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Gyakuten Saiban Orchestra Concert Commemorative Souvenir :: Review by Muzza

Gyakuten Saiban Orchestra Concert Commemorative Souvenir Album Title: Gyakuten Saiban Orchestra Concert Commemorative Souvenir
Record Label: Capcom
Catalog No.: Promotional
Release Date: September 15, 2005
Purchase: Buy at eBay


The Gyakuten Saiban Orchestra Concert Commemorative Souvenir was released in April 2008 at the end of the Gyakuten Saiban Meets Orchestra Live 2008 concert as a promotional CD. It's a simple little vocal arrangement CD featuring two tracks — the first from Gyakuten Saiban 4, the other from the original Gyakuten Saiban. I doubt you'll ever be able to get a hold of this rare promotional item, but let�s take a look at the music regardless.

Track-by-Track Reviews

1) Loving Guitar's Serenade

The original "Loving Guitar's Serenade" (composed by the relatively unknown Shu Takumi) was one of the highlights of the Gyakuten Saiban 4 Original Soundtrack. The only vocal track in the series, I quickly fell in love with the elegant melody, and peculiar "doo-da" vocals; these vocal sounds fit with the lyrics (shown in-game) in graceful fashion, although admittedly they weren't that insightful out of the context of the game.

Thankfully in this arrangement, we get proper English lyrics from performer Haruka Shimotsuki meshed in with some Japanese vocal sections. Regardless, this arrangement is an exceptional one, as the vocal performance is outstandingly graceful and shines in conjunction with the sublime melody and fitting developments. What sounds like live instrumentation, including piano, drums and guitar, plays in the foreground of some dreamily atmospheric elements.

This is actually charmingly appropriate considering the thoughtful lyrics showcased, with lines such as: "Guitar, Guitar... Up together to the sky". I recommend you track down this CD for this track alone! (10/10)

2) Steel Samurai Song

"Steel Samurai Song", otherwise known as "Oo-edo Soldier Tonosaman's Song", was featured in the original Gyakuten Saiban game as the theme to the hit children's show The Steel Samurai. I made it known in my other Gyakuten Saiban soundtrack reviews that this theme is my favourite composition in the entire series, and is a definite fan favourite. So when I heard that it was to get a vocal treatment, I winced in pain... why taint perfection?

Putting these biases aside, this is actually a pretty solid vocal arrangement. The actual compositional arrangement is the highlight, with live instrumentation such as guitars and Asiatic percussion bringing the piece completely to life; some snazzy guitar solos are a definite bonus. As for the vocals, they're not great, but they�re passable, which I'm satisfied with. It's too common for a Japanese male vocalist to sound too dramatic or too silly, but Ryoji Yamamoto finds a happy medium, reaching all the required notes with a reasonable level of competence.

Not as good as the first track on this promotional release, and I probably would have preferred a simple instrumental arrangement, but as it stands it's surprisingly solid if a tad underwhelming. (7/10)


I was nicely surprised with these two tracks, which both contain excellent arrangements from the man Noriyuki Iwadare. The only distinguishing factor is that the first song, "Loving Guitar�s Serenade", is a tad simpler in execution and the vocals from Haruka Shimotsuki are absolutely stunning in comparison to Ryoji Yamamoto's. Track one's dreamy approach and gentle dynamics contrast well with the second track, "Oo-edo Soldier Tonosaman's Song", which has an upbeat pacing and clever arranging intricacies (guitar solo included). A commendable effort from Mr. Iwadare; it�s worth a listen if you�re a dedicated Gyakuten Saiban fan, but otherwise you�re not missing too much. I do recommend you check out the first track, though!

Overall Score: 7/10