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Zombies!!! The Official Board Game Soundtrack by Midnight Syndicate

zombies_cover-250x251As you read the next bit of this review I ask that you picture in your mind that voice you often hear in movie trailers. Now please picture that male voice here as you read these opening lines.

In a world where Zombies have become main stream is there a genre they have not yet stumbled and eaten their way through? My answer is no as here they are in a board game called, Zombies!!!.

You may ask why I start a review in such a manner but I felt it was fitting as people check the game out they must be sure to check on Midnight Syndicate’s soundtrack for the game. The title of which is very fitting as it is called, “Zombies!!! The Official Board Game Soundtrack”.

I will be up front with Midnight Syndicate fans as this soundtrack does have a few tracks that have been re-inspired for the game. I got to say that for me there was no problem with this as the songs worked great with the overall pace of the album. There is of course original songs upon this soundtrack as well that fans will truly enjoy.

Those who enjoy the game will also find the music to fit the game. I have myself not played the game but have researched it and from the videos and information I have seen I could see myself at a table playing this game and enjoying the music. The opening track does its best to get you into the mood for the game as I can imagine players hitting play on the album and listening to the song as they start. The style of the opening helps one imagine what they are in for as hordes are about to take over the world.

The album continues in such a way that as each piece plays you could get more into the game. The themes that come across in the tracks fit so well with the theme of the game. Yes you may moving a game piece across a board but when your mind can get it’s imagination fed more thru a piece of music it makes a game come more alive for the players.

I will say that from that opening track, “It Begins”, to the middle track of, “Town Square” this is easily accomplished thru the long mastered music style of Midnight Syndicate. The creators of the game even lumped praise onto the music in a press release that came out back in September 2016.

Quote from Press release….

“The soundtrack is a perfect complement to the game,” added Twilight Creations co-founder, Kerry Breitenstein. “I couldn’t be more excited for the Zombies!! Fans to hear it, let alone the rest of the world.”  End Quote.

Now how does a reviewer like myself able to add much more in the way of praise for this album when the co-founder of the company behind the game states something like those works?  I will say that after I listened to the album I could also see it working with other games, and even turning off the sound of some Android zombie games and letting this soundtrack role as you play the game.

Midnight Syndicate is one of those bands that is able to let a music lover get into the tones and ambience of the music but it stimulates the mind and imagination. The album, Zombies!!! The Official Board Game Soundtrack, is just another accomplishment in this bands ever growing music catalog and worth a listen for game and non-game fans.

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Posted by on April 1, 2017 in Reviews

 

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Midnight Syndicate to Release a Zombie Themed Album

midnightI’ve had the pleasure to review several of Midnight Syndicate’s albums. They are a band that uses music in a way to set a mood and paint images in the mind as you listen. It’s why I felt I needed to share this News Release of their upcoming album.

 

Almost 13 years after releasing the first official roleplaying soundtrack to Dungeons & Dragons® game, Midnight Syndicate has teamed up with premier horror game designer Twilight Creations to produce a soundtrack album for the zombie apocalypse-themed Zombies!!! board game. The dark instrumental album, which will feature new and previously recorded material blended with movie-style sound design, is designed to heighten the game play experience. The musical theme will center around the Zombies!!! board game and its 15 expansion sets that pay homage to classic zombie films, especially those of directors George Romero and Sam Raimi.

“I’m a big fan of Zombies!!!,” said Edward Douglas. “With the game celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2016, it seemed like the perfect time to undertake this project. We’re working closely with the Twilight team to create something that really enhances their players’ gaming experience. I think album will also resonate with our fans in the Halloween and haunted house industries.”

“Musically, it will be interesting to work in a modern setting,” added Gavin Goszka. “Most of our albums have been set in the Victorian and early 20th century, so this will definitely be something different and exciting for us and our fans.”

“Words cannot express how excited I am to have Midnight Syndicate doing a soundtrack for Zombies!!!,” said Twilight Creations co-founder Kerry Breitenstein. “For many of our players, Midnight Syndicate’s music has already been the unofficial soundtrack to their gaming sessions over the years. To have them working with us to create something specifically for our universe is incredible.”

The soundtrack is tentatively scheduled for release in September in coordination with the release of the Zombies!!! Ultimate Collector Set and Zombies!!! Ultimate Upgrade Kit. To be among the first to hear preview tracks, be sure to SUBSCRIBE to Midnight Syndicate on YouTube!

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2016 in Reviews

 

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Axe Giant: The Wrath of Paul Bunyan (Soundtrack – Midnight Syndicate)

AxeGiantSoundtrackLRWhen you think of a giant, a picture of a large hulking beast normally comes to mind. The beast making each step look extremely difficult to take with the foot landing in a manner that it shakes the ground nearby as it crushes the land and knocks over smaller trees. This is what you will get a sense of in the very first track in the Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. The soundtrack for the Gary Jones film, “Axe Giant the Wrath of Paul Bunyan” produced by Midnight Syndicate.

The film’s plot takes the viewer into a group of first-time offenders at a boot camp who find out, the hard way, that Paul Bunyan is real. The problem they find is the legend is a bit different from what many of us grew up with as a child. This Paul, he isn’t so friendly, in fact he swings a mean axe.

This is about all I will say on the movie as this is more about the music featured in the movie. It is of course composed by Edward Douglas and produced by Midnight Syndicate. The music is something that had it been featured a bit more in the movie may have helped me enjoy the film experience more.

The problem in many of these films is that you either get the brilliant soundtrack to be too loud or under-utilized as it is just small background noise that if louder helps build tension. The piece S.T.U.M.P.S Meet Bunyan is a great example of how a piece of music could really set a scene. The piece uses a combination of low base like tones to show Bunyan’s movement and his ever changing gate as he chases the kids. The kid’s movements are met with a higher pitched sense of quicker musical movements that fit perfectly with a group running for their lives.

The album makes use of several lower toned pieces of music and brass movements to help give the listener a mental image of the giant.  His movements can be understood through the sound of the brass instruments representing steps and other movements Bunyan could be making. The music fitting what must be seen in the film, much like the seventh piece on the album, No Escape.

There are other great pieces on the album such as, The Legend of Paul Bunyan. The piece uses what sounds much like a guitar, or banjo, to give you a musical interlude to the legend. It would fit in perfectly behind the telling of what brought Paul to this place in his life and why he became the giant he is in the movie.

There is one additional track on the soundtrack that was written and performed by one Hickory Hawkins.  Hawkins is the lead guitarist of the band Hickory Hawkins and the Panty Sniffers who have been playing their style of music for years. The band’s music has a rockabilly sound that combines country music with that of the punk music scene.  So it is no surprise that the piece “The Ballad of Paul Bunyan” does a great job of telling the listener of how Bunyan got to be who he is now. It’s a toe tapping piece that makes a great use of a guitar and Hawkins voice.

Sadly in the case of many movie reviews this great soundtrack does not get much mention. Instead you will find many reviews calling the film a mediocre B-horror movie and pointing out some of the poor acting.  This in a way is a shame as they are not pointing out that the music played behind the movie is brilliantly well done by Douglas and Midnight Syndicate. It is just another great entry into the work that they have done and can stand alone from the movie. However, if you are like me, you will find yourself looking for the movie to see how the music is used. Who knows maybe you will also wonder had the music been a tad higher the film could have been even better than I thought it was.

 
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Posted by on August 29, 2013 in Reviews

 

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The Disclaimers on Knightmist’s Blog

DisclaimerI apologize for this possible re-post for some but as I gain new followers I want to put out a disclaimer on my blog and my blogging practices. Also as it’s a new year it’s that time for a re-post.

First there is the source for my books. I do get some from authors who reach out to me and ask me to review their books. It’s always a great honor to have an author come to me, and this has also happened in the case of other media. A great example is Midnight Syndicate who reached out to me about their music.

I also use forums, and groups, on GoodReads as a way to find authors.  There are groups out there that you can join and put your name and blog out there, or look for those who want reviews. I have gotten books from individuals that way as well.

The other source is my own “leg” work in which I find a book on Amazon or a local book store and pick the book up.  I will try and contact the author to see if they’d be interested in doing the interview questions I have on the blog and if interested I will post those. In fact I am now doing my best to get an interview with all new authors I read on my blog.

So, yeah, some of the items are sent to me, but one thing I DO NOT GET PAID for my reviews. If anything I will often get an Ebook format of the book, or an occasional hard copy. It is up to the author involved if I have not purchased the book.

My review style is not here to point out what I dislike about the book, or what does not work. My style is to give you highlights about the book and hope that you find them worthy of checking the book out yourself. I do not want to turn someone off of something just because I dislike it, and at same time if I like something it’s possible the next reader will not.  So that is why my reviews do their best to point out what others may enjoy who are fans of the genre in question.

I will review just about anything that I can as you may have noticed. I will review movies I stumble across that I feel have not gotten enough attention.  There are review books, music and movies, and who knows what could be next.

The books I review are read in order received, or purchased.  They are done as soon as I can as I find I’m an avid reader and can often get through a book in a week and the smaller ones sooner. I however try to keep it down to one review a week as not to take the spotlight away from the item I am featuring.

After a review sits on my blog for a week, or a few weeks, it will get crossed posted to their places. Often this is Amazon and on GoodReads and its just something additional I do without being asked and just something I decided to do.

My personal life stories and my short fiction are just that mine. They are works that come from my mind and reach the internet through the formation of words that become a sentence and thus paragraphs. They are then entered into the WordPress new post engine and posted on the internet. Those stories that are fictional are just that. Names and places are not meant to correspond with anyone real and if they do, well just a lucky guess on a mashed up name I came up with when writing. Now, if it’s a city or location well that is on purpose to help tell the story.

So there we have it this is the end of my Disclaimer and basically how the blog works. If you have questions you can email me at Knightmist72@gmail(dot)com.  Yeah I did the (dot) to make it harder for scammers as some cannot think. Oh and please no grammar coaches or spelling “bees” need apply as this is a quickly put together post to be informative.

Thank you all who continue to follow the blog and take time to check out the new posts. If you like what you are finding share with your friends, family, and even enemies if you want. As an avid reader it is always good to know people are reading my words as well. So again thank you for taking time in visiting the blog and don’t be a stranger.  You are welcome back at any time and can help yourself to the internet fridge and find your favorite beverage as you read. If you prefer coffee, tea or hot chocolate there is always a single cup coffee machine available as well.

Shawn “Knightmist” Micallef

Also to  make it easy this time I have put contact information to email me, but note to avoid some Spam there are slight changes to email address to avoid spam. Some spaces and words where symbols belong.

Reach me by email at: Knightmist72(at )gmail (dot) com

On Twitter: Knightmist72

 
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Posted by on August 26, 2013 in Personal

 

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Monsters of Legend (Album) by Midnight Syndicate

monsters_of_legend_cover_loresMusic has the ability to take the mind and make it play tricks on a person. A song can make you think of a happy time in your life and bring a smile to your face. It may also do the opposite and have you rushing to move to a new song so as not to relive a painful memory.

This is why music is used so often in television and films. It helps to create a mood and set a scene from the fantastic to the mundane. Its use is key and important and often can make or break a movie’s success if not used correctly. It is thus important to have those around that can make that music and produce it for people to enjoy.

Midnight Syndicate is one of those bands who have been making music since 1997 and their influence can be felt in many genres. Their music has been used in video games, movies and TV shows like, a Barbara Walters special and Monday Night Football.

This is where their newest album Monsters of Legend comes in. This album is one that any horror fan will fall in love with. The music on the album will is primarily instrumental but there are some small vocals found in a few pieces of the music and this just helps to increase the tone of the track.

Midnight Syndicate makes beautiful work of what can only be said to be an orchestral arrangements to bring their music to life on Monsters of Legend.  As I listened to the album I found myself thinking back to classic Horror movies and picturing their music used in a scene. Moments where Frankenstein’s monster comes to life and starts to wander the country side is just one of the many items that came to mind.

Other songs within the album will bring up film moments when a creature comes into view and people must run to escape the beast. These songs will bring not just some beautifully haunting music to the ears but images to the mind.

I dare say that this album could easily be turned on as a person reads a book and you could pick the appropriate track to help set the mood for the book that you are reading. A few examples of this:

Unwanted Visitor – A title that speaks for itself. It’s the perfect piece to put on as someone, or something, begins to reveal itself with the story.

Black Woods – Can be used to help punctuate that lonely moment when the story calls for travel in an unknown area.  An area that is unfamiliar, a feeling of foreboding awaits and most important one should not take their time getting through.

Twilight – A track that makes use of a haunting vocal that seems perfect for a dark night. A night that has people looking over their shoulders wondering what could be out in the dark. A night that anything could happen and goose bumps climb up the arm.

The simple truth about Midnight Syndicate’s album Monsters of Legend is it’s the perfect soundtrack for the mind. It’s music that can be listened to and enjoyed by Horror fans who like to be scared by that bump in the night. As a person listens to the album, they should get a sense of why this album was named. The creatures of old will certainly come to life in your imagination as you enjoy this great album.

 
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Posted by on August 2, 2013 in Reviews

 

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