New York, NY (August 7, 2007)–G&E Music dropped a dose of heavy rock on ESPN recently, hooking up the network with a custom library of tunes for use in its promos and programming. G&E’s principle composers are Glenn Schloss and Erik Blicker.
ESPN caught a sample arena rock anthem submitted by G&E and hired them to do an album’s worth of big orchestral hard rock music. G&E’s ten-song library scores the sports story arc: the building tension of the pre-game, the kick-off and chase, the close competition and buzzer-beater victory, the sweeping defeat…it’s all there, in revving Metallica-esque guitars and pounding drums filled out with orchestral strings and horns, and symphonic choirs.
Schloss describes, “ESPN wanted that explosion of sound combining the two worlds: hard rock meets symphony.” The guys wrote and recorded ten two-minute-plus songs, channeling metal bands and big movie score sound, and packing each track with several major hit points, for the client’s ultimate versatility in the editing room.
G&E has worked with ESPN before, but the scale and thematic scope of this project were particularly challenging. “We typically score the highlight shows,” says Schloss, “which have a very consistent feel throughout, but these tunes have a wide range of emotion so they can be used for a variety of programming. We had fun playing with the different tempos to score such a wide range–some are super fast, and others are the opposite extreme. The slower tempos were the most fun when it came to the orchestration part of the project, for building tension and depicting the more ominous, threatening tones.”
With Blicker rocking on guitar and both thunderous and sparse drumming by Schloss, the foundations of these songs were laid in spontaneous jam sessions at G&E’s NYC studio. Over the past year, Schloss has been building a hybrid drum set-up for the signature sounds-for-picture G&E puts out, combining sound module and v-drums with real cymbals and hi-hats. Recording both audio and MIDI into Pro Tools, he has flexibility with all the individual drum parts (kick, snare, tom) split out into Pro Tools and MIDI. “I think these are the best drum sounds we’ve ever captured,” Schloss adds. “And we have a similar mix on guitars, using both pod/distressors and real Marshall stack cabinets throughout the record.”
G&E played with a big, cinematic sound in mind. “There was always the imaginary orchestra in our heads as we were laying down basic tracks,” Blicker shares. The sounds of a 100-piece choir, slow orchestral swells, string variations, horns and synth pads top off and fill in with Blick’s charging guitar and Schloss’ big rock drums, creating some really explosive, head-banging moments, as well as many more soft and reserved movements. From the up-tempo “Rise Up” with its wailing wah guitar to the determined-from-the-start “I Won’t Let You Score,” the G&E hard rock library puts ESPN in a whole lot of moody metal.