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Atelier Lise -Alchemist of O'ldor- Soundtrack Premium Package :: Review by Charles

Atelier Elie -Alchemist in Salburg 2- Original Soundtrack Album Title: Atelier Lise -Alchemist of O'ldor- Original Soundtrack Premium Package
Record Label: Team Entertainment
Catalog No.: KDSD-10021/3
Release Date: March 21, 2007
Purchase: Buy at CDJapan


Atelier Lise -Alchemist of O'ldor- Original Soundtrack Premium Package is a three disc compilation available through Team Entertainment. It is actually a celebration of all Atelier music that is portable. It features the otherwise separately released soundtrack for Atelier Lise as well as two exclusive semi-ported soundtracks for the Game Boy Advance and Game Boy Color. After hearing the elaborate and high quality soundtracks of the Atelier Iris and Alchemist of Salburg trilogies, it's hard to want to listen to portable versions with their 16-bit chip tunes. Nevertheless, if you are a fan of any of the portable games or portable music, and want more than just the Lise soundtrack, then this is the definitive Atelier soundtrack for you.


The first item of the album is the complete soundtrack to Atelier Lise: Alchemist of O'ldor. This soundtrack previously also received a commercial album release, hence the premium package makes that release somewhat redundant for those who want to shell out a bit. The DS soundtrack really compensates for its sound quality by being super upbeat in comparison to other albums. I get this feeling right off the bat with "OK! Let's Begin" and "Sparkling Workshop". They're catchy and easy to listen to like most of the series, but certainly lack the depth of previous works. A lot of the organic instrumentation was sacrificed along with it. Also, the sound quality really isn't perfect for the DS, but it's not like I was expecting full orchestration or Soma Bringer. Instruments like the violin get really obscured in pieces like "Fragments of Memories" and it becomes distracting even. It's just a bit sad to hear a game compensating for itself. There's still some of that nice flute heavy music like in "Gaze Up at the Great Waterfall", but a lot of the themes leave something to be desired.

The second disc features the music from the Game Boy Advance's Atelier Marie, Elie & Anis: Message from the Gentle Breeze. Given the focal characters, a large proportion of the music comes from the Atelier Marie and Atelier Elie games. However, it is downgraded to meet the notoriously limited channel and memory of capacity of the console. The resulting compositions therefore lose their resonant organic quality in favour of an artificial buzzing sound. This isn't really the fault of the arranger Akira Tsuchiya or manipulators, though, as they still make valiant efforts to retain the lyrical flair and atmospheric quality of the series. It's more a reflection of the inevitable consequences of downgrading PlayStation music on to a portable system. Nevertheless, a few new tunes were created, most obviously the highly cheery and bustling "Anis' Busy At Work" and "Alchemy Girl Magical Anis" for the third protagonist.

The third disc features the music from the Wonderswan Color's Alchemist Marie & Elie: The Two Girls's Atelier. This game is a combination of the Game Boy Color ports of Atelier Marie and Atelier Marie, which have never been released on CD before. These soundtracks once again mainly adapt the music from the original games, hence there is some overlap between the music featured in Disc Two and Disc Three. The arrangements are the same as the Game Boy Color games, but the sound source is different. It's even more chippy than the Game Boy Advance, but somehow much easier on the ears too. It's always fun to hear the really down and dirty chip tune music like on the third disc. That said, while I like the older sound music, I just don't think it works well for this series. It's nice for a playthrough every now and again, but the PlayStation versions are definitely the definitive ones.


The Atelier Lise -Alchemist of O'ldor- Original Soundtrack Premium Package is a great compilation album that really celebrates all that is portable. In the end, pretty much everything that is portable in the Atelier series is sure to be on this album. The exceptions are the Game Boy Color ports, given they're made redundant by the Wonderswan Color version, and the Atelier Annie soundtrack, which received a separate soundtrack release shortly after the game. If light-hearted low-fidelity music is your thing, then you can't go wrong here, but steer away from it if you only enjoy the clearer, more organic music of the PlayStation games though.

Overall Score: 8/10