Listen: David Bowie's little known video game soundtrack

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I played way more of that game than it deserved specifically because of David Bowie’s awesomeness.


For anyone who wants to buy it, has it for $9.99 (Windows only). Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with a download of the music.

I have a fuzzy sounding rip of the soundtrack; I wish a better quality version were available.

I never got around to playing this game either – but I do still have the original funky-shaped box somewhere.

And of course I have the box contents somewhere too, including a flyer inviting one to sign up for “BowieNet”.


This was the only PC game I ever bought (other than chess), and played to completion, strictly because of the Bowie association. I actually have an emulator of it on my laptop at home. I loved the atmosphere–the soundtrack really seemed like a callback to his work on Outside. I actually wish that …hours was more of a real soundtrack to the game than what it turned into. Something about Bowie making music for sci-fi dystopias, it always works.

Anyway, I downloaded an absurdly long soundtrack of the game, which includes sound effects and other random noises. I’d love to get a proper Omikron album.


Years ago, on a French TV network focused on video games, I saw an interview of David Cage, the head of Quantic Dream, the game studio behind Omikron: The Nomad Soul.

He said he and his staff were working out what kind of music to put in the game, and it turned out that David Bowie came up very often in the propositions. So they asked ID Software (for whom they were developing the game) to arrange a meeting with David Bowie, in order to ask him if it was okay to use some of his songs in the game. David Cage was very very very anxious when he went to ID Software’s London offices, in disbelief that he was about to meet David Bowie. “That’s impossible, he won’t be there!” was what was rolling in his mind. But David Bowie was there. And his answer was NO.

No, he didn’t want to allow some of his songs to be used in the game. Not at all. None of his songs. None of his PAST songs. However, he was okay to make the whole soundtrack of the game, because he found it more interesting, artistically speaking. Which is one reminder among many of how “multimedia” Bowie was.

As a result, David Bowie spent several weeks in Paris, chatting with Quantic Dream’s staff in order to catch the spirit of the game, and write his songs accordingly. And since they had him and Reeves Gabrels and Iman at hand, the game creators scanned them. David Bowie appears in the game as one major secondary character, he and Gabrels appear here and there as the Dreamers, an underground band in the game’s universe (with Iman dancing on some of their songs, if memory serves), and as your character jumps from body to body, one of the most badass body you can get is Iman’s.

Shit, I want to play it again. I need to set up a virtual machine.


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