Tom Salta on Top Score

by Emily Reese
October 5, 2011

Listen Top Score: Tom Salta
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Composer Tom Salta (Seth Kushner)
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From Dust is a difficult game to describe, nearly as difficult as it is to describe the interactivity of the music created by Tom Salta to support the game.

Games like From Dust are called "God games," giving an immense amount of power to each player to control major aspects of the world in which one plays.

From Dust gives elemental control to the player, allowing one to shape the environment using things like water, sand, lava, trees and more. How you shape your world depends very much on whether or not the tribe you control survives or is swept away by nature's wrath.

Interestingly enough, the music exists in the game just like the sand of the beach or the water of the ocean. In a brilliantly minimalistic way, composer Tom Salta created music for nearly every motion and action in the game.

Is there a tsunami headed for the tribe, or perhaps the tide is coming in a bit too close to their home? The tribe beings playing music to "repel" the water. There's also music they play to repel fire and other elements.

Salta comes from a less conventional background than many composers featured on Top Score; he started with piano as a child, but as he got older he got into producing records, writing songs and doing remixes.

But as a life-long gamer, he wanted to get into writing for video games. Salta decided to create a solo project called Atlas Plug, specifically designed for game designers to use his electronic music in games.

It worked, and Salta has racked up quite a resume in game scoring, including scores for Red Steel, Red Steel 2, Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands and Tom Clancy's HAWX and HAWX 2.

You can hear our interview with Tom Salta in the audio above, or by downloading the new episode of Top Score from Classical Minnesota Public Radio here, or on iTunes.


  • INTRO: From Dust - Main Theme
  • From Dust - Village Powers
  • From Dust - Village Powers
  • From Dust - Village Powers
  • From Dust - Last Map
  • Philip Glass - Mad Rush
  • Red Steel 2 - Back to the Old Temple
  • Red Steel 1 - Katana Girl Theme
  • Peter Gabriel - The Last Temptation of Christ, "The Feeling Begins"
  • Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands - Sacred Ascent
  • Michael Maisley - Blue Flamingo
  • Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands - The Peri (Zahra's Theme)
  • Atlas Plug - Truth Be Known
  • Red Steel 2 - Exploring Caldera
  • CREDITS: Atlas Plug - 2 Days or Die