Beast Dramatic Music Collection II

beast2 Album Title:
Beast Dramatic Music Collection II
Record Label:
Polydor
Catalog No.:
POCH-2204
Release Date:
March 25, 1993
Purchase:
Buy Used Copy

Overview

This is another Sato album that I know pretty much nothing about. If what I read on the Internet is true, it’s a side scrolling adventure game. Composed during his time with Birdie Software, it offers another look into the compositional skills of the man behind the modern strategy RPGs offered by Nippon Ichi Software. How is it?

Body

Most of this tracklist is named after colors. Surprisingly, each name, for the most part, manages to fit with the color in the track title. On this soundtrack, you’ll find a nice mix of slower and more upbeat pieces, and a few vocal performances.

Of the slower tracks, there are a few that stick out. The opening piece, “Snow White,” is a very beautiful piano and string piece. The drum pad is rather simplistic and adds an element of pop to the piece, but that’s not the sole focus of the track. I absolutely love the piano work, especially as the piece draws to an end. “Deep Purple,” is another piano and string focused composition that is quite relaxing. However, at the same time, there are some similarities between it and “Snow White” in terms of track progression. A bit disappointing, but the melody again is superb.

In addition to some of the slower pieces, there are definitely some more upbeat pieces as well. Tracks like “Burning Red” offer a nice upbeat melody with a focus on strings and brass. It’s extremely catchy. In addition, the keyboard work is also quite pleasant. “Infra Red” has a rock oriented focus, however, it’s not extremely upbeat. It’s got a moderate flow throughout the piece, but the guitar bass line, the electric guitar, and the brass really helps to create a pretty enjoyable piece.

Unfortunately, in both cases, there are also some pieces that are ruined, per se, by the inclusion of spoken vocals at the end, needlessly extending the pieces. “Blue…,” for example, is a very sorrowful piano piece. However, it is only showcased for four minutes of the total ten minute track time. The rest seems to document a phone conversation. The music is nice, but the spoken dialogue could have been cut out, making this a much stronger piece on the whole. “Flash Yellow” is another example of this. It’s a fantastic rock piece, with a nice guitar riff bass line and upbeat string/synth keyboard/electric guitar melody line. However, as before, the overall effectiveness of the piece is dampened by the spoken words at the end of the track. Fortunately, only a few pieces suffer from this fate, but it is something that could have been cut out to make the album stronger.

There are also two vocal performances on this soundtrack. “Palm of the Moon” has a nice pop sound to it with some nice violin and piano work. The vocalist isn’t the greatest, but seems to fit the nature of the composition pretty nicely. “Shine on Me” is the other vocal performance on the track. As opposed to the violin and piano focus of “Palm of the Moon”, this one focuses on piano and electric guitar, while retaining the pop sound found in the other vocal performance. The vocalist doesn’t really offer much to the table in this piece as well, but I do find this one to be more enjoyable than the other vocal piece, partly due to the electric guitar solo it features.

Summary

On the whole, this album is pretty solid. There’s a nice mix of slow and upbeat pieces, with a variety of styles, ranging from pop to rock to jazz. Sadly, some of the stronger pieces suffer from the inclusion of spoken words after the conclusion of the piece. Without these, the album would flow much better as well as be stronger overall. Still, they are few in quantity so it’s not entirely bothersome. This is another interesting Sato album that’s definitely worth a listen, especially if you are more familiar with his Nippon Ichi Software compositions and are looking for a change of pace.

Beast Dramatic Music Collection II Don Kotowski

Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!

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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Don Kotowski. Last modified on January 22, 2016.


About the Author

Currently residing in New York, I spend my days working in antibody therapeutics and dedicate some of my spare time in the evening to the vast world of video game music, both reviewing soundtracks as well as maintaining relationships with composers overseas in Europe and in Japan.



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