Original Score III: Soldier Chapter is the third and final album from the Alpha Original Scores. It is personally my favorite among the three. It contains a number of good character theme songs, some nice vocals, and there is no drama portions in the vocal songs, so listeners can engage in the songs easily.
It starts off with the six-second Banpresto logo song, then several scenery songs (at least, that is how it sounds like to me), along with some vocals. The scene songs are an enjoyable listen, though most of them are a bit too short for me to really get into. Starting from the ninth song “Everywhere You Go” is where all the character themes are at in this disc. In regards to the music this series offers, I tend to enjoy the character themes most of all (and JAM project themes). A few theme songs were not in other Super Robot OSTs that I have heard, so I find it even more enjoyable listening to this.
All four character themes from the SRX crew, along with a special theme are featured. Starting off with the main trio, Ryusei’s “Everywhere You Go” grew on me with its funky, techno beat. Rai’s “Ice Man” and Aya’s “Psychic Energy” on the other hand are a little lackluster. I like the characters quite a lot, but I find their themes to be on the weaker side with uninteresting melodies. Ingram (their boss) easily has the most interesting theme song among the four with his “Time Diver.” The song has a dynamic melody with usage on guitar and brass instruments (sounds like it has brass bits to me). When the trio combines into the SRX robot (whose head is shaped like the Banpresto logo), the theme song played is “Steel Spirits ~ Super Robot Spirits.” It is a cool song that certainly does give off the super robot feeling, and gives me some reminder to the old super robot anime, which I am sure is what the composure tried capturing. A fine listen.
Sandwiched between the SRX team songs are Masaki’s, Shu’s and Ryuune’s (Lune’s) themes. For a bit of a history, Masaki was the very first Banpresto Original to be in the series back to the second Super Robot Wars on the SNES, followed by his arch-nemesis Shu, then Lune. They were responsible for setting the milestone for many other original characters to come later on. Moving on to the songs, “Scirocco! Gale! Cybuster” is Masaki’s theme, and it’s a very fast (like the mech itself), energetic song. The melody very lighthearted and catchy, remaining a classic to this day. Shu’s theme “Dark Prison” is an excellent theme song. I love how engaging it gets when it gets to its intense, orchestral melody, giving a strong sense of enchanting darkness within the song. Definitely a fitting song for an enigmatic character such as Shu (plus Granzon rules). Lune has her “Flapper Girl” song which like Masaki’s theme, is also energetic and spunky in its own way. Whenever I listen to it, I tend to think I am doing a run in a Mega Man stage, and the style of the song certainly fits it.
There were a few miscellaneous I enjoyed quite a lot as well. I loved the song “Marionette Messiah,” which is Levi’s theme. I find it a great boss theme in Alpha, as well as Original Generation. It is an atypical style for a boss theme using techno beats rather than orchestral like a lot of RPG games tend to use during the final fights, making them more epic. I thought it worked well as usage for a final boss, given the sci-fi theme and it is eerie in a techno way. Besides, the melody is very contagious. I also enjoyed “Variable Formation” which is a neat remix of “Everywhere You Go,” making it a lot more edgy. “The Herald of Oblivion” is also a nice, dark boss theme worth listening to. It is much darker and enigmatic than “Marionette Messiah,” with a moderately fast beat, using trumpets for the main beats with guitar, and violin in the background. In the end, it gave off a sinister impression to the listener. I am simply impressed on how engaging a lot of the series darker songs were.
There are four vocal songs in this album. Overall I thought they were quite good, and certainly engaging. I think “Ace Attacker” and “Steel Cockpit” are my favorites among the four. They both have awesome melodies along with enchanting vocals: especially “Ace Attacker.” “Vanishing Trooper” is a nice hot-blooded song with good vocals as well, but there is something about female vocalists that makes me enjoy their songs more overall. “My Rival” is easily my least favorite vocal song here. The song itself is decent, but I felt the melody, and vocals do not mesh well together.
I may have not liked every song, but it was an enjoyable soundtrack. The themes are still great, even if I preferred a lot of other songs over the SRX tunes, and nice vocals. I had fun listening to it, including songs that are not featured in other soundtracks in the Alpha series. It is quite a tough find these days, but it’s worth a listen in some shape or form.