Tokimeki Memorial MIDI Collection 2
Tokimeki Memorial MIDI Collection 2
December 31, 1997
Buy Used Copy
1. Good melodies are the most important thing to me, when listening to music.
2. I prefer light-hearted music to dark, dramatic and/or serious music.
3. I don’t need real instruments to fully enjoy the music as long as the synth is good.
4. Multiple loops are important to me.
5. I don’t mind if my music comes from a dating simulator.
If you agree with these five statements, your next move should be tracking down copies of both Tokimeki Memorial MIDI Collections. What Konami did was take 60 of the most important tracks from the Tokimeki Memorial soundtrack and essentially remade them, using a top-notch midi set-up with 30 tracks for each Midi Collection. Very little (if any) arranging is done, so you’re getting straight-up game tracks, taken note-for-note from the original compositions (unlike Dracula MIDI Collection and the MIDI Power Pro series, which are all-out arrangements). By that description, the Tokimeki Memorial MIDI Collections might not sound too impressive. What makes them such a must-have is the treatment the music is given. The MIDI used is much more pleasing to the ear than even the second soundtrack (which was very good) and all of the tracks are played through two or three times (compared to only once on the soundtrack). To me, this makes all the difference in the world, because they are so much easier to settle into than the soundtrack. Since Tokimeki Memorial‘s music generally gets right to the point of the melody without wasting any time, it feels like each Midi Collection contains well over the hour of music on each of them.
Of the two, the second MIDI collection is my favorite. Most of the tracks on here are my favorite ones of the series, mostly the more bouncy, rocking variety. Plus, a lot of the tracks selected were those that I never noticed on the soundtrack because of their brevity (many tracks seemed to get sandwiched on Disc Two). Of the character themes featured here, the only one that isn’t really upbeat is Mio Kisragi’s “A Sonata For You”, with its classical overtones. The others — those for Ayako, Saki, Yuko, Nozomi and Yumi — are all energetic and a rocking good time. Ayako’s “Boyfriend” is a great funky piece, with an awesome synthy sax while the others are done mostly with a synth-guitar.
Once the character themes finish, the disc doesn’t let up. We have “Burning Gong”, the awesome synth-rock theme for the pro wrestling matches, with it’s relentless, but catchy melody. Amazingly, this was never arranged on the Sound Collections or any of the other arranged albums. Later in the album, we get the 1-2-3 punch of “Find That Kid”, “Encircled by Flowers”, and “Song of the Southern Islands”, three of the greatest “unknown” themes ever composed, one after another. Series stand-bys like the classic “Karaoke”, “Planetarium”, and the season themes grace this disc with their presence as well. Finally, we are given the pleasure of two vocal songs getting instrumental versions — “Don’t Carry Love Too Far”, which is Ayako’s in-game karaoke song, and “Futari no Toki”, the final ending theme. If Konami really wanted to milk this franchise, they would be re-releasing all of the Tokimeki Memorial vocal songs this way and people like me would be lining up to buy them, because they are so darn catchy.
Describing this music is a waste of time to be honest, because you have to just sit down and listen to it, in order to understand its brilliance (or better yet, play the game!) It’s simple, it’s light-hearted, it’s hummable, and it’s very listenable. If I were forced to choose between getting the Tokimeki Memorial Forever With You Original Soundtrack 2 and the two Tokimeki Memorial MIDI Collections, I would choose the MIDI Collections simply because they are the better listening experience. Of the 60 tracks selected, I feel the best from the soundrack was chosen, so having extended and improved synth versions of them makes for a much more satisfying listening experience (of course, I still love the soundtrack for completeness’ sake!). If you agree to everything in my little questionnaire at the top of this review, try to find copies of these. They pop up on eBay from time to time. Thanks to the obscurity of this series outside of Japan, you should be able to land them for decent prices.
Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!
Posted on August 1, 2012 by Andy Byus. Last modified on August 1, 2012.