Thursday, November 29, 2001

Vision of Escaflowne OST 3

Credits: Yoko Kanno.

Escaflowne Manga and Artbooks
Toys and Figures
Original Soundtrack
Track Listing:
  1. Short Notice
  2. Arcadia
  3. Epistle
  4. Farewell
  5. Aoi Hitomi (Blue Eyes)
  6. Perfect World
  7. I Recommend Instincts
  8. Scrappy
  9. Shrilly
  10. Revenge
  11. Illusion
  12. Blaze
  13. Fatal
  14. Hikari no Naka E (Into the Light)
  15. Again

Enjoy even without the visual experience >>> by firesenshi
If I had to choose just one anime OST from my collection, it would definitely be this album. Escaflowne Original Soundtrack 3 packs many of the most unforgettable and most poignant tunes heard throughout the entire tv series. Not particularly surprising, since these are the songs that colored the closing of a timeless story. As a fan who listened to the tracks, I could hear the endearing beat of memories flooding in once again--as if bidding me a last feel of the fictuous world that is Gaia before the curtains drop for the final time. Take for example, the songs Farewell and Arcadia. Their quiet and subdued tones remind us of the tearful and somber moods that took place in the later parts of the story. In the fast-paced beats of Epistle we are reminded of the final battles that Escaflowne fought against its enemies. And in Fatal we hear nothing but the whistling of Folken. The impact of this track comes in its utter simplicity--the mysterious calmness in the rise and fall of the whistled melody and the dying of its echo. Beautiful.

Anime OSTs usually need to be experienced before one can fully appreciate it, but such is not the case with this album. You don't have to be a fan of Vision of Escaflowne to love this. Not at all. You don't even have to watch the series itself (although I'd recommend it to any anime fan looking for a good watch). Hell, you could care less about anime and still know that this is good music. I know for sure because I've played it several times not only in the privacy of my own home, but also in public--and it actually made people stop and remark in praises. This includes my own mother, who is eternally opposed to my "weird, Japanese hobby". The look of surprise on her face, when I smugly told her that the album is from an anime, was priceless.

Then again, this is no ordinary anime soundtrack. This album is a collection of songs arranged and composed by Yoko Kanno, a true genius and master of her craft. Also, there is Maaya Sakamoto (then only 16 years old) who dished out the cream of the crop--Aoi Hitomi and Hikari no Naka E . Her voice, though young and mostly devoid of vocal acrobatics, is genuine talent. Along with a simple string accompaniment (for the main melody), she effectively captures the lighthearted wistfulness of Aoi Hitomi, singing of a cherished yet short-lived relationship. In Hikari no Naka E, she sings of farewell, her young voice once again bringing to mind the pain of ending an equally young love. Both songs embody the emotions of lead character Hitomi Kanzaki, when she experienced the thrills and the utter confusion in falling deeply for someone.

This album takes you for a ride through the final moments of the story that unfolded in the tv series. It draws you deep into the fictional world of its characters and lets you relive the romance of Gaia. It would be such a shame to miss it, so try not to.

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