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CD + MP3: Crysis (2008)
Review Rating:   Very Good  
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January 29, 2008

Tracks / Album Length:

22 tracks / (65:00)


Composer: Inon Zur

Special Notes:


Comments :    

Inon Zur’s score is given a full hour on Sumthing Else’s CD, with 22 tracks covering the game’s themes of alien infiltration, heroism, and tragedy. Zur’s skill with electronic and orchestral elements are in full force, balancing organic, sampled, and emulated orchestral elements in small and large scale cues, although most of the score is tied to moments where characters are forced to confront a new element after some quick assessment.

The game’s central theme is configured into heroic guises (“Strickland’s March”) or a kind of Journey theme (“First Flight”) where the emphasis is on the gradual unraveling of tension rather than one big musical slam, and most cues tend to be structured as mood statements with differing orchestrations geared towards specific levels of conflict. There’s catchy metal flanging in “Loss of Pressure,” a Bondian techno beat in “Grave Danger,” electric guitar tones morphed into arching feedback in the electro-grungy “Shotgun,” and some gorgeous plaintive strings in the affecting “The Nexus” and the concluding track, “Pyrrhic Victory.”

The brass samples are part of the same sonic bunch used by Sean Callery in 24, but Zur also includes a few choral samples (“Sometimes You Lose”), and the odd dialogue or sound effects snippet (such as the bookends in “Strickland’s March”).

Although most cues don’t end with a decisive thematic statement – some tend to wind down abruptly – Zur’s crafted an engaging narrative, and the album’s engineering ensures many subtle nuances (particularly the digital effects) are clearly discernable.

The second game, Crysis 2 (2011), features music by Hans Zimmer and several collaborators. Zur’s other notable work includes Dragon Age II (2011).


© 2011 Mark R. Hasan

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