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

Monday, September 21, 2009


Viva Pinata
Music by Grant Kirkhope
Sumthing Else SE-2058-2 (US)
25 Tracks 59:55 mins

Try to overlook the infantile cover artwork of this CD, which I confess made me expect the worse from Grant Kirkhope's score, and you'll discover that this is actually quite a wonderful score, conducted and orchestrated by Nic Raine, and performed by the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra.
It's my first experience of Kirkhope's music, though he has previously scored games like Donkey Kong 64, GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark. But what of the game? Well, apparently its very interactive with players creating and managing a colourful environment, populated and visited by over 60 species of pinata. Now, somebody must have been on quite a high to come up that scenario!
As for the music, a brief, magical opening "Island Welcome" leads into "Oven-Fresh Day," a charming, optimistic melody and then bassoon gives a somewhat comical quality to the equally optimistic "All in a Day's Work." "Tranquil Hours" features a dreamy soundscape of piano and strings. "Frosty Morning" is introduced by flute and plucked strings, before being borne along on woodwinds and brass. The lovely melodies then just keep on coming, filled with delightfully expressive solos, for flute and woodwinds especially, and gorgeous string embellishments, beautifully played by the Prague Orchestra.
To sum it all up, a really enchanting and relaxing listening experience, filled to the brim with melody - a rare treat these days.
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