Praising Music #2: Dreams of an Absolution (Lee Brotherton)

Updated: May 28

Image from: Lee Brotherton - Sonic Retro

For this series, I search for songs that I believe should get their own praise and analyze them. I will break down the desired track into time frames, thus realizing how each section contributed to make it sound great!

Instead of being standard singles and Anime OPs/EDs, these songs will come in other forms of releases (soundtracks, remixes, promotional, etc.).

Intro- The intro is headlined by its synth and guitar, which offers a bit of a funky rhythm to the track. A male vocal comes in with a... seductive(?)... tone. I don't think that's the right word to describe the voice, but it does give a nice character to the song already.

Another synth and a percussion crashes in during the second half of this section, giving the track a bit more energy before the first verse.

Verse- The first synth and the guitar vanishes, leaving room for Lee Brotherton to do his thing. He's supported by the second synth and percussion, along with a bass that can be heard clearly. His voice during this segment sounds heavenly, I must add.

We then come to a break where the first synth is being used again. The melody of this synth sounds so alluring!

The song circles back to the same tempo we heard before the break.

There isn't much of an indication of a pre chorus, but we do have a section where it alerts us that the chorus is coming. You can tell by the change in his vocal and the guitar rhythm that comes right after.

Chorus- The main highlights of this hook are the first synth and the melody he produces. I'm sure you can notice the change in his vocals. It was altered during this segment to sound futuristic. It's the result of vocal processing.

I've heard plenty of songs that use vocal processing in its worst way. Depending on the track, it can strip some of the emotions the singer is evoking. However, Dreams of an Absolution perfected it. This track falls under the electronic genre, so it makes sense that the producers would change the way his vocals sounded. Nicely done!

After the enduring vocal melody he gave us, we then get to hear the intro again (specifically the second part of the intro).

Verse- Not much is to be said for the second verse. It basically offers a shorter version of the first verse, musically speaking. There are some vocal effects going on here. I would've liked to hear more of his natural voice, but it still doesn't hurt the song's overall quality.

Bridge- This is where the track would suddenly start changing its production. Not too much, but you'll hear a shift in the tempo from here on out.

First the bridge.

We are now entering the world of nightclubbing. This is basically techno right here.

Forgive me for not recognizing the types of instruments being used here. From what I'm hearing, there's obviously another synth that was implemented here just for this segment. In the background, I think there's an extra synth being used. It has a bit of a stuttering effect, offering a nice dynamic with the main synth. We then get a drum that elicits a four on the floor beat.

Believe it or not, that wasn't the end of the bridge,

A switch up occurs once his vocals come into play. It's a nice disruption to the tempo we were just listening to.

I'm not going through all the details here, just because the bridge does take a bit to reach its climax. It's all worth it, though. I do want to mention that the vocals and instruments apply a nice build-up to the song's final moment.

Outro- You'll recognize its closing seconds once the tempo kicks in again. The percussions, synths, and vocals all combine to make a fantastic conclusion, honestly sounding like an ending to a nice dream you're having. A fitting style for the song's title!

Sonic 06 failed with its gameplay, but it definitely succeeded in the music department!

I always point at Sonic games to have one of the best soundtracks out there in the Video game industry. Dreams of an Absolution is a great example of that statement, and there's more to discover. Just discussing this makes me want to revisit Sonic tracks. I loved listening to them when I was young!

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