For fans of the Halo series (and those looking forward to the release of Halo 4 in general), IGN has a surprise: an interview with the game’s music composer, Neil Davidge, known for his previous work for Massive Attack. But there’s more to the interview than just words: it comes not only with samples of Davidge’s soundtrack for the upcoming Halo, but also for the Special Edition Remix Album, containing reinterpretations of the Halo score by artists like DJ Skee, Apocalyptica, Sander Van Doorn and more.

The interview itself goes into detail about the composer’s work on Halo 4‘s soundtrack. Rather than attempting to emulate Marty O’Donnell’s work in previous Halo titles, Neil Davidge decided to take it in another direction. In fact, it was one of the reasons why he was hired in the first place: 343 Industries wanted a more electronic, more beat-driven direction, to musically flesh out a new universe they could expand on in subsequent sequels.

Davidge explains his work methodology as similar to how a method actor works: create music as he immerses himself in what he creates, surrounding him with characters whose themes he’s composing, the environments which he illustrates with sound, before he starts to work Although he finds still images the most powerful aids in the process of making music, Davidge also mentions using dialogue written for characters as crucial help in establishing the correct tone for the characters.

Those interested more in the music and general background of the artist should head on over to his profile on SoundCloud, which contains all the music samples from Halo 4 OST and the remix album, as well as an in-depth profile of the composer.

Halo 4, the upcoming eighth installment in the Halo franchise, is set for release on November 6, 2012. Its Official Soundtrack and the Special Edition Remix Album will be made available for purchase on October 22, 2012.