The Impact of Music

Over the last few years I have received a ton of fan mail regarding much of my old work. I admit at first I was perplexed as to the reason so many fans seemed to admire my ancient compositions on the old Sierra games and the DOOM and Quake games over my more recent (and far superior quality) work.

I have since thought about this often and I think I am beginning to understand the power of nostalgia and memory recall. Many of the letters reference very specific memories of spending time with friends or loved ones, going through a tough time, or needing to escape the pressure that life can sometimes bring to bear on us. Some are so heartfelt and in some cases life altering that I have been brought to tears with the realization that I have made a positive difference in the lives of so many people. Hearing from so many of you is truly a blessing and an honor. I’l do my best to continue to pour my heart and soul into my work in hopes that the young people of today will hold my current work with the same regard as my early work.

One last thing:
I recently received an email that I was not able to respond to due to an invalid email address. I try to respond as quickly as possible to all fan mail and my response bounced back in this case. So, I just wanted to thank J. Brown for his kind email and wish him the best for such nice sentiments as follows.

“Dear Aubrey, just wanted to thank you for your awesome music. It helped make my childhood awesome. Whether it was playing quake 2 on n64 with my cousin or blasting away demons with a shotgun in doom 64, I can always think about your music and those memories come flooding back. Just wanted to say thank you for your work, it has made an impact in my life.”

To all of my fans, whether you have sent mail to me or not, I thank you sincerely for such kind letters of support and am honored to be a part of such happy memories.

-Aubrey

3 Comments

  1. dan

    Dear Aubrey:

    Thank you so much for sharing your music for PlayStation Doom. I appreciate the work you did for that PSX title when I was in my 20’s. Thanks a lot. Is there any chance there is any unreleased Doom music for the PS that you might share in the future?

    • Hi Dan, thanks for the compliments and for your support and enthusiasm for my work. I found a few old sequences recently when I was preparing the first soundtrack. For some reason I had forgotten to embed the program changes in the file and now I am not certain which sample patches were used. I do plan on experimenting some to try and sort it out. I am planning on a 20th Anniversary Edition of the soundtrack which may include those tracks as well as a few new arrangements of some of the songs and much longer versions of the level tracks. I “hope” to get this done by the end of November. I need to finish the Shadows of Darkness Soundtrack first though.

  2. Eric

    Already touched on this elsewhere on this site, but to reiterate: I think I realized how much music can make an impact on videogaming and how immersive it can truly become when I first played Sega Saturn’s Panzer Dragoon, and then PSX Doom…the Tempest 2000 soundtrack (Atari Jaguar) was also something quite special, and still holds up to this day (yes, I actually owned a Jag). The aforementioned soundtracks were obviously very different and were not going for the same feel, but all left an undeniable mark on the industry. When people look back on the ill-fated history of the Jaguar, one of the high points that is always brought up is Tempest 2000, and thought it was a terrific game, its soundtrack is a huge reason why it hasn’t been forgotten. As fun as PSX Doom was, I think it would’ve been forgotten long ago had the music simply been a rehash of the Bobby Prince tunes (like what was featured in 3DO Doom, which was actually an excellent update of Prince’s work…too bad the game itself was complete rubbish).

    Aubrey, I think part of why people remember your old work so fondly is because you were one of the true pioneers in the “dark ambient” arena…some might say THE pioneer. It’s hard to put into precise words what it was like hearing your compositions upon playing PSX Doom for the first time, but suffice it to say that they left a hell (pun intended) of an impression on just about everyone who played it. Until I had fired up PSX Doom, it honestly hadn’t occurred to me how much music can influence both the feel of the game, and how the player experiences it. Your work was a breakthrough in SO many ways…like you said elsewhere, your Doom vision actually changed how iD approached the musical aspect of their games…and I think it helped to inspire others, as to what was possible in the soundtrack arena…to push the envelope and to take true immersion to the next level. I can honestly say that I had never found playing a video game “scary” before, and never thought that I could at that time. Obviously many games meant to scare the s**t out of its players have come out through the years, but when I think of the first building block in related genres, I firmly believe it started with PSX Doom.

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