this week for the weekly review, we’re checking out a short instrumental EP – Moonage Lobotomy – A Hylics 2 Musical Expansion, by Hylics 2 composer Chuck Salamone with Mason Lindroth. gotta say, right out the gate, that i love the idea of an expansion for a video game soundtrack, especially one where you get to explore some of the themes of the soundtrack without necessarily being tied to specific gameplay. neat idea, right off the bat.

this EP is only a few tracks long, so i’m gonna eschew my normal “track analysis first, album thoughts second” structure and just talk about this one. i had a BLAST with this EP. i dug Hylics, and it has a strange, ephemeral, dreamlike quality that the music was a huge contribution to. i’ve not yet played Hylics 2, but i know i’ll get around to it soon. it also helped to be kind of familiar with the characters, even if the first Hylics is a little brief. An Endless Cycle (Wayne’s Theme) is our introduction here, and this track is moody with a fantastic build over its runtime. love the transition from the bold electric guitar to those chunkier steps between movements. Azure Memory (Somnosa’s Theme), has chunk that remind me of a friend’s Tame Impala – this one definitely feels like drifting to sleep on a highway while a friend drives you home to me, lights blazing past. not the biggest impact on the EP, but a solid player. La Danse du Gobelet en Papier (Dedusmuln’s Theme) feels quite a bit more cinematic and aspirational than the other tracks. has some incredibly cool movements here. Bolt Thrower (Pongorma’s Theme) returns a bit more to the darker, meatier sound that i dug on An Endless Cycle – definitely feel a lot more symphonic metal influence here, and man its so good. not gonna lie, after a few listens its very cool how cohesive this manages to be, even across four character profiles. extremely cool EP, and a fantastic collection of rockin instrumental tracks.

faves – An Endless Cycle (Wayne’s Theme), Bolt Thrower (Pongorma’s Theme)

Moonage Lobotomy – 8/10

next week, i’ll be listening to Tears For Fears’ Songs From the Big Chair.  i’ll be back next Friday, March 10th with that review and to pick another weekly record, and in the meantime, let me know what album you’d like me to review! (i pool all suggestions in one place, and draw a person, then one pick from that person, so feel free to drop as many as you’d like! if you leave an email or username i’ll contact you when i’ve gotten through all your suggestions.)