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Sega Rally Revo :: Review by Rimo

Sega Rally Revo Album Title: Sega Rally Revo
Record Label: Sumthing Else Music Works
Catalog No.: SE-2034-2
Release Date: August 26, 2008
Purchase: Buy at Amazon


The latest installment in Sega's line of Rally games is Sega Rally Revo, the first overseas-developed title. Meant to act as a "revolution", it features rich graphics and an enhanced game engine, which certainly makes it a considerable game. When it comes to its soundtrack, the word "revolution" would be a tad too strong. It features solid rock pieces, yet the composers Paul Arnold and Andrew Barnabas (aka Bob & Barn) didn't reinvent the genre.


Released on the Sumthing Else label in August 2008, the 13-track album exists in both CD and MP3 forms. Surprisingly, the CD release is somewhat cheap looking with its plain text formatting and a tracklist sorted by alphabetical order. But once the disc is in the player or ripped and sent to a portable player, this is no big deal. Thankfully, the poor aspect is limited to the exterior, visual aspect of the album. Indeed, the music has a rich sound, synonymous with a quality studio work. The genre is rock, featuring plenty of live performances of loud guitar riffs and driving drum and bass lines. Other elements were also thrown in the mix to differentiate the themes, such as the City of Prague Philharmonic string section, ethnic woodwinds, and various electronic sounds to name a few.

This is the first take on a full body of rock by Bob & Barn. They opted for a sound that could be qualified as medium to heavy rock, in the vein of Guns N' Roses and Aerosmith. As a whole, the soundtrack is uniform. While all tracks fit together, there is still a number of different themes to be found, coming from the different race locations. Each location is represented by two tracks, except for Lakeside which has only one. Aside from the recurrent rock ensemble, the distinguishing elements include a horn section (quite synthetic sounding!) in Alpine, icy and crystalline synths in Arctic, slightly western-esque strings in Canyon, more prominent rhythms and electronics in Menu, tribal rhythms in Safari and flutes, and wood percussion in Tropical.

The music found on this album is of high quality. There is no real problem concerning what is present, but what is missing is an important weakness. What is actually missing are strong melodies, especially in the form of guitar or keyboard solos. This kind of material is screaming for such solos, but sadly there are none to be found. There are however many different guitar effects such as noodling, burning, flange, wah-wah and more, and the compositions are evolving, yet in the end the tracks are missing this small plus that would make them really memorable.


Still better than a lot of rock game music out there, these cool grooves should work very well as background music in-game. However, for out of context listens, it might be easier to appreciate the music by hearing a track once in a while in a shuffled playlist than by tackling the whole album in one go. Melody maniacs should skip this soundtrack, but those who usually appreciate heavy, but not downer rock jams without elaborate solos might find Sega Rally Revo to be an enjoyable experience.

Overall Score: 7/10