Tales of Hearts CG Movie Edition Visual & Original Sound Track DVD

Tales of Hearts CG Movie Edition Visual & Original Sound Track DVD. Передняя обложка. Click to zoom.
Tales of Hearts CG Movie Edition Visual & Original Sound Track DVD
Передняя обложка
Published by Namco
Release type Game Soundtrack - Promo / Enclosure
Release date December 11, 2008
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The DVD released as a preorder bonus with the CG version of the DS title Tales of Hearts features various video clips and music recordings. The music recordings include Motoi Sakuraba's arrangements of ten of his own compositions from the title. Given the extensive amount of arrange soundtracks the composer has released, does this one stand out amongst the others? And just how does the first arranged Tales of soundtrack devoted exclusively to one game fare?


The disc opens with an arrangement of the game's first, and major, world map theme "Present World". It's a very typical Sakuraba track, led by strings and supported by brass, heroic in places, with tinges of sadness in others. The track starts initially quite similar to its original counterpart (using higher quality synth, of course) but soon branches off a bit, never straying too far from the source material. The last third of the track features a slightly quieter section before finishing with a simple piano arpeggio. Overall, this piece presents a satisfying if not relatively uncreative way of representing this major theme. Moving on, the ethereal choir accompanying this arrangement of the game's title theme "Tales of Hearts" is startlingly captivating, and serves as a perfect accompaniment to the softer melody, that unfolds through the tracks length like the raising of a curtain. The instrumentation used here is excellent, and really breathes life into a fantastic piece. The track's ending is quite enjoyable as well.

"Who Are You Fighting For" is classic Sakuraba progressive rock and the only battle theme arrangement on the disc. This track does not stand out at all from the plethora of similarly styled tracks in the composer's extensive repertoire, but with the higher quality synth it does sound quite a bit better than its original DS counterpart. An improvisation section not found in the original is of course present, adding a bit of flair and giving the ability to lengthen the otherwise short piece. I'm quite happy to see the villain's theme present on this soundtrack, "Scarlet-Haired Devil", given it is one of my personal favorite tracks from the original. Here we are treated to an excellent progressive rock arrangement of what was once an orchestral theme, retaining the theme's harpsichord and church organ. What's left is certainly the most impressive piece on this album, and a truly enjoyable and creative achievement that ends far too quickly for a track so good.

"Spiria Disappears" presents a somber, solo piano piece. Sakuraba tends to delight with his piano compositions, and this one is no exception, featuring impressive virtuoso sections that never feel too out of place from the main melody, that, while typical, is nonetheless enjoyable. An absolute improvement on the original's presentation and melodic content, and a display of what all arrange soundtracks should strive for. "Warmly Hometown" is another solo piano piece, but much happier and lighter than the preceding, serving as an arrangement for the game's first (peaceful) town. There are a few sadder tones not present in the original, but the piece still retains its joyful mood. The piece isn't nearly as impressive in technique as the preceding, which would undoubtedly clash with the quieter nature of the track, but it does feature a nice improvisation section around its halfway point which does contain some impressive points, as well as a pinch of discord, leading to a swift conclusion.

"Bonded Wings, Leinheit" presents another progressive rock piece, this time an arrangement of the wonderful airship theme. A high pitched synth plays the original melody, which is everything an airship theme could aspire to be: hopeful, with a tinge of melancholy. This is one track that certainly benefits from the synth upgrade, though it still sticks too closely to the source material to really feel like a truly developed arrangement. Less impressive is "Put Hopes into Spiria",where heavy brass play the original melody and a sort of sweeping synth dominate this event track at its initiation. Another synth soon joins the fray with a pounding, deep bass. A piano becomes somewhat more prominent as the track develops, and soon we hear only the latter two instruments, until the track ends much the same way it started. Ultimately, a rather boring and unimpressive track.

"To the Still Unseen Land" is yet another solo piano piece, this one being predominantly hopeful. Unlike the previous piano tracks, this arrangement sticks fairly close to the source material, though of course gaining added flair in its piano transition. While it does nothing terribly interesting, the melody is nice and the piece really contains no outright flaws. Finally, "Mind Touching Bonds" is a nice, short piece to close the soundtrack. Earnestly hopeful and conclusive, this track is merely bombastic and explosive in nature, though not in a bad way. It serves as a fine, though not particularly noteworthy, ending.


The album's greatest boon is the far improved synth over the original. Its greatest flaw is a running tie between its short length and rarity. There's nothing here that absolutely warrants a purchase, even for diehard fans of the composer, but those with an intense fondness for the original soundtrack that see their favorite's represented in whole or part here might want to consider tracking it down. For all else, there are plenty of other more worthy compositions and arrangements by Sakuraba, and they're all much more easily attainable.


Music in game


Marc Friedman

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