Song of the Week: "Milky Way (Explore)" by Ben Prunty | Model Behaviors

Song of the Week: “Milky Way (Explore)” by Ben Prunty

If you don’t play video games but you live with someone who plays them at any and all hours of the day, my greatest hope is that those video games have a killer soundtrack.

I used to live with two guys who played this game called Faster Than Light (FTL) all the time. All. The. Time.

And that meant the soundtrack played all the time.

Luckily, I fell in love with it. While they sat in the living room playing the game, I sat in the dining room jamming out. And by jamming out, I mean writing or working, because it’s the perfect soundtrack to put your mind in the focus zone and keep it there. Thank you for creating it, Ben Prunty.

I recommend listening to the whole soundtrack. All the songs have the spacey feel of “Milky Way (Explore),” but each one has its own unique quirk or tone. There are two parts of the game. In one part, you explore. In the other you wage battle against space foes. So each song on the soundtrack has an explore version and a battle version.

You can hear in the explore version of “Milky Way” how the sounds expand and layer over each other. The melody bounces and floats at the same time. Everything is smooth. Everything is connected. Each tone and layer rolls into the next, leading us further and further through a meandering cosmos.

Prunty combines several different synth sounds. The lower ranges in pitch are buzzier, more distorted. But the higher in range we go, the more bell-like and clear they become. He plays a steady sixteenth-note riff through almost the entire song, which threads all of the other pieces together. The way Daft Punk made us feel like the soundtrack to Tron would be the music played inside a computer world, the soundtrack for FTL makes us feel like this is the music they’d play on a space exploration ship.

If you enjoy “Milky Way (Explore)” by Ben Prunty, also listen to “Space Cruise (Title)” and “Engi (Battle).”

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