This was a very special project to be a part of. THE BANNER SAGA was my first real experience with Kickstarter, and there is something very different about being "hired" by 20,042 backers instead of a single team. The sense of responsibility with this score felt hugely magnified by that. So I hope I have delivered something worthy because not one day passed in the year and a half of work that I didn't think about that trust.
With that said, I LOVE this game and the wonderful Stoic team. So unlike anything I've ever worked on, and probably the most challenging score I've ever written. One couldn't have dreamt up something better to follow the surreal experience of JOURNEY.
Certain people need singling out for praise. Kim Campbell and Jerry Junkin are at the top of that list. To collaborate with the illustrious Dallas Winds on this game was a dream come true. Jerry completely changed my life via his commission of John Corigliano's 3rd Symphony, "Circus Maximus," (GO LISTEN TO IT if you haven't!) and so to work directly with him, and with these musicians, was beyond blissful. As Executive Director of the Dallas Winds, Kim worked long and hard to make this project happen and it simply wouldn't have without him.
Also, if you remotely enjoy this album, credit rests overwhelmingly with the musicians performing it. The Dallas Winds played with both force and nuance. It was breathtaking to record. Thanks as always to my wonderful team (all credited below) for their invaluable contributions.
Thereafter the bizarre and beautiful prepared electric guitar work of Mike Niemietz, and didgeridoo playing of Randin Graves brought something beyond what I'd hoped for. Eery and creepy but also haunting and lovely. Afterwards, my regular collaborator Noah Gladstone brought me an actual viking instrument, the bukkehorn. It is NOT an easy thing to play and of course he nailed it. There is also a fair amount of added percussion I recorded after the Dallas (because apparently having 7(!) in the orchestra wasn't enough!) and that was done by the ever-masterful MB Gordy.
Next were the singers. What more can be said of Peter Hollens and Malukah? They're among the best I've ever known; glorious talents and the finest human begins. It's a humbling privilege to have worked with them, and to call them dear friends. Add to that Johann Sigurdarson, whose voice I can't imagine the score without.
Finally, Taylor Davis, who sits at the heart of it all. Her violin solos are already known everywhere for the covers she's done, but to write for her and so closely collaborate was an honor. No amount of thanks will cover it.
Enough of my rambling!
LINKS to stuff:
releases 14 January 2014
Original score composed and produced by Austin Wintory
Music performed by The Dallas Winds
Conducted by Jerry F. Junkin and Austin Wintory
Soloists - - - - - -
Taylor Davis, violin
Peter Hollens, vocals
Johann Sigurdarson, vocals
Orchestrations by Susie Seiter and Austin Wintory
Score mixed and mastered by Steve Kempster
Digital Recordist: Kevin Globerman
Copyist: Steve Juliani
Prepared electric guitar: Mike Niemietz
Didgeridoo: Randin Graves
Bukkehorn: Noah Gladstone
Percussion: MB Gordy
Accordion: Austin Wintory
Icelandic vocals directed and casted by Rósa Guðný Þórsdóttir
Icelandic translations by Davíð Þór Jónsson
Icelandic vocals engineered by Friðrik Sturluson
Dallas Winds - - - - - -
Executive Director: Kim Campbell
Recording engineer: Keith O. Johnson
Assistant Engineer: Sean Martin
Score Reader: Donald McKinney
Soundtrack CD produced and published by Reference Recordings
The Banner Saga is an album by Austin Wintory containing 1.18 hours of music.