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Theem

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  1. The glaring omission of Michael Hoenig as a choice is disappointing, almost rudely so. A 'spiritual successor' to Baldur's Gate must include the spritual center of Baldur's Gate, the music, the atmosphere, the leitmotifs. Take the time again to listen to 'Night Falls on Baldur's Gate' and its evocative instrumentalization...pensive, almost mournful woodwinds and deep male vocal padding with minimalistic industrial percussions added to perhaps remind us of the city gates closing for the day. Then try 'Safe in Beregost' with its homage to renaisannce-styled polyphony and inexactly kept time. Like it's counterpart 'The Friendly Arms Inn' you can hardly think of those places in the game without the music instantly coming to mind. In case lush melody isn't your thing, The 'Main Theme' with its Mahleresque co-ed choir and war-drum marching rhythm practically defines the Baldur's Gate expereince. You are instantly put into the fantasy RPG mood after hearing the first few da-da-daaaaas! of the introduction. 'Swords Against Darkness' how many times have Minsc and Boo triumphed over Evil to that insistent brass and those orchestral hits? You know that survival is your only priority and it's time to un-stock those potions when Michael Hoenig starts his battle music. Need I go on? Is not the soundtrack of Baldur's Gate arguably the defintion of an RPG soundtrack? Do not all subsequent attempts by other composers try to be as immersive, as innovative, as replayable and complimentary to the subject matter? Only Mark Morgan, with such masterpieces as 'Dionarra's Theme' and 'Catacombs Battle' and of course the 'Nameless One Theme' has even approached the same level of unison with the subject matter as did Michael Hoenig with Baldur's Gate. While Mark Morgan is also a correct choice for P:E, as any cutter would tell you, after listening to 'Curst Battle' you can't help but think he too would pick Michael Hoenig. My ear hears Los Angeles Television Studio music of the late 1990's when I hear Mark Morgan. Not that has any bearing on the quality, in fact it adds more of a professional timbre, but hearing it does not immediately evoke an RPG setting. While Mark Morgan and Plancespace has earned a permanent spot in my musical multi-verse I do not think it lends itself completely to this project. Clearly the answer to this non-problem is to commission works from all of these very talented composers and incorporate their creations into the body of the work. I don't just listen to Mozart, I enjoy a bit of Beethoven as well. Why should this project be any different? Hire them all and have a enriched soundtrack that you can enjoy for decades after the game itself is put lovingly on the shelf.
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