ScreenSounds

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Thursday, July 29, 2010


CD REVIEW - ALAN WAKE


Alan Wake
Music by Petri Alanko
Sumthing Else SE-2081-2 (US)
18 Tracks 73:30 mins

A new game score release from Sumthing Else is by a new name to me, Petri Alanko, who has written very varied tracks for this psychological action thriller, some studio realized, others orchestral.
The opening title track finds a solo romantic, yet somewhat lonely piano rising out of cold electronic scoring, which is followed by the opening lush strings of "A Writer's Dream," though this too descends into eerie electronics by its close. Lush strings again open "Welcome to Bright Falls," with piano and a nice woodwind solo leading us on to a quiet conclusion. The lonely piano returns for the opening of "Vacation," giving way to a mournful cello and strings.
"Cross That River" is a dark and ultimately menacing affair, racing to a percussive conclusion; with "Waking up to a Nightmare" following, again with a solo cello leading fluttering strings.
The opening fragile beauty of "The Clicker" gives way to warm strings; then, after a subdued opening, "Deerfest" develops into a nicely expressive melody.
At nearly 11 minutes, "Taken by the Night" again opens melodically, but turns increasingly threatening, with a real sense of dread; the mood continuing in "On the Run," before becoming increasingly anxious and then ending with real menace. The subsequent "Mirror Peak" develops a real sense of purpose as it propels us onwards; with the increasingly dramatic and passionate "Tom the Diver" following.
The weighty "The Night it all Began" gives way gentler fare in "Bright Falls Light & Power," with its tinkling piano and expressive strings, but the mood is soon crushed by the percussive menace of "Hunters." It's only temporary though, with piano returning expressively in "The Well-Lit Room," which is then taken up by strings.
The penultimate track, "Water Pressure" offers a final does of menace and action, before "Departure" provides a peaceful conclusion to the score, with more lovely, melodic writing for piano and strings, even if it does carry a slightly ominous ending.
With a healthy running time of more than 73 minutes, most of the tracks are of sufficent length to really get one's teeth into and there's plenty for those, like me, whe enjoy melodic screen writing. I shall be looking forward to hearing more from Petri Alanko in the future.

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