About

30 years of award winning scores

Together we have over fifty years of professional experience as composers and have been working together since 2001. During that time we’ve amassed a plethora of technical skills and a global network of musicians, studios, engineers, conductors and music editors to help realise our madcap musical ideas.

Paul Arnold

Paul (AKA Bob – obviously!) is a classically trained musician, gifted at the piano, guitar and trumpet, although not usually at the same time. He has an MSc in Music Technology and a BA (Hons) in Music and Computing and his musical influences include 80s glam rock music, film scores and pop music of most sorts past and present. It’s important to have a broad appreciation of music in our chosen field!

Andrew Barnabas

Andrew Barnabas (AKA Barn) is also a classically trained musician, he has a BA (Hons) in Music. He was taught piano from age 7, oboe from 12 and recently took up drums & percussion, finally finding an outlet after 20 years of air drumming! His musical loves are funk, jazz & film scores, and his influences include James Horner, Stevie Wonder, Vangelis and Earth Wind & Fire.

Timeline

2020

In November, we launched our Patreon page. We aim to support up and coming talent with tutorials and insights into what we do and how we do it. If that’s not for you then lower tier subscriptions give a look behind the scenes of the process and the things that we get up to.


You can find our page at https://www.patreon.com/bobandbarn if it sounds interesting to you.

2019

Our last job of the decade was to score the theme tune for this TV show, which itself was a reflection on the good, the bad and the ugly from the last ten years.

We’ve seen enough fake trailers on YouTube to approach rumours of MediEvil revisitation with a huge slice of scepticism. But, turns out, it was real! And it was our great privilege to be involved with scoring this new version of MediEvil – revisiting old themes and working on some new ones as well. Spending time in this world is like food for the soul for us….

Sometimes there seems to be jobs that are custom made for you. Dead Pixels was one such job. A comedy TV series which centres on three mates (Meg, Nicky and Usman) whose world revolves around their obsession for the fictional MMORPG Kingdom Scrolls, splitting between their real and virtual lives, and how they cross over.

2017

Courtesy of another drunken contact Barn made in Cannes in the early hours of the morning outside ‘Le Petit Majestic’, we landed the gig to score this fascinating feature film about a girl who can travel back in time to discover the truth about her past.

2016

Working with VR was a new challenge to us. Allowing a player to look anywhere they like creates new challenges when driving content. We learned that it was possible to use sound to steer people in the direction you want them to look. We also learned that extended periods of VR makes us feel quite ill.

This was an absolute blast to work on from start to finish. The writers and directors were kindred spirits, and together we did a lot of laughing! We also visited the set and met the cast and then, capped it all off with one of our most memorable excursions to record in Prague, where we met with musical friends living out there for a couple of headache-inducing nights out.

We decided to rebrand since there were occasional puzzled expressions when we arrived with business cards adorned with a fried egg. It was memorable for sure but we can’t have people thinking that we’re farmers!

2014

This came to us very unexpectedly. The film’s creators needed a new score in a very short time frame for the DVD release. We ended up turning the complete score around in 2 weeks. It meant working around the clock and through the weekends but in a very unlikely turn of events, we did it!

2013

As a result of attending the Cannes Film Festival the previous year, we made some new contacts that lead to us scoring this film for Lionsgate. We’ve always believed that getting work is about building relationships and this was the perfect example of that principle in action.

Back when Web Series were brand new, a company called iDare Productions were lucky enough to be fan-funded to create a multi-award winning sci-fi series – the only long form web series to come out of the UK at that time. Affectionately branded the “90s of web series”, what was accomplished on such a small budget was unprecedented and a true testament to the talent involved!!

2012

In 2012 we attended the Cannes Film Festival for the first time and it was an epic experience for us both. We met Robert Rodriguez at the Sin City 2 party as well as forming friendships that will last a lifetime. We’ve attended each and every year since then (with the exception of 2013). Everybody should go to the Cannes Film Festival at least once in their life!

2011

Brink is a first-person shooter video game developed by Splash Damage and published by Bethesda Softworks for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. There are two factions within the game, Resistance and Security, who battle in a once-utopian city called The Ark – a floating city above the waters of a flooded Earth. We wrote a very corporate sounding theme for the Ark and then devised two very distinctive soundsets for these two factions. Again the orchestral elements were recorded in Prague and all elements were mixed by our friend and long time colleague Gareth Williams.

2010

Forza 4 was developed by Turn 10 Studios and published by Microsoft Studios for the Xbox 360. It is the fourth instalment in the Forza series and the first title to support the Kinect sensor alongside the traditional controller-based gameplay. Musically this was a departure from our usual brief but something we enjoyed doing immensely!

This was our first TV commission and we’d been trying to make it into the world of TV for some time at this point. Luckily for us Andy Brereton and Matt Mulot took a chance on us and we were able to deliver a title track for the show that they loved! It was a pleasure working together with those guys and something that we’ve done quite a bit since that day!

2008

Neverwinter Nights2: Storm of Zehir was an expansion pack for the role-playing video game Neverwinter Nights 2, developed by Obsidian Entertainment and published by Atari. It was another chance to get a score recorded with our wonderful team and players from the Prague Philharmonic.

2007

In 2006 we had the pleasure of scoring Sega Rally for the Sega Racing Studio here in the UK. After we’d written and produced all the demos, we spent a couple of weeks residential in a recording studio in the midlands with a selection of the great musicians we still love to work with – Alex Reeves on drums (now playing for Elbow), Louis Thorne on guitar and Chris Taylor on bass, with guitar hero on PS2 fired up most of the time. It’s a wonder we got any music recorded at all!

2006

In July 2006 we saw the release of our first library music album – Big Screen Superheroes. Many years later and we’ve worked on a huge range of tracks and albums for Universal Music, Warner Chappell, Audio Networks, Focus Music and Accorder Music to name but a few. It’s always a great thrill to be watching TV and hearing a track you wrote on a TV show you happen to be watching.

2005

After a hiatus of 5 years we got the chance to revisit the wonderful world of Gallowmere as well as to revisit old tracks, improve on pieces we thought could be bettered and record the whole thing with the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. It doesn’t get better than that!

2004

This was an amazing experience and our first opportunity to record with orchestras in London (it’s a very expensive endeavour).

2003

Capping off a great year for us, we discovered that we received a BAFTA nomination for our score for Primal. Even though we didn’t win, it was an immense privilege to receive the nomination all the same and the reward for a lot of hard work behind-the-scenes to get the score performed live.

What a wonderful surprise to pick up the ‘Best Original Score’ award at the 2003 Zaragoza Film Festival in Spain for a short film called ‘Palos’. It was a very pleasant shock since we had no idea that the team had even entered the film into the competition.

We worked together on this game with some of our old Sony friends and colleagues who got together to set up their own game development studio ‘Just Add Monsters’ that later became ‘Ninja Theory’. This game was a lot of fun to compose since the music was inspired by Lalo Schiffrin’s music on ‘Enter the Dragon’ and was a fusion of funk and authentic Chinese instrumentalists.

2002

Very early on in the development of our company we saw the opportunity to partner up with an up-and-coming London based voice over company called Side. Side have gone on to huge world wide success in providing top quality voice over for the video games community globally.

In 2002 we were able to persuade Sony to not only work with us as freelancers but also to let us record the score for Primal with a live symphony orchestra and choir. To our knowledge nobody had recorded a video game score in Prague before then so it also paved the way for many other scores that followed the same path.

In our career there have been friends and colleagues that stand out for the help and support they haven given us at key moments in our growth. One of those people is Ian Saunter who provided composition work in the first year or two of our inception and allowed us to begin our freelance careers. To Ian, we owe a huge debt of gratitude! These remakes of 3 wonderful retro titles were a wonderful experience to be involved with.

2001

Our company came to life on 4th June 2001 and we’ve never looked back since. Well, actually we’ve looked back quite a few times, and to the side. In all directions in fact, but we’re still here and doing what we love to do most!

Our last project as staff at Sony Cambridge was to write the music for a game called C-12 Final Resistance.

2000

After completing work on the score for MediEvil 1, it seemed clear that we would work on a sequel. The initial designs were set in Victorian England so we started writing music that was stylistically consistent with the original game, but with a seemingly darker overall tone.

1998

Our first project working under the Sony banner was to write the music for MediEvil (Frogger was already written by the time the deal went through). We had no idea that this would become the most recurrent and probably most important project in our careers.

1997

This was great fun to do and the first project we properly worked on together. Memorable for many reasons, rapping frogs, rhythmic toilet sounds and Bob belching out the main vocalisations for Frogger. There is literally no beginning to his talents!

This was a massive development for us in our careers and saw us developing exclusively for PlayStation for the next few years and making a lot of long life friends in the process. This was a real golden period to be working in games and memories we’ll cherish forever.

1994

And finally there was Aladdin, for Virgin Interactive and written for the Amiga.

1993

Next came Cool Spot, again for the Amiga.

1991

Barn’s second score was the conversion of the Technos Corp coin-op, strangely they chose to not have any music during the game. The title track is a track called Water II which at the time was his favourite track. Fortunately a few reviewers noticed it too.

1990

We go back a long way, especially Barn won his first commission in Oct 1990 whilst still at school! The game was released by Sales Curve in Feb ’91 and went on to top the music charts for his favourite magazine Zzap!64.

© 2021 Paul Arnold & Andrew Barnabas (Andrew Barnabas & Paul Arnold)  Site: Leigh Howells