Soundtrack Central The best of VGM and other great soundtracks

Please sign up or log in for the best forum experience!

    Pages: 1

GoldfishX Dec 28, 2017 (edited Dec 28, 2017)

I'll be honest...As someone that is about 5 discs shy of owning every Falcom album prior to Zwei, I had given up on their newer work. It wasn't doing anything for me. They mixed genres of music for the sake of mixing genres. The orchestra parts meshed with the electronic parts, while meshing with the rock parts, equaling something horribly less than the sum of its parts. The output blew up immensely over the past couple 7-8 years, with the Kiseki albums and quite a few Ys albums. And yet, without fail, every remade track I came across (with the exception of some Ys Origin stuff...Overdrive is full on neoclassical shred that is hard for me NOT to enjoy) just ended up bathed in mediocrity and I'd flip through about 3-5 Kiseki tracks (from whatever was out that year) on Youtube before moving on to something else.

But then something very odd started happening. I went scrounging for stuff the other day and started giving Ys VIII music some serious hands on time. And it just...clicked. The different "new" style was clicking. While stuff like Felghana and Celceta (a soundtrack I still consider to be a hellish spectacle of how NOT to remake classic tracks) were still fresh in my mind, I spent probably a good 2 hours going back and forth on the first 10 tracks of Ys VIII alone. It was bringing in thoughts of Grandia I's soundtrack and it's poppy blend of orchestra and rock that gelled so smoothly together. So okay, that's a relief.

But then I hit upon the recent "Sen No Kiseki III" soundtrack and while not every track was a winner, it was producing SOME winners that I kept going back to. Enough to warrant a purchase slot, alongside Ys VIII. It IS a four disc soundtrack, afterall. So I go flip some more tracks and sure enough, the other two Sen no Kiseki albums are generally solid all around. And then I find out they REMADE the first three Sora no Kiseki soundtracks (the first OST is generally solid RPG fare, but Falcom was going through some growing pains with their synth at the time, making it, Ys VI and the very first Zwei album tough to get through...the "Evolution" soundtrack renders it completely obsolete).

To be honest, I'm only scratching the surface and I have mixed feelings about the giant machine of output that Falcom has become*, but hearing what Ys VIII was doing finally made it easier to accept the new Falcom on its own merits. I wish it was clearer who was doing what, but VGMDB has other names popping up around Jindo and I'm hoping that is what is making everything seem so much better. Baby steps for me right now, but there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel.

Thoughts on new Falcom stuff? (from 2001-ish and on)

*Yes, I understand the irony of this statement and their late 80's/early 90's output.

layzee Dec 29, 2017 (edited Dec 29, 2017)

I like to compare Falcom's "no Kiseki" series with Namco's "Tales of..." series: profitable cash cow franchises with big soundtracks that are a bit hard to get into unless you've played most of the games. So because of failing to get into the older original three Sora no Kiseki albums, that kind of put me off the later ones. I don't seem to have the same problem with the Ys series. Probably because the games are less big/epic and have suitably smaller soundtracks to match. Or maybe the composers save the good stuff for the Ys games similar to how Motoi Sakuraba saves the good stuff for the Star Ocean series (e.g. I haven't played SO5 but I don't mind listening to it).

I can't say I have any issue with Felghana, Celceta, Ys VI nor Zwei. Zwei!! in particular is one of my favourite Falcom works. As for Celceta, my only complaints would be the lack of arrange of the music that plays in the ice dungeon place, as well as no The Great Ordeal AKA Far Beyond The Sun arrange (understandably so).

"Poppy Orchestra/Rock"... sounds like you're referring to track 5 "Sunshine Coastline"? That track did quite jump out at me. Poppy indeed. To be honest, Grandia 1's OST didn't come to mind when I listened to Ys 8 (and I quite liked Grandia). Images of Yngwie Malmsteen and his neoclassical shredding did flash in my head multiple times though.

To finish, are they still arranging "Silver Will"? As great as that song is, I think it deserves a rest.

GoldfishX Dec 30, 2017

That is what I meant by the giant machine of output (Tales and Atelier are both kind of in the same camp...pretty intimidating to look at and hard to find a starting place. I guess you can throw Pokemon in there as well, although I'm fine with the original GB soundtrack and X/Y).

What I've learned to keep the Kiseki stuff straight is...one trilogy (Sora), then a duo (Zero and Ao), then another trilogy (soon to be a quadrilogy, the Sen No Kiseki/Trails of Cold Steel stuff), plus spinoffs (one Ys-style action RPG and a fighting game). So yeah, 11 Kiseki's, not counting the "Evolution" upgrades (I want to say that brings it up to 16) or the online game. Then start factoring in arranges. I want to say the Zero stuff I sampled previously is generally mediocre, but I had the opposite opinion of Sen No Kiseki and the Evolution versions of the soundtracks. It's all familiar RPG fare (ala Tales or Atelier) but still part of the machine. One track just went full-on trance and caught me completely offguard. So they mix it up here and there.

Oddly enough, I remember "Silver Will" from the very first Legend of Heroes VI soundtrack and I kind of knew it was going to be some kind of anthem. I think it foreshadowed Falcom's newer obsession of violin-driven action tunes. Ys Origin is the one that sounds the most like Malmsteen to me, particularly Overdrive and Silent Desert and ESPECIALLY their super arrange versions. Those two tracks are the most authentic neoclassical shred tracks in all of VGM to me (I heard them before listening to Malmsteen and immediately made the connection...they would fit right on his Odyssey album).

layzee Jan 15, 2018

GoldfishX wrote:

Ys Origin is the one that sounds the most like Malmsteen to me, particularly Overdrive and Silent Desert and ESPECIALLY their super arrange versions. Those two tracks are the most authentic neoclassical shred tracks in all of VGM to me (I heard them before listening to Malmsteen and immediately made the connection...they would fit right on his Odyssey album).

I haven't listened to Ys Origin's OST in a while but coming back to it now, the intro of Silent Desert is definitely Yngwie (the trills etc). As for the arranged versions of Overdrive and Silent Desert, if they were solely guitar plus orchestra tracks, then they would also fit in nicely with Yngwie's Concerto Suite for electric guitar with the Japan Orchestra.

On the subject of deserts, could I mention that Falcom makes great desert themes... Desert Clime (Ys V), Desert of Despair (Ys VII), and of course Silent Desert (Ys Origin). Are there any more?

XISMZERO Jan 19, 2018

I miss the Zanmai and JDK Band (specifically the Summer 2010 one) series of arranges. Really felt like an early 90's VGM renaissance for a while.

The_Paladin Jan 21, 2018

layzee wrote:

On the subject of deserts, could I mention that Falcom makes great desert themes... Desert Clime (Ys V), Desert of Despair (Ys VII), and of course Silent Desert (Ys Origin). Are there any more?

Dapne Desert - Zwei!!
Desert (and) Castle of Sand - Sorcerian
Desert Wind - The Legend of Xanadu
Over the Desert - The Legend of Xanadu II

Board footer

Forums powered by FluxBB