By Thomas Quillfeldt
We’ve got some rather tasty releases for fans of music from classic Japanese role-playing games (JRPGs).
We’ve loved seeing the trend towards orchestral concerts based on video games music grow, so we were chuffed to get to work closely with producer Thomas Böcker and Merregnon Studios, the crack team of classical music experts behind Symphonic Odysseys, Symphonic Legends and other award-winning concerts.
With Böcker and co in our party (and after downing a cheeky Turbo Ether or two) we summoned the gods of vinyl to attack some of Merregnon’s most exquisite catalogue. And here are the results!
Available to now on our web store (released December 2016) are triple vinyl and double CD editions of Final Symphony and Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo. Both vinyl editions feature three 180-gram discs and all releases are presented in a deluxe card gatefold sleeve.
Final Symphony: Music from Final Fantasy VI, VII & X
Final Symphony, based on superb classical concert arrangements that have been performed across Europe, Japan and the US, was recorded at London’s legendary Abbey Road Studios. The performance was conducted by Eckehard Stier with the London Symphony Orchestra and pianist Katharina Treutler.
This four minute video gives you a window into the production of the album:
The music is drawn from beloved Nobuo Uematsu and Masashi Hamauzu scores for Final Fantasy VI, VII and X and an original work by Jonne Valtonen. The tracklist comprises:
- Fantasy Overture – Circle within a circle within a circle
- Final Fantasy VI – Symphonic Poem (Born with the Gift of Magic)
- Final Fantasy X – Piano Concerto" (I. Zanarkand, II. Inori, III. Kessen)
- Encore: Suteki da ne
- Final Fantasy VII – Symphony in Three Movements" (I. Nibelheim Incident, II. Words Drowned by Fireworks, III. The Planet's Crisis)
- Encore: Continue?
- Encore: Fight, Fight, Fight!
Arrangements are by Jonne Valtonen, Roger Wanamo and Final Fantasy X co-composer and lead composer on the Final Fantasy XIII series, Masashi Hamauzu. Both releases were mastered at Abbey Road Studios, with the vinyl set being specially mastered for the format.
Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo
Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo includes music from some of the best-loved JRPG games published by Squaresoft/Square Enix, including Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, Secret of Mana, Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross.
The album features an overture composed by Jonne Valtonen and five suites based on the music of legendary Japanese game composers Yoko Shimomura, Hiroki Kikuta, Yasunori Mitsuda and Nobuo Uematsu (arrangements are by Jonne Valtonen and Roger Wanamo), with tracks including:
- Fanfare Overture
- Fantasy I: Kingdom Hearts
- Fantasy II: Secret of Mana
- Fantasy III: Chrono Trigger/Chrono Cross
- Fantasy IV: Final Fantasy
- Encore: Final Boss Suite
- Bonus: Final Fantasy X: Suteki da ne
The Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra was conducted by Eckehard Stier, with choirmaster Keita Matsui, pianist Benyamin Nuss and Rony Barrak on the Darbouka.
Both versions were mastered at Abbey Road Studios, with this vinyl set being specially mastered for the format.
Illustrations for the covers and gatefolds were created by Johnny Di-Doi (jsdidoi.com) with additional graphics by Petherton Press.
If you want to find out more about Merregnon Studio’s concert programme, including details on forthcoming shows and album releases, head to GameConcerts.com.
Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo limited edition print
Also available is a 12”x 36” print of Johnny Di-Doi’s gatefold artwork for Symphonic Fantasies, presented on 300 gsm card.
Vinyl & CD pricing
- Final Symphony - Triple Vinyl & Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo - Triple Vinyl — €44 / $45
- BUNDLE: Final Symphony & Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo - Triple Vinyl — €78 / $80
- Final Symphony - Double CD & Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo - Double CD — €14 / $15
- BUNDLE: Final Symphony & Symphonic Fantasies Tokyo Double CD BUNDLE — €24 / $25
- Symphonic Fantasies Limited Edition Print — €20 / $25
All prices exclude local shipping. Order at:
- US— LacedRecords.com/collections/final-symphony-symphonic-fantasies-tokyo
- Rest of World— LacedRecords.co/collections/final-symphony-symphonic-fantasies-tokyo
Any orders placed in Japan will be refunded and not fulfilled. For any enquiries please contact: email@example.com