Demon Castle Dracula MIDI Collection

Tracks

59 minutes total
  1. Vampire Killer
  2. Staker
  3. Wicked Child
  4. Walking on the Edge
  5. Heart of Fire
  6. Out of Time
  7. Nothing to Lose
  8. Simon Belmont's Theme
  9. Battle of the Holy
  10. The Silence of Daylight
  11. Rainbow Cemetery
  12. Vampire Killer
  13. Out of Time
  14. The Silence of Daylight
  15. Descendents of Heaven and Earth - Richter's Theme
  16. Awakened Soul
  17. Strange Bloodlines
  18. Lost Painting
  19. Kid Dracula's Theme
  20. Beginning
  • Released Oct 22, 1997 by King (catalog no. KICA-7809, retail 3200 yen).
  • MIDI Arrangements: tracks 1-11. Game Sound Simulation: 12-17. Piano Arrangements: 18-19. Kukeiha Club MIDI Arrangement: 20.

Reviews

MIDI-style Vampire Killing.

Reader review by Abrahm

Don't let the title of this soundtrack deceive you, Dracula MIDI Collection is not what you might think. This is neither a collection of Castlevania songs played on a cheap keyboard, nor original background music from various Castlevania games. Rather, it is a collection of MIDI arrangements complete with drum support and other decent instrumentation, and it is every bit as good as any of the other arranged Dracula game music CDs.

Tracks 1-7 give you MIDI arrangements of the background music that appeared in the original NES version of Castlevania. From the familiar "Vampire Killer" (stage 1) to "Nothing to Lose" (Dracula's boss music), each one of these arrangements is very good and easily recognizable since they don't have any heavy guitar playing or upbeat rhythms.

The next four songs give you even more MIDI arrangements of familiar Castlevania tunes. Track 8 is a cool arrangement of the town music featured in Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, and "The Silence of Daylight" is a livelier version of the same song featured in Super Castlevania IV (Super NES). "Battle of the Holy" may sound unfamiliar to those who have not played the Game Boy title Castlevania: The Adventure. However, it is one of the best songs on the disc with its nice, "laid back" rhythm and mellow tone.

Tracks 12-15 are original PCM music from Castlevania games. So, you get to hear "Vampire Killer," "Out of Time," and "The Silence of Daylight" as they were recorded for the Japanese versions of the Castlevania games. Track 15 is from the PC-Engine version of Dracula X (stage 1), and is not unlike the version on the Dracula X original soundtrack.

The highlights of this soundtrack are the two piano-arranged versions of "Lost Painting" (Dracula X: Nocturne in the Moonlight) and "Beginning" (the tune from stage one of Castlevania III). The arrangement for "Beginning" is clever to say the least, and "Lost Painting" (which is one of the best on the Nocturne in the Moonlight soundtrack) is, in a word, beautiful.

Like most video game soundtracks, though, Dracula MIDI Collection has its flaws. Tracks 11, 16, and 17 are MIDI arranged versions of "Rainbow Cemetery," "Awakened Soul," and "Strange Bloodline" respectively, but are not very different at all from the versions that are on the Nocturne in the Moonlight soundtrack. Track 20 is a MIDI arrangement of "Beginning" by the Konami Kukeiha Club. But among the many variations of the song, this one is the worst, thanks to the generic sounds of the drums and quirky instrumentation.

Since the disc is in "CD Extra" format, you get a couple bonuses. Included on the CD are graphics files of box art from a few Castlevania games, along with quite a few MIDI tracks (which sound totally different than those in the CD audio portion). You can access those files if your Macintosh or PC has a CD-ROM drive and a good sound card (which is needed to hear the MIDI files in their full glory).

Any Castlevania/Dracula game music fan should not miss Dracula MIDI Collection. It is yet another example of how well Konami arranges their own music to make the most memorable songs even more unforgettable.

A worthy collection of Castlevania music!

Reader review by Aaron Lau

What we have in Dracula - MIDI Collection is one of the coolest collections of Dracula/Castlevania song collections in gaming history. Brand new arrangements from the oldest games, some arrangements from the most recent ones, and a few of the best from the OSVs.

The CD starts off with a new arrangement of "Vampire Killer", an all-time favorite. No Castlevania compilation would be complete without this song. This time, it's a slow-rock version. Although it's not my favorite reprise of the now-famous theme, it's still pretty good. The next seven songs really bring nostagia from the old NES games. When you hear "Staker" and "Wicked Child," you know you're hearing true Castlevania. "Walking On The Edge" has powerful overtones, accompanied by a wispful flute. "Heart Of Fire" is just bitchin'. With its steady beat and smooth jazzy-pop melody, this is one of my favorite songs on the album. Love that famous organ piece in the middle of it!

Tracks 12-17 are game sound simulations. The songs sound slightly different with a few changed instruments, and for the most part are better. What has to be my favorite song in the entire series is "Descendents of Heaven And Earth." There's a heavier reverb on the electric guitar sounds, making it sound almost euphonic. The arranged reprises of "Rainbow Cemetery" and "Awakened Soul" sound *way* better than the original Playstation versions.

"Strange Bloodlines" is a reprise of track 15. Although I really like it, this may be the only song that doesn't sound as good as the original. It just doesn't sound as powerful. Now what puzzles me is why in the heck Konami decided to put the NES versions of "Vampire Killer" and "Out Of Time" on this CD. Probably for the nostalgia effect. (I'm all for another version of Vampire Killer, but if it had to be from an OSV, I would have used the awesome PC-Engine Dracula X version.) The piano versions of "Lost Painting" and "Kid Dracula" are wonderfully arranged. However the Kid Drac song, while excellent, seems a tad out of place on this CD. Its silly, whimsical overtones just don't seem to fit the Castlevania mood.

The MIDI effect can really be heard on the first eight tracks, with a noticeable synth-fuzz sound. It's almost unbearable in the beginning of "Wicked Child", but overall the effect is not that bad. Regardless, most of these songs are top-notch material, staying very faithful to the awesome original melodies. The CD is a tad costly, but worth every penny. If you're into Castlevania music at all, then there's no excuse to not check out this soundtrack. It's awesome, awesome stuff.

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