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WSHU Public Radio’s Kate Remington combines her love of music and video games in this series of informal conversations with composers and performers of game soundtracks. Plus, there’s lots of music in the interviews, so you can hear it for yourself!

WSHU Public Radio’s Kate Remington combines her love of music and video games in this series of informal conversations with composers and performers of game soundtracks. Plus, there’s lots of music in the interviews, so you can hear it for yourself!
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WSHU Public Radio’s Kate Remington combines her love of music and video games in this series of informal conversations with composers and performers of game soundtracks. Plus, there’s lots of music in the interviews, so you can hear it for yourself!








John Swihart's Music Is As Vivid As 'Far Cry New Dawn's' Post-Apocalyptic World

Seventeen years have passed since the nuclear explosion that ends Far Cry 5 , and in that time Nature has reclaimed the landscape. So have some really nasty Highwaymen who aim to bring all the survivors under their control! John Swihart and co-composer Tyler Bates created a soundtrack for Far Cry New Dawn that plays off the ideas of instruments made from scavenged parts, and the vibrancy of the Super Bloom. John says the concept art and ideas that the dev team at Ubisoft gave him and Tyler...


Laurence Manning Puts Her Passion For Piano Into Classic Game Themes

Laurence Manning started playing the piano at the age of three, and she began playing games almost at the same time. Listening to familiar themes from Kirby , The Legend of Zelda and Golden Sun inspired her to create classical-inspired arrangements for the piano and launch a Kickstarter campaign to record an album of beloved melodies! In addition to creating arrangements of her favorite game themes, Laurence has also composed some game-inspired music, including a Medieval Fantasy. She hopes...


Marty O'Donnell's Earliest Ideas For 'Music Of The Spheres'

Every composer approaches writing music differently, and few are willing to share their earliest sketches, but that's exactly what Marty O'Donnell has done in a series of fascinating videos in which we get to hear his earliest thoughts for the suite, Music of the Spheres, which he wrote as a prequel for Destiny, created by Bungie. I had a deep dive with Marty into his composing process as we listened to these fascinating sketches and to the finished recordings performed by an orchestra....


Brian D'Oliveira Follows Lara Into The Jungle In 'Shadow Of The Tomb Raider'

Composer Brian D'Oliveira has channleled his passion for pre-Hispanic music from Latin and South America into becoming an acknowledged expert, which made him the obvious choice for Shadow of the Tomb Raider . Lara Croft's latest adventure takes her to the jungles and ruins of Mexico and Peru. As he told me, Brian had his own adventures in Mexico sourcing authentic instruments to create an authentic sound for the game. Brian estimates he brought back about 900 different instruments, many of...


Calum Bowen's Funny, Lighthearted Soundtrack For 'Pikuniku'

Pikuniku is a clever, kind of trippy platform puzzle game, but it's the game's humor that's got everyone's attention. In our conversation, composer Calum Bowen told me that he wanted his music to have the same light touch. The world of Pikuniku actually has a dark secret, which gave Calum a lot of latitude to create music that fits with all the different environments and the surprising conclusion of the story. Calum grew up playing now-classic games including Final Fantasy VII and Wind Waker...


Cris Velasco Goes Bigger And Bolder For 'Darksiders 3'

Cris Velasco loved composing the music for the original Darksiders, but he had limited time to finish the score. As he told me, he was really excited to be called back for the soundtrack for the much more ambitious Darksiders 3 , which gave him more time to open the throttle creatively and write for a huge orchestra and chorus. As the story of Darksiders 3 opens, the Seven Deadly Sins are wrecking the earth, and of all the Four Horsemen of the Apocolypse, Fury is chosen to shut them down one...


Catching Up With Wilbert Roget II At MAGFest

The Music and Gaming Festival, or MAGFest, is a four-day explosion of video game music! There are panels with composers and musicians, and LOTS of music making. I caught up with composer Wilbert Roget II to chat about the music he contributed to Destiny 2 Forsaken , and what makes MAGFest such a fun and meaningful experience. One of the things Will loves about MAGFest is the chance to connect with other musicians. At last year's festival, he met up with fellow wind players, alto saxophonist...


Thomas Parisch: 'Iris Fall' Is Another Step On An Unconventional Journey

Thomas Parisch's composing career has taken him in some unusual directions. Trained as a classical oboist in Stuttgart, Germany, Thomas began to question where that career would take him, and decided to concentrate on composing, eventually settling in Los Angeles writing for TV, films and games. His most recent project was co-composing the soundtrack for Iris Fall with Edwin Wendler. As he told me, it was a really interesting change of pace. The instrumentation for Iris Fall is as unusual as...


Olivier Deriviere's Music Respects The Sacrifices Of World War I in '11-11 Memories Retold'

11-11 Memories Retold tells the stories of two World War I participants: Harry, a Canadian photographer, and Kurt, a German engineer. Each of them has a unique reason for traveling to Belgium to be part of the battle: Harry to impress a girl back home, and Kurt to find his missing son. The game is created by Aardman Animation , in conjunction with DigixArt, and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe. Its art style is similar to an Impressionist painting, and in our conversation,...


Wintery Fun With The Game Brass

The Game Brass got together two years ago, but they just finished their most ambitious project: a complete album of brass arrangements of beloved wintery music from Mega Man, Banjo-Kazooie, World of Warcraft and many others. The ensemble is John Robert Matz and Robby Duguay, trumpets; Danny Flam, french horn; Daniel Romberger, trombone; and Alex Hill, tuba. Even if you're in a warm climate, you'll be reaching for a sweater as you enjoy Thomas Kresge's brilliant arrangements featuring chimes...


In Concert With The Videri String Quartet

There have been some big changes recently in the Videri String Quartet . Just over a year ago, they found themselves looking for two new violinists! A happy set of referrals added Chris Ferrara and Matheus Garcia Souza to the original ensemble that includes violist Rosie Samter and cellist Jeremiah Barcus. Now the Videri is ready to debut their new program, Bits and Bytes, which features movements from string quartets by Antonin Dvorak, Benjamin Britten and Joseph Haydn, alongside their...


The Tomb Raider Suite: Nathan McCree Builds An Orchestra For Lara Croft

After more than 20 years, composer Nathan McCree is finally realizing his dream to create a fully orchestral version of the music he wrote for the first three Tomb Raider games starring Lara Croft. The Tomb Raider Suite project was launched to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first Tomb Raider game, with a live orchestral performance in London. Now, after a very successful Kickstarter campaign, a recording of the suite is available! Nathan told me he was a bit nervous about revisiting...


The Flight's Music Brings Ancient Greece Alive In 'Assassin's Creed Odyssey'

Joe Henson and Alexis Smith, collectively known as The Flight , say composing the soundtrack for Assassin's Creed Odyssey was a dream project. They were able to spend 18 months immersing themselves in discovering and recreating the sound of ancient Greek music and instruments and adapting it to fit the massive story and landscape of Assassin's Creed Odyssey . As they told me, their first step was to go shopping for authentic instruments – one of their favorite pastimes. Joe and Alexis...


Pieter Schlosser: 'It's So Cool To Write Music For Destiny!'

The opportunity to write music for Destiny 2 and its subsequent expansions, including the just-released Forsaken is a dream come true for Pieter Schlosser . He says it was an incredible experience to have access to the themes that have become an iconic part of Destiny and "just go nuts with them!" Pieter got to know Bungie's music director, Skye Lewin, when they were both attending the Berklee School of Music in Boston. They collaborated on a number of projects there, which Pieter says...


Wilbert Roget Lets His 'Inner Debussy' Loose In 'Anew: The Distant Light'

Wilbert Roget describes his music for Anew: The Distant Light as a passion project. The game tells the story of a child shot into space to reach an alien moon twenty light years away, in the hope of finding a new home for humanity. The game is in development by Resonator Studios, and they've encouraged Will to create a soundtrack that references some of his favorite composers including Debussy, Stravinsky and Bartok to create his own uniquely distinctive sound. Will says he's been enjoying...


Mike Salvatori: Creating A Sad But Hopeful Mood In 'Destiny 2: Forsaken's' Soundtrack

Once again the world of the Guardians experiences tragedy with the death of the beloved character Cayde-6 in Destiny's newest expansion, Forsaken , by Bungie. Composer Michael Salvatori says that although the story of Forsaken is tragic, the possiblities offered for revenge and grief were fertile ideas for him and the rest of the music team. The setting for much of the game is the lawless Tangled Shore, and Mike says he and Skye Lewin, Bungie's music director, added a subtle Wild West sound...


Jeff Ball Reimagines The Classics In 'Timespinner'

Timespinner , from Lunar Ray Studios, is a loving tribute to those classic games like Castlevania and Metroid , reimagined for modern players and computers. Jeff Ball created a gorgeous soundtrack that's also a tribute to those earlier composers including Nobuo Uematsu. He says it was an interesting, fun process to create the perfect music to fit the retro style of the game, in which you play as Lunais, a Time Messenger who's tasked with traveling back in time to save her community from an...


Mark Benis' Music Amplifies The Mystery In 'Lamplight City'

New Bretagne, the setting for the Victorian detective adventure Lamplight City , has menace and mystery lurking around every corner. Composer Mark Benis says it's that atmosphere and the divese characters, including Detective Miles Fordham, that provided the inspiration for his subtle soundtrack . Mark says one of aspects that made it so interesting to write the music for Lamplight City was the goal of the developer, Grundislav Games, to create a diverse, living world with believable...


Gareth Coker's Music Makes Norse And Egyptian Mythology Come Alive

As the creators of Minecraft continue to expand deeper into the realms of mythology, composer Gareth Coker continues to add to his repertoire of exotic instruments and music of heroic times. His two recent soundtracks, f or Norse and Egyptian Mytho logies, gave him the opportunity to work with some incredible world instrumentalists. As he told me, it was the stories of the gods that provided much of the inspiration for his music. Gareth was thrilled to have a chance to work once again with...


Tim Shiel's Atmospheric, Ambient Music For 'The Gardens Between'

On its surface, The Gardens Between created by The Voxel Agents is a simple puzzle game. But as you follow two childhood friends, Arina and Frendt, on their explorations, you realize that you're helping them relive important memories. Composer Tim Shiel created a beautiful ambient soundtrack that perfectly fits the game's esthetic. As he told me, he wanted the music to sound as if it was part of the memory. Tim says he was given the luxury of time to develop the soundtrack because The...