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Soundtrack Review

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Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure (The Official Orchestral Score)


Composer: Lorne Balfe with Hans Zimmer
RRP: £9.99
Available 24 October 2011

Frozen in our world. Alive in theirs. For generations, the Skylanders have used their magical powers and weapons to protect Skylands. But now an evil tyrant has frozen and banished them to Earth. Only you can put them on the Portal of Power and bring them back to life in their world to save Skylands forever...

Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure is the soundtrack to Activision's console game. Hans Zimmer and Lorne Balfe were the creative due behind 2009's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. While the two no doubt work well as a team I can't understand why Activision insist on getting Zimmer to come in to compose the main theme (as he did with Modern Warfare 2) and leave Balfe to write the rest of the score. While it's obviously a big pull having Zimmer as the main name on a project, for a game like Skylanders I can't see the point - especially when Balfe has proved that his music is just as impressive, if not more so, than Zimmer's input.

The soundtrack to Modern Warfare 2 was, and still is, one of my all time favourite game soundtracks. There are some beautiful themes in that and while Zimmer's theme is incredible, again Balfe tops this with some of his set pieces. That's not to say that Zimmer's work isn't fantastic, I'm just pointing out that it's a shame that Balfe isn't allowed to carry the weight of these scores on his own.

While Skylanders is a very different score to Modern Warfare 2, there are still some impressive set pieces here - although it's nowhere near as heart pounding or beautiful as Modern Warfare 2 is. But there's some similar styles here - for example, 'Crystal Eye Castle' sounds in the same vein as some of Balfe's previous work.

Still, for what is basically a kid's game, this is another incredible score from Balfe and Zimmer.


Darren Rea

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Skylanders - Spyro's Adventure (The Official Orchestral Score) - Hans Zimmer & Lorne Balfe
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