Position Music Orchestral Series 8: Rise Above Review
Since its inception in 2006, Position Music’s Orchestral series has grown to become an important force in the Trailer music world. Although the quality of releases has varied from brilliant to mediocre, composers such as Jim Dooley and Jo Blankenburg have managed to give fans truly epic classics in every sense of the word. Last week, Position Music released the eighth entry in the series, “Rise Above”, composed by veteran trailer music composer Veigar Margeirsson. With a big reputation to live up to, does the latest entry “Rise Above” its forbears or sink into mediocrity?
The first thing you’ll notice when listening to Rise Above is the complete lack of choirs, an unusual choice in a genre that demands the maximum of impact and emotion from its tracks. Unfortunately, while Choirs are by no means necessary for an Epic experience, their absence in Rise Above is sorely felt. All too often, I imagined choral backdrops at moments where the songs bogged down, and good choral work could have saved the album from mediocrity. One song, “Trial by warriors”, features a solo female vocalist, yet her voice is all too fleeting and subdued.
“Rise Above” is, for lack of a better comparison, a mediocre and textbook example of trailer music. It does nothing particularly wrong, and all of the tracks are mildly enjoyable and convey a bit of dramatic force. The orchestral work is solid, and I did enjoy listening to it. Sadly, none of the tracks manage to convey a distinct personality to carry them beyond the ordinary. This is a standard “Drama” disc, lacking the action and ferocity of Vendetta or the magical overtones of Wonderstruck. Nothing distinguishes the tracks from the thousands of trailer music pieces written before them, and they feel rather bland and aimless. Although I’ve been listening to the album all day, none of the songs have reached the point where they are stuck in my head or instantly recognizable.
I do want to stress that “Rise Above” is far from terrible, and I urge you to head on over to Postion Music’s website and decide for yourself. Position Music has kindly put the entire album up for streaming, so don’t take my word for it! Veigar’s previous work with West One Music shows his potential as a composer, and I hope that he will build beyond the cookie-cutter averageness of “Rise Above” in future releases. For those interested, the album is available for purchase on itunes, amazonmp3, and on Spotify. Physical CD’s should be available directly from Position Music in the coming days.