01 - Difficult Love Puzzle
02 - Sensing the Happiness
03 - Myao's Feelings
04 - Someday I'll Become Meek...
05 - Love Trap
06 - Dream Chaser
07 - Sorrow Blues
08 - The Truth Behind Love
This album is a character vocal album, featuring "original" (that is, all-new and not in-game) vocal tracks for each of the eight major characters.
The first track, "Difficult Love Puzzle," is sung by protagonist Cornet. It is the epitome of happy, upbeat music. The vocal performance is excellent: subdued voice on the verses, but strong on the chorus.
Then the fairy/puppet and best friend of Cornet, Kururu, comes in with the song "Sensing the Happiness." This song is slower, but still ballad-like and sentimental. Not so for the next song, featuring villain and comic relief character "Myao." What RPG is complete without a cat-like humanoid witch? My thoughts exactly! This song is super-cutesy, and the majority of the instruments are simple synths.
Cornet's friend and rival, the incredibly wealthy Etoile Rosenqueen, performs track 4, "Someday I'll Become Meek..." which is definitely my favorite track on the album. The vocalist behind Etoile sounds surprisingly sincere in her performance. The melody is decent, and the tempo is just right. I generally don't fall in love with ballads, but this one really stands out to me. It's simple Tenpei Sato work, but I can't get enough of it.
Track 5, "Love Trap," is performed by supporting villain "Crowdia." Crowdia is one of the more sympathetic villains in the world of Marl's Kingdom, and as a result, the song itself remains happy and enjoyable. There are no dark undertones in this song.
"Dream Chaser" is performed by the prince (Marl's son), the love interest of the game. The only male vocal performance on this album, Sato decided to power it up with electric guitar. The music is typical Sato-style pop/rock, and it sounds like something that would come out of the late '80s. If you liked Japanese music from a decade ago, you're guaranteed to enjoy this track!
Strangely, the album wraps up with two more villain tracks. There's no combined vocal performance for the end, nor does Cornet appear at the end to wrap things up nicely. Instead, we end on a dark, sultry, jazzy note. Supporting villain Gao performs the shortest track on the album, "Sorrow Blues," coming in at just over two minutes. She sings over a standard 12-bar blues progression. Then, Marjoly sings "The Truth Behind Love." The song is a minor-key tango with a bit of jazz influence, and Marjoly's performance is surprisingly reserved considering the nature of her character.
It's nice to have a follow-up album for people who really enjoy the characters of Puppet Princess (known in the US as "Rhapsody"), but I don't think I'm alone when I say that I prefer the vocal tracks used in the game to what's on this album. Collectors, here's another album to hunt down. Good luck!
Reviewed by: Patrick Gann