Fifteen Texas Bands That Made Video Game Soundtracks Even Better
Sometimes a great game isn't complete without a great soundtrack to go along with it. With literally HUNDREDS of games out there, there's bound to be a couple of games that have bands that you know & love. Here are a couple of Texas bands you might've heard on video games.
We'll start off with a band that has appeared in MANY video games (at least 13 to date):
- Walk has appeared in Rock Revolution, The Bigs 2, Madden NFL 10, NHL 11
- Cowboys From Hell - 4 Guitar Hero games (Guitar Hero, Guitar Hero Live & Guitar Hero Smash Hits) & Operation Flashpoint: Red River.
- Mouth For War - Shaun Palmer's Pro Skateboarder
- I'm Broken - Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock & BandFuse: Rock Legends
- & Cemetery Gates - Rocksmith 2014.
- In addition, 5 Minutes Alone (and some of the aforementioned songs) & the ENTIRE The Great Southern Trendkill album was included as DLC for the Rock Band series.
Let's not forget the fact that Pantera was a HUGE inspiration for the creation of the soundtrack for Doom.
When you think of Texas rockabilly, The Reverend Horton Heat is certainly one of the biggest names in the genre. However you might know them from a handful of games:
- I Can't Surf - Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3
- Baddest of the Bad - Tony Hawk's Proving Ground
- Pride of San Jacinto - Hot Wheels Turbo Racing
- Steep - Chasing Rainbows
- Mad Mad Heart - Far Cry 5
- Psychobilly Freakout - Guitar Hero 2
- & the most popular one: Big Bed Rocket Of Love on MotorStorm, The Sims 3 & Need for Speed: The Run.
Another Texas band that's known as a one hit wonder, Austin's Butthole Surfers have actually appeared on at least 3 different games
- Pepper appeared in Saints Row: The Third & World Tour Soccer 2003
- Who Was In My Room Last Night was in Guitar Hero 2 (expect a lot of GH/RB entries on this list)
While it's sad that The Sword officially called it quits in 2022, we can at least enjoy the songs the Austin rockers gave us through out the years. Including these soundtrack features:
- Iron Swan - Tony Hawk's Project 8,
- Tres Brujas - MX vs. ATV Alive,
- The Black River - Guitar Hero: Metallica,
- Maiden, Mother & Crone - Guitar Hero 5,
- & Freya appearing on Burnout Dominator, Guitar Hero 2 & Guitar Hero Smash Hits.
The one hit wonder band from Ft. Worth Texas, The Toadies are known for Possum Kingdom. So far they've only appeared in one video game: Guitar Hero 2 (and yes that song DID appear in the game). However they've also appeared as DLC for the Rock Band series: Away & Tyler were included with Possum Kingdom.
A band that doesn't get talked about a lot, but anyone who's played the NASCAR video games, might be familiar with the Stephenville, TX band Submersed. They've appeared in 2 games:
- Divide the Hate - Nascar 2005: Chase for the Cup
- Better Think Again - Nascar The Game: 2011
The Benton, TX band that formed back in 2002 had a SLEW of hits & skyrocketed Lacey Sturm's career. You probably have seen Flyleaf appear on quite a few games in the Guitar Hero/Rock Band series:
- Again was their most popular video game song, appearing in Tap Tap Revenge 2, Guitar Hero Warriors of Rock, Power Gig: Rise of the Six String. Also later appeared in Rock Band as DLC.
- Tina was featured in Guitar Hero III: Legends As Rock as DLC
- New Horizons - Guitar Hero Live,
- Perfect - Guitar Praise,
- Cassie - The Sims 2: Teen Style Stuff,
- and of course you might remember I'm So Sick on the original Rock Band.
Yes this is one of two bands from El Paso that have appeared on video games. At The Drive-In have appeared in 4:
- One Armed Scissor appeared in Guitar Hero: World Tour & Rock Band 3,
- No Wolf Like The Present - Forza Horizon 4,
- & Cosmonaut - Tony Hawk: Shred
The Mars Volta:
It makes sense that if At The Drive-In was featured in a video game, then the other huge name from El Paso, The Mars Volta, would as well.
They've been featured in only 3:
- L'Via L'Viaquez was in Guitar Hero: World Tour (This is the only game that features both El Paso bands but I think there should be more in the GH/RB series),
- The El-P remix of Goliath was used in Gran Turismo 5 Prologue,
- Zed & Two Naughts in MLB 12: The Show
The alternative/indie rock band from Austin, Spoon might be in the running of having the most songs from any Texas band included in video game soundtracks (aside from Pantera):
- Mat Hoffman's Pro BMX 2 featured Take A Walk,
- Rocksmith - Me And the Bean,
- MLB 09: The Show - Don't You Evah (It would appear on another video game but we'll get there)
- MLB 15: The Show - Rent I Pay,
- MLB 17: The Show - Shotgun,
- MLB The Show 22 - Feels Alright,
- Need For Speed: Payback - Pink Up,
- EFootball 2023 - Wild,
- Sister Jack would be included as DLC on Guitar Hero 5,
- 4 songs would be included as DLC for Rock Band: Don't You Evah, Got Nuffin, I Turn My Camera On, & Trouble Comes Running
The Black Angels:
If you've heard The Black Angels, you might think they're from the 70s but no...the Austin psychedelic group was formed in 2004. So far they've only appeared on 2 games (1 having 2 songs)
- Black Grease on Grand Theft Auto V,
- The First Vietnamese War & Bad Vibrations on Specs Ops: The Line
One of the oldest bands on this list, Austin's punk rock band MDC was formed in 1979 & they have only been included on 1 game:
- John Wayne Was A Nazi was featured on GTA V when it was released for the PS4 & Xbox One. The song would be on the radio station Channel X & there's another Texas band featured on that same fictional station.
Houston's thrash band D.R.I. (or Dirty Rotten Imbeciles) would also appear on GTA V's Channel X but that wouldn't be the only game D.R.I. appears on:
- I Don't Need Society on the re-release of GTA V
- Tear It Down - Backyard Wrestling 2: There Goes The Neighborhood,
- Couch Slouch - Tony Hawk's American Wasteland,
- Beneath The Wheel - Skate 2
The final Austin band featured on this list, White Denim is a neat blend of jazz, rock, psychedelic with a few video game appearances in their career:
- Let's Talk About It - Colin McRae: Dirt 2
- Paint Yourself - Saints Row: The Third, Tap Tap Revenge 3
- I Start To Burn would also appear on Tap Tap Revenge 3,
- Burnished - Rocksmith
- At Night In Dreams - Gran Turismo 6, Rock Band 4 & Guitar Hero Live
And finally we got ZZ Top & OF COURSE they have been featured in video games. But how many to be exact?
- Sharp Dressed Man - Guitar Hero. The Live In Texas version was used in Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock.
- Gimme All Your Lovin' - SingStar Amped, GH: World Tour (DLC) & GTA V (Re-Release)
- Just Got Paid - Skate
- Thug - Grand Theft Auto IV
- I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide - MLB 08: The Show
- I Gotsta Get Paid - MLB 13: The Show, Guitar Hero Live
- & La Grange - GH III: Legends Of Rock, Guitar Hero: On Tour & Nascar The Game: 2011. The Junkie XL remix would be used in Forza Motorsport.
1 - Nothing More: While the San Antonio rockers haven't appeared on a video game (yet), Nothing More DID get used the trailer for the Paladins video game. You can hear a couple of seconds of Go To War be used.
2 - Damageplan: The band Vinnie & Dimebag formed after Pantera, Damageplan was actually originally intended to be on the soundtrack for Midnight Club 3:DUB Edition. But for some reason the 2 songs got cut but we can blast them both here cause why not?
If you're curious about more video game related content, you can see a list of 10 video games set in Texas.
You can also see 10 MORE bands that made video game soundtracks better HERE.