For the people who, like me, get inspired by music, I’ve been working on a set of playlists on YouTube consisting of songs that either inspired my books, or helped me write them, sometimes a combination of the two. All of them are currently and will probably always be in progress, and each one has a different feel to it, overall. Here is your guide to the Music of the Tales. I’ll try to keep it as spoiler-free as possible.
The Tales of Esper Ravenwood Playlist
Not divided by book, per se, but telling the connected story across the whole trilogy.
- “When the Raven Spoke my Name” – Weh
This is the song that inspired Esper’s original concept, and has since become something of his “spirit song.”
- “Far From Home” – Five Finger Death Punch
What I imagine Esper’s voice to be like, as well as how he must feel after having wandered the world for almost 600 years.
- “My Demons” – Starset
Esper and Leon’s song, which was originally picked out by Bran, my creative adviser and partner.
- “IRIA” – Celldweller
You’ll notice a lot of Celldweller through all of the playlists. Klayton is arguably my favorite artist besides Thomas Bergersen. “IRIA” stands for, “I remember it all.”
- “If I Had A Heart” – Fever Ray
When I first heard this song on the Vikings I though immediately of Esper: “If I had a heart, I could love you. If I had a voice, I’d sing.”
- “Immortal” – Thomas Bergersen
I originally had this one in the Redgate Chronicles playlist, but Bran suggested it sounded more like the Battle at Hazel Hill than anything. So, it is now my unofficial theme song for Lightbringer.
- “Helvegen” – Wardruna
Esper’s “Dirge of the Damned.” Not only because of what the song translates to in English(“The Road to Hell” roughly), but because Borean, Esper’s mother tongue, is essentially a mangled version of several Scandinavian languages.
- “Poet” – Bastille
What I want playing at the end credits if Lightbringer ever gets made into a movie.
The Tales from Liserna Playlist
This one is divided by book. Runesong’s songs start at the beginning, Heartnet starts with “My Freedom,” and Winterdream starts with “Into Darkness.”
- “The New Beginning” – Lunatic Soul
What I imagine the Runes sound like whispering in Rowan’s head. Laguz in particular. Also, this is the first song for the first book of a new tale, which makes it a literal new beginning.
- “Afraid This Time” – Celldweller
There’s a specific event that goes along with this one and for spoiler reasons I will not say what it is.
- “I’m So Sorry” – Imagine Dragons
I’m not sure what it is about this song that makes me thing of Rowan’s team in Runesong, but it does. There’s a lot for all of them to be sorry for, I suppose. It has that kind of upbeat, fighter-y feel that I like.
- “My Freedom” – Thomas Bergersen
This one would be Sive’s song, if she were singing to Mairin. Also what I imagine her voice sounding like. It ended up being much lighter in Heartnet than it was when I was planning.
- “Ocean Princess” – Thomas Bergersen
Mairin’s song. Not necessarily because it’s what she sounds like, but the title is pretty perfect.
- “Fire in my Eyes” – Fireflight
Both a Sive and Mairin song, and what I condier the “end credits” song for Heartnet.
- “Into Darkness” – Thomas Bergersen
The beginning of Winterdream. Also…reasons. *evil cackling*
- “The Road of Trials” – Austin Wintory
The soundtrack for the game Journey was almost exclusively what I listened to while I was writing Winterdream, and what inspired the setting for the book. This track is arguably my favorite, and captures the spirit of Morick’s team pretty well.
- “Casablanca” – Two Steps from Hell
This song is actually in two of my playlists, and for similar reasons. When Bran heard this he said, “It makes me think of that scene where they’re all riding up to the canyon city.”
- “Down to Earth” – Celldweller
End credits for Winterdream!
The Redgate Chronicles Playlist
This one is still a work in progress, but in terms of the first book, Old World, it’s basically complete. This one is more instrumental than the others because I was listening to it while writing. Lyrics and writing don’t mix.
- “Sonera” – Thomas Bergersen
The male vocalist’s part is how I imagine Marcus’s voice. There are other reasons for this song being here but, spoilers.
- “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” – LORDE
Because everybody wants to rule the world.
- “Gift of Life” – Thomas Bergersen
This would be for an event that happens before the events of Old World but is mentioned throughout.
- “Casablanca” – Thomas Bergersen
In this playlist, it is my “walking into Duusan” song. Among other things.
- “Blackheart” – Two Steps From Hell/Thomas Bergersen
Roughly the last third of the book.
- “Yaybahar” – Gorkem Sen
A collection of otherworldly sounds on a very unique instrument. There are a specific couple of scenes toward the end of Old World that fit the slightly creepy tone of this thing.
- “Cry” – Thomas Bergersen
What I’ll be doing when I go back to edit this thing. Also, the last chapter of Old World.
- “Dragonland” – Thomas Bergersen
Song for the second book in the Chronicles, which is currently still in the “refined concept” stage.
- “Footsteps” – Pop Evil
Also for the second book, or perhaps the roll-credits song for Old World.
Hyperion Project Playlist
A story that is still in the super rough concept stage, so it’s kind of a vaguely-themed conglomeration of whatever sounds cool/relevant at the moment.
- “Antigravity” – Starset
Starset makes epic space songs. This one was Bran’s suggestion for Ion’s theme song.
- “Hyperion” – Celldweller
The song that inspired the title for the project, and Karl Westforge’s theme song.
- “Empire of Angels” – Thomas Bergersen
Current theme song for Muro, a disabled soldier. I was trying so hard to fit this in as Zahia’s theme but, alas, she liked a different one better.
- “Starfall” – Thomas Bergersen
Henrietta’s theme. The little sparkly sounding bits are perfect for an underaged alchemist!
- “El Dorado” – Two Steps From Hell
Zahia’s theme, because she’s got attitude and skill. Though, what areas of life said skill applies to is still somewhat up for debate.
- “Jupiter” – Celldweller
Reasons for everything. Also the main villian’s theme for this story, whose name I won’t spoil because no spoilers.
- “End of an Empire” – Celldweller
I love this song, and it’s perfect for the story.
- “World on Fire” – Les Friction
Heh. Where are my theorists at?
- “Pompeii” – Bastille
Because the sadistic bastard is probably my favorite character ever. Tribute playlist to the brainchild of Bran and I(mostly Bran).
- “Into Darkness” – Thomas Bergersen
Brandon’s suggestion. He’s a sneaky, sneaky man.
- “Razorface” – Celldweller
Because one of Legion’s characteristic features is the scar up the side of his face.
- “Uncrowned” – Celldweller
Basically how Legion feels about everyone.
- “Jericho” – Celldweller
- “Faction 5” – Celldweller
For some reason, Bran heard this and thought, “marching into battle theme.” Then he told me to imagine Legion’s laugh at the end of the song and OH.
Stay tuned for more! I’ll continue to update this as more things happen.