Review: The Revenge of Shinobi Soundtrack Vinyl (Hardware)

The Revenge of Shinobi Soundtrack Vinyl: Official GBAtemp Review

Hardware 2,159 views 1 like 2 comments
Reviewed by Prans Dunn, posted Jun 12, 2017
Jun 12, 2017
The soundtrack accompanying Joe Musashi's quest for revenge ninjas its way to the vinyl format. Does it do justice to one of Yuzo Koshiro's masterpieces?
Prans Dunn

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A New Side Quest 

If you've been keeping up with my gaming life's side quest to explore gaming vinyls, you'd have noticed that the two I've reviewed were both from Mondo. While they are both highly recommended products, Mondo isn't the only company in the market making video game soundtrack vinyls. Today I'll be reviewing one from DATA DISCS.

DATA DISCS is a London-based record label solely dedicated to releasing video game soundtracks on vinyl, in particular from SEGA games. Their past releases have included OSTs from the likes of Shenmue, Shinobi and Streets of Rage. The company states that their intention is to promote the work of game composers, which is all too often overlooked and they aim to release soundtracks that work as standalone pieces; albums that can be enjoyed by casual listeners as well as game fans. Indeed, too often video game soundtracks are taken for granted and the painstaking effort taken to craft successful OSTs are not given their due merit. Being a collector of and having reviewed video game soundtrack vinyls myself, I salute DATA DISCS' mission to bring composers and their music to the attention of a wider audience.

In this review, I'll be taking a look at Yuzo Koshiro's work in The Revenge of Shinobi.

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The Legacy of Yuzo Koshiro

Yuzo Koshiro, the composer for The Revenge of Shinobi's music back in 1989, has been hailed by some as the greatest game-music composer of the 16-bit age, having created some of the most memorable game music of the late '80s and early '90s. In particular with The Revenge of Shinobi being given full freedom of music direction, Koshiro masterfully weaved together Japanese style music with Western dance tones, effectively creating a soundtrack like it has never heard before.

In 2017, the uniqueness of his creation is still valid and impressive. Listen for yourself from the 2 sample tracks that DATA DISCS has made available on soundcloud:

I'll admit that even if I have not very much kept in touch with the Shinobi series, I've enjoyed this soundtrack set as standalone, quality music pieces.

The Set, The Art

The Revenge of Shinobi is presented as a 180g LP, cut at 45rpm. It comes packaged in an outer sleeve with the game's cover art in front and at the back the track list can be found.

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DATA DISCS has gone the extra mile to include an inner sleeve with double-sided lithographic print, featuring original artwork sourced from the SEGA archives in Japan. There's also a separate print of the game's cover art with a note by Koshiro himself at the back. Neat!

The set is available in a limited edition 180g bone and black vinyl, a 180g bone coloured vinyl and a 180g classic black vinyl.

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DATA DISCS has kept their end of their bargain by issuing an album that can be indeed be enjoyed by casual listeners as well as game fans. You can keep your end of the bargain by purchasing this set for £19.99.
 

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Verdict
Pros
+ Quality music
+ Quality product
+ Original game's art
Cons
- Hard to find a negative point for this value for money product, unless if you don't like the game
8.5
out of 10
Overall
The Revenge of Shinobi soundtrack vinyl has taught me that you don't have to be a fan of a video game series or even a gamer to appreciate a game's soundtrack.
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