Sound Off: Spectrums of Mana

Today will be a post not about writing itself, but rather a shout-out to some inspiration fuel I’ve recently discovered.

People familiar with my earlier posts might have gleaned hints of my gaming background – particularly my soft spot for a number of SNES-era 16-bit RPG’s. I’m painfully aware of the nostalgia factor in regards to many of them, but among the things that has stood against the test of time would be the soundtracks to a number of these beauties.

Secret of Mana is no exception. An earlier Square (not Square-Enix!) game from 1993 – a year earlier than some of the world’s most renowned titles in gaming. The composer for Secret of Mana was one Hiroki Kikuta, who has been thankfully busy, and this humble blogger would not be alone in praising his music. Numerous Overclocked ReMixes can be found, and not all of them are from Secret of Mana.

However, Spectrums of Mana, another arranged ReMix album of the Secret of Mana soundtrack, does not fly the OCReMix Banner, but was in fact brought to my attention by OCReMix itself. Twitter is a lovely tool.

So Spectrums is divided by three discs, and is free for download. I wish I had known of this project earlier, but better a couple months late than never. Each disc is divided by theme, or mood, which really is up my alley as a mood-listener. Disc 1, War, comprised of the fighting and conflict tracks, features heavy rock and powermetal influences. Disc 2, Peace, features the tracks that brought the mood of mystical settings and the wilderness, featuring slower, orchestral tempos. The final Disc, Spirit, is comprised of tracks that bring zest to this game – the upbeat tunes from towns, action scenes, and rather important story moments.

Perhaps having a pre-existing attachment to the original game and/or soundtrack creates a bond stronger than the average listener, but if you’re a fan of melody, this is something for you. I recommend it for anyone – especially writers – in search of an independent album made up of indie artists and musicians who, evidently, poured sweat and blood into their passion to make this.

It would be unfair of me to pick a favorite track, but I already did. It’s called Solum from Disc 2, a remix of arguably my favorite videogame theme.

And trust me, there are a lot.

This is a slower piece, for a scene in the game that is nothing short of sacred.

Happy writing, dear readers! Are there any mood-setting music you prefer for when you’re writing? I’d love to hear about them.

 

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