Having finished my soundtrack for book one of the World Spectrum, it’s now time to move on to Children of the Gods. It’s a grim soundtrack for a grim book, but as in the story, there are occasional flashes of hope for better times.
The first four songs will cover events up to and including chapter seven, “At the Foot of Keonum.” Once again, I’ll keep the spoilers as rare and vague as possible, but some are still going to slip through.
1: The Arcanids:
The Arcanids are a race as cruel as they are bizarre. Ruthless and calculating, they have designed themselves with the ideals of selfishness, greed, and ruthless domination in mind.
For their theme, I’ve picked the intro music from the mission “River of Blood” from Myth: The Fallen Lords. It’s a strange, exotic, and ominous song that sets the tone for the downward spiral that is Children of the Gods.
2: Beautiful Things Lost Forever:
Prince Tyrom is a tragic figure. Even before Pira fell the first time, he bore the heavy burden of living up to an ancient legacy he couldn’t hope to equal. His country had barely begun to recover before it was imperiled a second time, and he was forced to swallow his pride — the only thing he had left — and accept aid from the rest of humanity.
Early on, we see Tyrom vent his pain, singing on the ocean cliffs in the night. To accompany this scene, I’ve chosen Gaeta’s Lament — also known as the Stump Serenade — from Battlestar Galactica. This could easily have been the song Tyrom sung on that night.
As an aside, if these books ever get put to film, I think Alessandro Juliani would make a fantastic choice to play Prince Tyrom. Hmm… Anyone out there good enough with Photoshop to put together a movie poster with Ellen Page and Alessandro Juliani as Leha and Tyrom?
3: The Automaton Reborn:
The most terrible thing about the Arcanids is not the physical threat they represent, but that the only way to survive their onslaught is to sink to their level, to betray your own ideals and embrace violence.
Nothing symbolizes this better than the decision to rebuild Automatons. This is a moment of utter horror for the people of Barria, and for Leha especially. To fight monsters, they had to create their own monsters.
I find that An Ancient Enemy from the soundtrack to The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is a good match for this event. It’s a song of pure dread, pure menace.
4: At the Foot of Keonum:
A pivotal battle in the war with the Arcanids comes at the foot of Mount Keonum in Pira. But this is not the Battle of Tallatzan. This is no noble uprising of humans against their oppressors.
This is a massacre. Thousands of lives are wasted at the foot of that mountain. That it is necessary in no way diminishes the tragedy of it.
It was difficult to find a song that fit both the epic excitement and grim brutality of this event, but I eventually settled on the Battle of the Hornburg from The Two Towers soundtrack.
This is a song that always reminded me of Leha, and particularly her struggles in Children of the Gods. I won’t pretend it’s a perfect match, and I’m probably misinterpreting the lyrics badly, but there seems to be a certain resonance there. It’s a very bright, happy-sounding song — which suits Leha’s charismatic persona — but if you pay attention to the lyrics, it’s actually a pretty sad song — just as Leha’s is a sad story.
When I’m gone,
What I’ve done
Where I don’t belong
It’s all, not one
I love everything
I lose everything
Oh, don’t tell me again
I won’t see you again
* * *
That concludes part one of the Children of the Gods soundtrack. Stick around for the next installment, which will take us from despair, to hope, to despair, to hope again with songs from World of Warcraft, Mass Effect, and Myth II: Soulblighter.