The Long Dark Playlist!


Raphael van Lierop

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Thought you all might find it interesting to know some of the music the dev team listens to to get inspiration for creating The Long Dark. This will be different for everyone on the team, and doesn't necessarily suggest anything about what the music in the game will be like.

Personally, the music I listen to is a big part of my creative process, and over time I've found certain music really helps get me in the right state of mind to work on the game, whether I happen to be writing design specs, story material, searching for art reference, etc.

Hopefully you will all find this little glimpse into our creative process interesting! And of course, feel free to post your own inspirations in this thread -- music you listen to that helps get you in the mood for The Long Dark!

- Raph

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I'm super weird and what Hinterland Dave calls an "active listener," so I find it distracting to listen to music when I work. I will listen to music before I start working, I'll take a break to listen, or I'll play something when I'm done for the day. I can't be the only one like this, right? Speak up if you're like me!

That said, I'm happy to share a few songs that flip on my creative switch! Let's see what I have...

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@Raph I see a gem or 2 in there, i will have to sit down and listen to them as a playlist.

For me i have a wide range of music, but i love PJ Harvey and her song ~

Whore PJ Harvey - The Whores Hustle and the Hustlers Whore I couldn't find a decent Live recording so this is from the Album. Also

Again the Live songs don't do them justice, but just close your eyes and listen as they are both very powerful songs . . .
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"Like a Lake" by Jim Guthrie

Today's music typically doesn't hold much appeal for me, but Jim is a friend and I wanted to support his latest album when it was released earlier this year. I listened to it all summer long. "Like a Lake" won me over with the celeste and the harpsichord -- they, along with the strings, evoke a drama and mystery that definitely bring The Long Dark to mind.

Yes, there's a strong whimsy to this soundtrack that may seem out of place, but this particular track (to me) reflects longing and beauty. If I was Mackenzie, staring at the surreal beauty of the aurora from my safehouse, I could almost hear "Comptine d'Un Autre Été" gently playing in the back of my mind.

"Theology/Civilization" by Basil Poledouris, Conan: The Barbarian soundtrack

I know, this track screams epic fantasy (and always reminds me of Arnie punching a camel), but hear me out. This Poledouris track whisks me away and makes me feel like I'm about to embark on a hopeful journey. This site says it elicits "sheer joy and optimistic enthusiasm," and it plays when "Conan and Subatai discuss their personal mythologies over a campfire and are then to be seen running across the mountains in search of civilization." More similarities than you think!

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For moody atmospheric stuff I dig Massive Attack. Also been enjoying Daniela Andrade. Last year Grimes was one of my favs. What I listen to depends on what I am doing. Sadly, working in audio curbs the amount of music I can listen to while working, but it sure helps writing documentation go faster.

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I'm super weird and what Hinterland Dave calls an "active listener," so I find it distracting to listen to music when I work. I will listen to music before I start working, I'll take a break to listen, or I'll play something when I'm done for the day. I can't be the only one like this, right? Speak up if you're like me!

That said, I'm happy to share a few songs that flip on my creative switch! Let's see what I have...

I'm like you Emily -- listening to music (even without lyrics) breaks my concentration too much.

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"Like a Lake" by Jim Guthrie

Just gave this a listen and I have to say, I really like it...I'll probably buy it from his site.

if you like this one, you should also check out the "

" and the music for "
", also done by the talented mr. guthrie. :)

great music to work/paint! :)

(i also posted some music links a few days ago and got a message, that it'll be approved...is that normal? did i use too many links? :P)

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@Raph [Hinterland] i copy & pasted the posting before pressing "post comment", since i've learned to do backups on what ever, glad i did so here... :)

the approval message appeared in the left lower corner of the browser window in a white text bar and lasted for like 2 or 3 seconds, then it was gone and no posting in the thread...

new try ->

great idea! really like the music suggestions already mentioned here (especially David Wingo's soundtrack for the movie "Take Shelter", massive attack (classic!!!) and guthrie - great soundtracks and "Take Shelter" is a really amazing movie imho!)

i listen almost everytime to music while drawing/working... it really helps me getting into a mood that then can help me getting the kinda "stroke" or speed for the particular painting i am doing. sometimes i forget to start some playing music and get kinda distracted by something (maybe a car horn outside or people yelling, something like that), that's when i get sort of angry about why i didn't had my headphones on in the first place. ;)

i would LOVE to be able to listen to audio books, but there's no chance for me doing this while working. so many people i know can do that... it simply won't work for me. i have to rewind all the time because i missed the content of the last sentence, even if i've heard it clearly. xD

so here are some tracks i listened too the last weeks while working (as you will find out soon, it's all kinda melancholic, reflective and calm):

(Live on KEXP)

(Official Studio Version)

(Offizielles Musikvideo) (awesome music video too!)

Cafe Tour 2008 Atlanta

love this one.

makes me very sad sometimes, so be warned. awesome video too. ;)

also live a great play!

more happy:

Stateless - Bloodstream (Vampire Diaries Remix)

and somthing to chill out for the end (first heard that on GTA V and liked it a lot for cruising around digital sunsets ;)):

(Official Video)

i think some of the tracks here fit TLD too, so maybe there's something to pick for you guys @[Hinterland]. ;)

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i would LOVE to be able to listend to audio books

, but there's no chance for me doing this while working. so many people i know can do that... it simply won't work for me. i have to rewind all the time because i missed the content of the last sentence, even if i've heard it clearly.

xD

The trick is in not rewinding even if you miss something. Just let the audio book play and pick what you can the first time you're listening it. Then just listen it a few more times and you'll get the whole story eventually ;-)

That's how I do it anyway. I've almost given up reading books, because my mind wanders all the time and I have forgotten the content of the page once I get to the last row. Audio books are easier, because the reader just goes on uninterrupted even when I drift off.

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When I'm writing, I usually hit up Pandora with my Flux Pavilion station or chill/downtempo station. I definitely look for electronica or things like movie songs. (I.E. Anything by Hans Zimmerman!) Rob Dougan's instrumentals are glorious, too. Royksopp and Ratatat are other favorites. I tend to pull on commercial tunes because without the commercial they make some great feelings and get the creative juice flowing by the batches. ^^

[Folks will recognize this because of The Matrix!]

[One of my favorite listens since it's complex, but not overly so and fits so many of my writing moods.]

[Have some feels with this strong build up. Not his most famous song, but definitely an incredible one known because of Inception.]

[More Dubstep, though I'd call it melodic Dubstep rather than the noise the kids are raving about these days. Repetitive, soothing, with a solid beat for my more action-oriented and character building writing.]

[They have a lot of variety in their songs though, so if this particular song doesn't appeal to you, feel free to thumb through some of their other songs!]

For instance,

[That chill downtempo that I was talking about. Soothing.]

Royksopp's Junior album [An awesome listening experience. I recommend buying it to jam to in the car while you're driving.]

But what they're known for, Royksopp's Remind Me

And I'll leave this here, too, anything by Two Steps from Hell (which, consequently, also makes for intense tabletop game music!):

.
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When I need to work on specific tasks or organize my notes, I usually just run my Progressive playlist (set on random play order - the little double arrow beside the speaker icon when playing the full playlists)

http://grooveshark.com/playlist/Progres ... l/88655047

When I really need to focus on a very specific task, or need something really relaxing and non-distractive, I'll usually switch to some nice quiet Industrial Metal

http://grooveshark.com/playlist/Industr ... l/88655081

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  • 4 weeks later...

@ all: Thanks for sharing your music. It is great to get some new music. That helps to change my point of view from time to time.

@BillTarling: This is awesome, Bill. I am with you. I can’t belive I found another person that listen to my sort of music. All of my friends have a different taste of music.

I also agree with @Trudi_Castle. The soundtrack of Far Cry 3 and Oblivion (movie with Tom Cruise) are very relaxing and inspiring.

I definetly need music to work. Otherwise I get distracted by surounding noises very fast. Then I can’t concentrate on anything.

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  • 1 month later...

@Kessa -- Here's an amazing metal group that you might enjoy... something extremely unusual about them.... they're called van Canto

So what makes them unusual?... well, they're comprised of the drummer and 5 vocalists -- and that's it. No guitars, bass, or keyboards -- they create all the instruments (including lead guitars) vocally.

[bBvideo 560,340:tunvagel]

[/bBvideo]

And if you want to hear a heavier track, check out their track Kings Of Metal (and yes, even the lead guitar is done by voice).

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