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Lord Of The Rings: War In The North by Inon Zur (Review)

posted Nov 14, 2011, 8:44 PM by Kaya Savas

Video games based on films prove the most difficult for composers. They are tasked to create an original score to an established franchise yet make something fresh and new. In most cases the film's theme's aren't allowed to be used in the video game adaptations due to legal issues, but then again why would a composer want to just reuse themes? Inon Zur was given the incredibly hard job of creating a Lord Of The Rings score outside of the film all the while making it his own. Zur succeeds greatly with the score and won't let fans of the film down either.

Inon Zur is a supreme heavyweight when it comes to video game scoring. He knows what it takes to compose a great game score, and here he shows it. The soundscape and instrumentation all have a Lord Of The Rings feel. You definitely feel like you are in Middle Earth, but someplace you've never been before. The score is a bit darker and not as lyrical as Shore's. It hits harder and is more propulsive. Zur uses a heavy choir and that definitely makes it feel like Middle Earth. The motifs and melodies he has are engaging and definitely dictate a certain pace while leaving room for the player to build his or her own ascending action scenes. The score showcases Zur's impecable sensibility to craft and execute a masterful score for a medium that many composers fail at. At times it suffers as a stand alone listening experience due to the looping nature of the tracks, but it's meant to be heard in the game.

Lord Of The Rings: War In The North is a grandiose entry to the Lord Of The Rings universe. Inon Zur's music commands its presence and definitely echoes Middle Earth while being a unique entry on its own. Fans will not be disappointed and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Inon is a master of video games and you should always leave it to him if you have a challenging game that needs to be scored.
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