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Monday, 3 February 2014

The Music of Takeharu Ishimoto - The World Ends With You

Chad - Heard of Takeharu Ishimoto?

If you're a Square Enix fan, chances are, the answer is yes. Takeharu Ishimoto has been involved in the audio aspect of all the Kingdom Hearts games, from the very original title to the very latest. He even composed a number of tracks in Birth By Sleep and Dream Drop Distance, including the many arrangements of Vanitas's battle theme (Unbreakable Chains, Enter the Darkness, and the like.)

Ishimoto is also famous for composing the original tracks in both Dissidia and Dissidia Duodecim, as well as arranging a number of the most famous tracks from the numbered titles in the series.

However, despite these feats, he has been acclaimed for his original scoring of The World Ends With You - arguably a complete 180-degree turn compared to the nature of the other soundtracks on his Square resume.

The World Ends With You features a plethora of tracks, ranging from gritty, urban rock to light, groovy pop to driving, pumping electronic tunes and even the occasional orchestral piece. The tracks, featuring a selection of Japanese vocalists and artists, were a major part of the title's success.

These tracks, remarkably dissimilar to his other soundtrack-based works, are not completely out of left field. Ishimoto's band, SAWA, holds a similar style to his TWEWY tracks.

Takeharu Ishimoto has taken the opportunity to remix and reinvent a number of his tracks, some of which have been heard in Kingdom Hearts 3D and The World Ends With You: Solo Remix.

Ishimoto's Soundcloud is a fascinating place. He has uploaded live concert recordings of his TWEWY tracks, as well as remixes - and even original pieces. Only very recently did he release a recording of a new track, "Revelation", featuring Stephanie, who notably sung "Runaway", the credits music for The World Ends With You.

I would also like to give a special mention to "Stay Away" and "DRAGON", both featuring Sawa.

Check it out here:
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