Yasunori Mitsuda's score for Chrono Trigger is rightly considered by many (myself included) to be one of the very best videogame soundtracks ever created. It also contains a track called "Burn! Bobonga!", which isn't important but the name just makes me smile. So, Chrono Trigger's soundtrack is great and all, but let's see what happens to it when it falls into the hands of other musically-gifted people: it's time for ten great Chrono Trigger remixes and covers!
Devildom String Orchestra - Chrono Trigger Medley
The previous remix articles I wrote up had something of a heavy metal flavour to them - partly because I'm a long-haired Iron Maiden fan and and partly due to the more rocking nature of Mega Man and Castlevania soundtracks. While there'll still be a some hard rockin' tracks here, Chrono Trigger seems to lend itself much more readily to gentle, orchestral reinterpretations like this thing right here: Devildom String Orchestra's four-piece string version of "Wind Scene", "Theme of Frog" and "Battle with Magus". Extremely well done, although I hope you don't have an aversion to slightly creepy animal masks or the Scream movie franchise.
Zircon - Calamitous Judgement
Not only is Chrono Trigger the pinnacle of 16-bit RPGs, is also teaches you lessons about the harsh nature of the justice system. I helped that girl find her cat and everything! Anyway, here's Zircon's energetic, techno-y take on the Trial music, which is possibly a gateway into another dimension where judicial proceedings are held at raves.
5/4 Takepod - World Revolution
If you are fighting a planet-destroying star-beast, you need some suitable dynamic music to accompany the battle. The original "World Revolution" does a good job of supplying this, but master remixer 5/4 Takepod's takes it even further with this powerful rendition.
lonlonjp - At the Bottom of Night (Acoustic Guitar cover)
After that aural assault, let's slow it down with a rendition of the impossibly sad "At the Bottom of Night". There's a lot to be said for the more simple cover versions, and this is just one man and his guitar with some excellent playing that enhances the original fantastically.
kLuTz - 600 A.D. in Piano
Continuing the gentle theme, here's kLuT's solo piano rendition of the 600 A.D. overworld music "Wind Scene". Again, its simplicity allows the fantastic playing to shine through.
Onnochi - Battle With Magus (Metal)
Back to the metal! It has to be heavy, really - what could be more appropriate for a metal cover than a track about fighting a scythe-wielding dark wizard? The only thing that could make it more metal is if Magus was riding a motorcycle while you fought him. Anyway, the reliably excellent Onnochi gives the theme a real sense of drive. Like driving a motorcycle! Haha, you see it all makes sense.
Yasunori Mitsuda, Hiroshi Hata, Hidenobu Ootsuki, and Gizaemon de Furuta - Undersea Palace (The Brink of Time)
The "Brink of Time" arranged album seems to be somewhat divisive amongst Chrono Trigger fans: supposedly "acid jazz" but really too varied to be classified by genre, it's a remix album that goes in some unexpected directions. Personally, I love it - it was the first thing I ever bought on eBay - and this version of "Undersea Palace" is my favourite track. I particularly like the completely unrelated intro section, which may not be from Chrono Trigger but fits the mood perfectly. After that, the bass guitar is the real star of this one, and the horns add that extra bit of punch.
SEXY-SYNTHESIZER - Frog's Theme / Fanfare 1 (Love SQ)
The requisite odd remix here, as SEXY-SYNTHESIZER offer up a chip-tuney, almost Game-and-Watch flavoured take on the theme of everyone's favourite frog/knight hybrid.
Phoenix Project - Boss Battle
I'm a sucker for jazzy organ solos, I admit, but this also offers some nicely crunching guitars that really drive the "boss battle" nature of the song home. Phoenix Project's "Resolution Trigger" doujin album is a great listen all round, really - their version of Frog's Theme is also excellent.
Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra - Chrono Trigger
Finally, something wonderful - from the Orchestral Game Concert series, it's the Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra's powerful version of the Chrono Trigger theme. A fittingly grand tribute to a truly grand game, and one that for all my better judgement makes me wish there was a Chrono Trigger movie.
There you are then, ten great Chrono Trigger remixes and covers. As you'd expect from a game with such a stellar soundtrack, this is just the tip of the iceberg so who knows? Maybe there'll be a part two to this article in the future. Until then, I'm going to be learning how to hack roms so I can give Magus a motorcycle.