Saturday, April 7, 2012

Béla Bartók Plays Doom

Since in the Classic Doom Hall of Fame I seem to be ranked right up there with prolific legends like Terry and Ruba, I've decided that it's time to release my next great Doom project. Though I've taken the project completely seriously, to others it should at least be good for a laugh or two.

I've been a fan of the compositions of Béla Bartók for many years now. Unlike the more conventional works of the famous composers one might think of when classical music is mentioned, the more contemporary pieces written by Bartók tend to be very edgy and somewhat unnerving, to me conveying feelings of mental and emotional chaos. When in the absence of an audio sample trying to verbally describe his music to someone unfamiliar with Béla Bartók, I usually say something like: "Imagine the music from an old horror movie." Bartók's 6 String Quartets are fine examples:

Opus 17, Second Movement

Thinking that Bartók's 6 String Quartets would also work well as a Classic Doom soundtrack, I decided to pack them into a WAD and test my theory. I was pleased enough with the results that I decided to upload the WAD to the id Games Archive, where I'm certain it will be well-received by my peers.

Since I did the FTP thing just a little while ago, the file is not yet available for download from the Archive. In the meantime, anyone interested in this music WAD can download it from GameFront. (Requires a sourceport that supports .ogg playback.)

It should be interesting to see what kind of "reviews" this one will earn...


  1. "I was pleased enough with the results that I decided to upload the WAD to the id Games Archive, where I'm certain it will be well-received by my peers."

    Clearly, you just ran a randomizer on some music and called it original work. Shameful!

    On a less sarcastic note: you're right, it does definitely have a classic horror movie feel.

    Personally, I usually played Doom to AC/DC; but hey, whatever floats yer boat...

  2. My problem is that I love variety in my game music, yet it has to feel to me like it fits the given game and has an overall theme (and is solely instrumental). I currently have five different sets of music I can use when playing Doom; two WADs from the PSX and N64 versions of the game, the Kevin MacLeod WAD which apparently wasn't royalty-free after all, my custom Samus Aran WAD which I wouldn't be allowed to share publicly for copyright reasons and now this unconventional Bartok WAD. Who knows what I'll come up with next?

    Though I will admit, I do recall listening to a bit of Cannibal Corpse while playing once upon a time; that definitely seemed fitting...

  3. Oh, and while we're on the subject...

    I'll agree with the anticipated naysayers that running some music files through a format converter and then using a WAD editor to pack them all together doesn't require much talent; I do however believe that it takes a certain level of talent and creativity to select and arrange music that is appropriate to a given theme. Not everyone can do it, which is why there are people in the entertainment industry that can't play a lick of music but are still getting payed the big bucks just to select and arrange music for movies and television soundtracks. So nya!

  4. Good WAD! Currently i'm playing OBLIGE'd maps with your randomizer, this music adds some extra madness to the mayhem :)
    Thanks for putting it together.

    1. Thank you for your support. I'm glad you're enjoying it!