The ruins of King’s Landing are still smoldering, but they’ll sing of the Mad Queen’s destruction of the capital long after Daenerys Targaryen’s reign. It’s just the latest moment from the show destined to become a song shared in taverns across the Realm for generations, but we will never hear them now that the show is coming to an end. Even though we won’t hear them in the Seven Kingdoms, some of the biggest moments from A Song of Ice and Fire are the basis for a new Game of Thrones concept album.
“Songs of Winter War” comes from Bard in the North, featuring songwriter Daryl Blake and the Mance Rayder Tribute Band (Luke Johnson – drums, percussion, Gus Puga – bass, mandolin, Patty Covey – flute, glockenspiel, Dan Fowler – lead guitar, steel guitar). “I didn’t want to write songs about pizzas or break ups,” Blake told us, “Then I began to think that if I lived in Westeros there would be all these crazy events happening that I could write about.” That led him to imagine what it would be like to be a bard in Westeros during the events of the show, writing songs about what was happening, the way the “Rains of Castamere” sings of Tywin’s brutality. It led Blake to pen songs about the Red Wedding, the Boltons brief reign, the demise of House Frey, Cersei Lannister, and more.
In addition to taking inspiration from Game of Thrones, Blake says he was also inspired by George R.R. Martin’s character point-of-view format used in the novels. He wrote each song as his own original bard from the North who “has concerns and preferences about what’s happening in the Seven Kingdoms,” meaning those of us loyal to House Stark can enjoy a favorable slant on each track. That just adds to the authenticity Blake says he was hoping to capture. “For me this helps the songs feel like they could be songs from Westeros, as opposed to songs about Game of Thrones or A Song of Ice and Fire.”
And that’s what they are. These sound like real songs we might hear some drunken patrons singing at a tavern in Mole’s Town, but without having to worry ice demons or dragons might ruin our night.