Monday Music: Remaking My Love For FFVII
Surprising literally everyone, in last week’s Sony State of Play, Square Enix announced “Final Fantasy VII Remake: Intergrade”. The new version of the game comes optimized for PS5 and includes an new DLC chapter featuring teenaged ninja, Yuffie. While the initial reveal is excitement enough for me, I was even more elated by the announcement that the FFVII Remake original soundtrack was releasing on Spotify. It gave me a chance to go back and listen to one of gaming’s iconic OSTs but with a new 2020 spin.
Revising A Classic
Beyond just the gameplay and settings, one of the biggest hurdles FFVII Remake had was its music. Longtime SquareEnix composer, Nobuo Uematsu, created the scores for the first nine games in the Final Fantasy series and VII is lauded as one of his best. But with Uematsu no longer the lead composer at the company, the job fell to Masashi Hamauzu to reimagine the 1997 classic. Hamauzu already was a long time contributor to Square Enix and was the man in charge for the Final Fantasy XIII score. Needless to say, when it comes to some of FFVII R’s new additions, Hamauzu’s fingerprints are all over the soundscapes.
New Hotness Meets Old Classics
Part of what makes the FFVII Remake OST so good is the fact that it didn’t shy away from its roots, in fact it improves upon them. But because so much of the game features new locales or additional chapters, Hamauzu was tasked with creating so much new music. What we ended up getting were call backs to the 97′ game that resonate in a new context and new songs that enhance the experience.
I personally think of tracks like “Jessie’s Theme” which expertly captures the spirit of a character that had virtually no development in the original game, but became Waifu #3 in the remake. Or the entirety of Chapter 7 where the musical tones ebb and flow from EDM, to House, to Hard Rock and Dub Reggae. On paper, none of it should work in conjunction with such a beloved soundtrack and yet it does.
This. Is. The. Remix.
I personally love it when Hamauzu takes an existing Uematsu classic and creates something wholly new and epic. Take for example, “Turk’s Theme” a simple character theme that lets you know Shinra’s cool, blue-suited G-men are on the scene. But in VII R, it gets multiple arrangements, including one during a boss fight with one of the Turks that just slaps out of this world.
Uematsu himself even game back to produce the new main theme for the game “Hollow” of which I personally prefer the instrumental version. However, the tone captures the tone of the games final act almost too well. And when you hear it for the first time in game, it almost foreshadows the fate of a certain character.
As said before you can check out the entire FFVII Remake OST on Spotify RIGHT NOW. And if your a fan of Final Fantasy or enjoyed the VII Remake then you need to lock it into your playlists asap because its not just a great game soundtrack. There’s some truly stellar music in this thing and you shouldn’t pass it up.