Senko no Ronde DUO Soundtracks Vol. 2 -Fullflat-
Senko no Ronde DUO Soundtracks Vol. 2 -Fullflat-
May 9, 2011
Buy at Sweep Record
The Senko no Ronde DUO Soundtracks Vol. 2 -Fullflat-, composed by Yasuhisa Watanabe, contains additional music written for the Xbox 360 port not featured on the first volume of the soundtrack. The content of this soundtrack is much more varied compared to the first volume, but at the same time, the tracks are shorter and some may be considered filler. How does it turn out overall though?
The album opens with “White Queen,” a piece that is very similar to the soundscapes featured on the first DUO soundtrack. After opening up with sinister electronic work, it quickly moves into an upbeat, yet contemplative, tune with beautiful melodic passages and an energetic accompaniment. The bridge is stunning, providing an angelic quality to the music, through the use of piano, and also serves as a breaking point between two distinct styles of music. After the bridge, the contemplative approach is still observed, but at the same time, it manages to come off as a bit more heroic. As the track comes to a close, a more sinister approach is observed by incorporating the opening synthesizer notes and some chaotic accompaniment before returning to the beautiful bridge observed earlier and the more heroic and upbeat melody that follows.
The title track, “fullflat,” features vocal work similar to the Ar Tonelico series’ Akiko Shikata. The vocal work is quite heavenly, aside from the opening which seems a bit off to me, and works wonders with the upbeat electronic accompaniment. It provides a stunning soundscape that provides a nice intensity that combines with ethereal beauty through the various elements present, such as piano and trance synth work. “Opera” features very dark electronic soundscape with foreboding beats, haunting synthesizer work, and intoxicating guitar work. Overall, it’s a fantastic soundscape and one of the best shorter themes on the soundtrack. “Haunting Faith,” as the name suggests, has a very chilling quality, focusing on spooky, atmospheric synthesizer and a slight Asian flair in terms of actual instrumentation. It’s very difficult to listen to outside of the game, given its nature. Fans of atmospheric, moody music will most likely enjoy this one.
“Welcome to Harmonia” has a very jovial quality to it with upbeat electronic work combining with melancholy cello to provide an interesting soundscape; however, at the same time, it doesn’t really catch the attention in terms of melody, but it does serve as a wonderfully relaxing track that works well to provide a nice atmosphere on the album. “Happy Teacup,” on the other hand, is a quirky track that combines sharp synthesizer tones with accordion and xylophone. As the theme progresses, it gets more upbeat and very theme park like. It’s a theme that takes some time to get used to, especially given the slow introduction that may put some people off.
One of the more substantial themes, “Les Trois Mousquetaires,” has a very smoky atmosphere with a beautiful jazzy passages and electronic soundscapes. It’s a very subtle soundscape, but manages to provide a bunch of energy. I love how as the track progresses, it gets a bit more intense, but manages to keep the beautiful atmosphere heard in the first portion of the track. Continuing on the jazz front, “Vivi” is a jazzy piano track with some light industrial electronic accompaniment, but only manages to serve as atmospheric music. “S.S.S.” is another jazz tune focusing on strings work, with jazzy percussion, slick bass guitar grooves, and piano accompaniment. While not a terrible tune, it does sound a bit messy at times, given all the instruments try to make their presence known. The B section, which focuses on ethereal synthesizer accompaniment and a synth lead melody, manages to help the track overall.
Featuring the tune from “Anti aliassing Garbera” from the first volume, “Storming Garbera” reinterprets the melody into a more heroic tune. It features the use of upbeat synthesizer work, a bit of drum and bass electronic accompaniment, and ethereal synthesizer. While not as good as the former, it is a nice rendition of that melody. “KairosNino” has a very new age type of sound. Ethnic percussion, xylophone, ambient electronic work, and a very beautiful melody through the use of sustained synthesizer chords provide the overall soundscape for the piece and it really works wonders. As the track progresses, it focuses a bit more on some light industrial percussion, but it serves as a nice contrast to the wispy A section. Lastly, “Art of war,” which closes the album,” is an upbeat electronic track that closes the album and features some Asian influences, choral accents, and an extremely catchy synthesizer melody. The track ends with a very ethereal soundscape with a music box melody.
Overall, the Senko no Ronde DUO Soundtracks Vol. 2 -Fullflat- features a plethora of styles, but at the same time, many of the shorter tunes do not live up to the expectations set by the first volume’s compositions. While not bad, they aren’t as developed and serve as filler music some of the time. Fans of the music in game are the candidates for this album, or completionists who want all the music to the Senko no Ronde DUO universe. There are some substantial and quality themes interspersed throughout the soundtrack, but the ratio isn’t nearly as much as I’d like.
Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!
Posted on August 1, 2012 by Don Kotowski. Last modified on August 1, 2012.