Tavern Tunes - Cursed Sails
Composer Robin gets down to the bones of the skelly trailer soundtrack!
When we announced the release date for Sea of Thieves' most recent content update Cursed Sails, we did so with a spine-tingling trailer – one that allowed Rare's Music Director Robin Beanland to bring back the spookiness stitched into many Rare tracks through the years. Let's never forget this little Halloween treat from our Audio team.
Of course, a finished trailer gets another layer of audio effects to set off the on-screen action, but if you'd like to hear the clean original version of the Cursed Sails trailer track stripped of those rattling footsteps, creaking timbers and shrill skelly cackles, here's your opportunity!
We also asked Robin to share some insights into the elements that make up the music:
"This edit of the full-length Cursed Sails music starts with some Bartok Pizzicato strings which is an articulation I rarely get to use, but love. It's achieved when the player aggressively snaps the string so that it hits the fingerboard and gives more of a percussive sound. Behind these cello and viola strings you can hear a 'wailing' hurdy-gurdy which has been detuned a fair bit... you may recognise this from battling on the Skelly Forts when there's a lull between waves of attacking skellies.
"From here we go into the main Cursed Sails motif, which is a 3/4 staccato string figure with some minor trills and chromatic flourishes. These are backed up with some glissandi rises and falls from the choir and lower strings to give a foreboding vibe. I wanted the music for Cursed Sails to sound menacing and unrelenting without being too in-your-face. So the percussion part of concert bass drum and snare play fairly modestly for the most part until we hit the big Eb minor to A minor chords from the brass and choir.
"Moving on from the choir and brass chords, the Cursed Sails motif continues to play with some added upper octaves from the violins but now in the key of F# minor. At this point the main Sea of Thieves theme arrives to play against this motif on some low and nasty brass. This is all punctuated with anvil hits and cymbal scrapes from the percussion, building to a dramatic climax.
"I loved writing the Cursed Sails music."
He's a good egg, is Robin. Check out all our previously posted Tavern Tunes and discuss your favourites on our social channels below!