Varèse Sarabande will release the Revelation – Original Game Soundtrack digitally on April 29 and on CD May 27, 2016. The game features original music by Neal Acree. The score earned the Global Music Award (Game Music and Original Score), the Scorecast Genius Choice Vote Award, and earned nominations for a Game Audio Network Guild Award as "Best Instrumental" by the International Film Music Critics Awards for "Best Score: Video Game."
"Having worked in both film and games I really enjoy projects like these where the line between the mediums is blurred," said Acree. "The score for Revelation could easily have been a score for a film. Ultimately we are all telling stories and painting pictures with sound. The viewer or the player might be experiencing these stories and places in different ways but the emotions we paint with are universal."
"The score for Revelation called for a rich, cinematic sound but the game's story and artwork called for a traditional Chinese palette," Acree described. "Orchestra blended with traditional Chinese and Japanese instruments was the natural approach and can make for some beautiful and evocative colors. Each Chinese instrument has its counterpart in the Western orchestra but brings a unique character to the overall sound. Combining the cinematic scope of the orchestra with the unique colors of the traditional Asian instruments helped create an otherworldly sound that existed somewhere between the two worlds that created it."
Writing the music for Revelation was very personal for Acree, it was the last of his scores he was able to play for his father before he passed away. Acree remembered, "His love of Chinese movies and culture was a way of life. We studied martial arts together when I was a kid and he would go on to teach Tai Chi for over 20 years. He was never a religious man but became a Buddhist later in life. One of his lifelong dreams was to visit China so when I got to go for the first time and conduct, I felt like I was living his dream."
Though he is not formally trained in Asian music, Acree often writes with an Asian palette. "The key to making the music sound genuine (aside from a lot of research) is to put it in the hands of musicians who truly understand their instrument and who grew up playing Chinese music," Acree explained. "Inviting the players to interpret the melodies through their own voices and experience opens up a new world of possibilities and gives the music a sense of authenticity that would be impossible to achieve otherwise. The music of Revelation wouldn't be what it is without the talents of Tina Guo (cello solos), Karen Han (erhu), Bei Bei (guzheng), Jie Ma (pipa) and Uyanga Bold (vocals). The best part about working with musicians like these is that it's the best way to learn how to write for the instrument."