The culmination of a long association with pianist Matthew Mills, Bagatelles represents some 30 years of piano music by British composer Bernard Hughes.
Soundtrack to Expedition is the soundtrack to a video game that was never released – a small, musical memento of a project undertaken by Red Fox Game Studio and teevee (indie musician Dylan Hyman). Expedition would have seen the player source materials and craft items in order to defend yourself and survive a harsh space environment. The game reached the advanced stages of development but was eventually shelved to pursue other projects survived only by the (already complete) soundtrack. Utility Tapes is working together with Red Fox Game Studio and teevee. to make public this compelling soundtrack and story.
The soundtrack itself is a collection of lush pieces that take the listener on a journey through various landscapes and moods. Drawing from ambient music, harsh noise and lofi hip-hop, Dylan expertly captures an other-worldly vibe with hints of retro-futurism in his sound selection. A few tracks deep into the 6 track cassette, the piano and cascading analog synths of “Travel” give way to oppressive noise pads and haunting, distant synthesis. Standout track “Main Menu” brings things towards their resolution with melodic piano and synth lines and the final track (“Inventory”) reprises the slow swing of the opener “Shop” to lead out.
Composer Dylan Hyman said of the soundtrack:
“While these pieces were designed as backdrops for the player’s active in game experience, I wanted to make them somewhat independent and able to stand on their own as music. Anybody who has access to the soundtrack should get a sense of what the game was to offer in terms of genre, setting, and mood. You were originally planned to be alone, set to colonize the desolate planet Mars. Some of the more harsh noise/drone tracks I have on the release represent the barren wasteland in which you would have had to survive. But there has to be some balance to that and the melodic/ethereal tracks on the release relay a sense of hope to the player and drives them to continue pushing forward. I hope that this release archives the game in the physical world as it never had a real, tangible presence.“
Soundtrack to Expedition is available from Utility Tapes on May 8th 2020 via Big Cartel and all streaming platforms.