Wednesday, 23 May 2012

An Interview with Miracle of Sound

I've always been incredibly jealous of talented musicians. Yes, I passed a music GCSE with an A, I can pick up a tune by ear within seconds on the piano, and I strum occasionally on the guitar, but I'm definitely not great at it. Miracle of Sound is one person where this jealousy lies with. A musician who utilizes YouTube to share his self-written songs inspired by games, Miracle of Sound's work is definitely worth a listen.

I managed to grab a few questions with the man himself on his music, favourite games, and much more.
Q. Hey Miracle of Sound! Can you introduce yourself to us?

MoS: Hi all! I'm Gav, I'm a big nerd and I make music about nerdy things that I love.

Q. Miracle of Sound sounds rather noble. Where did you come up with the name?

MoS: Ha, you say 'noble', some say 'arrogant'. Actually the name is not self-referential so it is neither of those: it's the title of an old song I wrote which was literally about how music was awesome, hence 'The Miracle Of Sound' just refers to music and the effect it has on people. It's also a slight little tribute to Soundwave, my favourite Transformer. 

Q. You've had an impressive amount of hits on your videos, and have built up quite a fanbase! When did you first realize that this was going to be big?
MoS: I guess that depends on how we're defining 'big', I mean, everything is relative and to me when 'Gordon Freeman Saved My Life' got 20,000 hits I thought that was big - then when 'Commander Shepard' got almost a million, that was bigger.... and now that it's my job and I'm past 10 million views across the web, it feels wonderful and a little overwhelming but I hope to get bigger and bigger! But if I had to pick a point where I knew this could be my job, I'd say after Commander Shepard blew up, I signed with the Escapist and Bioware started plugging me.

Q. You've created a huge variety of tracks for different videogames now, such as Skyrim, Mass Effect and Gears of War. What has been your favourite track to write/perform so far, and what game do you intend on writing more songs about in the near future?

MoS: I have a few favourites. Normandy is a track I always go back and listen to, I just love the way it starts at a whisper and builds into a big crescendo. I love 'Little Sister' and 'Redemption Blues' as both are dark love songs in their own way and are quite emotionally satisfying for me to listen to - one is for a man loving and protecting his family and one for a Big Daddy having paternal 'love' or something of the sort, for the Little Sisters. Sweet L.A. was really fun because I got to bring in Gary and Jack for the Sax and Piano parts - I rarely work with other musicians but those guys were special. I also got to do some jazzy singing on that one too which I have never tried before.

Q. One of my personal favourites is your collaboration with Malukah on "Legends of the Frost." How did this come about, and would you consider collaborating with her again in the future?

MoS: Well, we were mutual fans and didn't know it. She put out a Tweet about my 'Sovngarde Song' video saying she loved it and I responded with 'Sweet! Wanna do a collaboration?' And so we did. It was pretty simple really! Ha! And yes, we will surely work together again. Malu is a lovely person - (very talented and far more humble than I) -and we're friends now so I think we'll definitely do something again at some stage.

Q. If you had to choose one game, past or present to write a song about next...what would it be?

MoS: I want to make a song about Halo but I can never seem to come up with the right song. Maybe when Halo 4 comes out I'll get it right!

Q. As many people familiar with your work would know, you were picked up by The Escapist. How did this happen, and how has this contributed to your success?

MoS: Well, I was a member of their forums for a couple of years and I posted a lot. Did user reviews, that kinda thing. After Commander Shepard blew up I just emailed them and asked if they'd like to have me as a contributor and they said yes. It was again, a very simple procedure. It has helped me out hugely, the Escapist has a large fanbase and every fortnight tonnes of new people discover my work. I think I actually have more views there overall than I do on Youtube.

OK, now for some quick fire "favourites" questions. Ready?

MoS: Ready! I love these

Q. Favourite game of all time?

MoS: Fallout 3/Mass Effect 2

Q. Favourite game character?

MoS: Ezio Auditore. I am very gay for Ezio.

Q. Favourite game soundtrack or song?

MoS: I adore the Modern Warfare 2 soundtrack by Hanz Zimmer but I think my all time favourite has to be Jack Wall's Mass Effect 2 score, especially the Suicide Mission. Chills every time!

Q. Thanks for answering my questions! OK, final one, what should we expect next from Miracle of Sound?

MoS: You can expect a song about a game I have never covered before, that due to its main character Nate Drake I get a lot of requests for from female fans. ;) Thanks for the questions!

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