Dedicated to reviews and news of music for film, TV and games

Monday, June 09, 2008


I'm back - for now, at least, and here is at least one review, and hopefully more to follow in the coming week.

Alone in the Dark
Mucis by Olivier Deriviere
Milan M2 36378 (US)
21 Tracks 66:53 mins

I was never a fan of Xena: Warrior Princess, and though Joseph LoDuca's music had its critics, sometimes sailing pretty close to other composers' work, it was always pretty enjoyable, and I enjoyed listening to the CD releases. A feature of the music was the composer's use of the Grammy Award winning choir The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices.
For this reinvention of the original Alone in the Dark game, developed by Eden Games, French composer Olivier Deriviere, who studied both at the NationalConservatory of Nice and Boston's famed Berklee, and has written a number of video game scores, most famously Obscure, has called upon their services, resulting in a largely exciting score that Xena fans will just lap up.
The elegiac "Prelude to an End," with its use of soloist and choir, gets the score off to a fine start, with "Edward Carnby" developing the theme in more heroic fashion. Other choral tracks include the exciting "The Humanz," with its tribal percussion; "Who Am I? with its very Xenaish rhythmic action; the lament that is "Crying New York;" the despairing reprise of the opening theme in "Loneliness;" the fateful "No More Humans"and "Truth;"the a cappella "Niamam" and "Shto Li;" the spiritual "The Light Carrier Test,"with its use of church organ, and proud, heroic ending; the decisive "The Final Gate" and "The Choice;" and the final, propulsive development of the main theme in "An End for a Prelude." Other tracks, those largely of a mysterious nature, feature synths and samples alone, but there are also the desperate "The Fissure," with its swirling strings; and the propulsive action of "Bethseda Fight" and "Killing the Fissure."
Prior to this release, the pioneering Sumthing Else and, to a lesser extent, La-La Land Records have been the only labels consistently supporting game music, and so it's great to have the renowned Milan Records on board. Let's hope this won't be a one-off, as there is so much excellent music being recorded for the medium these days, and it is well worth preserving on disc.
The Alone in the Dark game will be released in Europe on 20th June, with its Statesside release cfollowing some four days later. The soundtrack album is out now.


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