Moving right along with what will unfortunately have to be my last blog post for at least a week (forgot I was having company for the next couple weeks), here we deal with the subject of fantasy style music.
Okay first of all I realize that fantasy isn’t a valid genre, but whatever, I needed at least 15 types of music for this so I improvised. What I mean by fantasy music is something that evokes a feeling of being out of this world or doing something that should be beyond our means. Something like what we’d here in the form of…..
Vision Of Escaflowne – Flying Dragon
This is something I would classify as fantasy music, Escaflowne’s opening episodes are about a girl named Hitomi being whisked off to a place called the mystic moon to find herself literally flying on top of a mechanical dragon with a prince named Van before she even knows what hit her. Here’s what Kanno gave us to go with it. Listen to the power in the song, the use of woodwind almost as if to evoke one soaring up into the sky and taking off at high speeds for parts unknown and a land that is already unfamiliar. Gets you right into it doesn’t it. Add in a bridge that gives a sense of danger (it can’t all just be fun and fantasy can it) and you’ve got yourself quite the piece to go with Escaflowne and it’s dragon form. Kanno brought us something else with her Escaflowne tracks, I’ll say that much.
Super Mario RPG – Nimbus Land
Shimomura did things with the SNES’ SPC sound chip that I honestly didn’t know you could do up until I heard it, and to this day I could swear I was somehow listening to real instruments whenever I’m playing it. Nimbus Land is just one of those examples with it’s floaty sort of feel lending extra life to the fantasy style cloud atmosphere of the area and yet somehow it still feels distinctly Mario-ish despite the relative lack of input by Koji Kondo. Still my favourite chapter in the game by the way. Now to discover just how the hell she managed to have that many layers of music going at once on something that never used red book audio. They must have used a special onboard chip……or perhaps she really just is that good with a synthesizer and limited hardware. We may never know.
Next time we get some Tribal beats, a Yoko Kanno staple that Shimomura also has a fair grip on.