Welcome to the second installment of my “soundtrack” for Rage of the Old Gods, covering the events up to and including chapter sixteen, “The Ziggurat.” This batch of songs will take us to the ends of known world and beyond: north through Tor Som and into the frigid homeland of the Northern Clans, east beyond the wall of the Gormorra Range, and south into the heart of occupied Uranna.
Once again, I’m trying to avoid spoilers, but it’s impossible to do this without giving some away.
5: The Tor Defender:
For Yarnig’s theme, I have again dipped into the fantastic soundtrack for Battlestar Galactica, choosing Adama Falls. It’s a song as dignified as it is tragic, perfectly encapsulating the man that is Yarnig Tor Lannis.
Yarnig will always put on a brave face for his people. He will never show anything but the strength expected of a Tor royal. But in his heart, he knows he has nothing to offer his people. He’s a figurehead and nothing more, no matter how much he longs to be the hero Tor Som needs. His is a tale full of sorrow, and Adama Falls reflects this well
6: The Northern Clans:
Using a Rohirrim theme for the Northern Clans is so obvious it almost feels like a cheat. But damn it, it fits.
The King of the Golden Hall embodies a sense of pride and fierce independence such as defines the Northern Clans, a people who rejected all the comfort of the south to prove themselves in the wild north. It also has a certain haunting and lonely quality to it, reflecting the desolate homeland of the Clanspeople.
I’m going to be honest: I still have a few regrets about the books, and not developing the Clanspeople more is one of them. They’re such a fascinating culture — in my mind, anyway.
7: Beyond the Gormorra Range:
The first spring after the return of the Old Gods is a dark time for humanity. They have been beaten time and again, and while the fight goes on, the unspoken belief is that the war cannot be won. Though they have found a modicum of respite beyond the mountains of the Gormorra Range, many feel the end is nigh.
For this piece of the story, I went to the soundtrack to the sadly forgotten real time strategy masterpiece Myth II: Soulblighter. The mission intro music for Through the Ermine has a sad and haunting quality to it, but it’s also very peaceful. It reflects that, though times are grim, the battles are distant.
There’s a subtle hint of hopefulness to this song, too. The seasons are changing, and maybe things aren’t as bleak as they seem.
8: The Battle of Tallatzan Ziggurat:
All right, enough sad and haunting tunes. It’s time to inject some life into this soundtrack.
There comes a time when you have to stop running. When you have to turn around and smack the bully chasing you as hard as you possibly can, and hope that maybe you can make him think twice about messing with you.
The Battle of Tallatzan Ziggurat is one such time. After months of crushing defeats, Leha has decided to take a chance and strike back at the heart of the Gods’ power with everything she has.
Once again, Bear McCreary provides the perfect accompaniment. This time, it’s the theme from the new sci-fi series Defiance. It’s a song as epic and emotional as Bear McCreary can make it, perfectly matching one of the most intense and pivotal battles in the World Spectrum series. Little hints of dubstep and techno music fit the surreal, sci-fi inspired landscape of an Old God city.
I’ve decided to focus only on orchestral soundtrack pieces for this because I don’t think popular music makes a lot of sense of the story, but there are still a few songs I feel fit the story of the books very well, so I’m going to be including a few here or there.
The first is Radioactive by Imagine Dragons. I find the apocalyptic imagery and general badassery of the song fit the events of Rage of the Old Gods very well.
Welcome to the new age.
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Next time, we wrap up the soundtrack for book one with four songs from three video games.