FF 35th

The best Final Fantasy song ever has a gross name and a sick beat

That sweet, sweet groove.

ff7 remake cloud and aerith
Square Enix

The Final Fantasy series has a long of strengths, and one of its very best is the stellar music. While it’s tough to nail down which game has the best soundtrack, I have to give it to Final Fantasy VII Remake, which features new and revamped versions of songs from the original game — which itself is a contender for the best, most inventive soundtrack in series history. The entire tracklist is stacked with memorable tunes, but for the series’ 35th anniversary, I want to hone in on one song, in particular, that has a sick beat and an even sicker title: “Under the Rotting Pizza.”

Final Fantasy was released on December 18, 1987, and 35 years later, it remains one of the most beloved franchises in gaming. Inverse's celebration takes a look back at our favorite games, characters, and moments over the years.

Less is more

During the Sector 6: Slums section of Final Fantasy VII Remake, “Under the Rotting Pizza” plays while you’re navigating the area outside of combat, giving off chill yet slightly creepy vibes.

“Under the Rotting Pizza”

The track starts off with an eerie synth melody that seems like it’s building up to an explosive climax, setting the tone for what could be a dark and sinister piece. The intensity of the drums grows as the section builds, and expectations are immediately through the roof.

But then, it pulls the rug out from under you, dialing back and hitting you with the sickest groove of the entire game.

The payoff is immense and a total surprise.

This section is led by the drums and bass, with an intermittent guitar melody that ties the whole thing together. The spookiness of the first section is mostly stripped away. Though, if you listen closely, you can still hear the haunting synth underneath the bass and drums — hovering ever-so-subtly in the background.

The power of this part is amplified by context, as the previous section was so full and almost overwhelming, while this feels far more chill — with a sprinkle of mystery throughout.

It’s all in the bass

You can discover the “Under the Rotting Pizza” song during Chapter 9: The Town that Never Sleeps within Sector 6: Slums.

Square Enix

While all the instruments and performances are crucial to making this section shine, the bass is the driving force here, giving the song its personality. The way the guitar and bass take turns gives each instrument a chance to shine, with a “call and response” arrangement taking place during the verse.

What makes the bass riff so successful here is that it’s not all played on one string. The riff bounces between the top three strings, giving the listener a push-and-pull feel — accentuated by the kick and snare drums that play underneath. It’s a seemingly simple, yet wildly effective groove that is hard to not nod your head to.

Then, the bass scales back in complexity, allowing the synth to shine for a bit, bringing the spooky tone back to the forefront. It builds once again before a moment of silence hits you in the face. Then it’s back to the groove.

It’s a track all about subverting expectations while still nailing the eerie, mysterious theme — with an inquisitive sensation throughout. While “Under the Rotting Pizza” isn’t an explosive epic full of orchestral instruments, it’s an essential part of the overall soundtrack, offering breadth to the already phenomenal list of tracks.

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