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Genso Suikoden V Original Soundtrack :: Review by Mac_Tear

Genso Suikoden V Original Soundtrack Album Title: Genso Suikoden V Original Soundtrack
Record Label: Konami Digital Entertainment
Catalog No.: GFCA-41/4
Release Date: March 24, 2006
Purchase: Buy at CDJapan


After over a year of waiting, the latest part of the beloved Suikoden series appeared and reached the hearts of the fans. It featured many comebacks from the past Suikoden games, more colorful graphics and emotions than Suikoden IV, and of course music composed by Norikazu Miura. Miura has also composed and arranged the earlier Suikoden Tactics (aka Rhapsodia) score and contributed a few tracks on Suikoden IV. Suikoden V's music features a wide palette of several styles and arrangements of classic Suikoden themes, for example the classic Name Entry or Victory theme, as well as the Theme for Narcissist and other surprises. The game credits say that four other people were responsible for additional music, namely Yoshihiro Tsukahara (Mario Party 8), Takashi Watanabe (several sound effects), Kuniyuki Takahashi and Chiharu Mukaiyama. Their role can only be spectaculated because the soundtrack details gives no further information, although its rather unlikely that Miura composed the whole bunch of nearly 150 pieces alone. But as I said, it's just spectaculation.

Track-by-Track Reviews

Disc One: Chapter of Dawn

1) Wind of Phantom

Suikoden V's opening theme "Wind of Phantom" is composed by Yuji Toriyama and performed by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. It could't have been a better introduction of the soundtrack and game as well. Why the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, you ask? Well, that's a good question. Maybe because of the royal lineage of our hero, the Prince of Sol-Falena, and the overall noble plot. Either way, it's an excellent choice.

A celtic jig-style fanfare opens the track in a splendid way. Afterwards some elegant strings perform the melody and are later accompanied by woodwinds, horns, and acoustic guitar. When the first minute is over, a grand march begins with some percussion, guitars, and a sitar, which reflects the ethnic atmosphere of the Suikoden universe perfectly.

In the second part, surprisingly a electric guitar shows up and performs a small section until the music reaches its phenomenal end. After all it's one of the best and most effective opening themes from the series. Easily surpassing the openings of Suikoden and Suikoden IV, this might top Suikoden III's emotional or Suikoden II's epic orchestra themes. Whatever the comparison, it's a stunning and wonderfully composed and performed track. (10/10)

2) Starting the Journey ~ Beginning Theme

The classic Name Entry music returns once again. This time is exhibits a very nice ethnic feeling, which is also heard on several other tracks from the soundtrack, through the use of sitar, interesting percussion, and distinctive melodic lines. Pleasant and refreshing. (8/10)

3) The Return

Soft flutes and mellow strings are mainly used in this piece to create a beautiful atmosphere with a distant Eastern feeling. After that a little interlude featuring harpsichord and percussion is played before the first section is used again. I really like the unobtrusive instrumentation here. (8/10)

4) A Moment of Calm

"A Moment of Calm" is actually the first of several versions of the Main Theme of the game. It begins beautifully with the use of strings and acoustic guitar to give a real "calm" feeling. In the middle of the track the second section begins with some flutes and sitar. The overall atmosphere is very peaceful and soothing. Definitely one of the best arrangements. (9/10)

5) Falena's Queen

The next track starts off in a militaristic manner with the use of snare drums, deep and high pitched strings, and some brass. Near the end the strings and horns get more forceful, creating a heroic and strained feeling. This track shows some similarities with "March of the King" from Suikoden II in style and instrumentation. Regardless it's a nice addition and works quite well. (7/10)

6) The Scorched Earth and the Weary People

The first of several unique town themes from this score. They actually work better in the game than on a stand-alone basis given they almost all fit very well to the scenery. The same is true for this one here. The instrumentation is pretty low key with the use of a strong bass line, faint percussion, mandolin decoration, and background strings. There is a depressed and desolate sounding melody featured initially on flute and then on sitar. The theme gives gives the listener the perfect image on Lordlake, a scorched town with weary people in it. Maybe not one of the strongest tracks from this score, but it works wonderfully in the context of the game. (8/10)

7) Recollection

"Recollection" is actually the first of numerous arrangements of this major theme. It's mainly arranged by piano and chimes, though later some strings join and accompany the melody. The atmosphere created is very sorrowful and depressing. It's again very fitting for the scenery, but one of the less memorable arrangements compared to later ones. It's too simple for my tastes. (7/10)

8) A Fated Confrontation

This piece introduces us to the large amount of battle music from Suikoden V. The brass, strings, and percussion are excellent here, full of power, dramatic and morale. It builds up little by little until it reaches it sweeping climax towards the end of the piece. Sadly this theme is only played once during a short scene in the game, but it's definitely worthy of listening. Fans of this type of music won't be disappointed. (8/10)

9) Stolen Heart

Another trademark of this soundtrack are the ambient tracks and this one provides the introduction. There is hardly no memorable melody in here, just ascending and descending strings together with some synth and percussive effects. It intercedes the feeling of anxiety and tense quite well, but is definitely one of the weaker stand-alone tracks. (6/10)

10) A Power Like the Sun

"A Power Like the Sun" is one of my favorite tracks from the first disc. It features a very memorable melody and great instrumentation. The first section is mainly dominated by emphatic violin and harpsichord notes, while a sweeping percussion line and horns accompany them. In the second section strings and flute show up to increase the dramatic in this piece a little. Definitely a piece you won't forget too easily. (9/10)

11) Sealed Room

This track is written in a style similar to "Stolen Heart" but is a bit less memorable. Merely synth and sound effects surround you with a slightly mystic aura. Nothing too spectacular sadly. (5/10)

12) Prison

In contrast to "A Power Like the Sun" this piece uses a more ambient and atmospheric style. It begins with some harsh steel guitar. After that some eerie and depressed strings underlay the piece while the guitar repeats certain notes. The very lonely and empty sounding texture fits within the scenery quiet well. Again, it is quite skippable on a stand-alone basis. (6/10)

13) The Knights

"The Knights" features some interesting percussion and guitar elements in conjunction with a melancholy flute melody. It lacks in development in my opinion. In its 1:40 playtime the piece goes nowhere and the melody simply plays along with no variety. An exception is maybe at the one minute mark when there is a little highlight from the flute. (7/10)

14) The Queen's Knights

This one is a little improvement compared to the previous track. It features a more Eastern sound with the use of shamisen, ethnic flute, and bongo percussion. After the introduction some light strings and jingles accompany the piece to the end. The melody is enjoyable and the instrumentation is pretty fine and fitting for the game's ethnic atmosphere. (8/10)

15) Harmony

"Harmony" is a innocent and happy little piece. It fits in context to represent scenery and personality, for example the appearance of Lym, the Prince's younger sister. The instrumentation is neat with bouncy percussion, guitar, and flute melodies. While the first part is enjoyable, the second part seems a bit out of place in my opinion, but that doesn't matter that much. (7/10)

16) Imperial Capital

A low-key arrangement of "A Power Like the Sun". The melody is played on violin and bagpipe, while acoustic and bass guitars as well some percussion accompany it. It's rather short and not as emphatic as the original version, but it fits the noble and majestic appearance of Sol-Falena very well. (8/10)

17) Disant Journey

"Distant Journey" is used as the world map theme this time. It's an amazing rendition of the Main Theme with the use of bagpipes, marching percussion, and more typical instrumentation including soaring strings and strong brass. The atmosphere is adventurous and the piece is absolutely stunning in construction. It takes you immediately into the world of Suikoden. Maybe not the best version of this theme, but one of the most effective and catchy overworld themes in the entire series for sure. It's very fun to listen to both in the game and on the soundtrack. (9/10)

18) Battle Start

The game's main battle theme is also the first of several (nice) arrangements we can enjoy later on this soundtrack. This version focuses mainly on strong brass and string passages together with some light percussion. The overall style in quiet similar to Suikoden I's "Confrontation with Monsters" with the use of percussion and harmonies, but I think this one is a little better. It works very well in the context of the game, even after several hundred battles the music doesn't get annoying and that's a point not all RPG games can share. Compared to later followed arrangements this one is rather low-key. (8/10)

19) Victory Theme

The traditional "Victory Theme" is also featured this time around. This time it captures a more energetic and Eastern feeling with the use of an Japanese flute. It's quite representative of the overall musical approach of the game. (7/10)

20) The Godwin Family Castle

"The Godwind Family Castle" is used as Stormfist's town theme. It features a gorgeous melody together with brilliant instrumentation. Eerie chimes and flute lead into the main melody, while a acoustic guitar, strings, and percussion accompany them and build up a majestic atmosphere. In the second section a sitar is used to perform the melody, which gives the track a little ethnic vibe. There are also a few arranged versions of this theme, one later on this soundtrack and one on the Music Collection CD. However, this is by far the best in my opinion. (9/10)

21) The Sacred Games

Another interesting piece. Pompous brass introduce the piece, while the strings soar in the background and the bombastic percussion drive the piece along. After that some delightful flute melodies shows up making this piece really fun to listen to. Thereafter the brass again takes the lead role until a small passage appears where the percussion is heard only. The developement here is great; it makes the music really exciting and fits to the spectacular event in the game extremely well. (9/10)

22) Arena

The next track is similar to the previous two tracks only with a more militaristic and tense feeling within it. From the strong and excellent brass chords to the fantastic use of strings, the theme is very effective and moving. Although the melody isn't as strong as the previous ones, the percussion is also quiet interesting and well done. Nice gladiator track. (8/10)

23) Time of Confrontation

The installation's One-on-One Duel music. Compared to earlier additions from the series, especially the latest from Suikoden IV, this is a big disappointment. It just features some repetitive brass chords, tremolo strings, and flutes. The percussion is the only thing which is quiet interesting here, but it falls behind because of the lack of the melody. The theme captures the feeling of confrontation, tension, and drama quite well, but it doesn't stand out as one of the strongest battle tracks in here. (7/10)

24) A Nap

A light version of "A Power Like the Sun" with pizzicato strings and flute. I like the second part where the instrumentation and development are a bit more enhanced. Dozed off? No? OK, then let's carry on... (7/10)

25) The Thriving Inn

A bouncy waltz version of the Main Theme with use of accordion, chimes, and woodwinds. It's interesting how one single melody can be transformed into various themes such as this one. Swing along! (8/10)

26) Rest

Another version of the Main Theme. This time a more mellow and restrained sound is provided by strings and flute. There is nothing more to say — it's very simple, but effective in the context of game. (7/10)

27) Standing Firm

A good situation theme which reflects the feeling of tension. The short breaks between the sections are especially nice. However, this is definitely a piece which works only in game. In the soundtrack, it feels a bit like filler and can be repetitive. (7/10)

28) Suspicion

Another situation theme. This time it's a bit more melodious and features a part of "Distrust" in it. The high pitched strings and woodwind melodies harmonize well with each other while the triangle and guitar use in the middle of the track creates a nice effect. It works sovereign in the context of the game, but like the previous track it's filler on the soundtrack. (7/10)

29) Slaves' Living Area

Like "Sealed Room", this one also focuses on building up a surrounding atmosphere with eerie synth pads, but it's a bit more effective than the others. True, it's very monononous and empty, but it reflects these feelings together with a breeze of mystery and fear, fitting for the scenery of a Slave Prison. (6/10)

30) Underground Passage

Ah... the famous Dungeon Theme from the first two Suikoden games returns here in a light mix version. A nice recollection, but the first versions were better. It's boring rather than enjoyable with the use of repetitive percussion and synth effects. The strings sound good, but that's sadly all. (7/10)

31) Declaration of War

This one is an interesting piece. It begins dramatic with the use of strings and percussion, then some horns set in and... hey, what's that? The Suikoden Main Theme appears in a few minor notes which gives the overall atmosphere a more light interlude. Apart from this the rest is rather repetitive and unmemorable, but it works in game quite well. (8/10)

32) The Stage of Battle

Back to the Sacred Games, this one is another exciting action track similar to "Arena". The brass and strings are once again excellent here and the use of percussion is delicious as well. The only thing which lacks is the melody. The music builds up a feeling of tension and confrontation in a very effective way, but sadly there is no point where a good melody shines. Anyway,the arrangement is top-notch and makes this piece one of the more enjoyable themes. (8/10)

33) Unrest

Some minor piano notes, light percussion, strings, and guitar constitute "Unrest". It's one of the typical atmospheric themes which is needed for a scene, but instead of others of this kind it lacks on memorability and developement. Somewhat enjoyable in the game. (6/10)

34) Sorrow

An arrangement of "Recollection" with the use of piano, acoustic guitar, and some faint synth in the background. It features a little more depth as the original version, mainly because of the improvement of the piano and the use of a well-harmonised guitar. I really like the part from 1:55 to the end. (8/10)

35) Distrust

This is another atmospheric theme. It features some minor notes of "Suspicion" in a very eerie form with the use of flute and synth. It's quite desolate sounding and works decent in the context of the game. (6/10)

36) The Two Guardian Runes

"The Two Guardian Runes" is a haunting guitar solo with some light synth in the background. It captures a feeling of mystery, convexness, and beauty all with just one instrument. That's quite amazing! The development is simple, but effective. Nobuko Toda's arranged version from the Music Collection is also very beautiful done; it's more grand and epic, but it doesn't capture the same effect than this piece does. Simple, but beautiful. (8/10)

37) A Beauty in Black

"A Beauty in Black" is the theme of Zerase, a mysterious sorceress who owns the Star Rune. The music is very atmospheric, based on synth melodies, strings, and harp appregios. It reflects a feeling of mystery, beauty, and eeriness as well, which it shows little by little with the slow development. Around the two minute mark the atmosphere gets more emphatic resulting in a very graceful conclusion. This experimental piece is a new direction of the Suikoden series and helps to bring it forward to the new age. (8/10)

38) Holy Land

The town theme of Lunas is a very beautiful and peaceful one. It features a gorgeous use of acoustic guitar and flute samples together with light synth and strings in the background. It's clearly one of the most enjoyable town themes around here, even if it lacks a little on memorable melodies. (8/10)

39) One Peaceful Moment

"One Peaceful Moment" features a similar atmosphere like the previous track, but is a bit more emphatic. Again, a acoustic guitar is used here, as well as a mandolin, a sweet piano line, some synth, and light percussion including cymbals. The atmosphere is so relaxing, warm, and tender that it really touches your heart. A very nice track. (8/10)

40) The Deep Forest, The Lost Forest

The first disc ends with a typical Forest Theme with the use acoustic guitars, bass, and whistling flute. The atmosphere is a bit mysterious and gentle as well, but it lacks on memorability and development. It's a little too bland and repetitive. (7/10)

Disc Two: Chapter of Dawn

1) At Play

The second disc opens up with a comical and silly number. "At Play" is featuring interesting instrumentation such as steel drums, percussion, saxophones, and xylophones. It reminds me a bit of "The Conversation Continues" from Suikoden IV, but luckily this one is much better developed and varied. Works in funny scenes very well. (7/10)

2) Town on a River

Raftfleet is one of the most interesting and unique places in this game, because the "town" itself consists of several boats and planks which are attached with each other. The musical theme is very vigorous with the use of excellent percussion, violin, flute, bass, xylophons, and chimes. The first section is more adventurous and upbeat with a strong violin melody, while the second section is more peaceful with calmed down percussion and flute harmonies. Even after several listenings this theme never gets boring or annoying and that's a great feature this theme possesses. It's very enjoyable and entertaining. (9/10)

3) The Dahaka's Departure

Another exciting theme shows up with "The Dahaka's Departure". The Dahaka itself is a large ship which is used as residence for Raftfleet's Admiral. It features a strong and emphatic percussion which is based on the previous track, except a little more improved with tambourine and guitars. The melody is played by bagpipe and strings in a enormous powerful way. The string section especially reflects a bit of an eastern or oriental atmosphere. The overall song is a bit repetitive after some time. An electronic dance remix can be found on the Music Collection arranged by Naoyuki Sato, but I prefer this version instead. (9/10)

4) Engagement Ceremony

"Engagement Ceremony" is a nice little dance which features some soft flute melodies, strings, and guitars. It accentuates the event well and gives the listener a feeling of festiveness and joy. It's too short and unspectacular to receive more attention. (7/10)

5) Tension

This is the main tension / hurry theme for the game and it captures the typical crisis atmosphere in an effective way. Beginning with an harsh orchestra hit and pulsing percussion including timpani, snares, and marimba, the piece developes in an energetic way. Ascending and descending strings and flutes are used in the background while some brass is used later in the second half to build up a little climax. However, the overall theme is very repetitive with hardly no memorable melody. (7/10)

6) A Mighty Enemy

"A Mighty Enemy" is the main boss theme for this game. It begins with some deep brass chords, timpani, and cymbals and leads into the main section with a frantic and strong use of percussion, brass chords, and strings. It really gives you the atmosphere of battling a worthy foe with a feeling of tension, epic, and agony. Quite similar to the first two boss themes from the series, especially with the use of percussion. Not the greatest battle theme, but one of the best around here. (8/10)

7) An Attack

"An Attack" is an interesting composition which is very similar to "Enemy Attack" from Suikoden II. It features some catchy ascending and descending appregios, strings, shakuhachi, a nice hi-hat, and some cool electronic effects. The created atmosphere has a touch of ethnicity, as well as dramatic and tense feel. It fits very well to the game's scenery. (8/10)

8) Sadness

This is another arrangement of "Recollection". This time it is more mournful, nearly tear-jerking with some glockenspiel, deep and high strings, and piano. The use of flute in the first section and violin in the second section are used very well in my opinion. It's maybe a little too simple to gain a higher score, but all in all a emotional track and a beautiful rendition of a major theme. (8/10)

9) Despair and Hope

The sad atmosphere from the previous track continues with "Despair and Hope". The first section is dominated by a beautiful flute, harp, and strings, which give the track a feeling of despair. When it's over a violin makes it appearance and plays some notes from "Recollection" again, while the harp appregios and strings get more intense to give a feeling of hope. The jingles in the background are a nice effect too. Overall a very pleasing and worthy piece. (8/10)

10) One's True Character

With this piece some bad memories of the Suikoden III score come back to life. The music itself has no melody, just weird and annoying percussion effects. It you know the song "??" from Final Fantasy V you know what I mean. It may be fitting to some weird/funny scenes, but that's pretty much all. One of the most unmemorable tracks from the score. (3/10)

11) The Great Artists

"The Great Artists" is... well... the theme for Haud Village, a bizarre place full of strange buildings and crazed people. The music itself is, from this point of view, very fitting. It captures the above mentioned things in a very effective way from weird synth riffs to out-of-context elements such as a steel drum. I just love the voice snippets in here — they're too funny! In the use of game it's a pleasing and effective track. On the soundtrack it may serve as one of those skippable tracks, especially when you never played the game. (6/10)

12) Narcy's Theme

Ah...what is Suikoden without the infamous "Narcy's Theme"? This time the piano is in the foreground accompanied by the classic accordion and flute. It's close to the original version from the first Suikoden and captures the sneaking, arrogant, but also clumsy atmopshere quiet well. (8/10)

13) The Water Capital

"The Water Capital" is another unique town theme with pleasant and refreshing instrumentation. The melody is dominated by the flute and later the harmonica, while acoustic and bass guitars as well as some watery synth and light percussion accompany them. The atmosphere is lively, pleasant, and absolutely fitting to Rainwall. (8/10)

14) An Odd Bunch

This is Salom Barrow's theme — a fat, mucilaginous, but involuntarily funny person, Lord of the Barrows Family, and one of the antagonists of the game. The theme is quite fun to listen to and fits his personality well. From the waltz tact over the harmonies, everything is just fine. It is maybe a bit repetitive, but on a stand-alone level is still an enjoyable piece. (7/10)

15) Mansion on a Hill

The theme for the Barrows Mansion is another little jolly one. The rhythm line is similar to the previous track only a bit lower. The light pizzicato and ensemble strings as well as the various woodwinds fit well together to create another fun and effective track. Nothing too spectacular though. (7/10)

16) A Lovely and Talented Woman

This is just a 13 second clip with some nice harp and string sections. It's played when Luserina, the daughter of Salom Barrows appears in a cutscene. (5/10)

17) Before Escaping Safely...

The next two themes are featured in a moving cutscene where Lyon, the Prince's guard, tells the truth about her past. The first track is actually a refraining piece with a few notes from "Recollection" within it. While the track begins rather slowly and bland, it gets more power around the second half when the brass leads into an beautiful part with harp and strings. Sadly underused in the game, this is one of the more effective pieces from the score. (9/10)

18) Overcoming the Grief

If there is one theme that is touching and emotional then it would be this one. From the beautiful piano chords to the melancholy oboe melody, everything is just fine here with exception of the length. The track is simply too short and doesn't develop to its true strength. The track is also a but clichéd, but it works very well in the context of the game. (9/10)

19) Move Out!

"Move Out!" was one of the pieces which stuck in my head when I first listened to this soundtrack. It's very heroic, dramatic, and pulsing with catchy use of orchestration and an excellent horn/string combo. You really can imagine an enemy army outside before the decisive fight begins; everyone's shouting "Victory is Ours!" and preparing for battle. Fantastic track. (9/10)

20) Clash!

Suikoden V's Warfare Theme. The first 42 seconds contains a clever remix of Suikoden II's War Theme with excellent use of percussion, brass, and flutes. After that the piece gets more heroic and emphatic with big brass and bell chimes, leading it to the end. The tune is enjoyable and varied so, even after some battles, you'll not get boring from this. (8/10)

21) Cry Victory!

The victory theme which plays after you won the war battle. Very effective in context of the game with great use of timpani and brass. On a stand-alone basis, it's skippable. (7/10)

22) Defeat

This plays when you have lost the war battle. It's the same as the previous track in construction. However, it's exhibits the opposite mood creating a somber atmosphere. A little less effective than the previous. (6/10)

23) When Your Strength Runs Out

The Game Over theme is a lyrical harpsichord duet which is similar to Final Fantasy IX or Final Fantasy X's game over themes. It's texture is quite simple, but enjoyable. By the way, it's actually the first original game over theme in the series. (7/10)

24) Running to the River

"Running to the River" plays whenever you take a ship and drive through the rivers on the world map. As you may have guessed this is another version of the Main Theme, but this time a more bouncy and uptempo one. It features the typical Suikoden style with a touch of ethnicity within. From the fast-paced percussion over the strings to the flute and sitar melody to the refreshing harp arpeggios, it's a pleasant arrangement and addition to the score. (8/10)

25) The People Underground

The theme for the Dwarf Camp is actually an interesting tune. An oboe is used as main instrument here and later a second flute follows. Tribal percussion and ethnic strings accompany them. The choice of instrumentation is clever and fits the scenery very well. (8/10)

26) The Earth, Water, Fire and Iron

This is a strange piece which plays while you meet the Dwarf Gunde. The first section is mainly performed by some ethnic flutes together with tribal percussion while the second section is more pulsing with the use of tubular bells and deep strings. A rather silly filler tune in my opinion, but it's enjoyable in the context of the game. (7/10)

27) Imprisonment

After the gloomy introduction some rather repetitive guitar samples appear accompanied by sinister violin and some percussive effects. It reminds me a little of "The Nightmare's Beginning" from Final Fantasy VII. As this plays in Agate Prison, it fits the scenery quiet well, but it's clearly one of the less inspired tracks. (7/10)

28) Tactician

The theme for Lucretia Merces, the beautiful Tactican of the game, is not the type of theme most would expect. It's neither militaristic nor dramatic — it's just pure beauty and describes her elegant, but also tragic, character very well. It uses a mournful melody of flute and violin together with light percussion, bass, and guitar. I really like the arrangement — it's not obtrusive, but also not too cautious. A more dramatic and lush version of this theme can be found on the Suikoden V Privilege Collection from Nobuko Toda titled "Lucretia's Smile". (9/10)

29) Strategy

"Strategy" is also an interesting piece. It's a remix of Suikoden II's "Tactics", which was the actual strategy meeting theme like this one. The percussion and background strings are sometimes identical, especially from 0:43 - 1:00. To round off the whole piece, the Main Theme is used as the melody line with some nice additions such as the violin. Though I prefer Suikoden II's one, this is very fitting and well arranged. (8/10)

30) Shadow of Doubt

A monotonous and repetitive tune with sinister strings and harp. A typical filler track, which only works in the context of the game. (6/10)

31) Oboro Detective Agency

Suikoden II and Suikoden III had an Detective Agency where you could find out clues about your characters. This one is a typical "sneaky" theme with jazzy instrumentation. The light flute melody is enjoyable, while the percussion and bass line are excellent here. It's fitting, but its unable to hold a candle to "Dandy Richmond" from Suikoden II. (7/10)

32) Guys Who Feign Ignorance

A rather unserious piece of music with use of horns, woodwinds, and percussion. It reflects the feeling of silliness quite well and works effectively in the context of the scenes it's used. Sadly the melody is a bit too repetitive for my taste, but I like the little part before the loop. (7/10)

33) Fallen

A symphonic theme mostly dominated by strings, woodwinds, and a few percussive effects such as timpani. A few minor notes from "Recollection" can be heard at the beginning. The overall piece is a bit too repetitive, but it works decently for the town of Rainwall after the uprising. (7/10)

34) Symphonic Poem "Dance of Death"

The second version of the normal battle theme. Instead of the light and cautious instrumentation of the first one, this one uses a synth orchestra and sounds more powerful, energetic, and dramatic as well. The percussion is very well done and the brass and strings also sound excellent here. That's why I like this version more than the original one. (9/10)

35) Crossing the Mountain River

The mountain theme for this game has a Celtic touch within and bouncy percussion. The melody is played by an violin and flute duet while an interesting percussion and bass line accompanies them. I like the instrumentation, but again it's too simple and repetitive. (7/10)

36) Village of Restoration

"Village of Restoration" is the Yashuna Village theme and accentuates the Japanese-styled scenery with the fitting music. The piece is very smooth and simple typical instruments like the shamisen, koto, or shakuhachi are used together with light percussion. You can easily imagine a small village with hot springs and relaxing hotels. (7/10)

37) The Water, Trees and Sun

The Beavers Lodge theme is a fun and enjoyable piece of music in similar style to "The Deep Forest, The Lost Forest". It opens with some ethnic woodwind instrument, then lively guitars and flutes appear to perform a nice little jig. The instrumentation is very natural and fits the scenery very well, although the melody is a bit repetitive. (7/10)

38) Warmth

A conversation theme with an actually light-hearted and tender atmosphere provided by soft woodwinds and pizzicato strings. It's a bit repetitive, but works fine in the context of the game, especially when it plays in the scene with the Beaver's elder. (7/10)

39) A Phantom Reborn

"A Phantom Reborn" features a similar style as the previous "A Beauty in Black", namely atmospheric ambient sounds with some eerie flute and harp sounds. Very chilling and low-key, which fits the scenery of Seras Lake quite well. (8/10)

40) Friend or Foe?

A situation theme performed in a very symphonic way with lush strings, horns, and woodwinds. It begins on a foreboding and uneasy line, but when the woodwinds enter the atmosphere gets more light and dramatic towards the end. Another simple piece, but I like the developement and the change of mood in here. (8/10)

41) Traces of the Sindar Civilation

This piece is an arrangement of the Sindar Ruins theme from Suikoden III called "Midwinter Land". It keeps the ethnic and mystic atmosphere with the catchy harp appergios, sitar, mandoline, and pan flute. However sadly, the overall theme is quiet unmemorable and the repetitive appergios can be annoying after a while. For a dungeon theme it is quite acceptable. (7/10)

42) Natural Naivete

"Natural Naivete" is Viki's Theme, the clumsy teleportation girl which also appeared in all previous Suikoden games. The music is very pleasant to listen to with light instrumentation and percussion such as guitar, whistle, and violins. It fits her innocent character quite well, but is a little too simple and underdeveloped for a higher score. Still, a nice end of the disc. (7/10)

Disc Three: Chapter of Twilight

1) The River and the Sun

The third disc opens grandiosely. After the grand introduction percussion in form of hihats and tribal beats sets in and the Main Theme is played in an very exciting and pompous version similar like "Distand Journey". The atmosphere is simply breathtaking, especially when you watch the accompanying event. The third disc couldn't have been opened in a better way. (10/10)

2) Star Tower

"Star Tower" is the first of three variations of the Headquarter theme and features the beloved Main Theme in it. It opens with some eerie bells, light percussion, and harp arpeggios. Then the melody in form of soft flutes sets in, whereafter a sitar joins to give it a more ethnic touch. The second section features some synth horns together with the bell motif from the start. Overall it's a nice and unique theme which fits to the scenery very well. As it's the first version, this one has a more minor role compared to later followed arrangements. (8/10)

3) Lordlake's Restoration

The music for Lordlake after its restoration is a beautiful and lush theme with guitars, flute, accordion, and strings. It gives you the picture of an restored town back to its full glory and beauty; the sun is shining and everyone's happy again, unlike the first theme "The Scorched Earth and the Weary People". A bit short, but a sweet little piece. (8/10)

4) Sharing Fate Together

"Sharing Fate Together" is just a little jingle which plays when a comrade joins you. It was used in the past Suikoden titles in game as well, but this arrangement is the first time it went on a soundtrack. (5/10)

5) The Three Islands

A relaxing tune full of soft harmonies and light instrumentation. It's used for the island of Leclar and various hot springs, where it fits quite well. You really can chill with this piece, though it's a bit too simply for my tastes. (7/10)

6) Bonds

A lush orchestral version of the "Recollection" theme and in my opinion one of the stronger arrangements. Even though it sounds a bit clichéd, it works pretty well on soundtrack. In the second part the melody from "A Sad Wish" makes it apperance, with gives the track a dramatic conclusion. A good arrangement. (8/10)

7) Final Defense Battle

The second war theme is actually an improved and dramatic arrangement of the first one combining harsh brass phrases and dramatic string sections to exciting effect. However, it's missing a bit of the catchiness the first theme had. (7/10)

8) Waving the Flag of Victory

Another victory theme performed by brass, flutes, and timpani. Similar to the first one. (7/10)

9) Fort Town

An interesting and unique town theme. This time is features a Wild Arms western style with a whistle melody, cool guitar, a bass line, and frenzied percussion. Even if the melody isn't the strongest, it captures a nice smooth feeling and fits well to the Town of Sable. (8/10)

10) Premonition of Battle

Everytime before a One-on-One Duel is starting this theme is played. It captures of feeling of premonition and confrontation very well. The brass is once again a highlight here, and also the bumping percussion and strings do a great job. Sadly this theme isn't used as the real duel music. (8/10)

11) Suddenly it's Euram Barrows!

Euram Barrows, the idiotic son of Salom Barrows, gets a pleasant theme which reflects his character fantastically. It works especially well in one scene in Sable which is too funny. The instrumentation is nice with violin, harpsichord, percussion, and brass and reflects his noble but clumsy and humorous character very well. Very entertaining and well suited. (8/10)

12) Scenery by the Windmills

The Estrise theme features similar instrumentation to "Imperial Capital" from the first disc, but is better developed and arranged. The catchy and playful violin and flute melodies work well with each other. A brief sequence from the Gregminister Theme from the first Suikoden can be heard shortly after the one minute mark where only percussion plays. One of the better town themes. (8/10)

13) Oh, Sparkling Sea! Oh, Sky! Once Again!

The ocean theme from Suikoden IV returns here with a lush and low-key arrangement. Instead of the fast-paced percussion from the original, this one is slower. I liked the original a bit more, because of the adventurousness, but this is a warm welcome and a nice retrospective piece. (8/10)

14) Harbor Town by the Lighthouse

Nirva Island is a nice harbor town with proud fleets and noble sea admirals. The music track is very fitting with a distant military and convex atmosphere. The instrumentation is fantastic with great use of percussion, flutes, strings, and tubular bells. It keeps the balance between drama and calmness quiet well. (8/10)

15) Island Nations Federation Naval Admiral

Admiral Skald's Theme is one track that I absolutely adore. Not only does it fit his adventurous and capricious character extremely well, but the piece itself is also excellently constructed and arranged. From the loud brass chords to the harsh harpsichord samples and strings to the organ as well, everything works. Military percussion is also added to give the track more tension. I especially like the introduction and the brass line around the one minute mark. The harpsichord line can be sometimes a little repetitive, but overall it's an stunning, creative, but sadly underused track. (9/10)

16) The Great Lighthouse of Nirva Island

Beginning with some minor and sinister notes from the Main Theme, this dungeon theme is an interesting one. Again, the instrumentation is pretty fine here with a strong and pulsing bass line, light bells, piano chords, and string / horn passages including a variation of "The River and the Sun". This gives you the feeling of climbing an enormous tower from the bottom to the top. (8/10)

17) Pirate Extermination

Suikoden IV's battle theme makes an appearance here in a slight arranged version. The overall piece stays the same, but this time the arrangement is a bit better. There is use of percussive effects and some new harmonies to fit with the rest of the score, such as the sitar in the second half. Not one of the strongest battle themes, but a nice "guest appearance". (7/10)

18) "Coronation"

An event theme which is mainly dominated by majestic strings, brass, woodwinds, and percussive effects. It fits the coronation scene very well and gives the listener a feeling like "something's not right here..." The instrumentation lacks a bit, but overall it's a welcome addition. (7/10)

19) We Gather Near the Water

The second variation of the headquarter theme is this time a little more lively with more harmonies and some better instrumentation with percussion, strings and woodwinds. It also features an Enya-like chorale from 1:40 until the loop, which is a very neat addition. The theme is getting better with each arrangement... (9/10)

20) Game On!

A little piece which is used as a opener to the mini-game trilogy. It's quite listenable, but actually too short and repetitive to discuss in detail. The percussion is interesting and the steel drum is a fresh addition as well. (6/10)

21) War on the Table

One of the mini-game themes in this game, luckily with more comfortable instrumentation than the previous score. It's in a similar fresh style like the track before with nice percussion, strong use of sitar and flute, and guitar riffs. Easy to listen to and not annoying, but in melodic way a bit repetitive and uninspired. (7/10)

22) Practice Dragon Horse Racing

This theme accompanies a fun game in style of a race with dragon horses and is a truly exciting end of the mini-game tracks. The instrumentation mixes both orchestral and electronic elements and could be straight from the beloved Suikoden II. Starting up with an ethnic flute, synth pads, and a funky eletronic beat, the piece gets more emphatic around the 20 second mark, where great string and horn passages set in and "The River and the Sun" theme makes a short but strong appearance. A remarkable piece — very well composed and one of those better mini game themes. (8/10)

23) Military Fortress

As the title implies, this piece is a slow militaristic march dominated by deep brass chords and strings. In the second half an organ makes a appearance which gives the track a bit of an epic and yet tragic feeling. Overall, an atmospheric track. (8/10)

24) Counteroffensive

This track is a bit more exciting than the previous one. It steadily uses percussion, strings, woodwinds, and sitar to gives the listener a feeling of doom, determination, and tension. Perfect for an invasion of an besieged fortress! The arrangement is pretty well done and the melodies and harmonies work well with each other. Maybe a bit too ambient and repetitive for my taste, but it's OK. (8/10)

25) Life or Death?

The second boss theme is similar to the first one. There is dramatic orchestration and a feeling of tense and confrontation in the first section, but it's more tragic and lush in the second part. Again, strings and horns are the highlight in here. While not as impacting as "A Mighty Enemy" I think this one here is a bit more deep melodically. (8/10)

26) Bitterness

A climactic variation of "A Sad Wish" with dramatic strings and some percussive effects. It fits the scenery quite well in the context of the game, but in the score it's another of those filler tracks. Not bad, but also not enjoyable enough. (7/10)

27) Determination ~Tragic Battle~

When I first listened to this track I thought: "Wow, this is really something special". Actually used as an battle theme during the duel with Miakis, the Princess' bodyguard, it illustrates her determination and need for protection with a depressed and dramatic atmosphere. While lending some melody phrases from "Life or Death?", the instrumentation is neat with the use of fast-paced percussion, guitar, woodwinds, and strings. Truly an extraordinary and well composed piece. Nobuko Toda's overblown dramatic version of this piece on the Music Collection is listenable, too. (9/10)

28) The White Sorceress ~The Star Over Yonder~

The famous "Touching Theme" or theme for Leknaat from the first Suikoden is back at last after being missing in the last two episodes. But instead of being overblown dramatically, this arrangement features a more soft and melancholy atmosphere. From the lyrical harp introduction to the beautiful end, the piece develops in a fantastic way. The use of harmonies is excellent here; the strings sound beautiful, while the addition of brass, woodwinds, and percussion in the second half is very nice and refreshing. A true classic and one of the most memorable themes from the series. Mabye not as top-notch as the original version, but I'm glad that this one is revived here with a beautiful arrangement. (9/10)

29) Assault!

A typical crisis and hurry theme. Deep brass chords play some notes from the war theme heard later on in conjunction with fast-paced percussion and strings. This is really the type of piece that works in the game well, but isn't very enjoyable otherwise. (7/10)

30) Betrayal

Another one of the tension themes in the soundtrack. Though it might be a bit repetitive, it works fantastically in the context of the game, because the development is simply breathtaking and gives the listener a feeling of confrontation, anxiety, and crisis. The brass does a great job here together with the string ensemble. (7/10)

31) Farewell

The conclusion of the tension trilogy is a bit more enjoyable. It begins with a whirl of dramatic strings together with some percussion, brass, and sitar. One of those themes which work excellently in the context of the game, but not really my cup of tea. (7/10)

32) The Extreme Deep

A dungeon theme dominated mostly by acoustic guitar, harp, and some additional effects like bells, violin, and light bongos. It sounds very natural and fitting for a cave, but is still a little too bland and repetitive. (7/10)

33) Fortified Castle

The theme for Sauronix, home of the Dragon Horse Knights, is a revamped version of one of the first tracks from the soundtrack, namely "Falena's Queen". While the military percussion line is identical, the melody has changed and is more emphatic through use of a dramatic build-up of strings. Not one of the most creative additions, but enjoyable. (7/10)

34) The Sound of a Flute Echoing on the Battlefield

Nice title by the way. This is the third variation of the main battle theme and features, as the title implies, a ethnic flute carrying the melody accompanied by light percussion and some orchestration. It's a interesting arrangement of the original track and sounds more peaceful. This is a little strange given the dramatic power of the first two versions. It's nevertheless quite charming to fight with this theme sometimes. (8/10)

35) Dragon Horses, Cross Over the Meadows

The melody of "Fortified Castle" is arranged here with a Celtic style. While the instrumentation is very pleasant, the theme is actually too short to impress more. That's quite a shame, because it has some potential. (8/10)

36) Soldiers of Godwin

A harpsichord solo in a Baroque style. It sounds sometimes like music from Bach or other classical composers. It's used during a very funny scene, but is also one of those filler tracks from the score, so you might want to skip it. (7/10)

37) Paen

Ah, the Main Theme makes a glorious return with this track. While actually sounding like a military mix of "Distant Journey" and "The River and the Sun", this piece is quite interesting and beautifully arranged. Not one of the most original arrangements, but a worthy addition for sure. (8/10)

38) Castle of Dawn

The final version of the headquarter theme is the best version for sure. It is a more glorious, epic, and lively arrangement than the first two. Some majestic brass chords together with tubular bells lead into a heroic march version of the main melody. The orchestration is fantastic. I really like the second part from 1:10 — it's so catchy and memorable. Miura simply pulls everything out of this piece and saved the best for last. (10/10)

39) Enchanting Runemistress

Jeane's Theme from Suikoden IV also makes a comeback here. While the first version was more mystical and enchanting, this extended arrangement is more upbeat with a touch of ethnicity. The melody is still very beautiful and memorable and the instrumentation is right on. That's why I prefer this version more than the original. (9/10)

40) Wandering the Labyrinth

A dungeon theme with gentle strings, a haunting flute melody, and some light percussion. It's more ambient that most, but I think it's one of the more enjoyable dungeon or cave themes from this score and serves its purpose well. (8/10)

41) A City Sealed Within the Earth

Similar to the previous one, this dungeon theme for a ruined city under the earth is even more ambient and features a haunting and ethnic atmosphere. Not too spectacular, but enjoyable and good to chill to. (7/10)

Disc Four: Chapter of Twilight

1) A Sad Wish

The fourth disc starts with an amazing piece. With some steady percussion and guitar playing in the background, a haunting female voice mourns a lyrical phrase of "Recollection" supported by an Enya-like choir and some beautiful flute passages. This piece is very emotional and strongly textured. A fantastic opener for the last disc. (10/10)

2) The Light Mourning in the Darkness

A piano solo version of the previous track. Even if the "Recollection" theme is overused in this score, this piece is a beautiful rendition and worthy to listen. Definitely one of the best variations. (9/10)

3) Armes New Kingdom

Very ethnic. The use of sitar, tribal percussion, and woodwinds is excellent here. However, it's clearly lacking on memorability. A unique and interesting addition, but one of the more odd tracks and a slight stinker after two excellent tracks. (7/10)

4) Dancing Rhapsody

What?! Suikoden is going to rock? This is the first time a Suikoden game uses rock elements within a score or even an electric guitar for that matter. It's the fourth last variation of the battle theme with Sakuraba-esque elements like organ, fast-paced percussion, and of course cool electric guitars riffs. Though it might sound out of place and doesn't quiet fit with the rest of the score, this is a unique and daring arrangement. I'm glad that Miura wanted to try something special and brought new winds into the series to keep it in the modern century. Listen to it, as it will grow on you, just as it did to me after a while. (9/10)

5) Surrender

A light reorchestrated version of "The Godwind Family Castle". While it's not as majestic and emphatic as the original, this one features a more peaceful and low-key atmosphere, which is again fitting for the gameplay. (8/10)

6) The Night Before the Decisive Battle ~Theme of a Moonlit Night~

Ah... I almost cried when I listened to this [oece. This is also one of those tracks which came from Suikoden and Suikoden II, and it's one of the most emotional themes (next to the "Touching Theme") in the series and delivers a huge feeling of nostalgia. Like "The White Sorceress", this arrangement is very beautifully done, but lacks on memorability against the versions of the first games, especially Suikoden II's. That's maybe also because the scenes where stronger than in this game. (9/10)

7) Peace

"Peace" is a light piano version of the Main Theme. It serves it's purpose well, but is too short and cheesy for my taste. Another typical filler track. (7/10)

8) The Sound of a Flute in the Moonlit Night

Even if this is only a duet between two flutes, this piece is unusually strong and atmospheric, especially when you have played the game. The melody from "Theme of a Moonlit Night" is used here. Simple, but very nostalgic. (8/10)

9) Battle to Recapture Sol-Falena

The last decisive warfare begins and with it a new music theme. "Battle to Recapture Sol-Falena" is a magnificent piece full of power, heroism, and dynamism. The brass is the highlight here with loud and energetic phrases, from the beginning over the middle section to the end, where the motif from the first warfare theme appears. Focused mainly on the brass, the remaining instrumentation lacks a bit, for example the percussion. However, it's still an effective track. (8/10)

10) Angry Waves

A tension theme with dissonant strings, flutes, and brass together with some percussion in the first section. Around 0:50, the snare drums gets a bit lower leading to a nice interlude with hi-hat rhythms, some chimes, and strings playing. It's perfectly fitting for the scene featuring a dam is breaking and a giant wave crashing over the town. (7/10)

11) The Fated Showdown

This is a battle mix of "Standing Firm" from Disc One with increased tempo and some energetic percussion. The overall atmosphere is a bit dull and repetitive, but I like the timpani solo after the one minute mark, which builds up a nice climax. (7/10)

12) Scar of Destruction

"Scar of Destruction" is a very mournful and depressing piece. It features gentle acoustic guitar riffs, flute passages, some percussive effects, and vocals in the background. A deep violin which plays the main melody, which is based on the "Recollection" theme once again. The instrumentation is very pleasant and the developement is right on, but why do they have to reuse this theme so many times? I wonder... (9/10)

13) Purification Spring

A new age track with some great harp / guitar arpeggios. It gives a perfect watery feeling needed for a small cave with a holy spring inside. The use of tribal percussion is also excellent here. It's a bit repetitive, but still a nice chill out track. (8/10)

14) Land of the Founder

After the eerie introduction, an acoustic guitar sets in together with some high pitched strings, surrounding flute effects, and percussion. This is an classic ambient track with hardly no melody line, just up and down harmonies. This isn't a bad thing at all, but it's not enjoyable enough on a stand-alone level. (7/10)

15) Ruins Locked in Snow and Ice

The last dungeon theme is an atmospheric one. It features an enchanting organ melody together with some synth and percussive effects. It gives the listener a feeling of determination, coldness, and sacredness. Effective. (8/10)

16) Invocation

A cinematic piece which builds up a great climax with each passing moment. Beginning with some low timpani and sinister strings, soon an organ sets in, synth melodies appear, and the timpani gets a bit more emphatic. At the one minute mark, the strings perform a dissonant part full of suspense and despair. This might sound a bit monononous and repetitive, but it works excellently during the cutscene where it plays and is a nice lead-in into the next track... (7/10)

17) The Final Conclusion

The last battle theme is a climactic composition full of suspense and crisis moments. But instead of relying on fast percussion and heroic melody frames, Miura chooses to develop a more atmospheric and low-key battle theme with great use of organ, strings, and horns. The percussion is more diffident here, but in some sections it really comes alive. The track begins with a dramatic conclusion of strings, brass, and organ. After that, the strings whirr around and the organ comes alive with great use of percussion and brass around the one minute mark. Compared to "Decisive Battle Against the Wicked One" from Suikoden IV this one is a bit less effective, but all in all it's an worthy, fantastically developed, and adrenaline pumping final battle theme which deserves a listen. (9/10)

18) Solitary Journey

"Solitary Journey", the sad ending theme, begins similar to "The Two Guardian Runes" from the first disc with some guitar riffs and beautiful yet mournful strings in the background. After the guitar is faded away, the strings get more emphatic and a violin and brass are added to build up a nice climax. The atmosphere created is very depressing, but fits the gameplay very well. It makes a nice introduction to the several ending themes which follow. (8/10)

19) To Walk This Path

This theme is more brighter and more luscious than the previous track with excellent instrumentation such as strings, woodwinds, harp, and brass. The first section features a nice melody performed by strings and later an ethnic flute to reflect the typical Suikoden feeling. Then some brass is lead into a warm and gentle woodwind part, which is later accompanied by the brass again to build up a great conclusion. Simply beautiful. (9/10)

20) A New Journey

"A New Journey" is a 36 second interlude featuring nice orchestration. The piece is actually too short. (8/10)

21) Finale

This lyrical piece begins with some harp arppegios and strings. Soon the atmosphere gets more heroic with the use of brass and percussion. The strings, chimes, and brass perform an excellent passage towards the middle of the track. After that a haunting female voice in the style of "A Sad Wish" is added which sounds simply gorgeous. Following that short interlude, a more lively part sets in with the use of harpsichord and brass until a nice timpani roll ends the track. "Finale" is my personal favorite of those four ending themes and is simply packed with emotions and atmosphere. (9/10)

22) To the End of the Woven Tale of the 108 Stars

I never ever had expected a rock ballad in a Suikoden soundtrack so far, then I played the game and listened to the soundtrack. This is nevertheless a nice one, even if it might sound a bit out of place in the style of the soundtrack and scenes of the game. I like the smooth and harmonious way this piece develops and uses instrumentation. The Main Theme is also integrated here in a wonderful way. After the one minute mark, percussion sets in and electric guitars play a cheesy main melody and orchestration. Again, a great new style and very welcome to this soundtrack. (9/10)

23) Future of the 108

"Future of the 108" is a ending theme to accompany the fate of the 108 characters afterwards like in every Suikoden game. Beginning with some minor notes of the Suikoden V Main Theme, the piece transforms into a glorious march with the gorgeous melody from Suikoden IV's "Epilogue ~For the 108 Stars~" originally composed by Michiru Yamane. Around 2:30 the "Recollection" theme appears in a soft variation. The part from 4:44 to 5:16 reminds me heavily of Suikoden II, which is a definitely a good thing. Overall, a great track. (10/10)

24) Into a World of Illusions

Ah... some great recollections of the original Suikoden. This piece is Suikoden's Main Theme performed by piano and acoustic guitar. While the acoustic guitar sounds beautiful like the original version, the piano played heavenly and is full of emotion and variety. The parts around the one minute mark and towards the end are especially excellent. (9/10)

25) To Peaceful Days

"To Peaceful Days" is my personal favorite ending theme of the whole bunch. It features a simply gorgeous melody together with fantastically instrumentation and variation. After the lyrical opening, the piece transforms into a glorious march around 1:12. Later a slower and more emotional part is performed with chimes, woodwinds, and strings. When it's over a harp sets in and a violin performs some notes from "Recollection" together with a haunting choir in the background. Later a sitar is also added to express the ethnic vibe of Suikoden and the piece ends quietly. (10/10)


Overall, this is another excellent Suikoden soundtrack as expected. After the fourth stinker (game AND music) and the tactical spinoff Final Rhapsodia, this score is a true classic and goes back to series' roots. The music is much more varied and diverse than in the previous scores. The classic trademarks "Beginning Theme", "Victory Theme", "Into a World of Illusions", "Touching Theme", "Narcy's Theme" or the beautiful "Theme of a Moonlit Night" reappear with fresh and extraordinary arrangement. There are also some bonus arrangements from Suikoden II and Suikoden III. On the other hand, we have great symphonic compositions, low-key ambient tracks, ethnic inspired pieces, and even two rock pieces, which is unusual for a Suikoden soundtrack. But it's a brave step and a welcome decision to bring some new styles to the series. Every track is used excellently during the gameplay, from the different world map themes to the various incarnations of the battle theme to the various themes to accompany cutscenes.

Of course we do have an excellent opener as well. "Wind of Phantom" is a masterpiece by Yuji Toriyama, the creator of Final Fantasy XII's "Symphonic Poem" and sets the style for the overall game with orchestral and ethnic inspired moments. The Suikoden V Main Theme ("Distant Journey", "The River of the Sun", etc.) is also a catchy and memorable tune in the best arrangements. The battle themes ("Battle Start", "A Mighty Enemy", "The Final Conclusion") are all excellent done with great use of brass, strings, and percussion. The duel themes are this time a little dissapointing compared to Suikoden IV's contributions. However, the large creation and variation of the nearly 150 tracks is a nice compensation to this. Truly, given this huge amount of tracks, it's unavoidable to create some filler and less memorable tracks, but luckily they don't appear that often here. In conclusion I must say that this is one of my favorite Suikoden soundtracks up to date so go and listen to this fantastic 'comeback' soundtrack!

Overall Score: 9/10