The original version of the Skyrim main theme practically screams “Epic Fantasy.” Strings, horns, forceful but unintelligible chorus of singers… this song has all of the boxes checked. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. It fits the game and gets it started off on the right foot.
Lindsey Stirling and Peter Hollens’ cover of the song doesn’t stray far from the original, but it dials things back a few notches, and I quite like that about it. It replaces the horns with strings and vocals, and vocal percussion takes the place of the original’s drums. In fact, the song is entirely performed by 114 tracks of one voice (his) and 6 tracks of one violin (hers), and that’s pretty impressive. Both Lindsey and Peter do an excellent job, and their video for the song is quite entertaining to boot. The only stumbling point in the song is a section in the middle that features a monk-style chant that does not quite match up with the beat. This may be due to the layering that had to be done to make Peter sound like a whole group of people, but if it is, I think I would have preferred that it be left out.