Music Driven Book – or Vice Versa?

For some reason, Learnedly Familiar insisted on being written to the music of Avantasia, and Xandria. Arthur’s scenes especially called for Avantasia’s “Raven’s Child” from the 2019 album Moonglow. It starts very melodic, and then goes to symphonic metal.

These are the first lines. The song/ballad is rather long.

Wild groves, sacred grounds fade to vastness
Mother Moon, cast your spell on these fields
Let the boughs paint ghostly shades on the trail
To a different world

Where the castle looks out to a valley
Where I’m given all the love that I crave
Not afraid of the rising sun laying bare my brittle soul

Cold is the wind
Bringing forth clarity
Time rushing on
And nothing will remain
There’s no glory on the last journey home

Looking down from this pure cope of heaven
Onto an ocean of white
That drowns all the noise and decree
And the craze in empty eyes . . . (C) 2019 Tobias Sammet/ Nuclear Blast Music

The whole song is . . . odd, but somehow it fits Arthur, and Corava, and a few others. I think the bit about “a tired chevalier of fortune” might play a role.

Avantasia’s “Let the Storm Descend Upon You” from a different album also pops up in M-Familiar.

Interesting, one of the other songs on Moonglow is “Piper at the Gates of Dawn,” taken from Wind in the Willows.

The scenes in Europe on M-Familiar wanted Nox Arcana and Midnight Syndicate. Those are both dark background music, 99% instrumental, good for covering up household noise and providing a serious, dark, “something’s not quite right here” mood without lyrics.

Except the chapel. For that? Organ arrangements of Ralph Vaughn Williams. Go figure.

I need music in the background, mostly to block TV noise in the afternoons when I get home. I don’t have to have it to write, unlike some, but I can’t focus well with the financial news and Jeopardy going.


7 thoughts on “Music Driven Book – or Vice Versa?

  1. Interesting. The “Piper at the Gates of Dawn” music I’m familiar with is the Pink Floyd debut album.
    “The title of Pink Floyd’s debut album is taken from a chapter in Syd Barrett’s favorite children’s book, The Wind in the Willows, and the lyrical imagery of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn is indeed full of colorful, childlike, distinctly British whimsy, albeit filtered through the perceptive lens of LSD. “

  2. I often use movie soundtracks for background noise while working. John Williams soundtracks are a favorite. I also like to put on an album of nature sounds – birdsong, whalesong, or just general “being outdoors” noises. Walking in a spring woods with birds singing all around is as close as I can get to being in church.

  3. The current WIP likes Assemblage 23, Edge of Dawn, VNV Nation, and the Black Hawk Down soundtrack.

    All of which help block out the sounds of world with the right mood, but none of which can block out the cat pawing my thigh, looking for a lap. *sigh*

    • I need things with enough melody to block the words, unless I’m really, really familiar with the words, enough that I can tune them out. As much as I like VNV and Assemblage, they are too “wordy” still.

      • I might be extremely familiar with the words before it makes it onto my writing soundtrack, yes. I’m writing to the Assemblage 23 album Failure. Which, as it came out in 2001, has been in my music collection… a while…

        That was just the other… decade?

  4. Chuckle Chuckle

    This is Off-Topic but a few years ago I watched a show called “Movie Magic”.

    The series was basically about “Special Effects” and one episode was about the “background music”.

    One thing I remember was they showed the same scene from a “stalker” movie (the character was in a parked car) twice with different background music.

    Once they had the scene with “standard” suspense music and the other had the scene with “Popeye the Sailor Man” (not the words).

    Quite a difference. đŸ˜†

  5. Paul, I’ve seen something similar, but it was the Imperials in Star WArs (original) waiting for Darth Vader to arrive on the ship – the opening of the movie. Playing underneath was a BeeGees, which made the focal character’s nervousness look very different from the apprehension John Williams’ score cues.

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