Listening to: Many things–see below!
Nothing too major this Sunday. I’ve spent the week pulling multiple overtime shifts, struggling with a late-summer cold, and attending a Renaissance Faire, so I didn’t have time to delve into lengthy analyses. Instead, here’s a round-off of my top ten most played songs!
10. Viva la Vida – Coldplay
The only song in my top ten that I can sing along to, incidentally. It’s possible that the number of plays on this may have been artificially inflated, since I played it on repeat for hours at a time while I was working on an a cappella arrangement. Even so, that’s a testimonial to how much I enjoy this song.
9. Vode An – Jesse Harlin (Star Wars: Republic Commando OST)
I could technically sing along to this one, if I spoke Mandalorian. I really like the sound that Harlin uses in his soundtrack: it maintains a similar feeling to John Williams’ Star Wars soundtrack while adding some unique flavor of its own–battle chants, didgeridoo, and so forth. The whole soundtrack is excellent, but this track is my favorite.
8. Innocent Days – Hitomi Kuroishi (Code Geass OST)
No surprises here, seeing as I’ve already linked to this one from a prior blog entry. It’s a combination of the song itself and the context in which it appears–only twice in the entire series, but very effective in both cases.
7. Let the Stars Fall Down – Yuki Kaijura (Fate/Zero OST)
Another rare song–this one only shows up once, as I remember. The rhythmic energy (an 6/8 meter that alternates emphasizing 3 and 2) creates a great battle theme, even if it isn’t utilized much. An arrangement of this theme also appears in Kalafina’s end theme, Manten, which appears in two episodes of the second half of the series.
6. Luminous Sword – Yuki Kaijura (Sword Art Online OST)
Asuna’s battle them from Sword Art Online. She’s my favorite character in the series, so it’s no surprise that her theme is my favorite as well. I especially enjoy the mix of vocals and strings–that particular instrumentation seems to be a hallmark of Kaijura’s scores.
5. Spanish Flea – Tijuana Brass
Because sometimes, you just need to listen to something silly. And then keep listening to it. This is also the best way to stay sane while playing survival horror games.
4. Gerudo Valley – Koji Kondo (The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time OST)
Despite the fact that the location was basically just a waypoint between quests in the game proper, I always spent an inordinate amount of time hanging around in the valley, just to listen to the music.
3. Nerevar Rising – Jeremy Soule (The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind OST)
I picked up Morrowind for five British pounds while visiting a discount electronics store in Harrod’s. It was one of the cheapest games I’ve bought a physical copy of, and also one of the games that I’ve spent the most time on. Booting up the game and hearing this on the main menu still gives me happy memories. Plus, the orchestration is neat foreshadowing for some actual elements of the plot…
2. “Such bonds are the true strength of this army” – Hiroki Morishita (Fire Emblem: Awakening OST)
This piece plays during some of the most touching conversations of Awakening, and listening to it always makes me feel calm. Whether I’m winding down at the end of a tiring day or repressing irritation, this song always seems to make things better.
1. Id~Return and Id~Purpose – Hiroki Morishita (Fire Emblem: Awakening OST)
Technically, these songs are meant to transition into each other, so I’m not actually cheating that much. Id is Robin’s leitmotif, and many versions of it appear throughout the game, but these are the climax to which all of them build: a triumphant fanfare in tribute to the camaraderie of the allied force. Who says that the accordion can’t be an epic instrument?
Got music recommendations of your own? Let me know! Signing off, until next week!