Netflix’s The Witcher series burst out of the gates to instant approval, pretty much becoming a phenomenon overnight. The tale of Geralt, Ciri and Yennefer has captivated audiences, as author Andrzej Sapkowski’s dark fantasy vision has come to life on the small screen. Its success is likely partially owed to the books themselves, as well as CD Projekt Red’s videogame franchise set in the same world, helping to reel in more viewers.
One aspect that has resonated with the fan base is the music featured within the show. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, it should be quite obvious which track is all the rage at the moment. For those of you that have somehow missed this “Toss A Coin To Your Witcher” is the answer, as performed by the quirky, irritating bard Jaskier. The song is very much an earworm, and has been stuck in my damn head every day ever since I first heard it. Needless to say, there’s been quite a few covers. It’s a shame that other compositions have fallen by the wayside, as the overall score is actually rather memorable. It almost feels as if the soundtrack has been done a disservice here.
Yet, amongst the endless sea of “Toss A Coin To Your Witcher” covers sprawling across YouTube, something more unique has sprung up. This is in the form of the “Geralt of Rivia Theme”, covered by Michalina Malisz. You eagle-eyed ones out there might recognise that name, as she features in Swiss Folk Metal band Eluveitie, as their Hurdy Gurdy player. Having become a fan them recently after witnessing their mind-blowing live performance, I knew it would be worth giving this a shot.
Giving it a shot very much paid off too. The original track (by Sonya Belousova and Giona Ostinelli) is stunningly epic. It has drama, suspense, and is filled with power. Malisz wields her Hurdy Gurdy like a weapon, capturing the same essence. Whilst there are less of the deep bassy tones that are in the initial song, it still packs a punch in it’s own way, the instrumentation giving the overall sound a unique twist. In this form, it feels like there’s more of a focus on the folk elements, which fits perfectly well, Malisz branding the track with her own identity. What’s more is, the video to accompany it should seem familiar, as it’s the exact location where The Battle of Sodden (from the finale of season 1) was filmed. Although this isn’t just for authenticity sake, as she is from Poland herself. This helps to create a stronger bond with the subject matter itself, completing the mood with a more of a personal touch.
Anyway, I’ve probably gone on long enough, so why not check out the video for yourselves below?