Front Mission 3 Original Soundtrack

Front Mission 3 Original Soundtrack. Передняя обложка. Click to zoom.
Front Mission 3 Original Soundtrack
Передняя обложка
Composed by Hayato Matsuo / Koji Hayama / Shikegi
Arranged by Hayato Matsuo / Koji Hayama / Shikegi
Published by DigiCube
Catalog number SSCX-10035
Release type Game Soundtrack - Official Release
Format 2 CD - 47 Tracks
Release date July 21, 2001
Duration 02:29:58
Genres
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Overview

As much as I try not to judge music by sound quality, with Front Mission I can't help but keep coming back to it. My first thoughts when I started up the Front Mission 3 soundtrack were "wow, this is like, electronic, but it's also... good!" The dynamic duo that composed this 2-disc set, Koji Hayama and Hayato Matsuo, made it clear that this was a stylistic return to the roots of Front Mission. Many of the symphonic styles and complexities of Front Mission 2 were stripped away, going back once again to that old simple mechanical groove. It's like the evolution of synthesizers. It used to be that a piano sound on a synthesizer sounded like, well, a synthesizer. Then synth makers got good enough that they could make a synthesizer that sounded like a real piano. But then they got this idea to synthesize the old synthesizers too, so now you can select an instrument that reproduces perfectly that old crappy electric piano. It's not quite the same, but you get the idea.

The Front Mission 3 Original Soundtrack features a large amount of electronic instruments, but they do indeed sound very cool. The characteristic wide range of genres is a feature any Front Mission player will definitely appreciate. One thing is definitely unusual for a Front Mission album, however, and this is the track length. Most of the pieces are well into the 3-5 minute range, with only a very small number being less than 2 minutes. Compare this to Front Mission, which had a mean track lengh somewhere in the 1-2 minute range. Though the pieces of this soundtrack are still fairly simple, that extra length allows for a great deal more variation, which is a big plus.

Body

The first track, "Government," is a perfect example of that return to electronica that I find charming about the soundtrack. It reminds me a lot of Phantasy Star 2; it's got that same happy melody, and the instruments are similar to the old Genesis hardware too, though the good mixing and sound quality makes it a lot cleaner. Sometimes the composers try some interesting fusion, having real-sounding instruments playing alongside heavily electronic ones. "Rest 2," an early track on Disc Two, has its melody carried by some wind instruments. Strings provide additional ambient backup, but the main bass range is clearly dominated by a monotone synthesizer. Such tracks are fairly common in game music, but that doesn't make them any less welcome.

Jazz enthusiasts will welcome the early "The Bar," which might be a homage to Noriko Matsueda's fantastic jazzy work on the first two Front Missions. The two "Setup" tracks, also early in Disc One, make great demonstrations that prove that the extra track length isn't just filler. The first is a trancey dance number featuring very high frequency sounds, a catchy rhythm, and interesting layered melodies. The second is similar in some ways, having the same good ryhthm and dance-ability as the first. The style is very different though, using a bass guitar, brass, and piano for the instruments. The end result is a cool Latin swing that's very easy to groove to. "Barrier" takes first prize for being the downright coolest groove song, though; it's just so funky, you have to give it a listen. Another one of my personal top picks is "Forst Invasion," a dark industrial piece with really evil-sounding horns and something that sounds like a sinister war machine.

Front Mission 3 may feature a wider genre span than any of its predecessors. With "Bar (China)," the name speaks for itself. "Hideout," the track which follows, is a heavy, moderately paced piece, and it has some of the best instrument selection on the soundtrack. The monotony of the bass line is easily relieved by the rising and falling synth backups, percussion, and cool-sounding bells that continue the Chinese theme. There's also plenty of symphonic material, despite the soundtrack's general trend towards a more electronic feel. "Assault" on Disc Two is highly recommended, featuring powerful percussion and brass, and a catchy melodic theme that will really get your blood pumping; it's one of those themes I shouldn't have to point out, you'll know it when they get there.

For those looking for battle music, look no further than the bizarre "Determination," which has a really dissonant harmony, but I guess that just makes the fighting seem even more desperate. "Swift Attack" and "Attack" are also highly recommended. "Enemy Attack" is cool in its own right too, but it's much slower and sounds more like a premonition kind of piece than a battle theme. You might notice that all the battle tracks are split up here, something I think should have been done with all the Front Mission soundtracks. With the first two, they lobbed all the fighting tracks at you in one volley. Here they take the smart road and mix it up more, so you don't overdose on it.

Summary

Is there a Front Mission soundtrack I won't recommend? Not at all likely. Folks, they just keep getting better and better. As of this writing, Front Mission 3 is new enough that finding a copy should still be pretty easy. If you only buy one FM soundtrack, please make it this one. Considering that many of the others are out of print, this makes your choice a bit easier.



Album
9/10

Music in game
0/10

Game
0/10

Kero Hazel

Overview

In 1999, Square Enix was busy developing their third Front Mission title, at least strategy-RPG wise. Similar to when they hired Riow Arai for Front Mission Alternative in 1997, they were willing to take another chance and hire composers outside the company. So, the duo of Koji Hayama (Cho Aniki) and Hayato Matsuo (Ogre Battle, Dragon Force II) were brought in for a breath of fresh air music-wise. Personally, I felt both composers did a great job, although I prefer Matsuo a bit more as he wrote the orchestral pieces. On the other hand, Hayama uses the score to showcase his techno talent.

Body

The first track that grabbed my attention was the guitar-driven "Starting," composed by Koji Hayama; it has all the good stuff — great composition, lovely sound, and it just sounds plain cool! This was used during the sequence of testing the Wanzers' strength and abilities in the laboratory. "The Bar" is a catchy jazz lounge track, much like Matsueda's works in the series and Racing Lagoon. Matsuo gets the atmosphere just right with this piece. Relax, and have a drink or two while you listen to this track. The "Setup" and "Setup 1" themes are both composed in techno style and do sound a tad repetitive, yet they're still catchy. The same goes for "Network." Those themes are played often in the game, so you'll need to get used to them.

The fun really starts with "Invasion," which Matsuo slips in a piano here and there. While the meat of the composition is more techno, it still manages to entrance and keeps the player listening without having to mute the TV. "Impact" sounds like a duel theme to me, as it is fast-paced, very militaristic in nature, and certainly fits the mood of battle. Another note-worthy track is "VS Katatsu." Matsuo adds more than enough variety so you won't lose the focus of your objective. This music is strategy-RPG material at its best, in my opinion.

"Bar (China)" has an very Asian sound to it. I can't describe it too well, but it just sounds so fitting for a Chinese bar or pub. Koji Hayama does the melancholic "Suspicion," which starts with a cello playing an eerie melody that's backed up by a piano; something awful must be going on while this plays. Disc One ends with the great "Attack." It's fast-paced and loads of fun to listen to. You can easily imagine rushing the enemy to this theme; what more could you want?

On the second disc, the first track which really impresses is "Fort Invasion." Once again, Matsuo exhibits amazing skill at combing techno and orchestral music, but this piece is of a much grander, more epic scale than those on Disc One. You can tell that capturing the enemy fort is a crucial part for winning the war. "Isolation" is one of the most emotional "sad" themes I've ever heard. Matsuo excels in creating emotional as well as battle themes, so this track is a no-brainer.

"Determination", also by Matsuo; is the final boss theme. It delivers wonderfully. You can feel the extreme tension while you hold on for dear life and pray that you survive the onslaught of the gigantic enemy, Wanzer. "Ending" takes the cake as being the most depressing ending theme ever. There are glimpses of hope here and there, but, overall, you can feel the characters aren't quite satisfied with the way the war has gone, even if it ended, too many lives were lost.

Summary

So, should you get this soundtrack? While Koji Hayama's contribution is hit-and-miss, Hayato Matsuo offers plenty of excellent pieces here and beautifully develops the sound of the series. That said, this soundtrack is now quite hard to find following DigiCube's bankruptcy.



Album
8/10

Music in game
0/10

Game
0/10

Luc Nadeau

Album was composed by Hayato Matsuo / Koji Hayama / Shikegi and was released on July 21, 2001. Soundtrack consists of tracks with duration over more than 2 hours. Album was released by DigiCube.

CD 1

1
The Government
01:50
2
Starting
02:30
3
City (Japan)
02:40
4
Predicament
04:00
5
Bar (All Purpose)
03:05
6
Infiltration
04:08
7
Setup I
03:34
8
Setup II
02:48
9
Network
04:05
10
Base Invasion
04:11
11
Impact
02:18
12
Silence
02:41
13
Defensive War
03:20
14
Anger
03:07
15
VS Mercenaries
04:06
16
City (China)
02:54
17
Bar (China)
02:46
18
Ajito
03:08
19
Escape
02:27
20
Army Base
03:06
21
Research Lab
03:01
22
Lukav I
03:00
23
Suspicion
01:14
24
Front Line Base
03:00
25
Advancing Attack
04:30

CD 2

1
Breather I
04:13
2
Breather II
03:12
3
City (Ruins)
03:03
4
Barilar
02:55
5
Plains (China)
04:06
6
Fort Invasion
04:00
7
Forest (Southeast Asia)
04:56
8
Advancing Enemy
02:15
9
Scout Unit
03:54
10
Aggression
05:04
11
VS Imaginary Number Force
01:52
12
Sorrow
03:02
13
Lukav II
01:54
14
Promise
03:49
15
Lunge
03:59
16
Big Battle
04:32
17
Memories (Alisa)
01:42
18
Swift Attack
03:40
19
Stage End I
01:08
20
Stage End II
01:38
21
Game Over
01:10
22
Ending
06:25
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  • Average album rating: 9.7 (8)
  • Page views: 24446
  • Album achieved 467 place in our Hall of Fame
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