Hi Joshua, thanks for taking the time to do this interview. First of all, tell us about yourself. How did you get started in the video game music business?
I am a composer for video games, television, film and multi media. I originally started of writing for TV and Industrial videos. Then in 2003 I landed Hunting Unlimited. I had a blast working on it and wanted to pursue it further.
Let’s talk about your latest project in video game scoring: Agatha Christie: Murder on the Orient Express. How did you get involved in that project?
I had actually worked with the Todd Resnick, the sound supervisor on MOTOE, on a couple previous titles. We worked together so well on those, so he submitted my work to the publisher and I got the gig.
What were your specific goals for that score and what aspects of it are you most proud of?
My main objective was to capture the essence of the story which entailed mystery and intrigue of-course. They also wanted real subtle pieces during game play so I wanted to achieve that with out being to monotonous. I am most proud of how the main themes turned out for the Main Title of MOTOE, Detective Poirot's Theme and the Orient Express (Train) Theme.
You’ve also worked on two instalments of the Hunting Unlimited series. What can you tell us about those scores?
They weren't too demanding in the way of music. Very rock driven main title and mostly short orchestral themes that established the environment and location of where you were hunting. But fun to work on never the less.
You’ve also scored for film and television. How would you compare movie and game scoring?
In film and television you already have emotion coming through the actors. Musically you just have to support or enhance what is already there and somewhat influence the feeling that the audience receives. In games, the emotion is a little more musically driven and in a lot of ways gives you more freedom, which is nice. But don't get me wrong, there is still much sensation that comes from the environments and game play.
Are you pleased that your scores are being discussed / compared with film scores? For many years the direction for "crossing over" has been from game scores to movie scores (e.g., Giacchino), but more recently movie composers have gone the other way (e.g., Schifrin, Elfman & Shore). Any thoughts as to why this latter flow is happening?
Yes, very. It is awesome to be able to get your music out and heard and an honor to have people enjoy your work. I think the shift, although subtle has to do with working on something new and refreshing. Also, budget for game scores have gone up to meet the demands of these composers.
Where do you see game music in five to ten years from now?
More of a main stream industry. Ever expanding in every direction. More live orchestral scores and I believe the interactive score, although somewhat sparse now, will be more popular as technology advances.
What is, in your opinion, the most difficult / challenging / enjoyable task when composing for a video game?
Capturing the essence. Wether it be, Action, Adventure, FPS or RPG. Dark, Bright, Mysterious or just fun. That is the most difficult, challenging and enjoyable task.
What other composers / musical styles have had the greatest influences on you? What is in your CD-player right now?
Film Composer Hummie Mann (Robin Hood Men in Tights, Year of the Comet) has been a great influence to me musically and professionally. I have learned much from him. He has been very instrumental (no pun intended) in helping launch my career. Other influences are James Newton Howard, John Powell and Claude Debussy. In my CD player right now is "X-Men: The Last Stand" score by John Powell.
What is, so far, your favourite project you’ve worked on?
Honestly MOTOE has been my best experience thus far. Worked with some great people.
What would be your dream project?
An epic adventure film in the vain of Spider Man, X-men, Pirates of the Caribbean, but also more edgier films such as Bourne Identity and Unbreakable.
What are you currently working on?
Currently I am working on two Commercials for Old Navy. I am scoring the introductions to www.gamecues.com and I am scheduled to score three game titles in the coming months.
Do you play PC or console games yourself?
I do somewhat. Not as much as I used to. Had more time then. I love RPG's/Adventure.
Is there anything you’d like to say that I didn’t cover?
Thank you for taking interest in my score to "Agatha Christie's: Murder on The Orient Express". There is more to come...
Thanks again and good luck on your future endeavours.