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Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST
Catalog Number: SQEX-20019
Released On: March 25th, 2015
Composed By: Takeharu Ishimoto
Arranged By: N/A
Published By: Square Enix
Recorded at: Unknown
Format: 1 BD
Buy this album from PlayAsia
Buy this album from CDJapan
Tracklist:

01 - Tempus Bellum
02 - The Beginning of the End
03 - Guided Conclusion
04 - Three Hours That Changed the World
05 - Wings of Fire
06 - Horror of the Abyss
07 - Divine Fire
08 - Arms of Steel
09 - War: Warrior Worth a Thousand
10 - Servant of the Crystal
11 - Choose How to Die
12 - Arecia Al-Rashia
13 - Crystal Guide Us
14 - Time of Tranquility
15 - Moglin
16 - Erased Memories
17 - A Day Like Any Other
18 - Machina Kunagiri
19 - War: Unseen Peace
20 - Show of Power
21 - Untainted Eyes
22 - Rem Tokimiya
23 - The Forlorn Heart
24 - That Which Quivers
25 - Raise the Vermilion Banner
26 - The Heart Boils
27 - The Earth Under Our Feet
28 - Chocobo!
29 - War: Recapture
30 - War: That Which Stands in the Way
31 - White Thunder
32 - War: The White Weapons
33 - Kind Tears
34 - War: Life of Darkness
35 - War: That Which Lurks
36 - War: Breaking Through
37 - War: Howl of the Dreadnought
38 - The Vanishing Soul
39 - The Azure Spirit
40 - Swaying Thoughts
41 - War: Pursuit
42 - Human Strengths and Weaknesses
43 - Your History and Fate
44 - Soar
45 - War: The Quiet Bloodbath
46 - War: Depths of Naraku
47 - Machina Kunagiri (Arrangement)
48 - Rem Tokimiya (Arrangement)
49 - Tempus Finis
50 - Machina and Rem
51 - Tempus Ratio
52 - Vermilion Fire
53 - Type Zero
54 - Colorful - Falling in Love (Japanese)
55 - Colorful - Falling in Love (English)
56 - UTAKATA
57 - UTAKATA (Instrumental)
58 - FINAL FANTASY AGITO: The Beginning of the End
59 - FINAL FANTASY AGITO
60 - Forbidden Fruit
61 - My Diamond (Japanese)
62 - My Diamond (English)
Total Time:
232'05"

The Death March Bonus Tracks
01 - The Beginning of the End from FINAL FANTASY Type-0
02 - Revelation from The World Ends With You Live Remix
03 - God in Fire from DISSIDIA 012 [duodecim] FINAL FANTASY
04 - Hybrid ignis fatuus from The World Ends With You
05 - Theme of Elfe from BEFORE CRISIS FINAL FANTASY VII
06 - Calling from The World Ends With You
07 - Promise
08 - HYBRID from The World Ends With You
09 - RUN AWAY from The World Ends With You Solo Remix
10 - Price of Freedom I Want To See You Smile from CRISIS CORE FINAL FANTASY VII
Total Time:
44'15"

The Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST has a huge amount of music to offer. In the space of over 60 songs, Takeharu Ishimoto builds and expands on a few different musical styles that together form his take on Final Fantasy music. And although it's a new take on Type-0, this OST sits comfortably alongside much of what the series has offered in the past. When I hear bit-crushed beats under billowing string sections or when the main theme swells up only to be cut short by a crunchy guitar, it feels authentic, familiar even.

That's not to imply that the work is derivative. Aside from the stray Moogle or Chocobo theme, the Type-0 HD OST has strong character. From over-the-top orchestral blow-outs like The Beginning of the End to the indie-rock tinged Erased Memories, this album always knows what it's going for, and delivers with consistently high quality. There were several tracks that I didn't enjoy at first, but I came around in subsequent plays as I began to appreciate the songs' layers and production.

Speaking of which, the production and use of effects are top notch. Electric guitar effects are used expertly: distortion, reverb, echo, chorus, and even a phaser are all brought in with little post-production to maintain a raw, direct tone. There's plenty of well mixed synth leads, some overdriven bass guitars, smart electronic drums, and Arecia Al Rashia even sports some kind of... cool underwater harp sound. Perhaps some kind of wet flanger? And every effect can be appreciated to the fullest thanks to the super clear, well tuned mix. I'm not familiar with the original Type-0 OST, but with the level of polish present in this version, I'm not surprised that this is a second take.

My biggest complaint is the frequency with which the main theme is reinforced. It's the driving force behind a number of songs, and is not generally used cleverly or staged in an especially meaningful way. The few songs that do are some of my favorites on the album, like War: The Quiet Bloodbath and Choosing How to Die, but it's easy to get burnt out on that chord progression over the course of the album. Ishimoto's use of percussion is very engaging, and that helps keep it fresh, but it was just a bit much for me.

Luckily, there are a ton of great one-off tracks. Soar, Arecia Al Rashia, That Which Quivers, Servant of the Crystal, and all of the War tracks stick out to me as unique tracks that show off Ishimoto's character, in the way that a band's b-sides can be more revealing than their singles. While his compositions can flip readily between live orchestra and digital production, he seems to be at his best when the two are in harmony.

Also included on the Blu-ray is a 10 track self-titled album by Ishimoto's band The Death March. While the (largely English) lyrics range from cringey to inoffensive, the tunes are fantastic. With a charming electronic indie-rock sound, they perform vocal arrangements of Ishimoto's compositions from The World Ends With You, Crisis Core, and Dissidia. I have some serious problems with a couple of the songs, but Calling, Hybrid and Promise might be the best things I listened to in the process of this review. I will be keeping an eye out for more stuff from The Death March.

There are a lot of tracks from the Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST that will be staying in my rotation. I don't ever assume that anyone's tastes are the same as mine, but I do think that the styles here are so well executed and thoroughly explored that most listeners will find something to love here.

Reviewed by: Davi Tesnovich



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