I was surprised today to learn that one of my favorite composers created one of my favorite scores (funny how that happens. 😉 ).
The score is Medal of Honor: Frontline, a PS2 World War II game. The composer is Michael Giacchino, composer for LOST.
What surprised me playing Frontline was the game’s emotional depth. It’s serious and very sad at points, akin to Saving Private Ryan (not a coincidence, as Spielberg’s Dreamworks Interactive teamed with EA on the Medal of Honor series).
As a WWII game, the orchestration in Frontline leans LARGE: action cues feature chorales, big brass fanfares, piccolo flourishes, cymbal crashes, etc.
LOST’s action is more about terror and fleeing, and everything is blankin’ strange, so the music is quirkier. Non-Western drums suggest the jungle, and the orchestra slides and tremolos its way to creep things out.
But if you ask me, LOST’s ratings are down because we’ve heard less of the longing, sweet Oceanic 815 main theme. It represents the emotional center of the show, and I think the audience may miss it. To be fair, there’s not much sweetness to be had when the main characters are locked up in zoo cages. But the producers say we’re “back to the beach” now, so I’m hope to hear it more this season.
Not surprisingly, the best and most listenable part of the Frontline score are two cues echoing the sweet side of LOST’s music.
The main theme “Market Garden” (iTunes) is below, the other is “Arnhem” (iTunes
). They’re both worth the 99 cents.
For a free listen, someone created a WWII photo essay around “Market Garden” on YouTube. I should warn the images get a little heavy, but it’s a nice way to experience the music.