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Majin Tensei Excellence Sound Collection

[back cover]
Catalog Number: PCCB-00256
Released On: March 18, 1994
Composed By: Hidehito Aoki
Arranged By: Hidehito Aoki, Yoshiyuki Ito, Masumi Ito
Published By: Pony Canyon
Recorded At: Unknown
Format: 1 CD
Tracklist:

01 - The Wrath of God (Arrange Version)
02 - Heavy Wind
03 - The Wrath of God
04 - Devil Dance
05 - Frame of Fragment
06 - Immortally Shop Rag
07 - Bi Arbonate of Face
08 - Neo Jakyou
09 - Electric Shock
10 - Chaotic Law
11 - Pallid Tears
12 - D.D.F.
13 - Scene of Carnage
14 - Actual Feeling...You
15 - Judex
16 - Omega
17 - Keepsake
18 - Actual Feeling...You (Arrange Version)
Total Time:
48'45"

Composer Hidehito Aoki is fortunate to be a part of one of the greatest legacies in gaming history: the Shin Megami Tensei series. The two "Majin Tensei" games are cousins, or "gaiden" titles, in the overall SMT franchise. Most people associate SMT with two composers: Shoji Meguro (for the newer games) and Tsukasa Masuko. But Aoki got a bit of action with the series as well: the two Majin Tensei games, as well as the first Persona title, have music composed by him included. So, how does Aoki-san compare?

Generally, I feel that these compositions are weaker than what you'd hear from Masuko-san on the old Shin Megami Tensei games. And even comparing Aoki vs. Aoki, I think his compositions in Persona are stronger. But that doesn't make this a bad album; just weaker, in comparison to other SMT works.

One thing I really enjoyed on this album were the bookend arrangements. Well, "The Wrath of God" wasn't the greatest arrangement ever, but "Actual Feeling...You" was a big surprise for me. You see, the song is only 30 seconds in its original version, but receives a 6 minute arrangement in turn. I don't know how this was pulled off (it seems some original melodies are injected into the arrangement). But whatever the case, I'd have to say that this ending track (arranged by Masumi Ito) was my favorite track on the album.

Other classic tracks, like "Chaotic Law" and "Pallid Tears" appear in their original forms here (they were later arranged on the "Megaten World" album). Like many SMT songs, the style is like...a dark, but electronic, "house" dance song. Very interesting, and very different. It's all part of the SMT charm.

Collectors should not hesitate to get this album if given the chance. If you don't like most SMT soundtracks, though, you'll probably dislike this one as well, even with Aoki at the helm in place of the two staple composers.

Reviewed by: Patrick Gann



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