Kud Wafter Original Soundtrack
Kud Wafter Original Soundtrack
Key Sounds Label
KSLA-0057 (1st Edition); KSLA-0077 (2nd Edition)
June 25, 2010; December 29, 2011
Buy Used Copy
Released as a spinoff to their Little Busters!, Key’s Kud Wafter is a visual novel focusing on one of that game’s heroines. Coming off the heels of a mixed soundtrack and composed entirely by a newcomer, Jyunichi Shimizu, is this new album worth perusing?
“Sunday Morning Dance” is a nice opening to this album, with its energetic guitar introducing a soft melody. It segues well into the game’s main theme, “At the Mountain Behind,” a moving though not particularly remarkable piece. One of the more exciting tracks, the fast paced beat lending itself to “Trampoline Girl” can be matched in exuberance only by its following track, “August Green,” with its active guitar and jazzy piano.
“mini glamour” is the first of many appearances of PMMK’s theme for the recurring heroine in this title, found in the original Little Busters. It’s a rather good arrangement of a decent theme. “Where I Belong” is a superior arrangement though, eschewing the original’s peppy, lighthearted nature for a soft piano piece. Shimizu quite capably wraps the theme quite neatly in this softer style.
Most pieces are softer in nature. “Breath of Stars” features harp arpeggios supporting a simple melody on synth that does sound like twinkling stars, leading up to the introduction of a violin that plays the melody. “Moontan” is ethereal and otherwordly with its atmospheric soundscapes and electronic ambience. The piano and synth playing softly over the ensemble balances the whole package. This track is followed by the rather similarly styled “The Roots of Consciousness,” which is, overall, a quieter piece, though annoyingly similar to its preceding. “Reminiscence” has a peaceful, subdued melody that will calm the listener. “grief” meanwhile, with its simple yet complex melody, is enjoyably touching.
One of the ending themes “Stardust” is rather peppy, though nowhere near as much as the closing track, “One’s Future (Rock Band Mix)”. While rather set apart from the rest of the album with its guitar riffs and rock-like drums, it still mirrors some of the original Little Busters! vocals, and it is a nice way to end off, without being too ostentatious. The other vocal, “Star Defense Song,” is enjoyable as well. But in both themes, Miyako Suzuta’s childlike vocals might annoy the unexpecting listener. Those who purchase the second edition of Kud Wafter‘s soundtrack receive a bonus a capella rendition of “Star Defense Song”.
It’s apparent that for his first work with Key, Jyunichi Shimizu is attempting to mirror the older work of his contemporaries. In general, he performs quite admirably. His pieces are brimming with complexity, and there is nary a dull moment. At the same time, however, with occasional exception, nothing in particular really stands out. I would like to see the composer flesh his own creative muscles, instead of imitating past success. I’m sure given some more time with the company, Shimizu will prove to be a strong asset.
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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Marc Friedman. Last modified on August 1, 2012.