When Gareth Coker landed in Nashville for the recording of his score for the video game Ori and the Blind Forest, he was terrified. This game had taken 4 years of soundtrack development, and Gareth had composed, orchestrated, and copied the music by himself. The game stood well on its own, but without an equally lush and gorgeous score, it could fail.
Ori's team was, relative to other titans in the video game industry, untested. But you wouldn't know it, listening to and looking at the game. You wouldn't guess that the female vocalist had never sung for a soundtrack before, or that most of the score was recorded by a small chamber orchestra.
Of particular note are the soundtrack's soloists. Tom Boyd, an oboist with over 1,400 film titles to his name, provides a sweetness and gentleness seldom heard in a double-reeded instrument. Rachel Mellis brings her arsenal of traditional and indigenous flutes for added drama. The voice of the soundtrack, Aeralie Brighton, delivers most of the emotional weight. And there is a lot of emotional weight to this game.
Take a look at the game's prologue to appreciate the composing, sound design, artwork, and clever storytelling.