- Composed by Harry Gregson-Williams and Audiomachine
- Activision / 2014 / 76m
2014’s installment in the Call of Duty video game behemoth is Advanced Warfare, set a few decades in the future when a private army is dictating the direction of the world (as if that would ever happen). The series has never stuck to a regular composer, and this time round goes back to Harry Gregson-Williams (who c0-composed Modern Warfare a few years ago) to write the main theme and some other key sequences, with the rest composed by a gentleman called Audiomachine. Gregson-Williams’s Overture starts the album off decently enough, a dramatic tension-builder primarily orchestral but with inevitable synth percussion accompaniment – it’s not particularly distinctive, but there’s a nice wash of heroism running through it and it’s worth hearing. Gregson-Williams’s half an hour or so on the album is all like that, really – there’s a touch of flair about it and it would probably make a decent little album by itself. There are a few thrills to be had in his cues,a patriotic outburst or two along with a few surprisingly tender moments, but unfortunately most of them last barely a minute so don’t have chance to leave much of an impression.
Unfortunately there’s also the 50 minutes of Audiomachine to sit through, the first of which is “Draconian Dream”, an absolutely vile rugged electronic onslaught with the dreaded Man of Steel percussion that is sadly typical of what is to come. I’m sure it’s designed to be unpleasant and it certainly achieves that. The only positive thing I can say about their 19 tracks is that individually they don’t last that long. No doubt they were acting under instructions to write music in this style, but that doesn’t make it any less horrible. Still, I’m sure that fans of listening to domestic appliances (microwaves, vacuum cleaners, tumble dryers etc) will be big fans of it because it frequently sounds much like that. At least it makes Gregson-Williams’s contributions sound better than they otherwise would.
Rating: * 1/2 (*** for Gregson-Williams, no stars for Audiomachine and that’s quite generous)