It was just earlier today that we were talking about how the line between movies and videogames is getting more and more blurred, and then there’s this bit of news. Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor, who has already won acclaim for teaming with Atticus Ross to score the founding of Facebook in “The Social Network” and a vast murder mystery in “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” is lending his skills to the video game world.
USA Today reveals that Reznor has penned the theme song to “Call Of Duty: Black Ops II.” The first person shooter is the ninth entry in the long-running franchise the features a storyline set in two different eras: the Cold War of the 1970s and 1980s and a futuristic world of 2025 where a new war has broken out between China and the United States. Having previously worked on “Quake” and “Doom 3,” Reznor knows his way around a control pad. But he took this gig as seriously as movie soundtrack work and discussed his approach when constructing the theme music.
“What I learned in listening to the full story and the amount of effort that has gone into the back story and the characters and the full preparation there is a lot of reservation and angst and sense of loss and regret and anger bubbling under the surface. So it didn’t make sense to have a gung ho, patriotic feeling theme song. It has to feel weighty. There is a lot of remorse and apprehension here. So choosing to arrange it a bit more with guitars and drums and aggressively sounding, that struck a tone with them,” he explained. “If it was set purely in World War II, for example, I wouldn’t have chosen the instruments that I did. The fact that it is set slightly in the future made me feel like maybe it is OK to get away from an orchestra. So we did it the way we did.”
While the next movie project from Reznor doesn’t seem to be on the horizon, he’s got lots of music on the way with an album from How To Destroy Angels in the bag and some new Nine Inch Nails material in some very early stages. You can hear his work on “Call Of Duty: Black Ops II” when it hits stores on November 12th.