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Brookhaven Receptionist
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 13 Jun 2007
Notes left: 811
Last seen at: Brazil
Tillerman wrote:
Wigeke wrote:
I'm quite aware of it being a composer myself, but in my opinion Akira's use of them was rather shameless, some tracks are nothing more than 2 or 3 loops layered with a very simple melody on top.


I so disagree. I think Akira created some of the best soundtracks I've ever heard, especially in 1-3. Even in the realm of horror movies, there's few that come close.


Take "Sun" from the SH 3 soundtrack for example, pretty much the entire ambience is a sample from Spectrasonics being looped, sure, it's nice sounding, but I wouldn't say he created it.

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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 12 Oct 2010
Notes left: 1446
Last seen at: Chicago
Wigeke wrote:
Take "Sun" from the SH 3 soundtrack for example, pretty much the entire ambience is a sample from Spectrasonics being looped, sure, it's nice sounding, but I wouldn't say he created it.


I didn't say "Sun." I said the soundtracks from Silent Hill 1-3. Some of it is original, some is sampled... I'm not really interested in sorting out which is which. What I'm interested in is the fact that those are BY FAR the best soundtracks in any horror game I've ever played, and very little has come close. So whether it comes to creating original music or picking out samples, either way he's the best at what he does. And that's not easily replaced.

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Brookhaven Receptionist
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 13 Jun 2007
Notes left: 811
Last seen at: Brazil
Tillerman wrote:
Wigeke wrote:
Take "Sun" from the SH 3 soundtrack for example, pretty much the entire ambience is a sample from Spectrasonics being looped, sure, it's nice sounding, but I wouldn't say he created it.


I didn't say "Sun." I said the soundtracks from Silent Hill 1-3. Some of it is original, some is sampled... I'm not really interested in sorting out which is which. What I'm interested in is the fact that those are BY FAR the best soundtracks in any horror game I've ever played, and very little has come close. So whether it comes to creating original music or picking out samples, either way he's the best at what he does. And that's not easily replaced.


Sun was used as an example just because it's him at his worst (you can probably reproduce it by holding a single key in a keyboard) and it's from SH 3 which is from what you'd consider his good stuff, I'm sure that it's possible to find other examples that are just as lazy. I'm pretty sure his most original songs are the rockish ones which in my opinion are quite generic, to me his "signature" sound are the industrial sounds used in the dark ambient songs and the ambience used in the trip hop ones, both those elements are nothing but samples and are easily reproduced if you have access to the same samples. Sure, the soundtracks for SH 1-3 sound good, but if you pick up the same sample libraries he tended to use and give them to any regular John I'm pretty sure he could whip out something really close to it as most of what makes his sound work are there. I'd rather have something fresh, and original.

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Gravedigger
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 09 Jun 2010
Notes left: 494
Tillerman wrote:
Wigeke wrote:
Take "Sun" from the SH 3 soundtrack for example, pretty much the entire ambience is a sample from Spectrasonics being looped, sure, it's nice sounding, but I wouldn't say he created it.


I didn't say "Sun." I said the soundtracks from Silent Hill 1-3. Some of it is original, some is sampled... I'm not really interested in sorting out which is which. What I'm interested in is the fact that those are BY FAR the best soundtracks in any horror game I've ever played, and very little has come close. So whether it comes to creating original music or picking out samples, either way he's the best at what he does. And that's not easily replaced.

I'm not convinced you've heard that much ambient/industrial then.

I get that composing video game music and creating an actual album are totally different creative muscles you're using, but learning how to work with synthesizers, field recordings and drum machines really is not that hard.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 12 Oct 2010
Notes left: 1446
Last seen at: Chicago
Wigeke wrote:
I'm pretty sure his most original songs are the rockish ones which in my opinion are quite generic, to me his "signature" sound are the industrial sounds used in the dark ambient songs and the ambience used in the trip hop ones,


Honestly, there's so many great tracks from Silent Hill 1-3 that it's hard to choose his *best* stuff. Actually, I don't like Sun that much (it's a vocal piece, and I don't recognize the music under it/don't know where it's used in the game.) First, there's the openings of each of the first 3 games, all of which are brilliant. From SH3, the really excellent tracks are From the Lost Days, End of Small Sanctuary, Dance With the Night Wind, In Monochrome Night, A Stray Child, and Memory of the Waters. Then there's SH2, pretty much the entire soundtrack is fantastic, including a lot of music that isn't included on the official album. Heaven's Night, True, and White Noise are all absolutely incredible. Same with SH1, there's some amazing pieces of music on that soundtrack. One of my favorites isn't on the official sountrack, it's the music when you first meet Cybil, called "The Rest." And all the music that layers on top of each other when you first enter the alley, called "Dead End" on youtube is amazing as well.

Most of the songs I mentioned aren't really industrial or trip-hop, are they? It's just really good, atmospheric, memorable music. All of which I think would compare favorably to 99% of horror film scores.

Trauma_ wrote:
I'm not convinced you've heard that much ambient/industrial then.


I haven't. I don't generally like that kind of music.

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Gravedigger
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 09 Jun 2010
Notes left: 494
Then my point is illustrated for me, thank you.

I've immersed myself in dark ambient/industrial/electronic music for years now and eventually came to the conclusion that the 'Silent Hill sound' that's supposedly so hard to replicate is simply mendacious idealism (and yes, I did actually test this out of boredom at one point- though I didn't actually want to give the cynic in me the satisfaction). Whether you like or dislike the OST's is beside the point. It's simply a construct people have in their heads, and nobody I've talked to can come to any kind of consensus for what this means beyond "ambient sounds and drum beats".

If it means anything, those sample libraries are specifically designed so that the only way something can sound like complete garbage is if you layer 20 or 30 of them over top of each other. No amount of veracious idealizing will make this untrue.

I have the compilation of samples he's used open right now and many of the tracks you listed only necessitate hitting 'play', or lifting other sounds nearly completely wholesale. The 'ability to pick and choose samples' is really not a skill regardless- because as I've noted, they're specifically engineered to only sound terrible if you pitch shift them up by 35 octaves or layer as many as possible over one another.

That said, I myself use sound effects taken from various movies and TV shows relatively infrequently- but they are there. I'm actually a fan of Yamaoka's sound design work (along with much of his soundtrack work up to and including SH3- and the odd track onward). Nobody is saying that it doesn't sound good, just that it doesn't actually take much to sound good- the sound engineers that actually created the samples wouldn't attach their names to them if they didn't.

I just prefer hand crafted work with synthesizers and field recordings because it's much more rich texturally, you're also offered a lot more flexibility in regards to the composition process. Sure, it requires a bit more work, but it's work you put into it.

And lastly, that's not to say his work wasn't completely groundbreaking as far as game soundtracks go- while he may not be all that unique in the greater framework of the genres he works with- I've struggled find any videogame prior that utilized industrial music at all, much less the way he did. It's thanks to him that I even listen to Throbbing Gristle, Psychic TV, Funerary Call, Lustmord, Portishead or a variety of other artists at all- so with that much I'll credit him.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 12 Oct 2010
Notes left: 1446
Last seen at: Chicago
Trauma_ wrote:
Then my point is illustrated for me, thank you.


Mine too. You're only focusing on that one type of music. His really good stuff isn't industrial.

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www.flipsidecomics.com


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Gravedigger
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 09 Jun 2010
Notes left: 494
Tillerman wrote:
Trauma_ wrote:
Then my point is illustrated for me, thank you.


Mine too. You're only focusing on that one type of music. His really good stuff isn't industrial.

I believe I've mentioned trip-hop and electronic music in there, and that much of his electronic/trip hop stuff has been precomposed for him.

I'm glad you ignored that though, truly.


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Rosewater Park Attendant
 Post subject: Re: New composer?
     
         
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Missing since: 12 Oct 2010
Notes left: 1446
Last seen at: Chicago
Trauma_ wrote:
I believe I've mentioned trip-hop and electronic music in there, and that much of his electronic/trip hop stuff has been precomposed for him.

I'm glad you ignored that though, truly.


Give me some examples of songs that were pre-composed for him, from the song examples I listed.

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Historical Society Historian
 Post subject: Re: New composer?

Missing since: 04 Mar 2007
Notes left: 3325
I think Cliff Martinez could be a good choice.

He's composed atmospheric pieces as well as nice pop arrangements for films such as Drive and Only God Forgives. He'll be doing a horror/thriller film next with the same director called The Neon Demon.

Kojima is friends with Nicolas Winding Refn so maybe they can hook each other up.


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