Policenauts F/N

Policenauts F/N. Front. Click to zoom.
Policenauts F/N
Front
Composed by Konami Kukeiha Club / Motoaki Furukawa
Arranged by F / Koichi Namiki
Published by Konami
Catalog number KICA-7724
Release type Game Soundtrack - Official Release
Format 1 CD - 10 tracks
Release date November 1, 1996
Duration 00:51:20
Genres
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Overview

Policenauts: one of the greatest games that most have never played. Due to a lack of localization, the name Policenauts means virtually nothing to gamers outside of Japan, though a sliver of hope did come through when an unofficial fan translation was released in 2009. After playing through the game for the first time, I was enthralled with the title's captivating story, expertly delivered voice acting, and wonderfully composed music. When I started going through the series' various albums, I knew that I was in for a treat when I discovered Policenauts F/N. Arranged by veteran composers Motoaki Furukawa and Koichi Namiki (hence the name F/N), this album remixes classic songs from the game performed on actual guitars. What more could a fan want?

Body

The overall format for this album is like this: The background track will be composed with synth with either Furukawa or Namiki performing the main melody as a solo. Each song is expertly synchronized and neither part feels out of place with each other. Usually Furukawa's performances are inspired by rock and jazz fusion, while Namiki's are acoustic. Although their performances differ in style, they complement each other perfectly.

We get things started with "Just Who I Needed to See." After a brief intro with crowd chattering and a female voice, "Do you love me, too?" the synth lead in the melody performed on electric guitar by Furukawa. This excellent theme is accompanied by chorus and synth. Furukawa's performance is splendidly done, as is the overall mixing of the piece. "My Love" has a jazzy theme performed by Namiki, backed by some great bass and percussion. While the main theme is played prominently, much focus is also given to improvisation with the electric guitar. In contrast to the previous two tracks, "Ana's Theme" is a mellow BGM with the electric guitar being traded in for an acoustic one. Furukawa delivers a performance that's laid back but still inspired.

"Theme From News Order," is the theme for BBC News (Beyond Coast Broadcasting Company). While the track starts off like a typical news theme, the middle section adds a more rock-driven focus that's makes this theme really stand out. "Lavendor," a BGM track during Beyond Coast Central Hospital, once again returns to the style of being laid-back and chilled. The performance of this track reminds me of something I'd hear at a beach or spa. The cinematic track "The Movement of the Clouds" is probably the weakest on this disc. The synth and percussion feel out place among the rest of the album, but Namiki's performance on electric guitar make up for it. Although not a bad track per se, its appearance on the Snatcher / Policenauts Hideo Kojima Music Collection Black Disc is a better way to experience it.

Moving forward, "Girls" is an upbeat and happy theme used during scenes with female characters. Much like previous tracks, Furukawa gives this piece a hard rock edge that makes it all the more enjoyable. The best track on this album for me was undoubtedly "Karen." As the theme for the main female character in the game, it's a romantic piece that backed by masterful acoustics provided by Namiki. The electric guitar gets its chance to shine towards the latter part. "Living in the Real World" is a more techno inspired track. Here, Namiki changes his regular style and allows room for a rock-driven section in addition to the acoustic one. The overall vibe feels very experimental, but pays off well in the end.

We wrap things up with "Policenauts End Title." A 14-note motif that was heavily featured in the original game starts off this piece. By the one minute mark, Furukawa responds with a second melody on electric guitar. At 1:40, he changes into improvisation while the 14-note theme continues to play in the background. Each section is coherent and fluid, with the different melodies working together splendidly. Furukawa returns with his melody at 3:06 before going back into improvisation. After playing the main theme once more, the piece fades out into the same audience chatter that opened the album. It makes me think of a crowd leaving, while band members pack up their instruments. Not a bad way to finish things, wouldn't you say?

Summary

Without a doubt, this is the best arranged album in the series. Furukawa and Namiki give strong performances, the mixing is excellent, and the new arrangements are splendidly composed. What made the original pieces so great is still here, and the use of live instruments only makes them better. With the out-of-place exception of "The Movement of the Clouds," I've got nothing but praise for this album. The only downside is its availability. All CDs in the Snatcher/Policenauts series are rare, fetching high prices on auction sites. If you can find it, pick it up without hesitation. Assuming that you are a fan of arranged video game music, rock/jazz styles, and jamming guitars, than give this one a listen.



Album
9/10

Music in game
0/10

Game
0/10

Oliver Jia

Motoaki Furukawa

   Solo Guitar on the Right Side.
   Rhythm Guitar on M1, M4, M7, M8 and M10.
   Acoustic Guitar on M3, M8 and M9 with nylon strings.
   Voice on M7.

   Guitars:
   YAMAHA SG3000 CUSTOM
   P-PROJECT RAW 3
   SCHECTER ORIGINAL MODEL
   GIBSON CHET ATKINS MODEL

Koichi Namiki

   Solo Guitar on the Left Side.
   Rhythm Guitar on M2, M6, M8 and M9.
   Acoustic Guitar on M3, M8 with steel strings.
   Electric Bass on M2.

   Guitars:
   IBANEZ 540S
   IBANEZ GB-1
   STEINBERGER GM-4T
   OVATION 1868 ELITE
   FENDER STRATOCASTER
   Bass:
   FENDER JAZZ BASS

All Arranged by F/N
                  by Motoaki Furukawa (M1, M3, M4, M7 and M10)
                  by Koichi Namiki (M2, M5, M6, M8 and M9)
Composed by Motoaki Furukawa (M1)
                by KONAMI Kukeiha CLUB (the others)
Chorus: Jyunko Hirotani & Yasuhiro Kido on M1
             Kahori Yamane & Kiyommy on M7

Recorded and Mixed by Kazuyoshi Hinoki
Assistant Engineer: Seiki Ochiai
Recorded and Mixed at Video Sunmall
Pre Recorded at Mickey House Studio & Space FM
Mastered at SONY Shinanomachi Studio by Machiko Suzue

Art Directed by Citroen Matsuda & Sayurin
Designed by Citroen Matsuda
Visual co-ordination: Shigeru Sasaka
Photography: Kenichi Simoyana
Hair and Make-up: Hiroaki Nabesawa
Stylist: Hiroko Okuda
Special Thanks To Takeshi Sasugano, Kenzo Miura, Masakazu Abe,
                           Takayuki Ogura, Kenya Ueno, Makiko Moriya, Yoshiyuki Ito
                           Noriko Kitayama, Aki (Hata) Namiki, Mami Asano, Riko Mitamura
                           Hiromi Kikawa, Shigeru Yamamoto, Kazuhiko Uehara, Hevey Moon

Directed by Ricky Ryuta O'Connell
A&R Jun Ohtsuki
Produced by Shigeru Fukutake


(note: the spelling mistake on track 5 in the tracklist is intentional.)
Album was composed by Konami Kukeiha Club / Motoaki Furukawa and was released on November 1, 1996. Soundtrack consists of 10 tracks tracks with duration over about 55 minutes. Album was released by Konami.

CD 1

1
JUST WHO I NEEDED TO SEE
05:12
2
MY LOVE
05:03
3
ANA'S THEME
06:08
4
THEME FROM "NEWS ORDER"
05:06
5
LAVENDOR
04:06
6
THE MOVEMENT OF CLOUDS
04:58
7
GIRLS
04:21
8
KAREN
04:51
9
LIVING IN THE REAL WORLD
05:50
10
"POLICENAUTS" END TITLE
05:45
27.02.13
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