This was written over two listens. The second had a fair bit of pausing which was unnecessary as it was nothing a third listen couldn’t have helped with.
I mostly wanted to focus on describing the song rather than getting into its imagery and I think in a way I succeeded, but perhaps not to the extent that I wanted. I’m still content with the result, however.
Masanori Hikichi (曳地 正則) and Miyoko Kobayashi’s (小林 美代子) “The Way Home” (“帰路“) is from Terranigma Creative Soundtracks (天地創造 クリエイティヴサウンドトラックス). It’s a soundtrack that covers some of the compositions used in the game known as Terranigma.
I hope you enjoy.
The sounds of something akin to a flute play decisively, clearly and in a spaced manner whilst something akin to strings oscillates underneath. Then suddenly a shift and the instruments rise higher, then descend. The strings suddenly rise, but only as a small flicker, then a brief pause in the music.
The sounds resume, now joined by bass moving simply and building on the melody. The flute returns and now the melody flows freely, almost on a breeze. More strings appear, further building on the melody, though their appearance is brief and they soon leave. They seem to hint at something else, but the gentleness and playfulness of the song continues.
The opening section returns but soon there’s a build on the strings, then the bass returns with some extra instrumentation. The song feels very gentle, yet firm. It’s almost gliding.
Suddenly much of the instrumentation drops away, leaving a single set of strings to continue oscillating, though now something underneath draws out and a new sound matches the strings. The strings that briefly appeared earlier now return, and the melody starts to rise.
Suddenly the music soars into its climax. A long and arduous journey finally has come to an end and now all that is must be left behind. It is bittersweet and beautiful, and moving, and aching.
Suddenly some instruments drop away and the song feels quiet and tender. The sounds create an expansive view, vast, with a long horizon. It is warm and perhaps comforting. A sense of playfulness returns, though it doesn’t last too long and soon it is just the flute and oscillating strings, quiet, riding the air as the song ends.