- "Because... because I've got spikes. Because I go between the zones, even when I'm not supposed to."
- ―Kurt Harland[src]
Ozar Midrashim, variously known as the Soul Reaver theme, Raziel's theme and Kain Encounter, is a recurring musical theme in the Legacy of Kain series, composed by Kurt Harland of Information Society. Originally commercially released in 1997 as part of the band's Don't Be Afraid album (and later in a compilation, Pure Energy: The Very Best Of), it was also used as the opening theme for Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, and acts as Raziel's theme in Legacy of Kain: Defiance.
Occurrences[edit | edit source]
The original instrumental recording of Ozar Midrashim plays in its entirety throughout the intro sequence to Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver, which recounts Raziel's execution and resurrection. A remixed, fast-tempoed variant plays while exploring Raziel's Clan Territory and the Sanctuary of the Clans, while a shortened version serves as the background music during Raziel's confrontations with Kain at the Pillars of Nosgoth and the Chronoplast.[Soul Reaver]
The opening to the track is heard in the recapitulatory introduction to Legacy of Kain: Defiance. Ozar Midrashim also plays in part while Raziel battles the Vampire golems at the entrance to Vorador's Mansion, in full during the second half of his final confrontation with Kain in Avernus Cathedral, and in a curtailed form during his final battle against Janos Audron/The Hylden Lord in the Vampire Citadel.[Defiance]
Variations[edit | edit source]
At least twenty official mixes of Ozar Midrashim are known to exist:
- The original Ozar Midrashim 1.1 and its unreleased predecessor, Ozar Midrashim 1.0 (which, according to Harland, is not substantially different from the original).
- Eight possible variations of the song play in Raziel's Clan Territory, which differ slightly based on the circumstances - standard, suspenseful, danger and combat mixes - and are further altered depending on whether Raziel is in the Material or Spectral Realm. Three prototype versions of the Spectral Realm theme also exist, from various betas.[Soul Reaver]
- Four further variations in Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver - "Kain Encounter", a mix played during Raziel's encounters with Kain, and "Anticipation before battle", which acts as a transitionary theme when traveling between the regions of Nosgoth, and also plays as a warning theme when Raziel stands directly outside the rooms housing the Pillars of Nosgoth and the Chronoplast. Both are accompanied by Spectral mixes.[Soul Reaver]
- Three variations in Legacy of Kain: Defiance: one played in the battle against the Vampire Golems, one while Raziel fights Kain (this version lacks the intro) and one when fighting the Hylden Lord. These are not accompanied by Spectral remixes.[Defiance]
Covers[edit | edit source]
Between the Zones, a French industrial rock band founded in 2005, created a cover of Ozar Midrashim under the title Wasted Lands/Wasteland Midrashim, an electric guitar re-interpretation of the theme.
DJ Chris Geo made Hardcore & Trance remixes of Ozar Midrashim in 2005 and 2007, which included dialogue sampled from Soul Reaver. Much of the dialogue featured in the Trance remix is from the original Soul Reaver storyline and is not in the released game.
Hguols - a music project taking 'an experimental approach to symphonic black metal' - released a single in 2010: Reaver of Souls with the song name 'affectionately titled' Ozar Midrashim, Ariel's Lament. The track combines Ozar Midrashim and Ariel's Lament (the Soul Reaver 2 theme).
HalusaTwin made an industrial remix of Ozar Midrashim in 2010. 
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Though the original Don't Be Afraid recording – Ozar Midrashim 1.1 – was preceded by a monologue voiced by Kurt Harland, they were omitted in favor of instrumental versions throughout the series. The prelude is spoken as follows:
- "Off in the distance I can see a huge holographic Ronald McDonald walking between the grain elevators and trees. Oh if I had the money I'd have 'em make one of those of me. And I'd send myself to stalk the landscape and scare everybody.
- "You see... 'Cause I've got this sort of field behind me... Because... 'Cause I've got spikes... Because I go between the zones even when I'm not supposed to... Because I'm a suspicious person report... And it's time to go shopping."
- Ozar Midrashim (Hebrew אוצר מדרשים) is a Hebrew term loosely meaning "Treasury of studies". The theme was specifically named after Julius Eisenstein's Ozar Midrashim, a collection of 200 minor midrashim, or biblical interpretations, first published in 1915 – Harland acquired a copy during the development of Legacy of Kain: Defiance.
- According to Harland, Ozar Midrashim secured him the position of composer on Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver when an acquaintance, the then-Crystal Dynamics-employed Mark Miller, played it to the Soul Reaver team.
References[edit | edit source]
- My Visit to Crystal Dynamics at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln)
- Audio Files at Nosgothic Realm
- Live Soul Reaver theme (Ozar Midrashim) by Between The Zones at YouTube (by gombaka)
- Between the Zones' official website
- Soul Reaver Hardcore & Trance remixes at Nosgothic Realm Forums
- Soul Reaver at The Lost Worlds (by Ben Lincoln).
- Soul Reaver 1 and Soul Reaver 2 cover at Nosgothic Realm Forums
- HalusaTwin - Ozar Midrashim (Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver Remix) at YouTube
- InSoc.Eyep.net interview at Information Society Brazil
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