Sunday, May 15, 2011

Yuzo Koshiro: One of the Originals, One of the Greats

Unlike the previous two composers I've posted about, this particular one started even earlier, during the 8-bit era. A compositional legend and a master of FM synthesis, Yuzo Koshiro began his career at Nihon Falcom in 1986.


He didn't stay with Falcom for too long, but he left an incredible legacy. He wrote songs for the games Sorcerian, Ys and Ys II, which although are not very popular outside of Japan, have absolutely incredible music. After his departure from Falcom, he became a freelancer, writing music for games such as Streets of Rage and ActRaiser. In 1990, he helped found Ancient Corp., a game developer which he's currently the manager of.

There isn't too much to be said about Koshiro other than his incredible music. He is, however, a skilled pianist and violinist, and has taken part in various concerts including the premier of PLAY! A Video Game Symphony in Chicago. He arranged music from Sonic the Hedgehog for this event.

Some of his more recent works include the Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune racing games, 7th Dragon, and the Etrian Odyssey series, which he gives a retro, PC-88 FM synthesis style. He also arranged the main theme from The Legend of Zelda for Super Smash Bros. Brawl, as well as Norfair from Metroid. And if you're a Castlevania fan, he did worked with Michiru Yamane to compose some tracks for Portrait of Ruin on the DS.

He truly is an absolute musical genius, and I highly recommend checking out more of his works. Furthermore, I really need to do a post on the Ys series as a whole.

Further reading:
Wikipedia article
Square Enix Music Online profile
Ancient Corp.

37 comments:

  1. Very good piece, second post i see about him today on blogger, the guy is a legend

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  2. Man I wish I was this talented for music :(

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  3. Excellent blog! Enjoyed reading it, keep them posts coming =)

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  4. @Gaston As do I. But you know, with enough dedication, just about anyone can build skill. Composing is a skill like anything else. A difficult skill, but a skill nonetheless. Never give up if there's something you desire!

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  5. castlevania and the brawl version of norfair? nice

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  6. When I first saw him, I thought this guy has social skills. To hear that he can compose, well it takes all kinds.

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  7. I haven't heard of him.. and now I'm glad I have :)

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  8. this guy has composed in some great titles, thanks for sharing about him...i did play one of those games

    I have followed your blog..Could you follow mine too please?

    Sky Stock Analysis

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  9. Really enjoyed reading this. Thanks for the post.

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  10. Another great set of games, another great composer.

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  11. The music from Zelda is still some of the best ever composed IMHO.

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  12. Takes great skill to make decent music

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  13. You never think about the music behind video games.

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  14. Composing music for video games is an important job that is not recognized well enough.

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  15. Great read good post! Video game composers are very underrated!

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  16. Man I loved the Legend of Zelda theme.... song has taken hours of my life, and drove me to the brink of insanity and back...

    I need to get me a new Zelda game.

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  17. I have a special folder for soundtracks which now contains only like 10 albums. I think, following this blog that may increase significant over time.

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  18. the score used for streets of rage is simply brilliant. years ahead of its time

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  19. Congratulations a winrar is you! I've posted you as my follower of the week on my blog of the week... well blog. I should have a graphic or something you can post to show how awesome you and your blog are. Keep up the good work!

    http://blogaweek.blogspot.com/2011/05/blog-of-week-2.html

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  20. So this is one of the guys who makes those ridiculously addicting tunes..

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  21. very cool. thanks for the report!

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  22. you should do a post on Nobuo Uematsu
    ;)

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  23. Very cool, thanks for sharing!

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  24. Synthesized music is awesome.

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  25. Classic sounds. It's good to put a face to the tunes that define many peoples childhoods.

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  26. Video game composers are overlooked far too often. Music an incredibly important part of games. Yuzo Koshiro is fantastic.

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