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Ys SEVEN Original Soundtrack Mini :: Review by Andrew

Ys SEVEN Original Soundtrack Mini Album Title: Ys SEVEN Original Soundtrack Mini
Record Label: Nihon Falcom
Catalog No.: Promotional
Release Date: September 17, 2009
Purchase: Buy at eBay


Ys SEVEN is the latest in the long running Ys series, skipping the standard PC platform and instead launching on the PSP platform. While the game itself is a step forward in terms of innovation, displacing the single player character mechanic with a party system, the music is a step backwards and the album releases demonstrate why. Before the full soundtrack was released, Falcom bundled a seven track promotional album with the game in Japan. Despite featuring many of the best tracks from the game, the final listen is still fairly underwhelming.


The first two tracks on the promotional album are among my favourites from the entire score. The opener "Mother Earth Altago" demonstrates exactly what an area theme in a Ys game should sound like. It's a track to drive you forward. The use of the guitar at 1:23 breaks up the core theme quite nicely and gives the track a bit of a boost. "Vacant Interference" is the first boss theme and it starts out with the right amount of gusto, though it does sound like a standard Jindo combination of electric guitars and an electric violin. Yes it is derivative and predictable, but if something works, why rock the boat?

"Extensive Forest Green" is a colourful setting theme with its combination of oriental instruments and electronic beats. However, it sounds a bit hollow due to its consistent development and is also a bit derivative. "Great Tree" elaborates on these influences with a mixture of earthy percussion and ethnic woodwinds. However, the melody is too detached for my personal tastes and makes the overall listen somewhat uncomfortable. Finally, "Isolated Island Consigned to Oblivion" suffers from the overly ambient nature that plagues many other themes in the soundtrack, but at least features some attractive timbres and rhythms in places.

Rounding off the promotional album, "Altago Ring" presents the Altago region in a grandiose fashion with brassy melodies and militaristic instrumentation. Though the development is compelling, I feel the core of the theme is too bombastic and derivative. Finally, "Ernst" ends the soundtrack on a high note with a rocking performance by the J.D.K. Band. Again, it's little different from what most have heard from the band before — with extravagant lead guitars, hard drum beats, and electric violin interludes — but this familiarity is probably a good thing and the melody is sufficiently enjoyable nevertheless.


This promotional album is a decent insight into the score for Ys SEVEN. It certainly has some tracks which feel right at home within the Ys setting and inject some of the flavour the new Falcom Sound Team J.D.K. offered on Ys Origin. However, a lot of the music does sound quite derivative and some of the core ideas are weak. Nevertheless, if you imported the game and enjoy this bundled album, you might find the full soundtrack release worth your time.

Overall Score: 6/10