Why inFamous Second Son’s Soundtrack Will Be Amazing

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Posted March 12, 2014 by Haris Iqbal in Editorial, Features, Opinion, PSN, Sony, Videos

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Made possible due to the amazing collaboration between not two but three talented composers, the returning Brain, Marc Canham and… (Drumroll Please) Nathan Johnson, the soundtrack to inFamous: Second Son looks to be absolutely promising. If you listen to the samples at sumthing’s website, you can see how unique each artist’s style is. In my opinion, this will keep the track really varied and enjoyable, even on a stand-alone level. However, lets delve into what makes the soundtrack really promising, the talent behind it.


This isn’t the first time Brain is composing the soundtrack to an inFamous title, as he had worked on, most notably, the RED soundtrack for inFamous 2. He wrote some of the most unique tracks for it, with my personal favourite being, “Ascension Parish”. The track had a really unique rhythm, which was complemented by Jazz like melodies, giving the listeners a relaxed, albeit exciting experience. His music in the soundtrack always stayed away from sounding generic or lazy, as the instrumentation had these unique sounding textures to them, which must have been a chore to engineer.

In my opinion, Marc Canham has composed some of the most beautiful and thought-provoking tracks in the videogame industry. To get an amazing example, one has to look no further than Far Cry 2. I understand that the general opinion on that game varies a lot amongst players, but the amazing music is one aspect that many has enjoyed. It was so authentically and masterfully composed, that every melody and harmony fitted neatly into place, providing gamers with a very comfortable and ear-pleasing listening experience.

Take the opening track, “Main Theme” for example, it starts with a very enchanting, African vocal piece that is subtly, but effectively accompanied by the nicely textured string work and pumping electronic percussion. Everything is smoothly and effectively layered, with one layer uplifting the other. In fact, even though you’ve got an amazing buildup past 2 minutes, that brings you to the track’s hectic climax, nothing ever feels loud or brash. It is all masterfully composed, and easy to listen to.  Basically put, Marc Canham tends to deliver something that is always enjoyable.

Now, on to our last composer, Nathan Johnson. Do you know that this is his first actual, big videogame break? The talented composer who has mostly been known for his amazing work on movies such as The Brother’s Bloom and Looper has never really composed for a videogame before, but by judging from the samples of inFamous, he might have the most unique sounding tracks of all. To get an idea of what I am talking about, you should definitely give a listen to the sample, “The Bio-Terrorist Threat”, by heading back to the Sumthing Else page.

Now, if you know me at all, you know I have been raving about one track in particular (videoed above), the one which has been used in most of the promotional videos, like the collector’s edition one. I was really hoping that it was from the original soundtrack, as it sounded breathtakingly exciting, and absolutely unique. Now, lo and behold, it IS from the official soundtrack after all, and composed by non other than Nathan Johnson, from whom I was definitely expecting a lot.

It is just something about that unique drum rhythm, and the breaks in between that really set your teeth on edge. It effectively manipulates our comfort zone, by first throwing us out of its scent, as we are not usually accustomed to a rhytmic pace such as this, then bringing us back into the comfort zone, with more traditional sounding melodies mixed in. It feels exciting, and rebellious, just what the game needs… just what Delsin needs.

Other samples that really stand out in only 30 seconds, are “Speed of Light” and “The Vandal King”. “Speed of Light” has been composed by Brain, and features his trademark pace, that is both jazzy and uplifting. What stands out the most is the ecstatic vocal work, that nicely blends in with the other instruments, and it leads me to believe, that this is probably Fetch’s theme. “The Vandal King” has a really playful side to it, probably referencing the rebellious side of Delsin Rowe.

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All in all, the soundtrack looks to be absolutely promising, and at $9.99 (approx £6) is an absolute steal, trust me. You’ve got 22 tracks, that combined offer more than an hour’s worth of listen, but most importantly, you’ve got variety due to the collaboration of 3 uniquely different artists that are all trying something different, each with the soundtrack. Honestly, the soundtrack to inFamous series has always been about experimentation and distinction from other soundtracks. More importantly, it has also always been about collaboration, as the first featured music from the talented Jim Dooley, Amon Tobin, Mel Weson, JD Mayer and Working For A Nuclear Free City, who had written the game’s amazing theme song.

The Second had Jim Dooley, JD Mayer, Galactic, Brain and The Black Heart Procession, while the third one will have Marc Canham, Brain, and Nathan Johnson. Now you can see why I was talking about it being great value for money.

To sum it up, you’ll get a good amount of play time built up of varied, and enjoyable tracks made by 3 unique composers. Isn’t this what we mostly look for during our soundtrack purchase, we should get something memorable out of it. The soundtrack will release on 21st of March, via AmazoniTunes and Sumthing Else Music Works.


Author

Haris Iqbal
Haris Iqbal

I am a guy who loves anything with a powerful storyline, whether it be a game, book or movie, it doesn't matter. Just so long as it hooks me in and keeps my imagination captive till the last word/scene! Also, I am huge Silent Hill fan, so I love all things Silent Hill... and anything horror. Huge horror fanatic!


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