Music From The Legend of Heroes IV ~A Tear of Vermilion~

Music From The Legend of Heroes IV ~A Tear of Vermilion~. Front. Click to zoom.
Music From The Legend of Heroes IV ~A Tear of Vermilion~
Front
Composed by Atsushi Shirakawa / Hirofumi Matsuoka / Masaru Nakajima / Naoki Kaneda / Satoshi Arai
Published by King Records
Catalog number KICA-1181~2
Release type Game Soundtrack - Official Release
Format 2 CD - 54 tracks
Release date June 21, 1996
Duration 02:14:33
Genres
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Overview

The soundtrack for The Legend of Heroes IV has been released in three major two disc releases: Music from The Legend of Heroes IV Running Red Blood features music from the original PC-9801 game; The Legend of Heroes IV MIDI Special features remastered compositions from the oiginal; and The Legend of Heroes IV A Tear of Vermillion Original Soundtrack features arranged music and some new compositions for the modern PC remake. While the original release was good for its time, it is massively exceeded in arrangement and synth quality for the subsequent remake. Let's take a tour of what it offers...

Body

It's clear right from the opening themes that The Legend of Heroes IV was intended to be a rich musical experience, yet is technologically limited. "Memoria" was intended to be a simple orgel solo to recollect its more innocent predecessor, yet the synth is such that it's not even clear it was composed for an orgel at all. "A Legend" is intended to be a more elaborate orchestral experience, offering rich piano and violin passages, but its expressive effect is limited by the immature synth compared to the remake soundtrack. In spite of the humble synth, the experiences grows darker with tense action themes like "The Heretics' Attack". Softer themes such as "Cabin in Sight" and "Frozen Village" are tinged with melancholy, as if to preclude the dark fate that lies ahead for the world. However, their bittersweet effects are so subtle in these FM synth versions, leaving one desiring the Celtic-inspired arrangements of the remake.

Though there are much more epic undertones running through this soundtrack, there are actually a similar amount of light-hearted themes to The Legend of Heroes III. They are just presented in a different context — more like a diversion than the core of the experience — and fortunately most themes are better composed too. This time synthpop compositions such as "Travelling on the Road of Dreams" and "Stepping Lightly" are actually well-integrated into the game while others like "The Rhythm of the Sea Breeze" and "On the Ocean Wind" are full of creativity. Simpler compositions also work better with the old-school synth used during the soundtrack. There are a few annoying tracks like "Phildin's Capital" and "High-Spirited Shannon", but they are few and far between. Of course, there are a fair number of well-produced rocking battle themes too, such as "Lambada Labyrinth" and "Mining Station", though those in the remake are even more enjoyable.

As the soundtrack develops, there are a larger number of darker tracks. However, the original version doesn't quite create the same sense of fate as the remake soundtrack, since motifs such as "Running Red Blood" and "My Name is Baldus" are not central. However, themes such as "Seeking the Truth" and "Inheritance of the Ancients" are a very effective complement to key scenes during the storyline. Looking forward, compositions like "Sealed Earth" and "Gaps in Space and Time" provide an epic and surreal preparation for the intense final battles. The album ends on a beautiful note with a reprise of the "Running Red Blood" motif and the gentle small ensemble recollection "Traveling on the Road of Dreams". Though not as effective as the ending of the remake soundtrack, it's still a fitting way to round the experience.

Summary

Overall, Music from The Legend of Heroes IV Running Red Blood is a fitting and effective accompaniment to the game. However, it doesn't work as well as a stand-alone experience due to the generally standard compositions and subpar synth. Fortunately, most of the music from this release was arranged for its PC remake, along with a number of new compositions. The resultant soundtrack is one of the finest efforts in The Legend of Heroes series and, unless you're a hardcore collector, makes this one redundant.



Album
6/10

Music in game
0/10

Game
0/10

Charles Szczygiel

Music by Sound Team jdk (Mieko Ishikawa, Atsushi Shirakawa, Hirofumi Matsuoka, Masaru Nakajima, Naoki Kaneda, Satoshi Arai)
Album was composed by Atsushi Shirakawa / Hirofumi Matsuoka / Masaru Nakajima / Naoki Kaneda / Satoshi Arai and was released on June 21, 1996. Soundtrack consists of 54 tracks tracks with duration over more than 2 hours. Album was released by King Records.

CD 1

1
A Tear of Vermilion ~memoria~
02:16
2
A Tear of Vermilion
02:15
3
Prayer
01:08
4
The Heretics' Attack
02:20
5
Cabin View
01:49
6
Leaving the Nest
02:53
7
The Road Towards Hope
03:44
8
The Village Where They Arrived One Day
02:42
9
Stepping Lightly
02:21
10
We Mustn't Be Defeated!
01:58
11
The Royal Capital Phildin
02:08
12
Phildin Castle
01:51
13
Underground Waterway
02:08
14
Mining Place
02:29
15
Those Who Haunt in the Darkness
01:52
16
Dancing Maze
02:51
17
A Bustling Street Corner
01:54
18
Benequia Monastery
02:35
19
To the Forest
02:32
20
Plateau Hymn
02:02
21
Iron Manufacturing Town ~Guia~
01:46
22
Frozen Village
01:47
23
Just Bring it!!
02:27
24
Energetic Shannon
01:18
25
Rhythm of the Sea Breeze
03:30
26
Riding the Ocean on the Wind
03:05
27
A Tear of Vermilion ~Darling Eimelle~
03:46
28
The Holy City
01:51
29
Tomorrow Shall Come
02:01

CD 2

1
Rone's Thoughts
01:44
2
Run, Avin!!
01:53
3
Frozen Over
02:21
4
Seeking the Truth
02:58
5
Do Not Disturb!
02:50
6
Ancient Legacy
01:40
7
Parting Regrets
02:40
8
Tainted Spirits
01:43
9
Shrine of the Spirits
01:07
10
Fight to the Death
03:14
11
Wandering Thoughts
02:31
12
Undersea Cave
02:38
13
Sealed Land
02:35
14
Lava Zone
02:20
15
Labyrinth of Space-Time
01:13
16
Octum's Temple
03:04
17
The Great Priest Bellias
04:21
18
Octum's Desire
03:10
19
My Name is Bardus
04:16
20
The End of a Fierce Battle
04:18
21
Avin's Determination
02:57
22
Drops of Life
03:07
23
And Then...
02:40
24
A Tear of Vermilion ~Friends' Smiling Faces~
02:39
25
The Road Towards Hope ~Light~
03:15
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