arrangements composer game music music orchestral review VGM

Hirokazu Tanaka – “Kid Icarus / Metroid Original Orchestra Version” Review


“Kid Iracus (Partena No Kagami) & Metroid” is a very old and rare cassette from back in the 80’s taking just 6 tracks and about 14 minutes of music from the two games. Yet the last time I saw it auctioned on e-bay it was sold at a shockingly high price! Was the music worth it?


The opening song “Theme (Partena’s Mirror)” is a beautiful and regal synth piece that layers some lovely ethereal chords over the classic old school blips and drum loops of the original and it works to great effect – very uplifting. Track 2 is a medley of the music from Partena’s Mirror using the same style as before. Each segment of the piece has a very specific scene setting. It stars of regal before taking on a middle eastern feel and becoming more and more complex like a battle theme. The different tunes are sown together perfectly in a way that many other medleys really fail to achieve. The final track from Partena’s Mirror is fittingly “Ending” which is dramatic, fast paced and enjoyable.
The Metroid songs now take to the stage with “Title” which is very futuristic at the start, with a military drum beat and the beautiful original synth melodies ringing throughout. The Metroid BGM medley follows and this too flows just as well as the previous medley but is a little darker in tone and plays a lot like a synth stadium rock band. The final track is of course “Ending” which playfully skips along without offence.


For many this wont appeal unless you enjoy going back to VGM’s roots. The songs while catchy in places and have nice hooks, are not exactly earth shattering but they do show the gap between classic and arranged VGM being merged which is very interesting to listen to from both an educational and from a listener’s point of view. This is a purists purchase only.

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