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Techno Drive Promotion Disc :: Review by Dave

Techno Drive Promotion Disc Album Title: Techno Drive Promotion Disc
Record Label: Namco
Catalog No.: Promotional
Release Date: 1998
Purchase: Buy at eBay


Techno Drive is a little-known racing simulator developed by Namco. Well-known for his contributions to the Ridge Racer series, Koji Nakagawa was the sole composer of the title and produced a fitting electronic score. The score was remixed for a three track promotional album released at the same time as the game.


Each track features a pumping beat, good use of synth, and well-developed sections throughout their long playing times. The tracks "TD {67668180byte Remix)," "TD {92047152byte Remix}," and "TD {30855940byte Remix}" have few obvious flaws and reflect the creative exhibition of electronica through forms not so well-explored in game music around 1998 when the game was released.

However, it's a pity that there wasn't more diversity in the release. Rather than exploring any other stylistic variety or instrumentation, Nakagawa's arrangements maintain the same sort of aseptic industrial-techno style throughout and stay rather close to their originals. Expect lots of hard-hitting beats and industrial distortions, peppered with random synth sounds and experimental samples. It's all good, but it does get repetitive after a while.

One thing that does stand out for the album is its high production values. The remixes do sound like they come from an authentic DJ and they are mixed wonderfully. The beats have a wonderful inorganic flavour to them and the vocoder usage is spot on. It's perhaps not surprising that most of Nakagawa's roles since have focused on sound design, rather than composition, as that is clear his greatest strength here.


The remixes in Techno Drive are enjoyable in isolation. However, collectively they're far from inspiring and the remixes mainly rehash the material. It's best not to hunt down this promotional album and, if it still interest you, head to Namco Sounds instead to download these remixes in conjunction with the original score.

Overall Score: 5/10