Shoumetsu Toshi Original Soundtrack Vol. 3
Shoumetsu Toshi Original Soundtrack Vol. 3
December 9, 2016
Buy at Amazon Japan
Shoumetsu Toshi is a mobile game that features compositions from Hideki Sakamoto’s noisycroak team, specifically Hiroyoshi Kato and Yasuhiro Kawagoe. The style of music ranges from acoustic to electronic, with a large focus on the latter. Split into three volumes, Shoumetsu Toshi Original Soundtrack Vol. 1,Shoumetsu Toshi Vol. 2, and Shoumetsu Toshi Vol. 3 include the music for the game, as well as bonus arrangements. How does the soundtrack for the third volume turn out?
The album opens up with “Recoil,” an odd electronic/strings arrangement of “Eternity,” that distorts the melody. The end result is nothing that particularly stands out and, while trying to be creative, ruins the appeal of the original melody. There is also a “Recoil (Strings Version)” that is more accessible, giving the piece a somber touch, and is reminiscent of the echochrome series stylistically. Fortunately, “Green Light” rebounds with an excellent EDM vocal with a fantastic presence and an engaging melody. The vocalist works quite well with the style of music and there are some wonderful synth harmonies. “Reloaded” opens with ominous organ and choir before incorporating quirky synths and techno beats alongside operatic vocals. The tense and desperate atmosphere certainly works well with the melody but at times, it does sound a bit cliche.
“Lunar” opens up with atmospheric and ethereal synth before moving into a drum n’ bass sound, however, as the tune progresses, it becomes clear that the end result doesn’t really amplify and just progresses without much sense of excitement, despite teasing it might do just that. However, as a counter, there are some beautiful melodies throughout. “Phases,” Yasuhiro Kawagoe’s sole contribution to this volume, opens up with a beautiful piano melody before moving into an EDM tune with a big room sound. This sound is complemented by jazzy piano in the accompaniment. As the piece progresses, it delves a bit more into the jazz side of things, providing light percussion, bright strings, and jazzy piano before moving into a more synth driven piano melody that opened the tune before finally closing out with the EDM sound. Overall, it’s a successful tune that manages to stand out. “Our Lost Future” is a jazzy tune with some light club music elements. The vocals certainly help shape the tone of the piece while the strings bring a dramatic touch. In addition, the piece incorporates the main theme of the series before ending with glitchy drum n’ bass that feels out of place with the rest of the tune.
There are also some arrangements of previous tunes featured on the album. “Now I Feel U (Arrange Version)” combines sultry vocals with synths and acoustic elements to create something that works well with the R&B/pop influenced accompaniment. “Stay with Me (Arrange Version)” is more of an ambient, atmospheric arrangement with a synth and piano lead. The vocals themselves have a bit of a jazzy touch to them and the end result is quite beautiful. “The End of the World and the Last Word (Strings Version) blends Emi Evans’ original vocals with an exquisite strings quartet to give a sense of romance to the original. In addition, there is also a mashup of “Flashback vs. Avalon (NRG Factory Rework),” remixed by NRG Factory, an alias of Hiroyoshi Kato, that incorporates both themes quite nicely to create an engaging piece of music that is lifted up by the melodies of the originals. The album ends with a “Special Megamix 2016,” a 15 minute mix of tunes in the series and spans a range of tones, from jazzy to industrial to electronic dance music.
With the third volume of music from this series, Hiroyoshi Kato and Yasuhiro Kawagoe manage to continue with the blend of more grounded elements with various electronic tunes. However, some of their experiments aren’t always successful on a standalone basis or by taking away from the overall listening experience. Fans of the first two volumes will certainly find something to enjoy, however, as the spirit of the music is still in line with its predecessors.
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Posted on October 6, 2017 by Don Kotowski. Last modified on October 6, 2017.