Another series rich in musical mastery, Mass Effect effect certainly has a lot of memorable and significant pieces to it’s name. Today, I would like to present a track entitled “The Thorian”. Please take a moment to listen, to take it in. Think about what you would expect this music to accompany, what would be taking place in the game while this is playing. Consider the implications of the tones and tempo, what does it elicit from you?
Now that you’ve heard the song and formed some ideas about it, let’s flesh out it’s background. This is a boss battle theme, named for the creature you’re fighting at the time: ‘The Thorian”. The Thorian is something that is unlike every other alien you encounter in the entire series, in that is is just that. Alien. It’s doesn’t follow familiar forms like the other space -faring species do, it doesn’t use language in the way that we do, it isn’t analogue for anything we have on earth. It’s something unknowable, entirely mysterious, held apart from everything we understand. The music reflects this quality. It doesn’t really relate to anything except the Thorian. It’s just barely related to the rest of the themes by merit if the kind of sound used; It doesn’t follow the normal pattern of boss battle music in that it’s not really fast-paced, tense, or bombastic; It’s almost not even music, but rather otherworldly sounds that somehow work together to form a working harmony.
This is a piece that, like it’s namesake, defies classification and defeats any sort of expectation. It shouldn’t be a boss theme, but it’s difficult to imagine anything but this theme being a proper fit.
What did you imagine for this music when you listened to it? Could you imagine any scenario where this music would fit? What sort of feeling did it revoke?
(I have some thoughts on what it evokes also, I’m looking to comparing in the discussion! 🙂 )