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Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded by Austin Wintory

Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded

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Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded (Soundtrack) by Austin Wintory
Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded (Soundtrack) by Austin Wintory
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded (Soundtrack) by Austin Wintory

Leisure Suit Larry Reloaded
Composed by Austin Wintory
T-65b Records (2013)

Rating: 6/10

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“LEISURE SUIT LARRY: RELOADED remains a breezy little slice of jazzy fun,...”

A Leisurely Listen
Review by Edmund Meinerts

 

LEISURE SUIT LARRY: RELOADED is a remake/reboot/belated continuation of an ancient series of point-and-click adventure games about a loser computer programmer in his 40s who experiences a sudden sexual awakening and heads off to the city of Lost Wages (guffaw) in an attempt to seduce any woman who will have him. All very high art, I’m sure. The game got off the ground thanks to a Kickstarter fundraiser started by the original games’ creator, AL LOWE, and it therefore seems surprising that the music for this game comes from none other than AUSTIN WINTORY, fresh off of making history with the first ever Grammy-nominated game score, JOURNEY.

On WINTORY’s Bandcamp page, the score is described as “featuring obsessive use of AL LOWE’s original theme” for the original games. This catchy little tune does indeed crop up in fragments throughout the score and WINTORY gets a lot of mileage out of it, but it’s not nearly as omnipresent as that statement suggests. The entertaining but brief opening cue does immediately presents that theme in its original 8-bit format before adapting it into the dominant style of the rest of the score: big-band jazz. It’s certainly a good match for Larry’s exploits. The score is pretty much a series of stylistic vignettes, with only the LOWE theme and the umbrella genre of jazz acting as anchors; not quite a “theme and variations” score, but in that neck of the woods.

Some of the more notable cues include a somewhat tedious excursion into blues in “Juke 1: Lefty’s” (3), harmonica, Hammond organ and all; the smooth, sultry low flute variations on LOWE’s theme in “A Lady of the Night” (4); a bit of pseudo-Mediterranean romance in “Heart of the Fawn” (9) with a melodramatic violin, hooting saxophone accents and that ubiquitous European-sounding zither; a country-flavored blend of Hammond organ, fiddle and banjo in “Juke 2: Weddin’ Ready” (10); and a completely bizarre and surprisingly entertaining marriage of vintage 80s Final-Countdown-like synth-pop with the wailing big-band brass in “Juke 3: Studio 69” (13) – WINTORY certainly deserves points for originality on that one. There’s also a brief sultry ballad sung by Melora Hardin in “Tiers of Joy” (18) with clever lyrics that wink at the game’s Kickstarter origins.

Despite these stylistic departures, a lot of the cues in between have an unfortunate tendency to slip into the background and become mere jazzy wallpaper – pleasant for sure, and a great match for the subject matter, but not exactly memorable. Certainly nobody should go in expecting the emotional profundity of JOURNEY; just take one look at the game’s synopsis, for heaven’s sake. But if anything, this score proves what a versatile composer WINTORY is; to bounce between an art game like JOURNEY one moment and this low-brow oddity the next is no mean feat, and if nothing else, LEISURE SUIT LARRY: RELOADED remains a breezy little slice of jazzy fun, an interesting footnote in the composer’s career.


Rating: 6/10


Track

Track Title Track Time  Rating
1 Larry Reloaded 1:27  ****
2 Channel Surfing 1:42  ***
3 Juke 1: Lefty's 3:01  **
4 A Lady of the Night 2:24  ***
5 Fire Escape Waltz 1:09  ***
6 Larry's Town 1:48  ***
7 Cruising the City of Lost Wages 0:54  ***
8 High Rolling 1:15  ***
9 Heart of the Fawn 2:24  ***
10 Juke 2: Widdin' Ready 1:40  ***
11 Prelude to the Evening of the Fawn 1:24  ***
12 He's Alive!!! 0:19  **
13 Juke 3: Studio 69 2:24  ****
14 An Unexpected Evening's End 1:14  **
15 Scents of Jasmine 1:57  ***
16 Below the Stars, Above the Lights 1:33  ***
17 Devout Faith 1:43  ***
18 Tiers of Joy (ft. Melora Hardin) 1:59  ***
19 The Penthouse 2:31  ***
20 An Apple for Eve 2:09  ***
21 Leisure Suit Larry (ft. Mojo) 2:05  ***
  Total Running Time (approx) 35 minutes  

 

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