Cosmic Star Heroine: Vol. 1 by HyperDuck SoundWorks
Cosmic Star Heroine by HyperDuck SoundWorks pressed on blue with black/red splatter, transparent red, and silver vinyl by Ship to Shore PhonoCo.
“Nothing I shouldn’t be able to handle.”
Battle of Conflicts
Queue up the battle log because this week are are taking a look at HyperDuck SoundWorks’ Cosmic Star Heroine. Pressed on a lovely array of variants by Ship to Shore PhonoCo., this selection labeled “Vol. 1” to this modern JRPG instant classic will get you hyped up to slay whatever comes your way and save the day!
Cosmic Star Heroine was one of those games that I feel took a lot of us by surprise when it came out in 2017. It is a true modern successor to JRPGs of the 90’s that defined the genre. This game and its soundtrack have emerged to the forefront of indie fandom, bringing the listener to a melodic love letter penned to the height of 16 bit games. Taking to the likes of Chrono Trigger’s faster style of combat, HyperDuck SoundWorks keeps the momentum going and the bits flowing!
Walking the Beat
Hailing from Northern Ireland, HyperDuck SoundWorks is a musical duo who got their start back in 2008. They have scored some of the gaming industries best indie gems, like Dust: An Elysian Tail, and been credited for arranging wonderful music across the media industry as a whole. Their work on Cosmic Star Heroine is, without a doubt, their best accomplishment to date.
Cosmic Star Heroine's pure jazzy and synthetic rock anthems are as transcendent as the game it inhabits. From the punchy first track named after the games main character, “L'salle,” to the downtempo brooding — dare I say, dangerous — and aptly named “Looming Disquiet” starting Side B, HyperDuck SoundWorks compositions have an array of musical flair symbolic to the journey it takes you on. A noir-like saxophone tears through the ether, sprinkling flair throughout a dystopian-filled macabre of guitar licks and bass riffs. Disconnecting and translucent symphonies will play tricks with your eardrums, coaxing you into deeper melodic territory before unleashing itself into a rushing and frantic boss battle filled with heart-pounding drums and a guitar that signals the imminent destruction of your enemies.
The Vast Nimbus
Ship to Shore PhonoCo.’s dedication to providing quality vinyl releases for gaming's most beloved soundtracks is poignantly evident with this release. With impeccable care to mastering and the great dynamic range that this selection of songs provides, there's no doubt that you'll enjoy spinning this one! Drew Wise's design for this release is as perfect as ever. The sprawling landscape of the game's cityscape spreads the front cover, reminiscent of Secret of Mana, with each vinyl variant accentuating all the best colors present here! However, the back cover of this album is where Drew shows his pure genius. He has a unique way of crossing that threshold between playing the game and making the soundtrack come to life in your hands. The sheer amount of love and attention to detail here truly makes you feel like you're holding something special. Once again, Ship to Shore PhonoCo. have shown that they are a formidable record label that has pride for the work they do!
Remastered for vinyl by :
Aaron Hamel & Justin Martell
Vinyl produced & distributed by:
Ship to Shore PhonoCo.
Where to Buy?
This album has two variants readily available directly from Ship to Shore PhonoCo. & The Yetee. Unfortunately, the silver Limited Run Games variant was limited to 400 copies and is no longer available to be purchased. The Yetee’s limited red variant is also limited to 100, so jump on that fast! The digital version of the games soundtrack is available directly for HyperDuck SoundWorks’ Bandcamp page, and contains the soundtrack in its monstrous 51 track length.
I will say that from my listening experience, there is no real discernible difference in quality based on pressing color. My recommendation? Go with whichever looks the best to you! There is a lot of incredible music to be had, and I highly recommend giving it a listen!