Friday, March 23, 2018

Music to Game to: Belatedly

I listen to a lot of music (over 40 days worth in 2017 according to and I find that few things help me keep the mood of a game foregrounded in my mind like a good soundtrack. Plus, I’ve discovered that when I’m playing music to a speaker via Bluetooth, I’m less likely to be on my phone, lest my players hear any stray sounds, letting me better model engagement during a game. To that end, I want to share some of my favorite music to game to; the albums that inspire and inflame my imagination and that I’ve found work well as background music for games as well. I’ll do a mini-review and cover the basics of what mood it helps me set.


Full disclosure, I only heard about this album through the magic of The Quietus, an online music publication I’m proud to support, which pitched it partly as the work of “a half-man, half-tuba cyborg.” Recorded after the death of the composer’s father, veins of melancholy and grief run deep in this album but never overwhelm it. As a high school tuba player, I might have an extra fondness for the instrument, but its dark, rich tones give it a feel unlike modern rock instruments. Belatedly can be as droning and heavy as a SUNN O))) album in places, but feels less anachronistic for a fantasy game. You can easily imagine the songs echoing through the dimly lit tunnels of a dwarven mine.

  • Vocals?... None.
  • Music Genre(s)...Drone, Brass Band
  • Perfect for...Bringing a bone deep and droning sense of melancholy or plunging your players deep underground.
  • If you only grab one track, make it ..."Antimony”, where the tuba is backed by a thudding bass drum and could easily work as a dwarven dirge resonating in far below the surface in a deep mine shaft.

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