Final Fantasy Symphonic Suite :: Review by Sitorimon
Final Fantasy Symphonic Suite is a fully orchestrated album, showcasing pieces from Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II. Epic is the name of the game here, as the series gets, for the first time, an arranged album! For an album from 1989, it still seems very up to date.
Body"Scene I" features a choir and a string arrangement of Final Fantasy II's main theme. It powerfully pounds out the main tune with a little help from some brass and percussion arrangements. It is a beautiful rendition and an excellent opener. "Scene II", an arrangement of Final Fantasy II's "Battle Scene 2", has a very strange drum beat to accompany it. Aside from that, it is a very accomplished piece with as much drama as you can handle. The drumbeat doesn't really detract from the arrangements; it just seems a little out of place.
"Scene III" is a medley of Final Fantasy's opening, town theme, and "Matoya's Cave"! Each segment is excellently transposed. The opening part's majestic ways must have been what earned it such high occult to be included somewhere in every Final Fantasy. The town theme is much more quieter, effortlessly rolling into "Matoya's Cave", which is where the choir join the string and brass instruments for what is a very relaxing piece before building up for a crescendo of the opening theme again. Fantastic stuff!
"Scene IV", an arrangement of Final Fantasy II's "Finale", starts off with a picturesque harp and xylophone piece that grabs your heart. Then a heart wrenching string piece is played, almost like a royal anthem. From here it gradually adds layers of instrumentation to a big finale! This is classic Final Fantasy music. "Scene V" showcases various instruments for a militaristic tune that, instead of being majestic, is more happy and outgoing. Soon this stops and the traditional "Prelude" begins, leading to another extensive medley.
"Scene VI" is a playful rendition of Final Fantasy's "Gurgu Volcano". The pizzicato strings make the tune at the beginning sound like a clumsy happy one. Soon other instruments enter the fray and it turns a little more mystical and dangerous developing into another medley. The final piece, "Scene VII", rounds off the album with a rendition of Final Fantasy's "Rebel Army Theme" rounds off the album with a majestic swan song. Everyone gets in on the act, and a full orchestra and choir pound out the ending to an ovation at the ending!
After listening to a blinding CD and clapping along with the crowd at the end, you'll find this CD treasured as one of your favourites, especially if you're a fan of the older games. Technically accomplished and on scale that was rarely done at the time of making, buy this piece of history and you won't be disappointed.
Overall Score: 8/10