2Old2Play [Link] → 'The surprise performance for me came in the next segment, Civilization 4. I've never played the game before or really had any experience with it whatsoever (I'm not a PC gamer). The amazing music coming from the orchestra along with a monumental effort from the choir easily made this the best performance of the night. I was truly taken aback by this piece of music. I would almost say that I would see VGL again just to hear this again, although the rest of the show sure makes it easier to say that. Excellent job done on Civ 4!'
Action Trip → '...the soundtrack in Civilization IV is one of the most soothing, fulfilling and fitting I have heard in a video game yet.'
ALLTVMUSIC → 'My favorite cuts: 1, 5, 10, 11 & 12 for various outlets'
Alphr [Link] → 'If you played Civ 4, you'll be familiar with that game's brilliant opening theme - Baba Yetu (we've got a video of it further down). Good news, the song's composer, Christopher Tin is back in Civilization 6. The new song is called Sogno Di Volare, which is Italian for 'the dream of flight'. It's suitably grand, and you can watch a video about Tin's process of composing it below. ...That said, the composer of Civilization 4's theme tune is returning for Civilization 6...so we may very well get a theme to compete with Baba Yetu. '
AMPB/Classical → 'A fine recording. Not charting , but getting some spins'
Amped IGO → 'The title track is an awesome, up-beat song that is definitely the highlight of the soundtrack..'
AOL [Link] → 'Electronic music star tyDi combines with classical music producer Christopher Tin for ground-breaking album... And his influence on "Collide" -- an often beautiful affair with epic orchestral soundscapes -- is obvious...'
Ars Technica [Link] → 'Congratulations to Christopher Tin, as a beautiful song's long journey is rewarded.'
Art Scene in Wales [Link] → 'Artistic Director, Eilir Owen Griffiths said "We are proud that Sir Karl Jenkins has supported this new venture and are delighted to have five honorary presidents including [...] Grammy Award Winner, Christopher Tin...'
Associated Press → 'I can't say enough about the excellent soundtrack..'
Atlantic [Link] → 'Composer Christopher Tin's "Baba Yetu," originally written for the video game Civilization IV, has been nominated for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s). It's the first time music written for a game has been nominated for anything at the Grammys. And a well-deserved first it is... But if you haven't kept up with game music, you might wonder how it evolved from that to Tin's "Baba Yetu," a rousing choral work written as a Swahili version of the Lord's Prayer.'
Atlantic [Link] → 'I got goosebumps when Jasmine Chen's "Waiting for Your Return" kicked in at the beginning and she began singing in Mandarin... "I didn't make it past the opening credits without bursting into spontaneous tears. Music can be such an emotional part of a movie experience to me, so the second Chen's cover started playing in Mandarin...at the top of the film, I was gone."'
BBS Radio [Link] → 'ADDed 'Dao Zai Fan Ye' & 'Mado Kara Mieru''
Billboard [Link] → 'For the first time, a videogame theme has been nominated for a Grammy--sort of. Among the nominees for best instrumental arrangement accompanying vocalist(s) is composer Christopher Tin's "Baba Yetu," featuring the Soweto Gospel Choir singing the Lord's Prayer in Swahili. Initially written as the theme song for the 2005 strategy game "Civilization IV," it has become something of a modern choral standard, as well as a regular feature of the popular Video Games Live concert tour, feauturing game music performed symphonically.'
Billboard [Link] → 'The move comes after the song "Baba Yetu" in February became the first song written for a videogame to win a Grammy -- Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists.'
Billboard [Link] → 'Among the big surprises and performances of last night's Grammy Awards is the historic win of composer Christopher Tin, who took home a Grammy for Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists for the song "Baba Yetu."'
Billboard [Link] → 'One Taylor Swift fan has given "Bad Blood" a new life, making the pop hit even bigger than ever before. Two-time Grammy-winning composer Christopher Tin has released an "epic orchestral" -- as he calls it on YouTube -- cover of the chart-topping track last month and it is massive. Swift shared the track with her Twitter followers Thursday (Oct. 1) and noted she was "getting pirate ship/sword fight movie scene vibes" from the cover and is "happy about it." '
Billboard [Link] → 'The diverse vocal ensemble wowed everyone in the room with a performance of "Baba Yetu," theme from the 2005 video game, Civilization IV.'
Blast Magazine [Link] → 'Not to mention the music is outstanding, giving a rich atmosphere to the colonization of Mars.'
BMI [Link] → 'This ambitious new piece features ten movements in ten different languages, starting with Proto-Indo-European and including Bulgarian, Sanskrit, Old Norse, Ancient Greek and other explorations. [...] The fearless experimentation of "The Drop That Contained the Sea" should come as no surprise when considering Tin's body of work: the innovative composer and two-time GRAMMY winner has worked on everything from Hollywood film scores to video games, presenting fresh takes on electronica, world music and the boundaries of orchestral music.'
Cambrian News [Link] → 'Christopher Tin from California, one of the adjudicators of the series, wrote the score. He won one of his Grammys for his composition Baba Yetu, the main theme song in the popular video game Civilisation IV. The song Baba Yetu has been sung by many a choir worldwide and is highly respected in choral circles.'
CBC Music Library, Toronto → 'I just added The Drop That Contained The Sea to our collection at the CBC. It's a wonderful work and great recording, thanks for sending it to us.'
Cinefonia → 'Christopher Tin created a remarkable work in the expression of the most extreme and subtle of emotions.'
Cinema Blend [Link] → 'The Civilization IV theme, "Baba Yetu," has earned quite a bit of notoriety over the years, as one of the few video games to break into the mainstream. ...impressive theme song. '
CIUT → 'This is a listeners journey. With our multicultural listenership the various languages are a benefit'
CivFanatics [Link] → 'This music is not a small group playing in a studio. This is an orchestra of over two hundred musicians playing Christopher's music. This album has a larger-than-life depth to it. It gives a fullness, a richness, that I don't normally feel when listening to music. I'm hard pressed to put into words the feelings I get from this album. The album has a full, rich sound which gave me visions of wide open plains, sprawling mountains, and far horizons over the ocean.'
ClassicFM [Link] → 'The best video game music: our guide to the best soundtracks: Christopher Tin's theme from the strategy game Civilisation IV was the first video game soundtrack to win a Grammy award. Recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Soweto Gospel Choir, it has the same accessibility and verve of Karl Jenkins.'
Classical MPR [Link] → 'On Tuesday night, the ensemble returned for the next round of judging with a stirring rendition of "Baba Yetu" (Swahili for "Our Father"), which has become a choral favorite after debuting in a 2005 video game.'
CNN Money → 'It's a meditative kind of day here in New York. Go to this site and click the free music for "Baba Yetu." It's the theme song for the game Civilization IV...the Lord's Prayer in Swahili. Peaceful and inspiring.'
Colorado Public Radio [Link] → 'Commissioning and performing one of the pieces in the project gave me a fresh perspective on how a gifted composer like Tin finds his voice as an artist and hones his vision for a project even in the face of challenging circumstances and multiple revisions... the experience of being inside Tin's compelling and unpretentious creative process was exhilarating.'
Cosmopolitan [Link] → 'Taylor Swift occasionally tweets out great covers of her songs (or an entire album's worth if you're Ryan Adams), though she usually sticks to relatively straightforward interpretations. On Thursday, however, she shared something a little bit different - an orchestral, truly epic rendition of "Bad Blood."'
Daily Post [Link] → 'Grammy award winner brings the world together at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod'
Dancing Astronaut [Link] → 'Written alongside Christopher Tin and vocalist Dia Frampton, the track uses sweeping orchestral elements, dramatic chimes, and subdued drops to hit brain in a way that stimulates euphoria. '
Dancing Astronaut [Link] → 'Tin's influence on the album creates an immersive and multi-faceted sound that would have been unachievable using just digitized instrumentals... Ultimately Tin and Illingworth have initiated not only the conversation, but the collaboration, that will surely dispel the stigma that electronic music is not real music.'
Destructoid [Link] → 'Every time I hear this theme, I have to just stop and listen in awe. I still remember booting up the game for the first time in 2005 and being greeted with this powerful, sweeping and utterly majestic song that introduces you into the cradle of civilization.'
Dirty Dog Jazz [Link] → 'Award-winning film and video game composer wrote music for the sea in this new album that blends Jazz, Classical, World and other elements into a vocal/orchestral masterpiece. Utilizing some of the world's most amazing choirs including the Soweto Gospel Choir, Anonymous 4, Schola Cantorum and more, Tin's new album is beyond mesmerizing.'
Dr Music's Weekly Checkup → 'Every once in a while a record comes along that transcends boundaries... Calling All Dawns is a masterpiece of modern World music... Tin's work takes on an explosive quality that is born from Classical but grows up into a risk-taking contemporary adult... I would challenge you to find a better production in any genre than what Tin has done here... It is one of the most 'advanced' of its kind in the genre, without a doubt. This presentation of intense composition is sure to inspire many more composers in the genre, and could quite possibly change the face of world music...'
DualShockers [Link] → 'I challenge anyone to close their eyes throw on a good pair of headphones and listen to Baba Yetu featuring the Soweto Gospel Choir and not be moved.'
Elder Geek [Link] → 'it may lead to more opportunities for Tin and more amazing music.'
Eminence Online [Link] → 'This album is, in a word, awesome... It really is a marvel, and it required the participation of dozens of people from nearly every continent on earth. ...Christopher Tin has achieved something mighty with this studio album.'
Engadget [Link] → 'The CD will have eleven tracks (full tracklist after the jump), and will feature music from a slew of terrific video game soundtracks, including our own Warcraft series (and Civ IV, which is probably the best music I've ever heard in a videogame, ever).'
eTeknix [Link] → 'A very inspiring and comforting tune.'
Eurogamer → 'It even has great music on the start scene, which sounds just like something from the Lion King yet - somehow - awesome.'
Eurogamer [Link] → 'This is the first time - we think! - a song written for a video game has appeared on America's Got Talent - or Britain's Got Talent for that matter. Whether you like these programmes or not, it's hard not to root for the choir and, let's be honest, Baba Yetu is awesome.'
Examiner [Link] → 'Tin knows his craft. He certainly knows all the tropes that make those blockbuster soundtracks succeed... This was my first contact with what I would later discover was the prodigious breadth of Tin's interests in different forms of music, not only on a global scale but also on a commercial one, since he was just as capable of writing music for video games as turning out this delightfully intimate little song... '
Ferrago → 'Special mention must be made about the first thing you encounter in Civilisation IV, its wonderful music. Right from the moment the menu screen loads up the player is treated to an array of evocative and wonderfully arranged melodies.'
Forbes [Link] → 'The Angel City Chorale gave a beautiful robust performance that dwarfed the space they were in'
G4 [Link] → 'Because history was made at one of this year's other big trophy-fests, the Grammy Awards, when a piece of music originally composed for a video game won an award; the first time music created for a game has received such an honor. The award bestowed upon Christopher Tin was a milestone moment and a beginning, a beginning from which other artists who bring game audio to life deserve to be honored, a beginning which couldn't have happened if not for a push for recognition for game music that began over a decade ago.'
GameAxis [Link] → 'The uplifting music that plays in Civilization VI's main menu and loading screens is about to take on an even greater form.'
Game Informer → '... the evocative music melds traditional orchestral scoring with more exotic themes to great effect.'
GameMusic4All [Link] → 'Calling All Dawns is a collection of songs that has to be heard because many different ideas and opinions can be taken away from this work. That may be one of the signs of a creation that is truly compelling and sustaining though. Repeated listens and reads with the liner notes are a must, as new things are gleamed and understood with each new listen.'
Gameranx [Link] → 'Christopher Tin has created a retro-futuristic score for the Mars colony game.'
Gamerz-Edge → 'The game music and sound effects is one area where Civ IV succeeds without question. The introduction song, Baba Yetu, is absolutely beautiful and so catchy that I almost don't mind the excessively long game load times because I get to listen to the music. Coronation, the theme for the intro movie, is written by the same composer, Christopher Tin. It's also quite beautiful, although its upbeat African flavor clashes with the Grecian war scene featured in the intro.'
GameSetWatch [Link] → 'The best music game ever made is Civilization IV. ...The catchy opening theme, "Baba Yetu" (composed by Christopher Tin and performed by Stanford University's Talisman a capella group), captures the epic, world-encompassing scope of the gameplay.'
GameShark → 'The sound is equally good, from the combat and game sound effects to the professionally done, and strikingly beautiful, soundtrack.'
GameSpot [Link] → 'Civ IV also presents itself well with a distinctive title-screen track that recalls the music of Disney's The Lion King...'
GameSpy [Link] → 'Though the camera work is nice, the cinematic is one that stands out because of the music, Baba Yetu ...the sum effect of the music is so powerful and works so well with the imagery'
GameSpy → 'Honorable Mention: Civilization IV - The main theme from the hit sequel is a unique "World Fusion" kind of sound, part African Drums, part chanting, part orchestral, that really calls to mind the epic sweep of the title. Throughout the rest of the game the music highlights the different eras, with different themes depending on if you're at peace or at war. The original scores eventually give way to contemporary orchestral themes that should sound familiar to most gamers, but the original music definitely deserves a nod. - GameSpy Honorable Mention, Best Music, 2005'
Game Tyrant [Link] → 'As far as I can remember, this is the first time that a song written for a video game ever made it to America's Got Talent or any other talent show out there.'
GameZone → 'The musical score is also exceptional. I don't know when I've enjoyed in-game music more, especially the introductory music.'
GamingAge → 'The music is composed by Christopher Tin, who did the music for games like Civilization IV, and it's well done. Sometimes the background track and the sound queues you need to listen for overlap, but overall it's pleasing to the ear.'
The Globe and Mail [Link] → 'In the first 15 seconds, the litany of opening credits rolled by. Then, a song. It starts with jazzy woodwinds that rise to a crescendo of horns. A final few staccato blasts of trumpets introduce the sultry singer. She's singing in Mandarin. Crazy Rich Asians had barely begun and my waterworks had arrived... The Mandarin opener by Jasmine Chen set the tone for me, a salvo that made clear the producers had thought through the emotional weight of the film right down to the details.'
Green Arrow Radio → 'Playing 'Hayom-Kadosh.' VERY interesting'
The Guardian [Link] → 'In 2005, the opening song to the game Civilization IV - Baba Yetu, a gloriously uplifting version of the Lord's Prayer in Swahili - was so popular that fans demanded it be released for download. The piece has now been performed at venues including the Hollywood Bowl and the Royal Festival Hall.'
The Guardian [Link] → 'His piece, Baba Yetu, for Civilization IV, combined orchestral elements with strong African vocals, joyfully suggesting the cradle of life itself, instead of the more militaristic sounds one might associate with a strategy game about conquering... The sound is of a burgeoning, evolving civilisation itself, peaking in imperial crescendo before, appropriately enough, dying out.'
Hello Giggles [Link] → 'Prepare to visualize yourself gallantly standing at the bow of a massive ship with a misty, Nordic breeze whipping through your hair.'
Here Be Geeks [Link] → 'There's a stirring sense of hope in it, which makes sense, as Sogno Di Volare means "Dream Of Flight". Coupled with the rather epic trailer, it's all very hopeful - a view of humanity that is constantly reaching for new horizons, instead of looking inwardly.'
Higher Plain Music [Link] → 'Christopher Tin's album is a masterpiece. Every track is of such a high calibre and standard... "Calling All Dawns" is not just the best world music album of 2009, it's one of the best world music albums of the decade. Pure and absolute musical hedonism.'
Higher Plain Music [Link] → '... a broad spectrum of electro elegance. The sheer complexity of some of the tracks is mind-boggling, from the percussion to the little nuances and frequency changes in all the instruments as they go. It's these things that elevate a good album to a truly great one. Quite frankly, 'God of Love' is one long eargasm from start to finish...'
Higher Plain Music [Link] → 'Calling All Dawns simply took my breath away and after a few years the conceptual composer returns to simply wow us all again with a beautiful album that has to be heard to be believed. Hands down, I can say now this will be the Classical album of the year - nothing will touch it. This wave stands taller than the rest. Stunning.'
IFC [Link] → 'Is this an overdue step towards a Grammy award for Best Videogame Soundtrack? Will video game music get the respect it deserves? Probably not, that will take time and request from the public, but the award is an overdue honor for Tin, a talented artist -- whichever his medium.'
IGN → '[Civilization IV] will also include licensed performances of pieces by the old greats (Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, and company) as well as contemporary greats like John Adams and soon-to-be greats like Christopher Tin.'
IGN → '... the music really steals the show. From the opening choral piece to the subtle nation-specific diplomacy music, the entire score of the game lends a strong sense of culture and feeling to the game... The music and Leonard Nimoy's voiceover work are amazing.'
IGN [Link] → 'One common element that many of the songs share is the beautiful-sounding and brilliantly interwoven choir, which truly lends these songs an epic narrative. Perhaps the song that best embodies this is Civilization. Based on a game which explores the myriad of cultures the world over, the song seamlessly transitions between musical styles of differing ethnic origins, and is enhanced by a matching choir. This may very well be my favorite track, even in spite of my limited experience with the game series.'
IGN [Link] → 'Though it lacks character in its story, Offworld does have terrific industrial-sounding music that hasn't gotten old over dozens of games.'
iHeart [Link] → 'Two time Grammy winning composer Christopher Tin got the opportunity to meet Taylor Swift which inspired him to recreate her song "Bad Blood" as an orchestral piece. Taylor thought the cover was so epic that she posted about it on Twitter!'
InsideGamingDaily → 'The game's score, on the other hand, is wonderful. Composed by Christopher Tin (Civilization IV, X2: X-Men United), the dynamic music drives the intensity of combat. When being attacked, the music is subdued but active. Once you finish blocking a string of attacks, thrumming taiko drums explode driving you forward in battle. This effect is even more pronounced in later fights that swap back and forth between attack and defense very quickly. Not only does it become a duel of martial arts, but combat between two different music tracks.'
James Wegg Review [Link] → 'Bright notes in the production abound, not least of which is Christopher Tin's soundscape, a truly wonderful mix of gospel voices, pensive strings and a perfectly placed, Coplandesque solo trumpet.'
LA Times [Link] → 'And its original score packs an emotional wallop, especially as the Chargers' defeats mount after a 2-2 start.'
LA Times [Link] → 'In a couple of other historic benchmarks, a Grammy for the first time went to a composition written for a video game: Christopher Tin's "Baba Yetu," which was named best instrumental recording;'
LA Weekly [Link] → 'And just last month, Australian producer/DJ tyDi announced his forthcoming album, Collide, an EDM-meets-orchestra hybrid in collaboration with two-time Grammy Award-winning composer Christopher Tin.'
LessThan3 [Link] → 'I think that this is the future of electronic music... As it begins to pervade our culture, we'll see it used more artfully within other forms of music. They turn negative soundscapes into sexy, euphonic compositions of righteous synth, virtuous instrumentalism, seductive vocals, and just the right amount of bass.'
Llangollen [Link] → 'Chris Ryan: ""Christopher Tin's work not only reflects the ethos of the Llangollen Eisteddfod, it demonstrates boundless creativity and innovation which we value. His song-cycles combine many world music vocal traditions and multiple languages in symphonic context, bringing classical music to wide and varied audiences."'
Minnesota Public Radio → 'I've heard three preview tracks, and it's evident that Christopher Tin's The Drop That Contained the Sea will deliver above and beyond its gorgeous predecessor, Calling All Dawns. Tin's passion for the voice and sensitivity with an orchestra shines brightly and I can't wait to hear the whole album. It's fantastic music.'
Minnesota Public Radio [Link] → 'With a new-age take on melody, harmony and rhythm, Tin's work nonetheless shares some of the defining characteristics of Mahler's best-known compositions. With soaring musical lines and dynamic changes that can raise the hairs on your neck, Christopher Tin would be a great Mahler pairing.'
MOOD/World Beat → 'WOW!! Love this. Will integrate!!'
MTV [Link] → 'Even though "Civ 4" came out half a decade ago, it's still nice to see some light getting shone on Tin's accomplishments. The recording was honored in conjunction with Tin's album, not the game, so Firaxis probably won't get a statue if "Baba Yetu" goes all the way. The track pools from a wide range of international musical traditions and has a discernible "Lion King" meets "Battlestar Galactica" vibe to it, in case you haven't heard it before. If that's the case, I highly recommend checking it out.'
Music Choice/Classical Crossover → 'I opened it up and listened--something I rarely do quickly with new CDs. After hearing just the first track, I took it home to play for my wife, because I thought she would be blown away by it. I cannot explain why, but parts of it nearly had me in tears. This is really great stuff.'
Music4Games → 'One of the key highlights from tonight's concert was Sid Meier's Civilization IV, where the orchestra and African choir vocals provided a rousing interpretation that was both bold and beautiful. This track was a pleasant surprise and welcome new addition to the VGL set list.'
MusicalDiscoveries [Link] → 'Listeners will be drawn to the powerful vocal parts and amazing percussion that spans the material. ...tremendous album for both classical crossover and new age enthusiast. Richly arranged, sung in ten different languages, the orchestral arrangements and vocal melodies will inspire listeners to search out more of the two-time Grammy Award-winning composer's work urgently. '
MusicNotes [Link] → 'It's upbeat and Swahili song style have made it a choral favorite for years, as well as a perfect song for tenor and alto soloists.'
NBC4i [Link] → 'For Tuesday's judge cuts performance, the choir sang composer Christopher Tin's Baba Yetu, the theme song to the video game Civilization IV.'
Neo Seeker [Link] → 'If you've played Civilization IV or at least heard its theme song "Baba Yetu," I don't have to tell you why it's one of the most beloved theme songs in gaming.'
Nerd Reactor [Link] → '"Baba Yetu" is an emotional and memorable theme song from Sid Meier's Civilization IV.'
NET Radio/The Verge → 'There are some Verge-able tracks on here'
New Statesman [Link] → 'Video game soundtracks are officially having a moment... the medium has undergone a dramatic transformation since the 8-bit, chiptune days of the Nintendo Entertainment System... It’s still tempting to try and pinpoint that epochal moment - whether it be the technological shift brought about by the advent of the CD-Rom... or mainstream recognition, which can be traced back to 2011 and the first ever Grammy win for a game, when composer Christopher Tin’s Baba Yetu, originally from Civilization IV, took home the Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) award.'
NY Concert Review [Link] → 'Mr. Tin has a gift for writing music that is immediately accessible in its tonal consonance, rhythmically vital, and appealing to the emotions. It is easy to understand why his music is so popular.'
NY Concert Review [Link] → 'The Drop That Contained the Sea is a powerfully dramatic work, well-conceived and skillfully realized. While retaining his marked ability for writing music with a wide appeal, he has also formed his own distinct voice without any obvious influences... the end product is reflective of Mr. Tin's deepending maturity as a composer.'
NY Concert Review [Link] → 'The World Premiere of Flocks a Mile Wide is filled with poignant lyricism. I have mentioned before that Mr. Tin is highly gifted as a melodist, so this comes as no surprise at all.'
OnlySinglePlayer → 'With the cutthroat nature of the game in mind, the gorgeous music creates an antithesis soundtrack. The theme song is slow and haunting with a hint of melancholy, and the other songs masterfully capture the exact theme and emotion as intended. It's really fun to pause the game and listen.'
Original Sound Version [Link] → 'I can't find the words strong enough to tell you how stunning this CD is. It's an album with an important message of the unity and bond that we all share... it might sound overly dramatic for just a CD, but it only tells you how strong the music is.'
Original Sound Version [Link] → 'I again urge you to listen to the whole album and be ready for the knockout punch of the final track. Only when your defenses are down will you realize how powerful this project is, and what better way to become vulnerable than to assume we can't be challenged by such weak tripe? It's a clever trap set by the artists, and it turns out the complexity of the music and the depth of the lyrics will stymie us all. Just like love.'
Original Sound Version [Link] → '"Love Is Love" is ridiculously good.'
Original Sound Version [Link] → 'From beginning to end it is simply incredible. I cannot sing its praises enough. I wish to high heaven I could hear it performed live someday.'
Parade [Link] → 'For its second audition, the Angel City Chorale performed "Baba Yetu," once again getting a positive response from the judges.'
Paradigm Magazine [Link] → '... I felt sex dripping from almost every track... like a lover walked through the door with "A Rapture," and left with "Love Is Love". Cue 'God of Love' and the exhilaration ensues: a dirty, Lohan-esque love affair, teeth catching lips and hair being pulled, all chased with clear liquor; you can thank Stereo Alchemy during the pillow talk.'
PC Gamer [Link] → 'Christopher Tin's new main theme, 'Sogno di Volare,' is just as sweeping, catchy, and beautiful as 'Baba Yetu.' I predict it will join his previous Civ effort in the pantheon of the greatest pieces of music written for a videogame...'
PC Gamer [Link] → 'Christopher Tin's score brings a game about numbers to life, channeling the hopeful thrum of Tangerine Dream one moment, and urgency of Philip Glass the next. It's affecting, alien, wonderful.'
PC Gamer [Link] → 'For my money it's also one of Civilization's better themes, and I'd say the Angel City Chorale did it justice.'
PC Games → 'Where Civ V felt a bit sterile with its classical music across all eras and somewhat stern colour palette, Civ VI grabs your attention from the off with powerful, uplifting menu music (by Christopher Tin, composer of Civ IV's much-loved theme music) and holds onto it through a bold new visual direction.'
PC Games [Link] → 'Civ VI grabs your attention from the off with powerful, uplifting menu music (by Christopher Tin, composer of Civ IV's much-loved theme music) and holds onto it through a bold new visual direction.'
PC Games [Link] → 'sung Baba Yetu, the wonderful theme song from Civilization IV.'
PC Invasion [Link] → 'Thirteen years after "Baba Yetu" first tugged at our heartstrings in Sid Meier's Civilization IV, the inspirational song is back at it again. ...[Baba Yetu] is the single most popular theme in the franchise's history'
PC World [Link] → 'The menu music is fantastic. Christopher Tin, who you may remember from Civ IV, returns here and outdoes himself. I've yet to load up the game without sitting and listening to the menu for a bit.'
People [Link] → 'If you think Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" video is epic, wait until you hear the orchestral cover she's digging.'
People [Link] → '[Taylor] Swift regularly gives shout outs to other artists on social media. Earlier this month, she tweeted about an epic orchestral version of "Bad Blood" from Grammy award-winning composer Christopher Tin...'
Portland Press Herald [Link] → 'When I first heard about an unusual classical album - devoted to a droplet of water moving from snow to a mountain stream to the ocean and back to the clouds - performed in 10 languages, I thought it might be a bit much. Then I heard the music. I was hooked.'
Public Radio International [Link] → 'When I first heard about an unusual classical album - devoted to a droplet of water moving from snow to a mountain stream to the ocean and back to the clouds - performed in 10 languages, I thought it might be a bit much. Then I heard the music. I was hooked.'
Quarter-to-Three [Link] → 'It begins with a raindrop patter that reminds me of the soundtrack by David Wingo for a movie called Take Shelter. But it then goes to its own places. What an evocative and poignant piece of music. Although I don't quite feel how it connects to the game yet - I've been playing a music-less Offworld Trading Company for so long now - it assures I won't be moving down the slider for music on the audio tab. On the contrary, I'm running the game in the background right now to hear the rest of Tin's music. Would it be too hasty to put it alongside other iconic and haunting sci-fi soundtracks? Clint Mansell for Moon, John Murphy for Sunshine, Vangelis for Blade Runner, Hans Zimmer for Interstellar, Steven Price for Gravity, and Christopher Tin for Offworld Trading Company. Yeah, that list looks about right.'
Radio.com [Link] → 'Created by GRAMMY winning composer Christopher Tin, this orchestral cover sounds like it should be part of a Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack'
RadioIO/Classical → 'This will turn some heads of those who don't mind a bit of world music in the classical vein'
RadioIO/Classical Favorites → 'One of the most creative contemporary cd's that I have played.'
Refinery29 [Link] → 'It almost sounds medieval, like something you might hear on Game of Thrones. Tin, a classical musician from Palo Alto, CA, wrote on YouTube that after hearing Swift play the 1989 track at the Los Angeles' Staples Center back in August (where, yes, he did get a chance to take a photo with her), he was inspired to go home and write this orchestral piece, which is filled with brass, strings, and booming drums. '
RelentlessBeats [Link] → 'tyDi and Christopher Tin really outdo themselves on this album with beautiful intros.'
RhythmRoo [Link] → 'This album really is amazing in every way shape and form. I've seen some interpretations of the cycle of life, but this has to be the best one so far... a masterpiece of vocal works that surely stirs our hearts and souls...'
Rock Paper Shotgun [Link] → 'The score helps - it's the work of Christopher Tin, composer of Civilization IV's Baba Yetu.'
Shropshire Star [Link] → 'Grammy award-winning American composer, Christopher Tin was the star of the show on the third night of the Llangollen Eisteddfod in the Calling All Nations Concert.'
Silicon Fusion → 'Musically Civ IV stands out, with original pieces like the main theme rubbing shoulders with Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. Indeed the main theme has a haunting quality that fits the mood of the title screen fully.'
Square Enix Music Online → 'Don and I have been listening to the album since its release. Both of us have been stunned by the scale and depth of the production, which truly reflects the motivation and genius of Christopher Tin.'
Square Enix Music Online [Link] → 'In the end, Calling All Dawns is a very impressive work. The overall scope and direction of the album is spectacular, lending itself towards many beautifully orchestrated and composed themes... This album is extremely impressive and should be on anyone's list of music to buy...'
Static Multimedia → 'Track 5 is the Civilization IV medley, which is arguably the best song in the lineup. Superb vocals and a solid ethnic beat add a perfect blend of life and celebration that has not been heard since millions of people crammed into theatres worldwide in 1994 and first experienced the musical wonder that is Disney's The Lion King.'
Taintradio/The New Edge → 'Playing: Water Prelude & Temen Oblak'
Taylor Swift's Twitter [Link] → 'Getting pirate ship/sword fight movie scene vibes from this orchestral version of Bad Blood and I'm happy about it.'
Telkom Gaming [Link] → 'Although the game's soundtrack is brilliant, one would be remiss not to talk about the new opening theme, Sogno di Volare ("The Dream of Flight"), penned by the brilliant Christopher Tin.'
The Washington Chorus [Link] → '"Or... if they ever did something by Christopher Tin - he writes fabulous, fabulous music. He has a song cycle for various soloists, chorus, and orchestra called Calling All Dawns which is enormous and wonderful."'
Time [Link] → 'What good is global domination without a great soundtrack? The 2005 hit Civilization IV got "Baba Yetu," as its rousing, anthemic theme song, courtesy of composer Christopher Tin.'
Toronto Sun [Link] → 'The X-Men: Apocalypse actress was completely mesmerized by harmonious singing group Angel City Choral, who she hit the giant button for, sending them immediately into the live rounds following a stunning take of Civilization IV's theme song, Baba Yetu.'
To The Game → 'The intro music, for starters, is particulary great.'
TuneCore [Link] → 'This week we're chatting with the incredibly talented Christopher Tin, composer for film, video games, and advertising. Christopher's (first!) album, Calling All Dawns, is nominated for 2 Grammy awards. Video gamers may recognize the album's opening track, "Baba Yetu", which is in the running for "Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalists," as this song was written as the theme song to the video game "Civilization IV." A native Californian of Chinese descent, Christopher was educated in England and now brings his diverse cultural background to his compositions.'
UnderCurrents → 'Playing 'Baba Yetu', 'Kia Hora Te Marino' & 'Sukla-Krsne.' Great music'
US Gamer [Link] → 'The soundtrack is amazing. Sogno di Volare is no Baba Yetu, but it's a great, rousing theme for the entire game.'
US Gamer [Link] → '"Baba Yetu," composed by Christopher Tin, is an eastern African take on The Lord's Prayer. It's also the first piece of video game music to win a Grammy award (2011). It's not clear how many-if any-of the judges recognized the piece as a composition from a video game. You can definitely catch a few "Woo!"'s from savvy audience members once the choir gets fired up, though.'
Variety [Link] → 'Olivia Munn awarded the golden buzzer on Tuesday's episode of "America's Got Talent" to a choir which performed the theme of "Civilization IV."'
Venture Beat [Link] → 'But beyond the massive success of his Civilization IV theme "Baba Yetu," Tin's career in classical composition has earned him equal - if not more - praise from the recording industry. His 2009 classical crossover album Calling All Dawns also won a Grammy the same year as "Baba Yetu." His newest album, The Drop That Contained the Sea, premiered at Carnegie Hall this past April before releasing at No. 1 on the Billboard Classical charts in May.'
Venture Beat [Link] → 'Gaming could have another memorable tune on the horizon.'
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'In the end, Calling All Dawns is a very impressive work. The overall scope and direction of the album is spectacular, lending itself towards many beautifully orchestrated and composed themes. (Baba Yetu) "exquisite piece of music." (Dao Zai) The strings work is exquisite and as the theme progresses, the addition of some background orchestration truly makes the theme shine and helps enrichen the theme. (Kia Hora) "...the lush orchestration really pushes this one over the edge."'
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'those who appreciate darker, industrial soundscapes, with the occasional upbeat and jovial tunes, all featuring some contemporary electronic styles, should definitely look into checking it out.'
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'the album does span a variety of emotions such as trepidation, forlorn longing, bliss, and mystery among others.'
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'The Drop That Contained the Sea is one of the must-have albums of 2014 for those who appreciate his unique approach to classical crossover music. I find it to be much more diverse emotionally compared to Calling All Dawns. I eagerly await his next album but I'm afraid he may have set the bar a bit too high with this one.'
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'The Drop... was undoubtedly epic in scope. However, it was also exquisitely personal and emotional. '
Video Game Music Online [Link] → 'I was enchanted with the score upon first hearing "Red Planet Nocturne..." This is one of those scores that I want to listen to over and over again, because I keep feeling as though there are more elements of it to be discovered. Additionally, Offworld Trading Company is profoundly unique. The instrumentation is unusual, and the thoughtful mix of repetition, judicious use of melody and motifs, and self-aware balance of chord progressions and rhythms make Offworld Trading Company a score that I can't quite pigeonhole into any one category.'
Wall Street Journal [Link] → 'This year's Grammy Awards will be remembered as a musical milestone for the video game industry and Christopher Tin. The 34-year-old composer from Santa Monica, Calif. won two Grammys for "Baba Yetu", a song he composed for 2K Games' Civilization IV and for a follow-up album that was inspired by the game. It's the first time that video game music has ever been awarded a Grammy.'
Washington Post [Link] → 'From the early bleeps and bloops of Pong and the simplistic tunes of Duck Hunt, Gauntlet and OutRun to the sophisticated compositions found in Advent Rising, Myst, Civilization IV and World of Warcraft, the performers synchronized their music to projected video images.'
Washingtonian → '"First of all, there are some amazing composers who are writing music for video games, like Christopher Tin, who is excellent and is classically trained and has won all sorts of awards."'
WAWL/flyingman → 'Christopher Tin does it again. Loved Calling All Dawns and this disc is just as good or better!!'
WBZC/Now & Then → 'Great stuff, and I like just about the whole CD'
WCCF Tech [Link] → 'Now, I genuinely couldn't be happier or more impressed by Songo di Volare, it's an outstanding theme that genuinely could top Baba Yetu. It's no wonder that when I launch Civilization VI, half the time I'll just sit back and watch that introduction.'
Wil Wheaton → 'Tron, Civilization IV (featuring an absolutely show-stopping chorus of African singers) and HALO were phenomenal.'
Wired [Link] → 'I especially like the Civilization IV medley - that's usually the highlight of the VGL shows for me, and the version here is great, especially the tenor solo.'
Wired [Link] → 'The opening theme to Civilization IV took home videogame music's first ever Grammy award last night... "Baba Yetu" is a standout piece of music - always one of the highlights of [the Video Games Live] concerts, for me - and richly deserving of the award.'
Wired [Link] → 'The opening song gave me goosebumps! The first strain of music you hear in the film is this old-Hollywood big band intro. Then the vocalist comes in ... and the song is in Mandarin! The first track, "Waiting for Your Return," is a Chinese jazz classic, delivered with renewed verve and glamor by vocalist Jasmine Chen. It's a thrilling opening for a thoughtfully curated soundtrack, interspersed with Chinese classics along with covers of American pop songs in Mandarin and Cantonese.'
WITF/Classical Air → 'Interesting piece. Playing 'Mado Kara Mieru.' Light spins but a good change of pace'
WITF/New Releases → 'Featured as a New release on air and on our website'
WITR/The Indestructible B... → 'Playing the more 'world music' tracks'
WUMR → 'Playing 'Hayom Kaoosh', 'Baba Yetu' & 'Se e Pra Vir Que Venha''
WUMR → 'Playing 'Se E Pra Vir Que Venha' & 'Baba Yetu''
WUNH → 'Playing: Iza Ngomso & Devipravaha. Very interesting recording'
WUTC/Weekend Sunrise → 'Playing: 'Baba Yetu', 'Mado Kara Mieru', 'Dao Zai Fan Ye' & 'Caoineadh.' I like this album and immediately added it to the playlist. 'Baba Yetu' & 'Hymn Do Trojcy Swietej' really stand out for me'
WVIA/Mixed Bag/New CDs → 'Cool disc. In the bag and spinning'
WVIK/Perspective → 'Spring Fund Drive. Some really lovely and very exciting music'
WVOF/The Upper Room with ... → 'Playing 'Baba Yetu''
WXEL/Mid Morning Musicale → 'With superior vocals, Calling All Dawns is a refreshing & exciting juxtaposing of one of the finest orchestras in the world with a new spin on traditional ideas. A definite recommendation to anyone looking to enjoy & expand their classical view of world music.'
WXXI/Music of the 21st Ce... → 'ADDed. Nice album!!'
Yahoo Games → 'Special mention goes to the music, which is shockingly good.'
York Press [Link] → 'The concluding movements of the work made clear why Tin is a multi-award winning composer. Upper voice writing was haunting and hazy; in a sea of sweeping cinematic sounds, evocations of darkly sinister storms, rolling waves and foreboding clouds were shot through with sparkling lights in the high strings. The final song, We Overcome The Wind, was an outpouring of joy; a unanimous standing ovation evinced the sense of togetherness at the heart of this concert.'
YorkMix [Link] → 'Tin's sound has universal appeal, drawing on ethnic themes, classical influences and texts both ancient and modern. He delights fans of a powerful choral and orchestral sound and aficionados of world music alike.'
YourEDM [Link] → 'COLLIDE does a great job remaining cohesive while spanning across numerous electronic music sub-genres (ranging from trance to electro to future bass), its stylistic variation isn't even its most impressive feature. The album works in a rather stunning usage of dynamic range in both its vocals and instrumentation (which is not often seen in dance music), and also spends the majority of its length veering away from recognizable dance music formulas.'
ZAM [Link] → 'Tin's compositions for the game are subdued but full of import, properly conveying the notion that Martian Business is Serious Business.'