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We Love Wizardry

[back cover]
Catalog Number: BY30-5179
Released On: December 5, 1987
Composed By: Kentaro Haneda
Arranged By: Kentaro Haneda
Published By: Apollon
Recorded At: Apollon Recording Studio
Format: 1 CD
Tracklist:

01 - Opening
02 - Castle
03 - Gilgamesh's Tavern
04 - Adventurer's Inn
05 - Boltac's Trading Post
06 - Temple of Cant
07 - Edge of Town
08 - Dungeon
09 - Camp
10 - Fight
11 - Exterminated
12 - Werdna
13 - Complete
Total Time:
40'47"

Kentaro Haneda is a well-respected VGM composer, one of the true "veterans" in the field. If there is one series that helped him earn this title, it is Wizardry. The franchise that originally started in the US as a fun, unique text-based RPG went on to become a completely different creature in Japan. "We Love Wizardry" is the first of many Wizardry "Suite" albums, using classical instruments (mostly synthesized) to create beautiful, clasically tonal pieces.

Within this "classical" style, we find a multitude of unique sounds. Though the opening may be standard (and catchy) classical fare, the quirky melody of "Gilgamesh's Tavern" will quickly throw off any preconceived notions one may have about Haneda's compositional limits.

Not every song on this album is a winner. I thought some of the environment themes, such as "Dungeon," lacked the presence of a strong melody. Pieces that are solely atmospheric are a hard sell. However, most of the album is void of this problem, since Haneda is a master of writing simple yet interesting melodies.

Some may consider the album (and Haneda's work in general) as a subpar rival to Sugiyama and his Dragon Quest scores. To me, however, Haneda offers a much stronger opus with his first efforts than Sugiyama did with the original Dragon Quest. "We Love Wizardry" is an album to be remembered: or, at least, an album to be purchased by collectors.

Reviewed by: Patrick Gann



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