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Time Hollow ~Searching For a Stolen Past~ OST

[back cover]
Catalog Number: GFCA-105
Released On: April 23, 2008
Composed By: Junichi Yoshida, Chuji Nagaoka (9, 19), Masanori Akita (1)
Arranged By: N/A
Published By: Konami Digital Entertainment
Recorded At: Pastoral Sound
Format: 1 CD
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Tracklist:

01 - Time Hollow
02 - Fragment of Memories
03 - Peaceful Place
04 - Friends
05 - Suspicion
06 - Frozen Heart
07 - Investigation Start
08 - Somebody Is Looking
09 - Pursuit
10 - Theme of Sadness
11 - A Moment
12 - Bad Omen
13 - Confronting
14 - Intertwined Expectations
15 - Distant Memories 1
16 - Distant Memories 2
17 - At My Own Pace
18 - Change the Past 1
19 - Café Chronos
20 - Change the Past 2
21 - Malice
22 - Ephemeral World
23 - The One That Comes and Goes
24 - Surrounded With Feelings
25 - The Dream Must Have Existed
26 - Tomorrow (Bonus Track)
Total Time:
57'26"

Time Hollow is a visual novel by Konami for the Nintendo DS that fell under the radar in 2008. It was not the greatest visual novel, but it did have a decent story and beautiful visual design. The opening anime sequence was excellent. Adding to that opening scene's excellence was one of the best opening themes I've heard in 2008. Everything about that song is fantastic. The instrumental's blend of piano, synthesizer, electric guitar, and strings is dynamic. The vocalist has an appealing voice and the English-language lyrics do not sound mangled. I used to watch the full intro every time I played the game because it was such a well done intro with a well done song. I was therefore more than happy to hear the full-length version of the song. The vocal song is fantastic and I hope it was released as a single. I would have liked a karaoke version of this song as well just to hear what it sounds like without the vocals, since the instrumental is really cool.

Unfortunately, the rest of the music does not compare to this opening theme. It's not that the multi-layered, MIDI-based compositions are offensive, but rather that they're bland, forgettable, and boring. The music barely stood up within the context of the game, and without the cool story and gorgeous character art, the music falls flat. The only positive I can say is that the sound quality is, obviously, infinitely better than what's heard on the DS.

If I were to describe the style of music in Time Hollow's soundtrack, it would be "chill out" music. Everything heard here is mostly downtempo; even the faster pieces do not give off a frantic sense of urgency and tension. Some pieces in the soundtrack, such as "Investigation Start" and "Pursuit," are reasonably engaging. Other pieces, such as "Frozen Heart" and "Somebody is Looking," tend to repeat rather short and simplistic melodies and become noticeably monotonous. A couple such as "Bad Omen" and "At My Own Pace" are over the top to the point of being cheesy. Most are in the middle in that they're unoffensive, yet forgettable.

The soundtrack to Time Hollow is analogous to the game as a whole. There are a few standout elements and tons of potential, but the final outcome is an unoffensive, plain vanilla product. Just as more intricacies could have been done with Time Hollow's storyline, more dynamism could have been brought to its music. The soundtrack itself is not bad but it's not particularly good either, except for that excellent opening song.

Reviewed by: Neal Chandran



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