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Best Bionicle Music Genre

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What style of music do you think fits Bionicle best? 2000s style techno? Orchestral? Tribal? Rap? Not sure what you'd call it, but like, rock?... (think gravity hurts, cryoshell stuff).

Personally I prefer techno, especially MNOG's music and the Power Pack. By the way, does MNOG's music composer have any of the old tracks in high quality still? What a tragic loss it'd be if he didn't. Come to think of it, most Bionicle media has surprisingly good music.

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Posted (edited)

I sort of lean to the earlier sounds in a way.

I know the lead track of the Power Pack was Paul Hardcastle's Killing Machines from his album "Extreme Global Hardcore" which was renamed to The Bionicle Music for the Power Pack release. That one is a banger, and it shows up a lot in MNOG and other early media up until 2004's Vahki Animations: https://music.instantlicensing.com/audio/killing-machines-1090149

As for the MNOG stuff, a lot of the original files Justin Lutcher composed are assumed lost. There are a few fans though who have recreated or reinterpreted those songs in modern high quality that are worth checking out: 

Of course I got to mention Nathan Furst and his orchestral works for the films. The fact he went back and re-recorded his music for a proper release on YouTube years after the fact is insane. That is some dedication.

Most of my musical tastes are rock, but for some reason I never really got it to stick with Bionicle. Yes I can't  listen to Move Along without thinking of the Toa Inika... but it still felt like an odd fit for the franchise. I never got that much into Cryoshell either. I sort of stopped following Bionicle as a kid in 2007 just as Cryoshell started playing for Lego, so I missed that train completely. 

EDIT: I guess what I feel about rock with Bionicle... is its not really a musical style that feels native to the story. Like its a sort of addition us humans made to the narration that the Matoran themselves wouldn't have picked. The weird techno-tribal fusion stuff from 2001 just sounds to me like the music the Matoran themselves would make, being a weird amalgamation of cyborgs living on a tribal island themselves. The orchestral stuff slides in as well, if only in the same way a Williams score fits Star Wars. No, at the end of Star Wars Luke doesn't sit down to listen to some Williams tracks; its not what people in Star Wars would actually listen to (Cantina Band and The Imperial March besides). But the Williams tracks convey the story's mood and tone to us in the audience. In the same way Furst's music seems to be telling the story along with the films. Where as something like Move Along is "this is a cool popular rock song lets run it with our toy commercial." Its a nice pairing, but All American Rejects are neither native to the Matoran world, nor does their song actively try and convey the story to the audience. Its only association with Bionicle is as a cool tune used in a cool commercial. 

Edit 2: Really getting off topic here, but an example of Williams music being adapted to sound "in-universe" to Star Wars is Michael Giachinno's scores for the Star Tours ride at Disneyland. It tries to take the film score's melodies, and turn it into some hammy travel company commercial tune. Its hilarious to think the epic scores from Star Wars only exist in the Star Wars universe as background noise in cheesy travel videos. 

 

Edited by Xboxtravis
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5 hours ago, Xboxtravis said:

As for the MNOG stuff, a lot of the original files Justin Lutcher composed are assumed lost.

It's a real shame too. I corresponded with Gordon Klimes (MNOG animation director) a couple years ago about it and apparently there was a huge server crash on top of office moves, so many digital files from that era were lost.  The back-up CDs did not do a very good job backing things up as advertised either. A similar instance happend with Cyan, the company that made the MYST games (which inspired MNOG coincidentally). Cyan had put all their old computers in storage believing that the game files would be preserved. When they took them out of storage years later, most/all of the files had been corrupted or lost.

I always preferred the Techno-Funk-Rock-Tribal-Club hybrid of the early years. Paul Hardcastle used a lot of samples between the Powerpack tracks and his own music. I found this one of his a couple years ago on his 2009 album Zer01 (a re-release/mix of his 1985 album Zero One). I believe it may have been cut from the Powerpack, since the lyrics are "Bionicle. Energy. Obey the force. The legend is born. Energy overload. The Bionicle has begun."

There's also the track Bionicle Age, that Peri found a couple years ago as well. Peri elaborates on the source here

A couple months ago I also found the stock music CD that had music from the Bionicle The Game trailer and the Technic ad on the mini promotional CDs. It's got a similar style to the early music. The album name is Youthquake ATMOS-CD 133. "Up For It" is composed by Billy Conrad & Sam Keaton. "Mental Focus" is composed by Steve Everitt.

When the LOMN alpha was found and I listened to the soundtrack for the first time I was ecstatic. I had spent years longing for this game, never thinking it would be found, let alone any music being available. David Q Madden is credited as composing the music for the game. I particularly like the music of Onu-Wahi, Lewa's boss music and Tahu's surf music. It's all very early 2000s with tribal beats.
Dave Madden's YouTube and Soundcloud pages

17 Up For It.wav 18 Mental Focus.wav

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I think the changing musical styles of the line owe to the changing tone. AIK got involved around '04, right? And that's when the very genre of Bionicle shifted dramatically. In that context, alt metal like AIK and Cryoshell makes much more sense than it did when Bionicle was played up as high fantasy. I think Furst's compositions paired with Hardcastle's medium of choice would be the ideal musical style for Bionicle. Too bad we didn't get that.


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i'd say the early Techno/Tribal stuff was the best but i'm more partial to the Alt. Rock stuff from later years (Cryoshell, Daughtry, etc.)! the Templar music is just amazing and it suits the first three years perfectly! "Hero" by All Insane Kids is a very inspirational track that gives me a sense ov heroic power every time i listen to it; almost as if I am a Toa trained and ready to fight! anyway, "Caught In A Dream" is also really awesome and "Ride" by Presence is a great song as well! overall; i think Alt. Rock was the best kind ov music that Lego could ever use for Bionicle! but i still love the Templar music! so yeah! there's my two cents! :D 

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I think the movie soundtracks for the first 3 (especially LoMN) are pure perfection for Bionicle. Many of the pieces from that soundtrack come to mind when I think of my childhood and Bionicle.

However, for advertising, Move Along is perhaps the most iconic song they used (for me). That alt rock style they used is perfect for the story line and tone they were going for. I was too young when the MNOG and old school techno stuff was used, but that 2004-7 range was my time for it. I have to say, I remember the Vaahki commercial music and that was cool. Nothing like the alt rock tho.

TL;DR: soundtrack & alt rock


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