Unfortunately, I had a horribly extended airport pick-up yesterday, so I had to cut my Skyward time short, but it did give me time to listen to the 25th Anniversary dealio at ear-bleeding volumes. Brief impressions: Pretty damned good! I enjoyed the full experience even more than the clips on the Nintendo Channel (which makes me think that the live show would have been even better).
I generally liked how the themes were cut up and arranged and medley-fied. That kept the music from being too repetitive, like it occasionally got in the actual games. It was also neat to hear similar elements and progressions evolve over the course of the series. Most of the choices were smart and/or interesting. The Wind Waker medley, in particular, was godly. Hearing the music independent of the games gave me a bit more appreciation for it. It held up surprisingly well as pop-classical music (next up, the Liverpool Oratorio!). I'm not sure how much modern, orchestral-type game music would, to be honest. Usually, those Youtube clips bore me a bit. But it's possible that nostalgia played a factor, since a lot of the familiar themes reflexively brought a big grin to my face. Ah, the dangerously enticing pleasure of reminiscing of past days. Better days.
As for cons, I wish it were a bit longer. And in 5.1 surround sound. And I also wish that the already-orchestrated Twilight Princess trailer music was included.
I haven't played Skyward Sword yet, but I did listen to the album. For a freebie, it's nice...albeit a bit short. But the quality is excellent, and I dug hearing a couple of tracks that I'd already watched on the Nintendo Video channel.
I'm pleased they included this CD with the game for free! I love the Wind Waker medley as well but I have to go with track 4 as being my favorite. Ever since I heard Gerudo Valley's theme in OoT its been special. It gave me a feeling of being within an empire hard at work on some naughty. Like North Korea.
I got serious goosebumps listening to the Twilight Princess medley. That Hyrule Field theme is just so off the walls balls awesome, I can't take it. I know people dog that game for reusing too many tracks, but I thought the music design in the game was pretty brilliant, the way they weave together so many themes throughout the game.
The only crappy part of the soundtrack is that they really don't cover the entire series. They cover WW, TP, and OoT fairly well, but other than that, it's mainly songs that span the whole series like the fairy fountain and the main theme.
Honestly though, just hearing the songs by an orchestra just makes me wish they'd have a version of OoT, MM, WW, and TP that had orchestral tracks. I feel like some of the songs I'm hearing on this CD are how they were meant to always sound, but were gimped because of the N64 hardware and some sound design decisions on the Gamecube.
Well, re-imagining the older themes into full orchestrations might have required a lot more work. And been less faithful, perhaps? It would be neat to hear a creepy orchestral version of the Zelda II Palace theme or Town theme, but would it have been faithful to the original spirit, or would it have been like that orchestral Metallica thing?
You know which band actually gelled surprisingly well with an orchestra? Collective Soul.
I mean, I would've liked to have heard Ballad of the Wind Fish and stuff like that, but I guess I can't complain, because it was a free CD. I'm sure there's been orchestrated versions of a bunch of other songs out there already, so I guess it's not a big deal.
@GelatinousEncore Yeah, it's in all versions, even though some ads implied that it wasn't. Y'know, I never even listened to the Mario All-Stars CD. Those tracks weren't orchestrated or arranged, right? Just ripped?
Welcome, welcome! Have a seat. There's some cheese, crackers, and salami over on the right...
The album as a whole is just okay, as the songs/medleys themselves just didn't ooze enough quality for my picky tastes. Though, perhaps hearing these performances live would make up for any shortcomings. However, one song stands tall and proud above them all... The Great Fairy Fountain Theme. I have always been rather taken with this theme, but I find the song on this album utterly bewitching.
Soundtrack is great.. I'm really enjoying all tracks.. I may not be as picky as NoName but the GFFT didn't totally blow me away although it does sound wonderful. Gerudo Valley was the one that blew my mind..
The Great Fairy Foundation theme was arranged beautifully. My favorite track has to be The Wind Waker Medley. It plays out like it's unfolding the game's adventure with each song, so it's rich with feeling.