Ghost Recon Wildlands – Hear a Sample of the Soundtrack Helmed By Alain Johannes

Ghost Recon Wildlands is coming on March 7, and when it does, it’ll feature a dynamic, deeply atmospheric soundtrack helmed by Alain Johannes. Johannes – who plays multiple instruments and has worked as a composer, arranger, producer, and musician with numerous bands including Queens of the Stone Age and Arctic Monkeys – worked with a group of other musicians to create the game’s score, which weaves traditional and modern influences into a moody backdrop for the game’s Bolivian open world.

“It’s been a lifelong dream to be part of something like this,” says Johannes. “Composing for a video game is much broader, wider, deeper – almost more satisfying in some ways, you know? I love making albums as well, but this almost has a wider scope, and it really takes every ounce of passion, ability, and talent that you have to do a great job. Even more than for a soundtrack, it’s incredibly rewarding, and in the way that it was done with a lot of improvisation, it’s a very rare thing to do. Just an incredible experience.”

In creating the soundtrack, Johannes says he and his team – consisting of musicians Joey Castillo, Nick Oliveri, and Norm Block – made heavy use of the charango, a lute-like Bolivian instrument traditionally made from an armadillo shell, along with a wide range of instruments including electric and upright bass, classical and acoustic guitars, cell, viola, “shamanic-type” drums, flutes, banjo, and harmonium. The soundtrack also prominently features one of Johannes’ personal favorite instruments, a worn cigar-box guitar.

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“[The development team] basically wanted to add elements that would be kind of resonant with Bolivia,” Johannes says when asked about the soundtrack’s strongest influences. “I think the inspiration also came from just being there, watching the open world, and reacting to it. Very often, they would give me reference tracks to listen to that kind of had the feeling of what they were after, and that was also an inspiration. The chemistry between us as well… we’ve known each other for a long time. We’ve played in bands together.”

Johannes worked alongside Castillo and Oliveri while opening for – and then as a member of – Queens of the Stone Age, while Block is a drummer who’s also worked with a large number of bands as a producer, mixer, and engineer.

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“They kind of lock in, like Joey keeping the groove and Norm adding the spice,” says Johannes. “It was this gut feeling that they would be the perfect addition to this thing that we were doing. We spent four days at my house… working on music that was a little more open and more fragile, and less heavy, as it were. It was pretty lucky.”

Ghost Recon Wildlands will be available on March 7 for Xbox One, PS4, and PC. You can preorder the soundtrack here. For more on the game, check out our previous coverage:

Ghost Recon Wildlands – Building A Reactive Open World

Ghost Recon Wildlands – Nighttime Infiltration Walkthrough Features Stealth Tactics

Ghost Recon Wildlands – Four Things You Need to Know About Customization

Ghost Recon Wildlands

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon Wildlands

Release date — March 7, 2017
Developer — Ubisoft Paris
Bolivia, a few years from now: this beautiful South American country has become the largest cocaine producer in the world. The influential and vicious Santa Blanca drug cartel has turned the country into a narco-state, leading to lawlessness, fear, injustice, and violence. The cartel is on track to becoming a major underworld power and global threat.

An all-out war is not the answer. A surgical, stealthy, lethal approach is the only way to stop the disease at its source. The Ghosts, an elite US Special Forces team, are sent behind enemy lines to wreak havoc, destabilize, and eventually break the alliance between the cartel and the corrupted government.

Facing an almighty enemy in a massive and hostile environment, the Ghosts will need to make critical moral choices and engage in tough battles to complete their mission – their grittiest and most dangerous operation to date.

ESRB Rating: M

Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands is a work of fiction. Like similar Tom Clancy’s games from Ubisoft, the game takes place in a modern universe inspired by reality, but the characters, locations and stories are created solely for entertainment purposes. One of the reasons Bolivia was chosen as the background of this game was due to its magnificent landscapes and rich culture. While the game’s premise imagines a different reality than the one that exists in Bolivia today, we do hope that the in-game world comes close to representing the country’s beautiful topography, and that players enjoy exploring the diverse and open landscapes it moved us to create. Any resemblance to actual events or any real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
The Author

Mikel Reparaz has been an editor at GamesRadar, PlayStation: The Official Magazine, MacLife, and Official Xbox Magazine. He now works as a Communications Mercenary on the UbiBlog. Follow him on Twitter: @Wikiparaz