Atelier Iris ~Eternal Mana~ Original Soundtrack

 

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Review by · April 2, 2005

When I turned on Atelier Iris ~Eternal Mana~ for the first time, I had absolutely no idea what to expect. This album was my first foray into the long-running series, and I’m definitely glad I took the time to check this soundtrack out. There’s a little bit of everything here: Celtic, rock, funk, and it is all done so well. I can’t name very many games that can blend different musical styles together into one seamless product. Not only does Atelier Iris ~Eternal Mana~ do this perfectly, it stands out (in my opinion) as one of the more distinguished RPG albums of 2004. Why would I say something like that, you ask? It’s simple: when you hear Atelier Iris, you’ll know it’s Atelier Iris.

As I turned on the first disc, I was overwhelmed by the pulsating beat of “White Night Fantasy,” a beautiful vocal that will invoke you with thought. As the first disc unfolded, I was treated like a king with peaceful tunes like “Fun Shopping in Kavoc” and “A Night Together.” Specific tunes like “Cross-Time Wind” reminded me instantly of Chrono Cross with its beautiful violin melody, and the modest “Popo’s Pleasant Money Lecture” had me going back to it again and again. But as the first disc progressed, the tracks slowly started to get heavier. “Hot or Cool” had me tapping my toe with its funky bass, and “Hagel’s Song” had me scratching my head in confusion as I tried to adjust to the strange macho-man vocals. But the real winner was “Ferocious Drive,” a great battle theme full of electric guitar and classic synth. As disc one came to a close, I knew Atelier Iris had much more to offer than it was letting on.

Sure enough, I was right. Disc two is all about the battles and suspense. It starts off with the heavily Celtic “A Far Country,” and yet another battle theme, “Beat of Illusion.” Eventually, “Huge Game Table” came up and slapped me in the face: this track is probably my favorite on the entire OST. It’s got an awesome drumbeat, some nice sampling, and great chords. Some heavier tracks, such as “Horned Enigma” and “Duke of Stratosphere” give you the feeling that the there’s an epic battle taking place. Near the end of the disc, I reached “Deceitful Wings,” (which sounds like the final battle track), which featured some familiar themes from earlier tracks and a hard rock style. The OST finally came to a close with “Silent Rhyme,” a pop vocal that’s got some great chords and a talented vocalist. If there’s one thing about this disc, it’s that it rocks harder than the first. The first disc focuses mainly on peaceful, uncomplicated melodies, and the second focuses on harder, deeper rhythms and melodies.

Atelier Iris ~Eternal Mana~ has a fresh sound. Its predecessors have offered up the same style, but this incarnation seems to do it the best. The only downside to some of the tracks is that they are short and sound alike, but they are all so good that it probably won’t bother you too much. But, nonetheless, I wholly recommend this album, and I also recommend the Atelier Viorate OST if you like this OST. Pick this album up while you still can.

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Mike Wilson

Mike Wilson

Mike was part of the reviews and RPGFan Music teams from 2005-2006. During his tenure, Mike bolstered our music review offerings by lending his unique voice and critique of the world of RPGs and VGM. His steadfast work helped maintain the quality of reviews RPGFan is known for.