Recaptured the soundtrack on my own time, download inside.

#1 Posted by Amethyst (95 posts) -


If there’s one thing about this year’s Summer of Arcade I won’t make concessions on, it’s the fact that Castlevania: Harmony of Despair has the greatest soundtrack out of all the releases. Granted, Limbo doesn’t have/barely has music, and the other three releases aren’t necessarily up to snuff in the audio department. Nevertheless, I consider it among the upper crust for downloadable titles’ soundtracks. I’m aware there’s already a thread on Harmony of Despair’s music and a download link inside said thread, but when I snatched it up, I was met with recordings of below average bit rates and abrupt endings. There’s also a YouTube playlist and numerous links on the internet compiling audio conversions from that list. Don’t even get me started on YouTube’s 128kbps audio streaming methodology (seriously, if the site has time to support videos up to 4096x3072, at least make your audio available up to 256kbps *nerd rage*). Plus, it’s like the guy loaded up Audacity, faded out the last second and called it a day.

 It's like the audio version of people who think filters are the way to "win" Photoshop.
I’m a moderate audiophile, primarily because I’m too broke to afford a decent pair of headphones—the best I’ve got is a pair of Grado SR60s. In spite of that, I can still discern a difference between low and high quality. So I asked a friend if we could possibly capture the audio on our own and attempt to rejigger equalizer sliders and whatnot. Obviously, we knew the results wouldn’t be up to par with raw files or an official CD but I’m pleased with the outcome. Even more obvious is the fact that virtually everyone has a different audio setup ranging from sounds cards all the way up to whether or not you use Windows’ integrated sound enhancements. Personally, as long as it plays well on my Zune HD, I’m happy. If there are any criticisms (i.e. Boost the bass [<--- No.] or there’s a click in “insert track name here”) I’ll see about giving the audio another pass. After three sets of headphone testing and an hour of donuts in the local Jewel-Osco parking lot for a car speaker test, any problems will have to wait. I did enjoy the fries and milkshake I had with the car test though. >_>

My only goal was to enhance the audio and provide it at a better bit rate. I also listened to the game’s sound test to make sure you aren’t missing any additional layers in subsequent loops other compilations didn’t include. Speaking of which, the tracks loop anywhere from 1.5 to 2 times by my personal discretion. Some CDs have background music looping to upwards of five minutes, which is insane to me. That’s what repeat functionality is for. Additionally, the songs are appropriately tagged with their title and the game the original composition belonged to. The sound director was credited as Yasuhiro Ichihashi, but I tagged the main artist as the original composer since Michiru Yamane and others deserve recognition.

She no longer works at Konami, but that didn't stop the music from being excellent. Or, future titles, for that matter.
I’m sure you’re sick of hearing about the actual refinement process and want to know how the music is. Is it awesome? Very much so. The fact that it isn’t, as stated above, commercially available makes me sad. It’s easily one of the most listenable soundtracks since last year’s Shatter or Gravity Crash and miles above Dracula X Chronicles’ remixes, which were excellent considering the limits of the PSP and even that got an album release. You shouldn’t take my word for it. There are download links at the beginning and end of this post. If all goes well, it should sort itself appropriately in iTunes. I tested it shortly, but I’m a Zune Software girl. Album art is also available in the .zip file or for copy-and-paste purposes just above the download link. My cropping and logo overlay is wholly unoriginal looking. I LOVE Ayami Kojima’s art, but it’s the cover/press start screen of the game and I was hoping to find more HD assets. Maybe I should commission aurahack to gin up some art (and so should you).

Download it, listen to it, love it! I hope this brings some mirth to the end of summer! ^_^;

Castlevania: Harmony of Despair Soundtrack (256kbps; 22 tracks; 56 minutes, 23 seconds)

#2 Posted by kevinski (521 posts) -

Nice. I'm downloading it now. :)

#3 Posted by Flappy (2410 posts) -

I appreciate the amount of effort you put into it.  Good job!

#4 Posted by AjayRaz (12702 posts) -

WOOOOOOOOOO! thank you! 

#5 Posted by Amethyst (95 posts) -
@Flappy said:
" I appreciate the amount of effort you put into it.  Good job! "
Perhaps a bit too much. Obviously not as monumental as actually making the music, but quality is key to me! ^_^;
#6 Posted by MVP1101 (224 posts) -

Much love for all the time you put in to this 

#7 Posted by Fierrze (191 posts) -

Niceee. Thanks!

#8 Posted by OllyOxenFree (5009 posts) -

Now this is quality!  Thanks!

#9 Posted by KillyDarko (1991 posts) -

Wow, nicely done! Listening to it right now ;)

#10 Posted by ajamafalous (12601 posts) -


#11 Posted by zepp (236 posts) -

Didn't play the game, but if you say this is on par with the Shatter soundtrack I'm in. Thanks.

#12 Posted by buzz_clik (7310 posts) -

Bloody brilliant. Grabbing it now, thanks oodles!

#13 Posted by Dolphin_Butter (1984 posts) -

I downloaded this a while back and never said proper thanks, so... Thank you for taking the time to do this!

#14 Posted by BunkerBuster (1054 posts) -

This should be interesting.

#15 Posted by Apathylad (3234 posts) -

Is this even legal? Eh, at least I bought the game. 

#16 Posted by Dolphin_Butter (1984 posts) -
@Apathylad said:
" Is this even legal? Eh, at least I bought the game.  "
Someone else posted a topic on another game rip and ZombiePie put it up on the Community Spotlight. I guess it's fine as long as Konami doesn't step in.
#17 Posted by TheIronYuppie (123 posts) -
@Amethyst: I just noticed this thread.  Incredible work! 

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