The midi piano Mother 1+2 soundtrack translates the in-game versions of each song into something a bit simpler. Instead of the whimsical array of sounds and instruments accompanying each song, the melodies play out in tinny piano fashion. The quality of the compositions remains intact from the original recordings, but without the variety of sounds, the songs lose some of the spirit that they are known for. The result is a more subdued soundtrack with less variety and shorter tracks that may only appeal to hardcore fans of the Mother series.
The selections from Mother 1 range from lively to sedated, and all are well orchestrated pieces, played masterfully. Their short lengths, however, may confirm many listeners’ fears that these versions are inferior to the originals. Furthermore, due to the lack of other instruments, some of the songs run together and sound too similar. “Snow Man” and “Magicant” are on the less exciting end of the album, with “Pollyanna” representing the opposite extreme. The epic nine-minute “The World of Mother” offers a preview of other Mother themes all-in-one in a fun, unpredictable way that ends this side of the album in style.
The Mother 2 section of the album plays out similarly, with a few tracks that are difficult to differentiate between. Fortunately, there are more songs here than from Mother 1, and they’re generally longer, although the level of simplicity remains the same. The piano versions of the songs just aren’t as memorable as the originals, although some, such as “Doko Doko Desert’s Theme” are still entertaining. “Cursed Jungles’ Theme” is one of the more unique tracks and “Room Number” mirrors Mother 1’s “The World of Mother” in that it combines several themes into one. The town themes are accessible as well, but there are a couple tracks that serve as little more than background music, “Underworld’s Theme” for example.
Overall, fans of midi piano music will enjoy this Mother 1+2 soundtrack, but I prefer the original soundtrack. The songs’ simplistic nature may appeal to some listeners, but others will miss the wacky instrumentation as I did. Reducing Mother’s music to solely piano almost seems an injustice.