Maybe you have seen the Syfy series, or perhaps you have played the MMO version of the universe for the current generation. If you are like me, perhaps you have only heard of this cultural event and while it may look enticing, you just haven’t had the time to dive in. This was my exact position when the Official Soundtrack got thrown my way. You be wondering what will make my review so special if I am unfamiliar with the material? Easy….Fresh unbiased opinion. I took this approach, jumping into this soundtrack would give me an honest look at the material without having any attachment to either version of the source material. Sounds fair right?
Before we get started, let’s go over a few things. Composed by Bear McCreary (Battlestar Galactica, The Walking Dead, Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie) brings us twenty three unique tracks, with a twenty fourth track comprised on an extended version of the Main Title Theme. This epic undertaking is part of an all out media take over, with the SyFy Series and MMO for current generation consoles, roughly ten hours of audio have been recorded for this universe. Buyers of the limited edition version of the game received a Soundtrack that included twenty one tracks. However a complete digital edition is now available on the majority of Digital Outlets. I will include a complete track list of both these at the end of the review.
But what kind of music is this? Well, that’s where it gets complicated….
“When I compose the score for a project, I feel like I’m creating a musical world. Projects like “Battlestar Galactica” and “Caprica” gave me incredible opportunities to not only score the drama on screen, but to provide snippets of music that directly impacted the characters and told the audience something about the worlds they came from. Still, even those experiences couldn’t have prepared me for scoring both the game and series of “Defiance.” – Bear McCreary
Creating worlds is perhaps the perfect summary of this project. I was expecting the usual orchestral score that would include a few unique elements, but this was something entirely different. Nothing could have prepared me for the perfect blend of Orchestral Symphony , Synthetic Elements, and a wide variety of textures and atmosphere. Each track brings with it a unique feel that remains exciting from beginning to end. This clearly isn’t your daddy’s orchestra!
There are simply a large number of stand out tracks for me. Ninety-Niners, Wrath, and The Battle Of San-Francisco are included in this list. I found it extremely surprising that the tracks included are not only able to compliment the two media outlets, but can be extremely satisfying on their own merit. With the incredibly talented orchestra as a base, Bear floods the audio spectrum with amazing synth accents and guitar riffs that will throw you into his unique vision.
While the soundtrack as a whole maintains a sense of unity, there a quite a few tracks that manage to forge their own identity. I would highly recommend giving this one the time of day. I am not a huge Video Game Score kind of guy, but this album will remain in my car for quite some time.
Limited Edition CD (Included with Game) 1. Theme From Defiance 2. The Battle of San Francisco 3. Raiders 4. Ridgecrest Mine 5. Hellbugs 6. Tranquility 7. Angel Island 8. Ninety-Niners 9. San Francisco Shadows 10. Wrath 11. Attack at Marin 12. Sausalito 13. Votan Romance 14. Dark Matter 15. Cronhite Bunker 16. Intellitons 17. Madera Combat 18. Mutants of Delta Bunker 19. The Volge 20. Scrapworks [Exclusive Bonus Track] 21. Nim [Exclusive Bonus Track] Complete Video Game Soundtrack ( Digital Version ) 1. Theme from Defiance 4:19 2. The Battle of San Francisco 4:20 3. Ninety-Niners 4:10 4. Marin Exploration 3:39 5. Ridgecrest Mine 4:52 6. Hellbugs 3:05 7. Tranquility 0:50 8. Angel Island 4:16 9. Raiders 3:20 10. San Francisco Shadows 2:48 11. Mount Tam 7:48 12. Wrath 0:44 13. Dark Woods 2:39 14. Attack at Marin 3:37 15. Wandering Madera 2:10 16. Sausalito 7:22 17. Votan Romance 1:19 18. Dark Matter 3:00 19. Cronhite Bunker 3:19 20. Intellitons 2:26 21. Madera Combat 4:04 22. Mutants of Delta Bunker 6:19 23. The Volge 3:50 24. Theme from Defiance (Extended Version) 7:03
Note: There Is An Announced Physical Disc Release Coming Soon
For more updates visit Bear McCreary’s Official Site.