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Game music of the dead: Silent Hill 3

Game: Silent Hill 3

Song: Sickness Unto Foolish Death

Composer: Akira Yamaoka

       
Above: Sickness Unto Foolish Death by Akira Yamaoka

Welcome to a special week of Game Music of the Day! All week we'll be sampling some of the creepiest tunes I've ever heard, beginning today with a track from the wholly excellent Silent Hill 3 soundtrack. Known for his moody, disturbing use of audio, Akira Yamaoka created several standout songs that managed to be beautiful, haunting and catchy all at once , so picking just one is rather difficult.

But if the primary criteria are weird and spooky, "Sickness Unto Foolish Death" has to take the cake. The name alone conjurs up some scary images, and when combined with that oppressive, industrial beat it starts to take on a life of its own. By the time the keyboard and other weird-ass SFX kick in, I honestly get a little creeped out. Even that echo-y rattling noise near the beginning curls my toes, like it's some kind of inhuman monster giggling in the dark. And yet the song is so listenable and melodic, even when played in a game filled with skin walls and pools of fleshy gore.


Above: Though this would have to be my favorite song from the game, You're Not Here, which was also used in the 2006 Silent Hill movie (and named one of gaming's most rocking intros)


Above: End of Small Sanctuary plays early on, and acts like a friendlier version of Foolish Death

Moving stuff, right? Even if you're turned off by Silent Hill as a whole, its music is irrefutably awesome. We so rarely get in-game compositions that both sound like legit music but keep that "videogame" feeling that makes it unique. Usually the balance is one way or the other - that is, super fast bleeps like Mega Man or sweeping yet impersonal scores like so many modern titles.

I actually interviewed Yamaoka a couple of years ago when Homecoming was first announced. Check it out for more on his style and past works, and then maybe crank Foolish Death one more time.

October 25, 2010

 

Game music of the day: Silent Hill 2
Theme of Laura by Akira Yamaoka

 

 

Game music of the day: 'Splosion Man
Donuts, go nuts! by Matt "Chainsaw" Chaney

 

 

Game music of the day: Rygar
Caverns of Saglia by an unknown artist

18 comments

  • ZenRobot - October 27, 2010 2:18 a.m.

    LOVE silent hill 3's soundtrack. it's the SH soundtrack of choice when i want to listen to silent hill music. My girlfriend isn't a gamer but got obsessed by this soundtrack when i played it for her.
  • philipshaw - October 26, 2010 7:17 p.m.

    Silent Hill 3 was a solid game but the soundtrack was fantastic,I was going to get mad that you for not putting put Silent Hill 2 here but you already did that as GOMTD before
  • porjos - October 26, 2010 12:19 p.m.

    Akira Yamaoka isnt a celebrated game music composer for nothing...I believe he did all of the music for every one of the Silent Hills... Sank You Brett *gong*
  • elpurplemonkey - October 26, 2010 5:59 a.m.

    That first 40 seconds of the first song are really fucking creepy. Then it just turns into a strange but very good song. I've never had the balls to play any of the Silent Hill games, though I've always respected the series for it's story, atmosphere and character design. But I had no idea it actually had good music.
  • Clovin64 - October 26, 2010 5:52 a.m.

    I love Silent Hill's music. I've got the soundtracks for SH2 and 3 and I still go back to listen to them occasionally. Who would of thought that something that sounds so monstrous and unnerving could still be beautiful?
  • zanthox - October 26, 2010 5:06 a.m.

    Silent hill has such great music. I wish I had played them back in the day.
  • Tenfey - October 26, 2010 5:03 a.m.

    Oh god Brett, that one room in the hospital with the mirror. Now I can't sleep.
  • shyfonzie - October 26, 2010 4:57 a.m.

    I`d spit over this beat if I weren`t so caucasian.
  • phoenix_wings - October 26, 2010 3:53 a.m.

    Gotta love You're Not Here =D
  • Strangleme - October 26, 2010 2:16 a.m.

    Sweet.
  • JohnDagger - October 26, 2010 1:57 a.m.

    Silent hill wouldn't be silent hill without it's music. Look at any great survival horror and you'll see one of the reasons that they are so great is because of their sound design. (ie. Amnesia: The Dark Decent, Dead Space, Silent Hill...)
  • ShaneCedt - October 26, 2010 1:39 a.m.

    Love "sickness". Gah they've killed Silent Hill and James Bond franchises! Wahhh
  • ZenPhoenix - October 25, 2010 11:32 p.m.

    All fantastic tunes, love 'em! Great pick, Brett.
  • CancerMan - October 25, 2010 10:38 p.m.

    Love it! Buying the soundtrack NOW.
  • kyle94 - October 25, 2010 10:05 p.m.

    The music for the Silent Hill games are some of the best video game music out there.
  • RebornKusabi - October 25, 2010 10:02 p.m.

    Oh god do I love Silent Hill 3... I literally just this month had my PS2 die and had to scramble to get a PS2 emulator just so I could play this one and Fatal Frame 3... totally worth, this is such a great, and great looking, game all around. Kudos to the music choice as well!
  • Aeshir - October 25, 2010 10:01 p.m.

    And now to listen to Laura's Theme again! It better be somewhere in this year's Halloween episode of TalkRadar, awmigawwww so guuuud.
  • batmanboy11 - October 25, 2010 10 p.m.

    Long live Halloweek!

Showing 1-18 of 18 comments

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