Aliens: Music of the Spears is a 1996 novelization of the comic book series of the same name, written by Yvonne Navarro and published by Bantam Spectra in the United States and Millennium in the United Kingdom. The book centers on eccentric musician Damon Eddington, who is determined to create a musical masterpiece by harnessing the most hateful sounds in the universe — the rage-filled screams of the Xenomorph.
THE ALIEN HAS LANDED — AND HE'S CALLING YOU.
New York City, 2124 and the streets are swarming with Alien Jelly addicts and homeless people. High above in air-conditioned offices the powerbrokers look down with disgust. One of them — an entertainment mogul — is planning spectacular revenge on a maniac musician.
Damon Eddington will shock the world with his latest opus — the Symphony of Hate — and knows that the unique sound he seeks to personify his vision of hatred is the scream of the Alien. But where and how is he going to find that elusive razor-sharp cry? The answer lies with the man who would see Damon gain his greatest desire and at the same time meet a dramatic downfall...
Eccentric composer Damon Eddington has become disillusioned with the music industry of the future, which is dominated by soulless electronic cacophony performed by bands consisting of grotesquely-deformed android musicians, and which has little time for the kind of old-fashioned, carefully recorded live music that he composes. Determined to finally create something that captivates the public's interest, Eddington approaches his superior at Synsound Corporation, a man named Keene, with a peculiar request — he wants Synsound to obtain for him a real, live Alien, so that he may record the creature's rage-filled screams and incorporate them into his Symphony of Hate, a musical masterpiece that he hopes will be his magnum opus.
Despite his indifference towards Eddington, Keene agrees the project may have potential and contacts his boss, Synsound CEO Yoriku, with a plan to steal a Xenomorph from the company's competitors, MedTech. Yoriku subsequently assigns his most trusted agent, a lethal ninja named Ahiro, the task of acquiring the specimen. Ahiro and his ninjas covertly break into MedTech's headquarters near the Synsound building in Manhattan and steal an Egg from the secret laboratories beneath the building, losing four men and killing several Xenomorph "guard dogs" in the process.
The Egg is installed in a containment cell constructed in the basement of Synsound's Presley Hall concert venue. There, Eddington is joined by bioengineers Michael Brangwen, a huge fan of the composer's work, and Darcy Vance, a workaholic who has little time for music, who will use the project as an opportunity to study the Xenomorph. Ahiro is also assigned to them. With the team assembled, the next task becomes finding a suitable host for the creature. To this end, Ahrio secures Ken Petrillo, a former musician acquaintance of Eddington's now so hopelessly addicted to jelly that he has joined a Xenomorph cult and actively desires to be host for a Chestburster. Eddington in particular is disturbed by the prospect of sacrificing a live human being for the project, particularly someone he used to live and work with. He tries to convince Petrillo to change his mind and seems to be getting through to the fanatical addict, but Ahiro intervenes, presenting Petrillo to the Egg and watching as he is subdued by the Facehugger within.
After Petrillo's gruesome death, Eddington secretly consumes a vial of jelly he found in Petrillo's clothing before he was offered up to the Facehugger. He soon becomes obsessed with the Xenomorph, which he christens Mozart. Darcy too becomes fascinated by the creature, studying its behavior and characteristics and theorizing about the possibility of a human imprinting on such a creature. When Mozart fails to make any suitable sounds for the sophisticated recording equipment installed in the enclosure, Eddington demands live prey be thrown to the creature to "stimulate" it. When cats and dogs provide little challenge for the Xenomorph, Eddington has Ahrio begin stealing more vicious, threatening animals, including bulls and panthers.
Still unsatisfied and becoming increasingly unstable thanks to his growing jelly addiction, Eddington pushes for even more challenging creatures to be pitted against Mozart, leading Ahiro to kidnap five men to be thrown into the enclosure. To improve the challenge, the containment chamber is expanded with a series of adjoining tunnels that might give the victims hope of escape, but which in reality lead only to dead ends. Despite Ahrio's assurance that the five people he had captured are all hopeless jelly junkies, one of the victims is clearly a healthy middle-aged man, in fact a MedTech employee. Brangwen is appalled by the turn the project has taken. Eddington, who by this point had become unhinged and dispassionate, agrees to the slaughter of the humans and one by one they are thrown into the containment chamber, armed with an electrostun rifle to ensure they have a chance, while the audio of their ordeals is recorded.
With the necessary recordings made, the project begins to wind down. Brangwen attends a concert upstairs in the main concert hall to forget about what he has seen, while Darcy stays to spend a few more minutes with Mozart. Eddington, still obsessively seeking one final scream of Xenomorph rage for the climax of his Symphony of Hate, attacks Darcy and throws her into Mozart's pen. However, she manages to escape into the tunnels and flee through a secret escape hatch only she and Brangwen were aware of, although she is seriously injured in the process. An electrical failure shorts out the recording booth, and when a delusional Eddington opens the chamber to record Mozart's slaughter of Darcy on a portable unit, the Xenomorph escapes and brutally kills him.
Mozart enters the concert hall upstairs and, after tearing the android performers apart, wades into the crowd, slaughtering some of the gathered concert-goers. In the midst of the carnage, a MedTech security team that had been tracking the stolen Egg burst into Presley Hall and eliminate Mozart. In the aftermath, the MedTech team discovers the containment cell in the building's basement, and kill Ahiro when he attacks them. Brangwen finds the wounded Darcy and gets her medical attention.
Three months later, Brangwen performs Eddington's piece, which he has completed posthumously himself, to a lackluster crowd in a small concert venue. With the piece's poor reception, Michael begins crying, realizing that all his, Damon's, and Darcy's work had been for nothing and that he was able relate to Damon's feelings of loneliness and uselessness that partly contributed to his mental breakdown. In attendance are Darcy, Keene, and Yoriku, the latter of whom muses that through the Synsound corporate machine he controls, he can turn the re-titled Rage Symphony into a powerful and hugely popular piece of music, granting Eddington the success in death he so craved in life.
- Aliens: Music of the Spears would be the last Aliens novel to be published in the United Kingdom by Millennium; the final Aliens book from Bantam, Aliens: Berserker, was never released in the UK. In fact, subsequent novels published by DH Press were likewise never officially released in the UK, meaning Britain would not see another Alien novel until Titan Books published Alien: Out of the Shadows in 2014, a gap of some 18 years.
- Yvonne Navarro often refers to the Xenomorphs as "Homeworld creatures", which could refer either to Xenomorphs that survived the infestation and subsequent cleansing of Earth (humanity's homeworld) or creatures captured from the Xenomorph's own planet of origin.
- The book dates its events as taking place in 2124, yet repeatedly refers to the events of Aliens and many of the previous novels as having taken place in the past. Aliens actually took place in 2179, several years after this date, while the novels it referred to were set later than this, making the date in Music of the spears totally nonsensical.