Hopefully you’re all familiar with YouTube user dummeh, or as he’s more commonly known as the Blake Robinson Synthetic Orchestra. He’s done tons of various orchestrations of video game tunes, including a plethora of Zelda melodies, has an entire Super Metroid Symphony album, and even has quite a bit of original music on his bandcamp page. Recently he made an orchestration of the Sanctuary Dungeon theme in anticipation of the upcoming A Link Between Worlds game. Hit the jump to listen!
Firstly, listen to the original theme from A Link to the Past to refresh your memory. It’s ominous and utilizes a lot of brass like many other Super Nintendo titles.
Now listen to Blake Robinson’s version.
The brass in this version doesn’t come in until after the intro and then backs off a lot to allow for some conversation by the woodwind section. Of course Blake Robinson can utilize many, many more sounds and instruments than Koji Kondo could with the Super Nintendo’s hardware, but the orchestrated version does stay true to the original in many respects. It will be interesting to see what Nintendo does with this theme, which will surely be in A Link Between Worlds, when the game releases.
The interesting thing about the brass in the orchestrated version, however, is that the somber tone and heavy use of horns in particular give this a film noir feeling, which you’ll be familiar with if you’re a fan of film noir or have played LA Noire. I have no idea how it would work, but now I’m interested in seeing if a film noir version of a Zelda game would be possible. That might have to stray too far away from the core of Zelda, however, and it’s probably best that it doesn’t.
The Blake Robinson Synthetic Orchestra has plenty of other Zelda orchestrations, too, so we’ll definitely be seeing more here on Windmill Hut.
What did you think? Let us know in the comments!