Back in 2019, Square Enix kicked off what now looks to be a series with SQUARE ENIX ACOUSTIC ARRANGEMENTS. What’s most remarkable is that the album features arrangements from games that are not often covered, including many from the Game Boy and Super Nintendo eras. It features a small ensemble of strings, piano, guitar, and hand percussion, all packaged with a stylish cover and booklet with extensive credits and commentary for each track in Japanese.
The album opens with the measured “Legend of the Mermaids” from Romancing SaGa 2 before an intense string quartet version of “The Decisive Battle” and “Kefka” from Final Fantasy VI. “Nuclear Fusion” from Seiken Densetsu III gets an alternating romantic/energetic arrangement while “Into the Thick of It” from Secret of Mana gets a dreamy and fantastical cover. The string quartet returns for “Battle with Magus” from Chrono Trigger with an added tinge of tragedy, “The Dawn Warriors” from Final Fantasy V gets flamenco-style guitar and percussion, and “The Farenheit’s Theme Part 2” from Bahamut Lagoon is dynamic with contemplative and adventurous segments. “WARM” from LIVE-A-LIVE captures this track’s sweetness with pizzicato strings and woodwinds, “Palom & Parom” from Final Fantasy IV goes classical with strings and piano, and “The Talon” from SaGa III is a tragic and tense spin on the game’s battle theme composed by one of my all-time favorite composers, Ryuji Sasai. Closing things out is the iconic “Opening Title” from the original Romancing SaGa which is sweet, riveting, and playful, and “Devil Lord Confrontation I” from Romancing SaGa 3 with big piano, guitar, bass, and percussion, ending things with a bang.
Since the release of this album, Square Enix has released a volume dedicated to the Final Fantasy VII Remake as well. Hopefully this will be a lot-running series with more love given to music from Square Enix’s catalog we don’t get to hear often. The album can be purchased from the Square Enix North America store.
This album has been teased for years. It’s appeared on numerous Square Enix sampler CDs and singles from the album have trickled out on iTunes. But what is it?
Now Square Enix has finally released the album, and it’s not quite what anyone was expecting.
What exactly does that mean? Well, read below! Continue reading Review: Military Tune The Album
Square Enix is keeping their SQ arrangement series alive, this time with what is supposed to be a swing-flavored edition. Like many of their past efforts, I can’t say the music here conforms to the style of the album’s namesake save for a few tracks, but I really do love the jazz and lounge arrangements presented here.
Read more below. Continue reading Review: SQ Swing
New titles in the Mana series typically don’t garner as much excitement as they once did. Rise of Mana in particular, as a free-to-play title, had people worried about the quality of the game, although I was personally excited to hear that series composers Hiroki Kikuta, Yoko Shimomura, and Kenji Ito were each contributing a song along with a main theme by ethereal vocalist Kokia.
Does the soundtrack live up to the musical legacy of the franchise? Read our review below. Continue reading Review: Seiken Densetsu RISE of MANA Original Soundtrack
It’s out! Ten tracks from across the spectrum of gaming, arranged and performed by GENTLE LOVE (Norihiko Hibino and AYAKI) for maximum relaxation and sleep. The album’s official website now contains the full track list (also below), and you can now purchase the album via Loudr.
Also, don’t miss the exclusive interview over on The Escapist where we discuss the potential for a second album. Send your feedback and suggestions to jayson[at]scarletmoonproductions.com!
Finally, check out the beautiful launch trailer at IGN today! Continue reading Prescription for Sleep: Game Music Lullabies (SMRC-1006)
Scarlet Moon Records is extremely proud to be able to reveal Prescription for Sleep: Game Music Lullabies, an album of videogame music tracks arranged and performed live for sleep and relaxation. The album features Norihiko Hibino on saxophone and AYAKI on piano, performing together at GENTLE LOVE. There’s a website dedicated to the album, which can be found here.
Each week we’ll be unveiling two track titles leading up to the May 19, 2014 release date on Loudr and other digital retailers. So far Donkey Kong Country’s “Aquatic Ambiance” has been announced (sample below) alongside Secret of Mana’s “A Wish…” (exclusive sample on GameSpot).