Sunday, February 6, 2005

Final Fantasy VIII: Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec

Credits: 1999 Nobuo Uematsu, Shiro Hamaguchi, DigiCube (reprint Square Enix), Sunrise Studio, Sound City, and Victor Studio

FFVIII: Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec
Final Fantasy Games
Strategy Guides and Artbooks
Toys and Figures
Original Soundtrack
Everything Final Fantasy

Track Listing:
  1. Liberi Fatali
  2. Blue Fields
  3. Don't Be Afraid
  4. Balamb Garden
  5. Fisherman's Horizon
  6. Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec
  7. Eyes on Me
  8. The Man with the Machine Gun
  9. Dance with the Balamb-Fish
  10. Love Grows
  11. The Oath
  12. Ending Theme
  13. Fragments of Memories

(Note that the pic shown is the inside cover. Front cover is blue and plain.)

Truly memorable >>> by skysenshi
It's the the mix of classical and goth feel that had me hooked to this soundtrack. While I've always believed that Final Fantasy VIII was one of the best, most innovative, most challenging FF ever to hit the market -- quite up there with Final Fantasy VII -- I can't deny that it's the sounds that had me pegging it as one of the most memorable games of my time.

(SIDE NOTE: Yes, I love FFIV, FFVI, FFVII and FFVIII. None of that old-school-versus-new-school hodge podge for me. A true gamer should be able to see the merits of creativity and innovation, rather than keeping their arses stuck in tradition.)

The opening theme of FFVIII alone, Liberi Fatali, should raise goosebumps. This track is oft confused with Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec, but it's actually the music playing while you watch Rinoa say that she will wait for Squall; while Squall goes head to head against Seifer; and while all things introductory to FFVIII are taking place. Liberi Fatali is guaranteed to get itself stuck in your head for ages.

Most of the tracks here are actually background music for fields, dungeons, and battles. Blue Fields is the BGM that plays while you explore walkable areas of the world map. Picture flowers blossoming and new leaves sprouting from trees; that is Blue Fields for you. Balamb Garden is about - d-oh - Balamb, the place where it all starts. Fisherman's Horizon is one of those unforgettable pieces that makes you believe that the place must've smelled good even though all you can think about are stinky fish. The battles are defined by Don't Be Afraid, one of my favorites in all Final Fantasies I've played, and the waltz music that served as the backgrounder for Rinoa and Squall's fateful meeting at the Balamb Ballroom is Dance with the Balamb-Fish.

Now for the title track, Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec. Those who have gone through FFVIII would probably be reminded of the dancing tribal warriors that performed during Edea's tribute. Spine-tingling, if you ask me. The music has just as much effect as the visuals. The steady beat of the percussions, almost like a chant, and the staccato play of strings are bound to get your imagination soaring. Of course, you can't miss the actual vocal chanting. It's eerie. It's scary. It's perfect.

Eyes on Me is the most popular vocal track in the entire CD. Performed by Faye Wong, it has the ability to capture the heart of someone who is truly in love - provided you aren't easily bothered by the funny lyrics. It's a love song that sounds like it has been badly translated, what with words like, "Whenever sang my songs, on this day, on my own. Whenever said my words, wishing they would be heard," and "Shall I be the one for you, who pinches you softly but sure? If frown is shown then, I will know that you are no dreamer." Yes, it does look like it's badly translated into English. That's precisely why it's such a hit. It's so silly, you just can't help but find it adorable.

Spin-offs of Eyes on Me would be Ending Theme, which is actually just an extended orchestral version of Eyes on Me coupled with the traditional FF ending credits BGM, and Love Grows. Love Grows will make you want to savor that doki-doki feeling as you immerse yourself in the enchanting piano and the lovely orchestral accompaniment. Another track that could give you the same feeling would be Fragments of Memories. Don't you just love waltz? It's such a romantic, intimate experience.

My verdict? There aren't really any definite way to say it, but this album just rocks. I can name 13 reasons why it does, but I think anyone who has an ear for excellence, provided by the genius Nobuo Uematsu, should be able to judge that for himself.

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