Arc the Lad Generation OST

[back cover]
Catalog Number: KICA-1342
Released On: December 22, 2004
Composed By: Takayuki Hattori, Yuko Fukushima, Koji Sakurai, Masahiro Andoh (1, 2)
Arranged By: Takayuki Hattori, Yuko Fukushima, Koji Sakurai
Published By: King Records
Recorded At: Sound Inn Book Studio, Others
Format: 1 CD
Buy this CD from Game Music Online

01 - Theme of Arc the Lad
02 - The Beginning of the Adventure
03 - Awakening Memories
04 - Edda ~ Departure
05 - Kirika ~ Remains of a Dream
06 - Wicked Soul ~ Awakening of the Exorcist*
07 - Maru ~ The Prince's Serious Affair*
08 - Hemo ~ Tiny Adventurer
09 - Distant Horizon
10 - Town of Trials
11 - New Power*
12 - Frustration*
13 - Seabed Oil Field*
14 - Nostalgia*
15 - Will to Fight*
16 - Tension*
17 - Unrest*
18 - Dilzweld*
19 - Holiday*
20 - Deep Forest*
21 - Unrelenting Malice*
22 - A Father and Daughter's Bond
23 - Reply*
24 - Temple of Water*
25 - Unreachable Feelings*
26 - That Which Must Be Protected*
27 - Romalia Tunnel*
28 - Pesius Library*
29 - Core*
30 - Cathena Underground ~ Land Where the Light Cannot Reach
31 - Ringleader
32 - Swirling Evil Desires
33 - Light
34 - Land of Good Harvest*
Total Time:

* From Arc the Lad Twilight of the Spirits

Arc the Lad Generation (known as "Arc the Lad: End of Darkness" in the US) is the black sheep of the series for straying from its strategy RPG roots to an action RPG setting. However, its music manages to be just as beautiful as its predecessors, if not more so. This is due almost entirely to the fact that nearly every song on this album is a live recording with lots of wonderful ethnic/world (non-western) instruments. That's not to say you won't find the occasional techno-synth song on the album: but many of the songs are live recordings.

There is a problem though. Over half of the tracks are from Twilight of the Spirits; I am unsure of whether they were changed at all from the "Twilight" version to the "Generation" version, but this alone has to make one wonder: is it really worth getting this soundtrack when one could just have the Twilight of the Spirits soundtrack?

I would argue that, if you can find it for a cheap price, the answer is still "yes." This is due primarily to Edda's Theme, which I take to be one of the best character themes I've ever heard for a videogame. The song makes use of both advanced synthesizers and live instruments (violin, cello, piano, flute, harp). The tonality is perfect, the recording is brilliant, and the song is uplifting. It fits the spirit of the character well, and the song stands strong on its own.

Also, this recording of the Arc the Lad Theme is the longest to date, and it features a neat variation on the theme, which I have made sure to sample. This neat little diversion from the main theme creates a certain feel that defines the game as being a little quirky and certainly an acquired taste.

The ending music, "Light", also makes good use of strings/winds performance. Fans of traditional tonal romantic/classical music, rejoice! This song (and perhaps this whole album) is for you.

Though I'd personally suggest hunting down the Twilight of the Spirits OST before this one, I have to say that this album isn't half-bad either. Like I said, if you run across it and the price is right, get it. Otherwise, don't feel bad about yourself. It's good music, but there are better (and more memorable) albums in print.

Reviewed by: Patrick Gann