DigiCube (1st Edition); Square Enix (2nd Edition)
April 22, 1998; June 29, 2005
Buy at CDJapan
Xenogears Creid is, in effect, the arranged album for the game, showing a heavy influence from Celtic and Eastern instrumentation. Yasunori Mitsuda collaborated with Millennial Fair to produce what could well be classed as one of the best arranged albums ever.
The album opens with the epic “Melkaba”. It starts off with hypnotising harps and piano before breaking out into a majestic guitar, fiddle, and choral piece that lets nothing slip from its grasp. From each chord and build up to the finale-like set piece, you’ll be hooked and mesmerised. Seven and a half minutes later, you’ll be hit with “Two Wings”, a new vocal version of Joanne Hogg’s outtake song. Although the song has not changed, new lyrics in Japanese an new vocalist make it feel fresh. The song is just as captivating and uplifting.
“Balto” starts off ethereally before showing revealing pure beauty and swiftness. This being an instrumental, the instruments take centre stage and really show off. Half way through, the style changes from Eastern to French, as the accordion kicks in, the tempo increases, and a chirpy version of a melody appears. The end result sounds like a river dance! “Creid” begins as a warm and spiritual hymn; half war through once again, the song changes and instruments transform it into an epic adventure featuring echoing drum rhythms and sweet singing.
“Dajil” is an absolute stonker of a song. It rocks out the electronic sitar from start to end with an overriding crescendo throughout. The diversity on the album hits home between the complete opposites of the last two tunes. “Stairs of Light” is a pleasant and happy ditty that goes through various culturally diverse passages to a lovely grandstand finish. The way in which each item is thought out really shines through on this album. The beloved “June Mermaid” is given a very sensitive and heartfelt rendition with harps, fiddles, whistles, and wind chimes.
“Spring Lullaby” is possibly the weakest song on the album, but that still could put it miles above the best of a lot of other albums. It’s still pleasant and definitely grows on you. “Lahan” is a fast-paced an fun track that gives listeners a buzzing smile before the anthemic conclusion. “Mebius” is a classic song to finish on. As loving as it is beautiful, this is a Japanese vocal of “Smal Two of Pieces”. The song captures all the drama and feeling of the original and ends the album perfectly.
Xenogears Creid is the kind of CD you can’t help but love. It’s a class above the rest with real emotion in the performances and extremely enchanting themes. Put simply, one of the best.
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Posted on August 1, 2012 by Simon Smith. Last modified on August 1, 2012.