Something happened today which I wouldn’t have expected to see for a long time. I’m a big fan of of video game music, and hold it in high regards when compared to other genres and forms, but I’m especially excited when there’s an orchestra involved. Symphonic Fantasies today streamed their full concert live and in high quality from Cologne, Germany available for anyone to see.
The concert was split up into four “fantasies” of the following Square-Enix games:
- Fantasy I: Kingdom Hearts
- Fantasy II: Secret of Mana
- Fantasy III: Chrono Trigger
- Fantasy IV: Final Fantasy
Thanks to the magic of YouTube, those sets are available below. While nothing can match the experience of being there, I hope you enjoy the fantastic arrangements put together and this amazing sets of work inspired by their original composers, and performed by the WDR Radio Orchestra.
Secret of Mana Fantasy Parts 1 & 2
It’s been a while since I’ve played Secret of Mana, so I’m not as familiar with the music, but there are still some great themes here. You should be able to recognize Into the Thick of it halfway through the first part if you played any of the game. This fantasy closes out with a very somber and reflective rendition of Rose and Ghost.
Chrono Trigger Fantasy Parts 1 & 2
Chrono Trigger is one of my favorite games of all time, and the soundtrack is no exception either. Opens up with a very familiar Scars of Time from Chrono Cross, eventually leading into Chrono Trigger. Out of all the orchestral arrangements I have listened to of Chrono Trigger, this is my least favorite but the rest of the fantasy does not disappoint. Just wait until you get to the amazing ending with Frog’s Theme!
Final Fantasy Fantasy Parts 1 & 2
If you are at all familiar with Final Fantasy, this portion just blew me away in a fantastic mixing of melodies in a completely new way that has not been heard before. Words for this fantasy do it no justice, so please just listen.
Encore: Final Boss Fantasy
After what seemed like 10 minutes of well deserved applause, an encore was played highlighting the final themes from all of the above. One of the most impression portions is near the end with that amazing percussion solo by Rony Barrak.