August 13, 2012
Gaming in Stereo: Grammy winning Monday
Happy Monday to all, mine has been extremely stressful and I am ready to have a small break and play Darksiders 2 for review. Today we take a look at some great music, including Baba Yetu from Sid Meier’s Civilization 4 and one of my favorite themes from this generation if not in all of gaming Drake’s Theme from the Uncharted series. Now both are not the originals, again I am featuring the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Baba Yetu is from the Video Games Live Level 2 album.
Baba Yetu – Civilization 4 – Christopher Tin – from Video Games Live Level 2
The only Civilization game I really got into was Civilization Revolution on the 360, being I am mostly a console gamer. I would like to try 4 and 5 when I have time. But Civ 4 holds something special besides a 94 on Metacritic, it is also the only game to have been nominated and win a Grammy Music Award. Say what you will about the Grammys as of late, but this is a huge step forward for these amazingly talented composers that bring the mediums storytelling to another level. It was nominated and won “Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)” at the 53rd Grammy Awards. Baba Yetu is sung in Swahili, the lyrics consisting of the Lord’s Prayer. Baba Yetu means “Our Father”. The rendition that Video Games Live did for their second live album is a duet version that is just phenomenal. Even if you don’t speak Swahili, it is just a feel good song and has a lot of heart. It makes me never want to when by militaristic means again while playing Civ Rev or any Civ. Hopefully with this taking the giant leap forward in game soundtracks getting general acceptance, we will see more game soundtracks getting the recognition they deserve.
If the Uncharted series is the Indiana Jones of the video game realm then Greg Edmonson is John Williams. The Uncharted series is known for great story telling, providing a great cinematic feel, and exciting cover based shooting and platforming. Greg Edmonson may be familiar to some; he was the composer for Joss Whedon’s FireFly series. The tone of Drake’s theme is subtle, yet grand. It conveys great adventures but that there is more of a personal feel to these stories. The Uncharted series has always had heart, and the theme conveys this. Dr. Jones was a professor; Nate was a kid from the streets that was taught what he knows by Sully, a scoundrel with a heart. While John Williams score gave great adventure and a cowboy riding off into the sunset type of feel, Greg Edmonson gives more of a personal journey to the theme. I really like this rendition of Drakes Theme, it feels like it was done with a much smaller recording group but it feels more personal, though I do like the original.