Children of Termina is a wild ride through one of The Legend of Zelda’s most eclectic games, Majora’s Mask, and combines orchestrated renditions with heavenly vocal sections to transcend to one of the best representations of the soundtrack I’ve ever heard.
Majora’s Mask has always been a divisive entry in the Zelda series, causing much argument about whether it is the greatest representation of the universe Ocarina of Time helped create or whether it is simply an odd ‘DLC’ of sorts, tacked on as a side story using assets already made for the original game. Undeniably, however, the music was always seen as a blessing — additional tracks to compliment one of the greatest soundtracks of all time. With thematically different and often darker themes, some of the tracks on the Majora’s Mask soundtrack took an interesting approach, using instruments and melodies unfamiliar to those who enjoyed the cheery overtones of the original game.
Children of Termina thrives in that obscurity and brings out the horror and mystery of the game in new ways. Adding arias and new orchestral takes on the original tracks bring a larger sense of scale to epic proportions — often sounding more like something from a movie’s score than the game.
Check out the following eight tracks to get a feel of what this legendary album has to offer:
The World That Ends in Three Days
The intro music from the beginning of the game is reborn into an epic, multi-layered audial story with a James Bond-like score of tremendous depth. The singing within this track offers a chilling and dark testament to the undertones of the game. Absolutely breathtaking on first listen and every listen afterwards.
Termina FieldTermina Field is a transformed field theme from the original Ocarina of Time soundtrack. It is a majestic take on that melody, with its own flair and additional use of the original overworld theme from Link to the Past. This version that the Sofia Session Orchestra was able to produce, combining the many variances of the track during both day and night, really showcases their power and Rozen’s mastery of the arrangement.
A Moment’s Peace
A simple yet brilliant take on the Tatl & Tael theme from the game. Short and sweet, this song is a beautiful tribute to the original with a swaying mandolin defining the tune.
Moon’s Tears (Astral Observatory)One of the most iconic tracks from this game, the beautiful chimes and orchestral deliverance bring home this epic song, whose entirety seems to tell an untold story. With a strong piano lead and a chilling, brazen drumline near the end of the song, its majestic delivery easily makes it my favorite track on this album and may be my favorite version of any Zelda song ever.
It’s Clock Town. This version takes a bit of liberty with the arrangement and introduces some of the themes played with throughout the game, but it’s the song that most defines the game as a whole. Such an excellent arrangement — perhaps even the perfect version of this amazing song. The way it takes the cheerful melody and brings it into the underlying chaotic themes is a showcase of wonderment and an excellent tribute to the town and game itself.
Final HoursA stunning and haunting reminder that this game is about the end of the world. This track plays during the last day, during the festival, where everyone is supposed to meet for fun and festivity. Instead, Clock Town is a ghost town, and the moon moves ever closer to destroying everything. Can Link save the world yet again, or will he be forced to turn back the hands of time for another try?
March of the GiantsThe cinematic nature and production of this theme helps retell the scene from the game, as the four giants move towards Clock Town to stop the impending moon. The gothic organ and vocals accentuate the intensity and purpose of this iconic scene.
Song of HealingThis is it. This is the song that brings everything together. Amazing vocals provided by Julie Elven, ocarina play of the original tune from the game, and an arrangement that inspires and instills the hope brought by this penultimate scene. Well done! Bravo! Magnifique!
Children of Termina is a great rendition of one of my favorite games’ soundtracks and a wonderful representation for anyone looking to check out some of the best music the Zelda series has to offer. The orchestrated arrangements within are some of the best video-game music I’ve ever heard, from any game series. It’s a tall order to cover such an iconic game’s soundtrack, but Rozen nailed it through and through. Children of Termina is an exceptional take on a masterpiece and it in turn, deserves to be called one itself.
Pick up Children of Termina on Bandcamp, available in physical and digital formats, including a 2 LP vinyl set. The album is also available on Spotify, Amazon Music, iTunes and Google Play Music. Check out more of Rozen’s work on his website or on Twitter.