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CD Review - Shenmue Orchestra Version (review by Major Start)
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Title: Shenmue Orchestra Version
Label: PolyGram
Catalog no.: POCX-1116
Release Date: 01/04/1999
Playing time: 37'31"
Tracks: 8
From: Japan
Price: 2.500¥
CDJapan Affiliate program

While waiting for the release of Shenmue 3 on PS4, still directed by SUZUKI Yu, and scheduled for the end of 2017, here is a good opportunity to dive back into the musical world of this excellent video game, real masterpiece.

As many of you already know, Shenmue probably has the most beautiful soundtrack ever, and so the particularity, here, is all music have been performed by the Kanagawa Philharmonic Orchestra. This is simply wonderful!

To musical composing, we find: MITSUYOSHI Takenobu (n°1, 7), IUCHI Ryuji (n°2, 8), YANAGAWA Tsuyoshi (n°3, 4), WATANABE Toshiyuki (n°5) and NITTA Tadahiro (n°6).

Note the awesome song at the last track, "Shenhua ~Jiang Qing Ri Bao Hua Ge~", sung by Ioli.

My favorite tracks are:
- "Shenmue ~Sedge Tree~" (n°1), the famous main theme of Shenmue, epic and beautiful at the same time. That reminds me of the time when I was playing on Dreamcast (fifteen years ago!). The sound of the Chinese violin, called Erhu, is so magical. Almost in tears.
- "Everlasting Earth" (n°3), especially the part from 1'22", starting only with piano and then, from 1'46", with strings and other orchestra instruments. It almost made me cry as well.
- "The sound of waves in the morning haze" (n°5), one of the most sad music I've ever heard in Shenmue. The theme is so gorgeous (from 1'06"), worthy of a major Hollywood movie! Emotions guaranteed.
- "Shenhua ~Jiang Qing Ri Bao Hua Ge~", the only one song of this CD, but you will be no doubt charmed by it. Words fail me to describe its beauty.

In closing, this CD is among the best video game music ever made, and I can therefore only recommend it to you. Shenmue will always have a special place in my heart, so magical, epic and beautiful experience!

Copyright © Animeillusion (July 2016)