game score

Soundtrack review: Taken (game) (Dawn Worth – 2015)

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“Taken” is a horror video game which benefits from a score written by Dawn Worth. I couldn’t find a lot of information about game play or what it’s about but the cover looks quite creepy and mysterious.

The main theme of the game is live action movie material. Only the almost imperceptible echo that the slightly distorted piano and flute sounds have made me thing think that the medium this music was written for was more interactive. I should have been more patient because the next couple of cues brought a little gaming nostalgia to me. I used to love to play adventure games, “quests” as I used to call them, where the main task of the player was to explore and discover things. Most of the time the character I would control would be alone in that strange world and the only companion I had was the music which sometime sounded a little renaissance like, just like “Taken”. The soft and slow piano and string sounds send me back to those hours spent in front of the computer.

Then the surprising “Into the storm” comes which combines the piano with the cello and I don’t need any support to enjoy this lonely and intimate cue. This is honest and brilliant music, minimalistic and poignant and I can’t get enough of it. It ends with a note of sadness, of something unfinished and I like that feeling of longing.

“Variations of a theme of Chopin” is a gem that I didn’t expect to find in this game score. Everything now plays as if I had been exploring this world for quite some time and I stumbled upon a hidden room where a lonely girl who thought she had been forgotten there plays the piano, slowly and with a lot of heart, for a person only she knows. That person is long gone from her life but she is stuck there, playing the same theme, unable to move on until the gamer finds her and sets her free.

“Taken” is one of the more unusual game score I’ve heard this year but I always appreciate a good ode to the piano. The overall dark and mysterious mood of the music also got to me and this one I will return to. Maybe it’s better that I couldn’t find any more info on this game, this way I could create my own imaginary world.

Cue rating: 93 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 9 / 14

Album excellence: 63%

Highlights:

She’s Watching

Inside the Mansion

Variations on a Theme of Chopin

Good Night Lucy

About the author

Mihnea Manduteanu

I have been listening to film music for 25 years and writing about it since 2014. I've written over 1000 reviews and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I am also a member of IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association).

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