Ludens (song)

"Ludens" is a song by British rock band Bring Me the Horizon.[1] Produced by the band's vocalist Oliver Sykes and keyboardist Jordan Fish, it was released as the fifth single of the soundtrack Death Stranding: Timefall on 6 November 2019, and was later featured on the group's 2020 commercial release Post Human: Survival Horror.

"Ludens"
BMTHLudens.jpg
Single by Bring Me the Horizon
from the album Post Human: Survival Horror and Death Stranding: Timefall
Released6 November 2019 (2019-11-06)
Recorded2019
StudioFonoprint Studios (Bologna, Italy)
Genre
Length4:40
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
  • Oliver Sykes
  • Jordan Fish
Bring Me the Horizon singles chronology
"In the Dark"
(2019)
"Ludens"
(2019)
"Parasite Eve"
(2020)
Music video
"Ludens" on YouTube

Promotion and releaseEdit

On 1 October 2019, it was revealed that the video game Death Stranding was getting an official soundtrack album titled Death Stranding: Timefall after Scottish band Chvrches released their song "Death Stranding" as its lead single.[2] Along with the announcement of the album, the track listing was revealed, which included the band's "Ludens".[3]

On 4 November, the band shared a photo of a floppy disk-like device with the numbers 06.11.19 written on it, which is the British format for 6 November 2019.[4][5] The next day, they revealed that "Ludens" would be on BBC Radio 1 with Annie Mac in promotion of the single.[6]

Composition and lyricsEdit

"Ludens" has been described by critics as being an electronic rock,[7][8] electropop,[9] and a metalcore song.[9] The song was written by the band's lead vocalist Oliver Sykes and keyboardist Jordan Fish, initially for the video game Death Stranding and its soundtrack Death Stranding: Timefall,[3] but is also featured on the band's commercial release Post Human: Survival Horror.[10][11][12] Sykes and Fish wrote and recorded the song in less than a week, with Sykes attributing the short deadline to "legal shit" with Sony and Kojima. Sykes requested an extension or an option to submit a placeholder demo instead, but both requests were declined. The song was created while the band was touring in Europe, with Sykes and Fish setting up temporary studios in hotel rooms.[13] "Ludens" is the name of Kojima Productions' company icon and mascot.[14] The tagline of Kojima Productions is 'From Sapiens to Ludens'. The Latin word 'Ludens' simultaneously refers to play and practice.[14] More to it, the game character Die-Hardman wears a carbon skull mask with Ludens text on the forehead.[14] However, the character is not present in Death Stranding. When asked about the identity of the mascot, Hideo Kojima responded:

"That's everyone, that's us, that's the users, that's each one of us wearing that skull mask."[14]

Sykes has stated that musically the song was inspired by the 1999 film The Matrix and the nu metal and industrial metal that was featured on its official soundtrack. According to Sykes, the song's lyrics are centred around the human race and its ability to adapt while also tying into the themes of Death Stranding.[6] The song's lyrics were partly inspired by environmental activist Greta Thunberg while lyrically, it is also a political song, as Sykes told NME:

"I don't want to come across as a hypocrite. Our music has always been about human emotions and the human condition. I've never tried to talk about how the world is. I've just been thinking about how I can start talking about it. I'm not a politically-charged person. I don't want to be. I don't want to talk about politics and I don't want to sing about politics, but if you're talking about environmental issues then you can't talk about one without the other. It just felt like a great way to start talking about that. It uses quotes from the game [Death Stranding] and stuff, but I'm talking about the bigger picture. We need to be our own heroes. We need a new way of looking at things. Greta Thunberg has shown us that—it's crazy, but this kid has proven that we can be our own leaders. We don't need to wait for these other people. It goes through the motions of what's wrong with the world and what we can do to fix it."[6]

Physical releases of Post Human: Survival Horror bear a different lyric in the second verse of the song. This alternative version of the song replaces the line "names can dig so many graves, you won't know where to stand" with the more graphic and potentially controversial line "names will make me blow the brains out of all the kids in class". The digital version of the song available on streaming services and online retailers contain the original line.[15][16]

Music videoEdit

The music video for "Ludens" was released shortly after the single was initially streamed.[17] Directed by Sykes himself, it features the band playing to a relatively small crowd while they mosh to the music and protest, with footage from the video game the song is based on, that being Death Stranding, being shown throughout the video.[17] In the behind the scenes video for the song's music video,[18] Sykes states:

"The concept of the video is kinda like it's got a kinda protesty rally feel to it because the song has kinda got this message of you've got this choice, basically we can give up we and let the world and everything else give up or we can all start making an effort start working together to try and save it."[19]

As of February 2021, the song has over 25 million views on YouTube.

ChartsEdit

Chart (2019) Peak
position
Hungary (Single Top 40)[20] 14
Scotland (OCC)[21] 53
UK Singles (OCC)[22] 75
UK Rock and Metal (OCC)[23] 2
US Hot Rock & Alternative Songs (Billboard)[24] 13

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Bring Me The Horizon Release New Video For Ludens". Kerrang!. 11 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Chvrches, Khalid + Major Lazer Featured on 'Death Stranding: Timefall' Album (Listen)". Variety. 1 October 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ a b "Bring Me The Horizon have a new song on 'Death Stranding' soundtrack". Alternative Press. 1 October 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Bring Me the Horizon teases arrival of 'Death Stranding' song, "Ludens"". ABC News Radio. 4 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Chad Childers (16 November 2019). "Bring Me The Horizon unleashes aggressive new song 'Ludens'". Loudwire. Retrieved 5 March 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ a b c "Bring Me The Horizon on bold new track 'Ludens' – and why they may never make another album again". NME. 6 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ Trendall, Andrew (30 October 2020). "Bring Me The Horizon: "I'm like everyone else: confused, scared and angry"". NME. Retrieved 2 March 2021. Bring Me gave us a first taste of ‘Survival Horror’ with last year’s single ‘Ludens’, an electro-rock beast written for the soundtrack to Hideo Kojima’s PS4 game Death Stranding. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ Mike DeWald (30 October 2020). "Bring Me The Horizon - Post Human". Riff Magazine. Retrieved 5 March 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ a b Morgan McMillan (16 November 2019). "Review: Bring Me The Horizon – Ludens". The Edge. Retrieved 5 March 2021. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ Emily Carter (14 October 2020). "BMTH Announce Post Human: Survival Horror EP Featuring Babbymetal, Amy Lee". Kerrang!. Retrieved 14 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ James Wilson-Tayloe (14 October 2020). "Bring Me The Horizon Just Announced A New Release - 'Post Human: Survival Horror'". Rock Sound. Retrieved 14 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ Graham Hartmann (14 October 2020). "Bring Me the Horizon Announce New Album + Collabs". Loudwire. Retrieved 14 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ Trendell, Andrew (6 November 2019). "Bring Me The Horizon on bold new track 'Ludens' – and why they may never make another album again". NME. BandLab Technologies. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  14. ^ a b c d "Hideo Kojima reveals the character behind the new Kojima Productions logo". Polygon. 17 May 2016. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ "Bring Me The Horizon - Ludens Lyrics". Genius. Retrieved 31 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ @bmthofficial (31 October 2020). "@maksss0308 just on the cd/ lp" (Tweet). Retrieved 31 October 2020 – via Twitter.
  17. ^ a b "Watch Bring Me The Horizon's video for Death Stranding track Ludens". Louder Sound. 12 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  18. ^ "Go Behind The Scenes On Bring Me The Horizon's Ludens Video". Kerrang!. 26 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  19. ^ "Bring Me the Horizon - Ludens (Behind The Scenes)". YouTube. 26 November 2019. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  20. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  21. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  22. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  23. ^ "Official Rock & Metal Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 October 2020.
  24. ^ "Bring Me the Horizon Chart History (Hot Rock & Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 29 October 2020.

External linksEdit