Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Soundtrack, Mikael Karlsson, 2010
Avant-garde composer Mikael Karlsson’s Battlefield: Bad Company floated some intriguing ideas, but was ultimately more interesting in concept than execution. Its successor is a more traditionally scored, larger-scale affair that nevertheless impresses. Karlsson’s background as a classically-trained composer is evident in his expert handling of orchestral forces throughout the Battlefield: Bad Company 2 soundtrack, beginning with “The Storm (Main Theme)”, which possesses not only cinematic sweep in spades, but also features a heroic trumpet melody that’s perfectly suited for this kind of game. Despite this aspiring, robust start to the album, Karlsson’s conception of Bad Company 2‘s music differs from that of most action-laden first-person shooter scores, opting for a more emotional, expansive experience. This ambition is most strikingly realised on the mesmerising “Snowy Mountains”, which builds irrepressible momentum by adding layers of rhythmic intricacies over stark string ostinato figures; and on “The Ancient Weapon”, a composition of almost operatic intent with its delicate solo violin, slow string melodies, percussive piano part and gushing crescendi.
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