Yuzo Koshiro is simultaneously the greatest and most flamboyant game music composer of all time. Perhaps you’ve found yourself transforming the squalid pit you call a bedroom into a makeshift gay night club by pounding out his Streets of Rage soundtracks. Or maybe you fancy yourself quite the game-rip aristocrat, swaying your hands to the orchestral groove of Actraiser Symphonic Suite (probably one of the greatest game soundtracks of all time).
I find all of this acceptable, even commendable. Today, however, I must ask that you oscillate wildly to one of Koshiro’s finest moments: Super Adventure Island. Within its reverberating walls, you’ll find that this maestro does, indeed, toot his own horn! He also wets whistles, bangs on enough bongos to make DK jealous, and makes a song so sensual in “Essential Vitamins” that Barry White’s likely to leap from his grave and belt a brisk, boner-bopping baritone behind the beat.
Please, see for yourself: Super Adventure Island OST (Megaupload)
As is expected, you can hear a lot of his typical influences in this soundtrack. Lots of “urban” breakbeats, reggae rhythms and funky freakouts. Through these compositions, Master Higgins is able to hammer, boomerang, and fireball his way through an adventure that, to this day, remains pretty darn difficult. You can practically feel the overwhelming pressure to succeed weighing on Higgins’ shoulders in track 13, “Dark Castle of Living Things.”
Go, save the romance!