game score

Soundtrack review: Trials of a blood dragon (Power Glove -2016)

trials

“Trials of the blood dragon” is a computer game which fuses together a popular gaming concept with an even more popular franchise: the “Trials” games and “Far Cry 3: Blood dragon”. I am interested in it because of the score, since Power Glove return after having worke their magic on the aforementioned Far Cry game.

As far as retro synth scores go, Power Glove’s “Far cry 3: Blood dragon” ranks among the best for me. If I was a fair and they had one of those stations where you punch or shout and see how high the indicator goes, the nostalgia rating would have been through the roof. Naturally a sequel to “The terminator” ‘s step brother of a score gets highest priority for me. The sound of a synth is my favorite sound in the world and as a child of the 80s, when I hear a theme like “Trial of the blood dragon”, with the rhythmic beat, the vocal samples and its occasional woodwind jungle inserts I get the perfect training cue. It’s 80s dance hip hop techno electronic goodness if such a thing existed. Every single second is magic. If the first score reminded me the most of “Terminator” and “Scarface”, this time I also get “Bloodsport” and “Kickboxer” vibes.

The guys from Power Glove do everything right here for an 80s synth fan like me; the darkness, the metallic shine of the music, the game sounds, the rock or hip hop samples they all make me feel like a kid in the candy score. “Trials of the blood dragon” is different than the first score but just as awesome. That one was mostly dark and deserted while here the music sounds more alert, more optimistic and there are a lot more guitars and percussion elements complimenting the synth. Many cues are like flamboyant commercials for the 80s with its video game and fitness craze. These are the two activities the music makes me think of: playing arcade games and working out.

When the music gets quieter I get Paul Hertzog nostalgia as the woodwind pieces make me think of the Jean Claude van Damme movies I grew up with. Add to that vibes of Vince Di Cola and it’s like I’m getting a varied assortment of my favorite 80s scores and sounds in an awesome packaging. The score has more punch and vein that the first one and leaves the cold wasteland for a more colorful urban landscape if the respective city was located very close to a jungle.

A delightful combination of atmospheric soundscapes and alert motivational cues, “Trials of the blood dragon” is a feast for the ears retro and synth wave fans. If you are looking for a trip back to the 80s it doesn’t get any better.

Cue rating: 92 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 47 / 75

Album excellence: 63%

Highlights:

Vietnam War IV

Trials of the Blood Dragon

Bullet Proof

Punch!

Iixv

Sibling Rivalry

Open for Business

Open Sesame

Ancient Caverns

Roller Mobster (Power Glove Remix)

9th Dimension

Sweat Shopping

Lock On

Inferno

Boss Fight

Reckoning

Crossfire

 

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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