Street Fighter x Tekken Original Soundtrack
Street Fighter x Tekken Original Soundtrack
March 8, 2012
Buy Used Copy
Following his work on the various Street Fighter IV games and Marvel vs. Capcom 3, the Street Fighter x Tekken Original Soundtrack is the next fighting soundtrack from Capcom’s recent mainstay Hideyuki Fukasawa. The artist combined plenty of original compositions with a few Street Fighter and Tekken arrangements to capture the characters and stages of the respective universes. The soundtrack came packaged with the limited edition of the game in Japan and is, at this time, the only way to get it.
Several tracks set the stage for this crossover fighting soundtrack. Written in line with modern approaches to the feature franchises, the “Main Menu Screen -Street Fighter x Tekken-” theme is an upbeat electronic rock theme with an infectious melody and tons of energy. The short dubstep section before the loop is also an interesting homage to Tekken, but I wish this section was a bit longer! “Character Select Screen” is also electronic rock theme with a nice beat, but given its length and designation, it doesn’t develop much. “Tutorial -Saikyo Fighting Style-” features an interesting blend of electronic and Japanese elements. I find the more electronic sections to be a bit repetitive, although I do appreciate the funk it brings to the track. That said, I much prefer the Japanese melody and taiko drums, as they bring a more delicate nature to an overall energetic theme.
When it comes to stage themes, the majority are highly energetic. “Urban War Zone” is a frenetic electro-rock theme that combines a tense atmosphere for the majority of the track, while providing a catchy electric guitar melody line before the loop. It’s not one of my favorites on the album, but it manages to capture the on-screen action. “Cosmic Elevator” features some sinister synthesizer tones that are both crystalline and distorted in nature. I really enjoy some of the ethereal strings accompaniment as well, as it provides another method of introducing a bit of tension into the theme, while still providing a bit of beauty as well. “Antarctica” is an engaging and sinister electronic theme. I really like the combination of ominous, crystalline, and distorted synthesizer passages in conjunction with the drum n’ bass accompaniment. Lastly, the “Training Stage” music is absolutely awesome, if you ask me. I love the electro house feel it maintains in the bass line while providing some rave sound effects and some more crystalline and distorted synthesizer tones featured in the melody line.
The rest of the themes come in multiple parts. The “Jurassic Era Research Facility” theme is comprised of two parts. The upper floor theme for this stage is one of my favorites with its nice jungle rhythm and some snazzy electronic leads. While it isn’t the most melodically focused, following in the vein of “Urban War Zone,” it manages to tie together all the elements of the theme. The bottom floor arrangement features a much more intense and exhilarating beat, while still keeping the original flavor intact. The three-tiered “Michima Estates” theme is comprised of three parts, each combining traditional Japanese instrumentation with various contemporary elements. The bottom floor theme is probably my favorite of the three, with its more intense funk rock sound and warbling synthesizer. Another favourite is the day version of “Pitstop 109.” I love how it combines quirky and bubbly synthesizer and chiptune melodies with an infectious dance beat. Of course, the night version of the theme is a more intense version of the day theme, featuring a more happy hardcore sort of sound, though it loses some of the charm of the 8bit original.
The normal “Blast Furnace” stage features a slower tempo than a lot of the stage themes on the album. I love how the gritty synthesizer accompaniment combines with the strings to provide a beautiful but ominous tone. The panic version of this theme, as one might expect, is much more intense, with an energetic rock backing and some orchestral accents. The final soundscape is entertaining, if not a bit shallow. The upper floor version of the “Halfpipe” theme is so catchy with its treatment of the melody by distorted vocals, although it might not be everyone’s cup of tea. The bottom floor version is another groovy theme, a bit more intense than its upper floor counterpart, featuring DJ scratching, more heavily distorted vocal work, and some infectious synthesizer work with a melody that would work quite well on the Genesis. Talking of retro, the “Mad Gear Hideout” series of themes all feature infectious melodies and old-school soundtracks. The variations are kept fresh depending on the featured character. Lastly, The Divination version of “Pandora’s Box” features some big-budget orchestral tones and mythical sitar parts. The Emission version of this theme is quite a different beast, focusing on more chaotic electronic and rock sounds, while still keeping the mysticism intact.
Of course, in addition to the normal stage themes, there are themes that are designated when fighting rivals and various bosses, depending on whether you are on the Street Fighter or Tekken end of the spectrum. The “VS Rival Battle SF” comes in two flavors. Both utilize the same original theme, the “Street Fighter IV Main Theme.” The first arrangement features the signature electric guitar and electronic beats of the original combined with powerful orchestra and choral accompaniment. The heroic alternative arrangement increases the tempo and features a more electronic focus. The “VS Rival Battle TK” uses the intro theme for Tekken Tag Tournament. The first arrangement is a more rock focused theme featuring guitar riffs, some synthesizer accompaniment, and the crystalline piano that makes the original stand out. As with the Street Fighter rival version, I find the second arrangement to be much more engaging, introducing a distorted drum ‘n beat beat and replacing the piano with synthesizer tones.
There are also mid and last boss battle themes for each series. The “Mid Boss Battle SF” theme is extremely impressive, incorporating “Juri’s Theme” from Super Street Fighter IV into an epic electro-orchestral theme. While only a short section is dedicated to “Juri’s Theme,” the electric guitar is a nice contrast to the fantastic orchestral and choral work. The “Last Boss Battle SF” theme transforms the elements heard in the mid boss battle theme into something fitting for an intense final battle. It’s a theme that really manages to get the energy flowing and, to the best of my knowledge, doesn’t rely on themes from the series. Moving on, “Mid Boss Battle TK” incorporates the much-acclaimed “Jin Kazama” from the Tekken 3 soundtrack. Interesting, Fukasawa transforms features of the original track — sometimes featuring it in underlying guitar riffs, just like in the original, and other times in some frenetic strings sections. “Last Boss Battle TK” also incorporates many elements of the original, but again with a more intense and contemporary sound. Of the four themes related to boss battles, I find it to be the least impressive, but it’s still quite enjoyable.
“Closing Credit” is an orchestral and rock theme that has a sense of closure, however, at times, it can get a bit repetitive, especially during the first half of the theme, where the rock sort of dulls the track a bit. Fortunately, the second half is much more beautiful and enthralling, featuring beautiful choral work, sweeping orchestral work, and powerful percussion. The release also features a couple of vocal themes, which blend Fukasawa’s signature stylings with mainstream-flavoured performances. The intro theme “Honest Eyes” might be a little abrasive for some, with its metal stylings and male vocalist. However, the motivating lyrics and catchy chorus will win it plenty of fans, just like Street Fighter IV‘s “The Next Door”. The closer “The Destiny Fight” combines the soundtrack’s upbeat electro stylings with Japanese lyrics and a female vocalist. It’s quite cheesy once again, but is likely gain some fans. The release ends with a number of jingles and a few Easter eggs.
If you are a fan of Fukasawa’s other Capcom fighting game soundtracks, you will likely enjoy his work on Street Fighter x Tekken. It features a plethora of styles, ranging from bombastic orchestral themes to intense electronic themes, many of which feature nicely with the respective styles of the Tekken and Street Fighter universe. He is able to capture a variety of moods for the various stage themes and does so with a certain charm that is lacking in some fighting game soundtracks. Some will be disappointed that it doesn’t feature more classic arrangements, though the strength of the originals in many ways makes up for it.
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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Don Kotowski. Last modified on August 1, 2012.