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Stephen Meyerink
RPGFan Soundtracks Spotlight: drammatica
Another check in the "Shimomura is awesome" column.
02.26.12 - 11:30 PM

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of Yoko Shimomura. Some of her music ranks among my absolute all-time favorites, and when I discovered Drammatica, I was beside myself. Featuring full orchestral arrangements of some of her best work, as well as some incredible production value, the album is really something special. The games represented include Legend of Mana, Kingdom Hearts, Front Mission, and even a track from the considerably lesser-known-but-no-less-sonically-great LiveALive. Amusingly enough, the album (released in 2008) even has a track from Final Fantasy Versus XIII, which we've still yet to see released.

There's not a single dud to be found on the disc. Some of the tracks come from less than incredible source material (Twinkle Twinkle Holidays from Kingdom Hearts 2: Final Mix comes to mind), but the arrangements are universally solid and expertly performed. The piano in Cities (source: Legend of Mana) is flat out beautiful, and I challenge anyone not to be moved while listening to it. In fact, I'd rank the track among my top 10 overall from the past decade. The arrangement of Roxas' battle theme, The Other Promise, is also an outstanding and melancholic rendition of the source, and the performance yet again showcases the incredible care that went into this album.

So, in short, you need to listen to this music. And support it, so Square Enix allows another composer (Mitsuda Mitsuda Mitsuda) the opportunity to do the same thing with their work.


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