Musical Monday: Reader’s Choice Edition

It’s time to round up the suggestions I received for Musical Monday! There are ten altogether below the cut; some were listed in the comments beneath my initial post, while others were the subject of a write-in. Above each song, I’ve added my own thoughts; the actual videos are embedded inside spoiler tags, to avoid crashing/lagging browsers. There’s some good and varied music here, so happy listening, and thank you all for taking part!

 

First to comment was longtime reader Josh, who suggested two songs.

 

I love Andreas Waldetoft’s evocative Crusader Kings II theme, which makes a gentle start before turning sweeping and majestic.

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I confess to not having the same memories of Matt Uelman’s Tristram theme from Diablo, because I was a wimp and played with the sound off! Listening to it now,  it’s an eerie take on a traditionally tranquil genre (RPG town music).

 

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cuc submitted two songs, both from Japanese indie shooter series Touhou. I haven’t played the games, but I’m happy to have heard the music, which is upbeat, cheerful, and reminds me a bit of the SNES era:

 

Shanghai Teahouse ~ Chinese Tea (by ZUN) (to me, this is slightly more sedate):

 

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Broken Moon (by U2 Akiyama) (the perkier one):

 

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frogbeastegg wrote in with no fewer than six:

 

Nobuo Uematsu, of Final Fantasy fame, composed the title theme to The Last Story. It’s a peaceful violin number, quite at odds to the action-RPG gameplay footage I’ve seen; it’s also quite nice. TLS is one of the games I’m planning to start soon, so you may hear more from me!

 

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“Gibbet Hill – Pilgrimage”, composed by Brian d’Oliveira and Kenneth Young, happens to be my single favourite song from Tearaway. It starts simply, with just a flute, and develops into something rich and wistful and lovely:

 

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Assassin’s Creed IV features a number of traditional songs — the sea shanties are the best known, but another is “Over the Hills and Far Away”:

 

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This music, from The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds, took me back years, to my time playing Link to the Past. The first song is a version of the Hyrule overworld theme, while the second is based on the Dark World theme:

 

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“Blinded by Light” is the battle theme to Final Fantasy XIII. Sharp and energetic, it sounds a little like an updated version of one of the SNES-era FF battle themes:

 

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Lastly, “Land of Light and Shadow” is the world map theme of Bravely Default: Flying Fairy, a game that I would play — if I had a 3DS! This has a whimsical feel to it that’s missing from most RPG overworld themes, which typically go for either “heroic” (Ni no Kuni) or “pretty” (Final Fantasy VI):

 

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