Check your e-mail inbox if you backed George Oldziey's live orchestra Wing Commander album on Kickstarter or FundRazr, because the orchestral pieces are now available for download! There are ten high quality tracks (48kHz 24 bit masters!) for a total run time of about 32 minutes. The remaining (digitally sampled) tracks and the physical album are due out early next year. We also have a behind-the-scenes documentary to look forward to, and you can check out several preview videos here, here and here. If you're in need of album art for your music organizer software, you can use the one that Mike Joffe put together with Klav's Hornet.
A couple of thoughts on the process. These musicians were wonderful, and very motivated to do the best they could. They particularly had to rise to the occasion on the gameplay music from Wing Commander 3, which turned out to be MUCH more demanding than WC4 or Prophecy music. You probably recall that the technology used back then to generate the gameplay music was very limited in terms of polyphony (in this case, how many notes could be played at once). Chris Roberts wanted that orchestral sound of course, so I had certain patches playing a lot more notes than I'd otherwise make live musicians play, as well as play in ranges that were challenging. I tried to keep as accurate to the original compositions as possible, which of course put a lot of strain on the french horns and strings, but I think they did a magnificent job.
Here is a list of the tracks... There are two tracks from the movie portions of the games. There is of course the 9 minute Suite, which features music from the intros to both WC 3 and 4. There is also the winning endgame from WC4 where Tolwyn has his meltdown in the senate chamber and culminating in Col. Blair flying off into the "sunset".
WC 3 gameplay music features three mission pieces; "Strike", "Behemoth" and "Defend". WC 4 gameplay music features two mission pieces "Borderworlds" and "Mission 4" (not sure what the final title of that was, but I found it in my files as mission 4!). There is also a WC4 battle medley. Music from Prophecy features "Mission to Alien Space" and "Intense combat".
You'll notice that for some of the shorter gameplay pieces they loop at least once before fading. I'm sure all you clever gamers out there can figure out good loop points if you want to try to hack them into a game!
As I mentioned in an earlier post, the digitally sampled pieces and CD will be available early 2015. This process took a bit longer than I anticipated, but I'll complete my mission before too long!
Once again, a TRULY heartfelt thanks to all of you for your support. Being in that recording booth and hearing all this music played by an orchestra for the first time was one of the biggest highlights of my career! Maybe we can do "Volume 2" in the not too distant future!
I hope all of you have a blessed and happy holiday season!