Grant Kirkhope and Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

by Emily Reese, Minnesota Public Radio
June 13, 2013

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning takes place in vibrant and expansive fantasy world, complete with gorgeous, sunshiney landscapes and dark, cobweb-riddled dungeons.

Composer Grant Kirkhope called on his British roots for much of the soundtrack.

In fact, many of the cues Grant wrote for Amalur are reminiscent of the English school of classical music. I was reminded of Ralph Vaughan Williams in particular for this track, called "Plains of Erathell."

Grant explains that he tried to use as many major chords as possible, and you can hear how gradually the waves of sound shift through the piece.

"I was thinking of the Plains of Erathell and the beautiful grasslands and I thought, I need to try and capture that somehow."

As gorgeous as the string writing is for "Plains of Erathell", Grant doesn't ignore the brass players in the 95-piece orchestra for Amalur.

Using live orchestras to record soundtracks for games (or film or TV) is really expensive. Grant has worked with live orchestra on the last five games he's scored, and counts himself as fortunate in that regard.

"There's nothing better than hearing other people play your music. It's just incredible. There's nothing like it."

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