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Interview with Composer... Boris Salchow

Great pleasure and I think the last interview for the year 2014 with Composer... Boris Salchow, please welcome him to the Wolf!
Jeremy [Howlin' Wolf]


Howlin' Wolf: Tell us how you got involved with "Sunset Overdrive" and how do you go about preparing music for this style of game? 

Boris Salchow: Sunset Overdrive has been developed by Insomniac Games whom I have worked with on a number of games already - two of the Resistance titles, a Ratchet & Clank and last year's Fuse.

Writing the cinematic score for this one was probably the most diverse project I have ever worked on – spanning from punk-influenced scoring through medieval bard songs to 1940s Hollywood spoofs. That is why there was a lot more preparation and research involved than in other projects.

Howlin' Wolf: Do you prefer Film/Television or Game music, which gives you more creative control?

Boris Salchow: That really depends on each project's story and the vision of the director rather than the medium. I have had a lot of fun with games as well as TV or films.

Howlin' Wolf: Orchestra vs. Digital? Do you think that computer generated music is hurting the industries, since more companies are turning to it? As a composer can you tell the difference between the two, what are some of the signs you listen for?

Boris Salchow: Orchestral music is great – and I personally am a big fan of digital music in the sense of music that uses synthesized or electronically altered sounds.

The only thing I have measured amount of excitement for is faking real instruments. Like sampled orchestras etc. It works and it has gotten much better – but it will always be like  juice made from concentrate compared to a freshly squeezed one.

Howlin' Wolf: What is next on your schedule?

Boris Salchow: I am just finishing up an international ad campaign for the Smart car and I am working on a game as well as a very interesting music software project. So stay tuned!

Boris Salchow:

Information: Boris Salchow has created cinematic music scores and unique soundscapes for some of the most prestigious brands in the world (ADIDAS, AUDI, LAMBORGHINI), award-winning documentaries (Germany From Above), Hollywood and international feature films (80 Minutes, Prom Night), drama television series (BALKO, Wolff’s Turf), and cinematic video games (FUSE, Resistance 2 and 3, Ratchet & Clank, Rainbow Six). ?Classically trained but just at home in the electronic music world, Salchow’s artistic range and versatility encompasses live orchestra, hybrid acoustic and electronic music, and immersive musical sound design.

Salchow began his scoring career writing commercials, promos and prime time television series for leading networks in Germany. Now based in Los Angeles, Salchow has composed for feature films such as the internationally-released action thriller 80 Minutes starring Gabriel Mann, additional music for Elsewhere starring Anna Kendrick, and additional music for the Sony/Screen Gems’ teenage horror mystery and #1 US box office hit Prom Night featuring Idris Elba.

Salchow also scored the feature film adaptation of the award-winning documentary series Germany From Above (Buena Vista International) recorded with a 70-piece orchestra and mixed at Babelsberg Studios in Berlin. This visually stunning film is comprised of breathtaking aerial shots of Germany. With only a few words from the narrator, the movie provided a unique opportunity to take the audience on an inspiring musical journey befitting the film’s grand scale. Germany From Above premiered with a special event at Germany’s largest movie theater, where Salchow’s 90-minute score was performed live along with the film.

Salchow recently swapped his baton and orchestra for Moog synthesizers and rare vintage audio processors to score Electronic Arts’ sci-fi video game FUSE. The score blends analog electronic elements, adrenaline infused drums and musical sound design to provide a foreboding and rousing sonic landscape for FUSE’s dark futuristic setting and intense action experience. Salchow’s previous scores for video games include Ubisoft’s Rainbow Six: Vegas 2, Sony’s Resistance 2, Ratchet & Clank: A Crack In Time, and Resistance 3. Recorded with A-list musicians at Abbey Road Studios in London, Salchow’s dark, emotional orchestral music for Resistance 3 was hailed as one of the top video game scores of 2011 by Classical MPR. 

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