Snow gently falls as people gather to pay their last respects to a samurai who sacrificed everything he had. Giving up your life for your country is no easy task and everyone in attendance knew just how much this man gave of himself, even to his detriment, but it served a purpose. The battle was won, but not without cost, as is always the case. However, without this man’s involvement, the outcome would certainly have been most unfavourable. And so, hailed as a hero, he is lowered into the ground with only a salute, and though he is unable to say a word, in his death he is silently encouraging those present to make the most of their lives.
Allow me to introduce our plucky, but unfortunately nameless protagonist. It’s midnight, he’s hungry, and the only thing that will satisfy him is pie. So begins a musical tale of despair, suspense and ultimate triumph chronicling one man’s epic quest to fill his belly. It begins with his decision to embark on his quest, followed by the start of his adventure, before suffering through disaster as things end up not going as he had planned. However, he resolves to continue on before enduring a cliffhanger after which his quest ultimately proves to be successful.
Journey’s End is a theme that was intended to be reminiscent of the themes to animated 2D platform or adventure games. Despite the title, this theme could have possible uses as an ending theme, a main theme, a location theme or a character theme, owing to its prominent melodies. Anime soundtracks and the strong melodies of the film composer John Williams were my main influences here.
This ambient track with orchestral elements was composed over two days. The title was mainly inspired by the piano patterns, but also by the structure of the music and the reliance on one or two main ideas coming back repeatedly. After the first section, the middle section employs a change of pace and mellower feel, before returning to a darker restatement of the beginning idea with more orchestral elements, building to a climax with a strong brass melody before fading out to end.
This is the full official soundtrack to the film Hammer and Nails, by Hamad Alawar. The film is available to view on the Videos page.
Hammers and nails are relatively small things, but with Hamad’s use of perspective, the struggle depicted in this film was presented on a larger-than-life scale. I wanted the score to reflect that, so I primarily used orchestral instruments and voices for a cinematic quality, layering these instruments with synthesised textures to add more depth and weight to the melodic instruments while creating a sense of ambience and foreboding.