arranged Axel F in A minor, and sold both together to a magazine. The demo scene easily (and lazily) made further remixes.

It sounds the same on every SID chip.

Suicide Voyage (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Suicide Voyage (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Thomas Schmidt
Released 1987-0?-??
Length 2:28.38
BPM 117
Format SID
Loops Yes

Axel F is erroneously tuned at 424 Hz and closest to D♯ minor.

The percussion at 0:16–0:32 sounds different on every SID chip because it uses SID's infamous band-pass filter.

Planet Attack (A8)

Platform - A8.png
Planet Attack (A8)
Output - POKEY.svg
Arranger Unknown
Released 1989-??-??
Format SAP


Beverly Hills Cop (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Beverly Hills Cop (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Arranger David Whittaker
Programmer David Whittaker
Released 1989-1?-??
Length 2:10.75
BPM 117
Format SID
Loops Yes

It sounds the same on every SID chip.

Robots from Hell (DOS)

Platform - DOS.png
Robots from Hell (DOS)
Output - Roland.svg
Robots from Hell - Axel F.png
Arranger Unknown
Released 1989-??-??
Format UNK
Loops Yes

Plays in round 4.


Beverly Hills Cop (A2GS)

Platform - A2GS.png
Beverly Hills Cop (A2GS)
Arranger Unknown
Programmer Unknown
Released 1990-0?-??
Format DOC


Beverly Hills Cop (AMI)

Platform - AMI.png
Beverly Hills Cop (AMI)
Output - Paula.svg
Arranger Ron Klaren
Programmer Michael Kleps
Released 1990-0?-??
Format MOD

Klaren originally arranged Axel F in 1988 and spread it in the demo scene under his handle "Master Blaster". The module is internally named "datafetch3", all samples are from The Ultimate Soundtracker (AMI), and the driver is SoundTracker V2.0.

About 1½ years later, someone used it in the official game. David Whittaker is credited in the manual, probably because he did all other ports, but it makes little sense as he had his own driver. According to ExoticA, Klaren was never paid.

Beverly Hills Cop (AST)

Platform - AST.png
Beverly Hills Cop (AST)
Output - SSG.svg
Arranger Unknown
Programmer David Whittaker
Released 1990-0?-??
Format SNDH, SC68, YM

To record one loop plus 10 seconds, the SC68 rip was loaded in foobar2000 with SC68 Player.

Beverly Hills Cop (CPC)

Platform - CPC.png
Beverly Hills Cop (CPC)
Output - AY.svg
Arranger Unknown
Programmer David Whittaker
Released 1990-0?-??
Format YM


Beverly Hills Cop (ZXS)

Platform - ZXS.png
Beverly Hills Cop (ZXS)
Output - AY.svg
Output - PC Speaker.svg
Arranger Unknown
Programmer David Whittaker
Released 1990-0?-??
Format AY


Das Schwert Skar (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Das Schwert Skar (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Frank Schulz
Programmer Chris Hülsbeck
Released 1990-01-??
Format SID
Loops Yes

Axel F in C minor makes up 4% of an otherwise original composition, arranged using Soundmonitor.

It sounds the same on every SID chip. In the rip, it is 5:42–6:04 of track 1.

Drumeditor (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Drumeditor (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Frank Hugenroth, André Hugenroth
Programmer Frank Hugenroth, André Hugenroth
Released 1990-01-??
Format SID
Loops Yes

Axel F in A minor was published as an example song with Drumeditor in a magazine.

The reverse cymbal at 0:14 and 1:02 sounds different on every SID chip because it uses SID's infamous low-pass filter. All other drums are almost mute on the 8580.

VGA-BoulderStar (DOS)

Platform - DOS.png
VGA-BoulderStar (DOS)
Output - OPL2.svg
Arranger Steffen Lohse
Released 199?-??-??
Format UNK
Loops No

Axel F starts whenever:

  • the title screen appears.
  • in the menu, you select SOUNDTRACK I and then GAME START or CONTINUE.
  • you press V in-game.

It stops whenever the menu appears. It never loops; you have to manually restart it.

The driver is unidentified, except that it is the same as in Spacestar (DOS). Both games were developed by Andreas Lübbers of Standsoft and published by Schenk & Horn.

Air Rescue (A8)

Platform - A8.png
Air Rescue (A8)
Output - POKEY.svg
Arranger Unknown
Released 199?-??-??
Format SAP


Brick Breaker (W16)

Platform - W16.png
Brick Breaker (W16)
Output - PCM.svg
Arranger Unknown
Released 199?-??-??
Length 0:07.38
Format WAV
Loops No

The file is named BOPN.WAV (possibly short for "Brick Breaker Opener"), 11025 Hz, 8-bit, mono.

Furball's Adventure (W16)

Platform - W16.png
Furball's Adventure (W16)
Output - PCM.svg
Arranger Unknown
Released 1995-??-??
Format MIDI
Loops Yes

Plays in a cycle music (Daytime only).

Return of the Jedi (C64)

Platform - C64.png
Return of the Jedi (C64)
Output - SID.svg
Arranger Unknown
Programmer Paul Kleimeyer
Released 2013-07-2?
Format SID
Loops No

Axel F is the second song in a medley, arranged using Master Composer and unnoticedly tuned at 434 Hz.

It sounds the same on every SID chip. In the rip, it is 0:22–0:36 of track 1.

Links