Sunday topic, game music

Today’s Sunday topic, i will share my thoughts on game music/game soundtrack. And this is a long one.

Lets start off by saying I’m an long time gamer who started playing games very early, so gaming have a special place in my heart even tough i rarely do it nowadays.

In the early days of my gaming history i never thought the music could have a big impact on a game, it was something that just was silently in the background and sometimes even annoying. But then I played the first Halo game on Xbox back in 2003-2004 and it was after playing that i started to realize how big impact music really can have on a game. After getting Halo 2 and playing the campaign with my brother i was very impressed by the music used in it.

With Halo and especially Halo 2 and 3, the music was a big part of the game and you could really feel the stress when you knew you had limited time and the music started to getting faster and faster. I do own both Halo 2 and 3 OST CD’s and when listening after all these years of playing the game, i still know where in game I am. For me it really was halo that showed how soundtracks was supposed to be done.

Halo 3 Soundtrack

Games came and went past for some years without much attention. Until a friend thought I should give The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim a try. I was blown away by the music, i hadn’t felt the same since Halo 3. The soundtrack of Skyrim is amazing with a total of 52 songs on 3 CD’s, each one composed for specific parts of the game. And one whole CD with one 42 min long “song” with the sound and music for the atmosphere in the game.

Skyrim Soundtrack

So nowadays, the music in a game is very important, good music can take the game to a whole new level and it’s a big part of the overall impression of a game for me.

Will update with images when i find the Halo and Skyrim OST CD’s
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Sunday topic, return of the vinyl records

Todays Sundays topic is about the return of the vinyl records into the the home of music lovers.

While I’m a bit to young to fully remember and buying vinyl records, i do know my dad used to play some when i was a kid, you had to walk through the living room calmly, so you didn’t make the pick-up jump. After that i rarely saw records, i bought all my music on CD’s and eventually moved on to digital media such as iTunes and similar services. I was one of the people that said that physical media was dead in just a few years and that everything would be digital in the future.

But a couple of years ago when i got my first stereo setup, although without a turntable, i started seeing more and more albums released as digital download, CD and VINYL!? And i still see them coming. I often look up a release on discogs.com, where you can find good info about different releases. And I’ve noticed that vinyl is coming back, The Rolling Stones is a good example here they are starting to release albums and compilations on vinyl again. There were a couple of years with CD as the only format but that is changing.

One more big indication that vinyl is coming back is the lack of second-hand vinyls. Just 5-10 years ago, i often saw in the local newspapers “buy & sell” section that people were selling or giving away plastic crates full of vinyls, just because they took up so much space. In the same sections nowadays it’s “looking for crates of vinyl” or “looking for vinyl collections”. For me as a collector this is both good and bad, it’s fun to see vinyl coming back, it really is, the more support it has, the longer it lives. But at the same time it’s hard to do find the super deals you could find a couple of years ago with a crate full of vinyl for 5-10$ or even free.

Even if it’s only a return into the homes of audiophiles and collectors, it’s still a return and i think it’s great that the future not just holds digital formats.

I’m a big supporter of vinyl records, i think the sound is slightly better then a CD, but of course it depends on the song as well as the quality of the original recording. But there is something strangely satisfying with putting down the tonearm and hear the pops and crackle as the needle make contact with the vinyl and that’s what keeps me playing a vinyl rather then a CD when it’s time for some fine listening.

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Dr. Jones and some bad movie and vinyl hunting.

Bad and good updates, let’s start with the bad ones. Yesterday there were a Asian/Japanese items second-hand market which i had been looking forward to for some time. And at the same time drop by two flea markets which i heard had lots of vinyls and were located in the same area. After a small delay from toping up the car with fuel i was on my way. All good, but what i didn’t know was that there were some major roadworks last part of the trip, then add an accident that caused the police, ambulance to squeeze through the traffic jam, it was chaotic to say the least. A trip that usually takes about an hour and a half took two and a half hours.

But my bad luck doesn’t end here! The delay caused me not be able to get to one of the flea markets which had vinyls and just browse the other for about 10min just to find nothing of interest. Then of to the asian items only second-hand makret. Where i found it to be in the smallest of places i’ve seen and the queue was the longest i’ve seen since a home electronic store shut down and hade a huge sale. I’m not joking if i say it was at least 100 meters and this was more then an hour after they opened. So i turned around and went home!

(I really don’t know why i write about this, it’s not really relevant to this blog, maybe because i had high hopes of finding something interesting.)

And now the good ones (which is really relevant to the blog), won an auction for a brand new and sealed “Indiana Jones – The Complete Adventures” very cheap and it was in the mail when i got home. I think last time i saw these movies were back in the good ol’ VHS time and i acctually haven’t seen the newest movie yet.

Indiana Jones – The Complete Adventures
EAN: 7332431038813
features 4 BD discs, one for each movie and an extra BD disc with 7 hours extra material

I’m really glad to see that they included a BD disc with the extra material. Sometimes you see a two disc release but only the movie is a BD and the extra is on a DVD, which is kind of boring.

Indiana Jones - The Complete Adventures

Sunday topic and Dir En Grey.

Well since i realized I’m not very good at keeping content coming all the time, i decided to try and post something every Sunday, it could be about a music group, a movie, a special release and so on.

So, this Sunday’s topic is about a music band. It’s the Japanese metal band Dir En Grey. (hopefully later this week, you’ll see why)

Short history, Dir En Grey was formed in 1997, the groups lineup has remained the same till this date. They have released 8 full length albums and 3 EP’s. Their musical style have changed throughout the years. In my opinion from not so hard metal to very hard/experimental metal. -Yes, i looked this up on wikipedia.

Dir En Grey is among very few bands that always been in my play list regardless of what genre I listened exclusively on at different times. I had a period with almost only hardstyle, a period with only techno and so on, but Dir En Grey was always mixed into the play list. It’s a very good example of where you don’t know the lyrics but you can still enjoy the music very much, and maybe that’s what kept me listening?

I’m not really sure when i started listening to them, but i think it was somewhere back 2004-2006ish. It was my, at the time “wapanese”, cousin that introduced me to them and also dragged me along to a Dir En Grey concert back in 2007, which was a really cool experience. I’m not completely sure but i think the first album i got was “Withering To Death” from 2005, but I’m not 100% sure and after that i was hooked. The small problem of living in Europe is that only 6 of their 11 EP/studio albums have been released outside of Japan. Luckily, when a relative were in Japan on a business trip he bought 2 of their albums; “Macabre” and “鬼葬/Kisou”, their both compilations “Decade 1998-2002” and “Decade 2003-2007” along with their “1999.12.18 Osakajo Hall” DVD, as a present since he knew i liked Dir En Grey.

So while my album collection is far from complete, I’m really glad that I’ve been able to get as many album as I have. But since I’m at the moment is very much into Japanese culture, music and movies, I thought I would try to extend the collection by trying to find the missing albums and since I’m 50/50 between a collector and a music listener, i will try and find first presses of the albums as they often are limited editions that often are very nice.

An image of the current collection and what it contains;

Dir En Grey Collection

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