"Castlevania: Lords Of Shadow 2"
Video Game Soundtrack Review
Music By Oscar Araujo
Sumthing Else Music Works
19 Tracks/Disc Time: 69:14
"Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2" is an action-adventure game, the sequel to the 2010 game "Castlevania: Lords of Shadow" and the 35th installment in the Castlevania franchise. The game was developed by MercurySteam and published by Konami which was released late February 2014 in both North America and Europe. A downloadable chapter has also been released in March from the same year.The story is set in both medieval and modern worlds and follows a weakened Dracula who is on a quest to defeat his former enemy, Satan. Gameplay takes after the original Lords of Shadow but this time through an open world. The player controls Dracula who uses multiple powers and weapons to achieve his goals.
Video game scores are very important in upping the ante and making the game a grand experience. Nowadays, the video game realm has been the place for composer to explore many musical possibilities and several big name composers such as Hans Zimmer, Brian Tyler, Harry Gregson-Williams, Michael Giacchino, Mark Mancina, John Debney, Christopher Lennertz and Howard Shore that have loaned their great musical talents to a video game in recent years with video game veterans such as Jesper Kyd, continuing to write great and exciting work as well. Oscar Araujo joins this list of more recent newcomers to add his name to this list.
The music is an orchestrial and electronic mix that isn't too dissimilar to the other video game scores I've heard recently. The score does have some very good material in it that would fit an action movie nowadays featured in tracks such as "Brotherhood Assault", "The Siege Titan", "Hunter and Prey", "Carmilla's Fight" and "Chaotic Battle" but at times it's not as potent on its own since the music is a little bit too much like repeated action wall paper. Not that it's all bad because these tracks do stand out, but they don't distinguish themselves all that much from the more dramatic moments of the score that include "Descent to the Castle Dungeons", "Dracula's Theme", "Carmilla", "City in Flames" and "A Man of God" where Araujo really creates and paints a more dynamic world admist the chaotic action material which grates at times.
I have no problem with video game scores because they like film scores do serve an important purpose in creating support for the medium its' intended for. This score while it partailly works, doesn't stand out as it really should and in learning about who the medium treats the music for the game, I can see why the tracks feel at times, unmemorable as they siege from one powerful house scene to another. This really feels like the case on this album, that would've probably worked better on 40 minute album as opposed to more than an hour, which really wears out its' welcome to be honest. A little goes a long way and "Castlevania: Lord of Shadows 2" goes a little bit beyond for my taste. Thumbs down.