Patrick Gann
Music That Makes You Sing "I Feel Pretty!"
Also: music that makes you scream "WTF!"
02.20.11 - 9:08 PM

Yes, yes, I know. Soundtracks updates are lagging these days. There's no one to blame but this sad sack of Kodama-love. I enjoy hate mail, so feel free to indulge me.

Before I get to my very personal, dare I say intimate, contributions to today's soundtrack offerings, let me start with some interesting Graphic Adventure stuff from Bob Richardson.

The game in question is 428 ~In a Blockaded Shibuya~. Before going on an extended break to finish his PhD work, news editor Chris Winkler had been reporting on this strange and wonderful PS3 adventure title pretty extensively. I've also spoken with our old import reviews editor Ryan Mattich, who told me that it is quite a good game. Based on listening to the OST alone, editor Bob Richardson is left pondering the question: "why not?" That is, why not bring it to the US? I mean, plenty of gamers got into Heavy Rain, and games like 999 are hard to over-sell in terms of critical acclaim. It turns out the music to the game matches the quality of the game itself. Bob also provides a review of the theme song single from Aya Kamiki.

Okay, so how about everyone's favorite underdog RPG franchise, SaGa? There have been some recent developments here. The DS remake title, SaGa 3 Ruler of Space/Time ~ Shadow or Light ~ how many subtitles can we add? had its own soundtrack release in January. Does it make up for the subpar SaGa 2 DS soundtrack in any way? The RPGFan 8-ball said "outlook not so good," but to be sure, head to the review and check out the audio samples.

Also on tap is a totally unnecessary compilation album of battle themes from the SaGa series. They've actually done this sort of thing before, but only as a promo album. This time it's a retail release, and it came out on New Years Day, 2011. Can't get fresher than that, eh?

Lately, our news stories have referenced publisher 5pb. That group is making bigger and bigger waves. But for me, their true value lies in their ability to get awesome game music out to the masses with their 5pb.Records label. We have two such 5pb albums for you today. One even includes music from Takeshi Abo, famed composer for the entire Infinity series and the Memories Off series as well. This time, he worked on a new title in a long-running series from Flight-Plan. The game is Summon Night Granthese Sword of Ruin and Knight's Promise, and it's been touted as one of the last PS2 games (in Japan). The soundtrack was released in May 2010. Sorry for taking so long in getting to it.

The other 5pb release is for Blue Roses. Former Flight-Plan developers dropped the company to form Apollo Soft, and they worked under Nippon Ichi to develop this game. The soundtrack is a little ... lacking, in substance. But it's not all bad news. Be sure to check out the review.

/gasps for air

FINALLY, we have a review for the extremely rare and highly-prized Granado Espada Renaissance soundtrack. It's volume 3 in the soundtrack series for Korea's most artistic and not-so-cutesy MMORPG. The music, from S.F.A., Osamu Kubota, and others, is sure to take you through a range of emotions. That is, if you can find the rare promotional 3 disc item on various auction-based websites. Hanbit really likes to tease potential fans with these non-retail releases.

That's it for today. Next time? I'm not quite sure what next time will be, but I'll give you some options:

- Megami Tensei Gaiden Last Bible soundtracks (GB music from the SMT series, OSTs published decades after their source material? COOL!)
- Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep & 358/2 Days OST (Stephen Meyerink gets cozy with Shimomura ... again)
- Criminal Girls OST (Yuzo Koshiro, Basiscape, and other composers help NIS bring their naughtiest title to date to a peak level of audio goodness. Maybe.)

Feel free to vote on your favorite option for the next update while sending that aforementioned hate mail. I look forward to it.