Review Summary: Just makes you smile when you come to the realization where all of these themes reside from. You’ll be pissed you ever left the world of side scrolling SNES games.
Guys this is extremely important, your father Donkey Kong is being held captive! It’s up to you two to rescue him! Are you up to the task? The chilling snows, the dangerous swamps, treacherous forests that you must comb to find your father is all part of this magnificent sequel to the original Donkey Kong game. What is really amazing, especially at the time of its release was the wonderful soundtrack to boot. I really can’t think of many other games released before or during the release of Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy’s Quest
that really came even close. You may not have noticed it when you were playing it, but once you hear it again after all those years you’ll have instant flashbacks of the levels they once resided in.
1995 was truly an epic year for SNES fans of all kinds. Donkey Kong Country 2 was only one of the fantastic releases that would see the light of day in 1995, which included Chrono Trigger, Earthbound, Earthworm Jim 2, Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island, I could go on, but I’ll stop there. Most importantly these games all included a fantastic storyline and memorable characters, but the deal breaker for these games had to be something that was overlooked and that was definitely a riveting soundtrack. Chrono Trigger’s epic adventure could not be expressed any further without the soundtrack at its helm; the same could be said for Donkey Kong Country 2
. Despite the few useless tracks by the end of the soundtrack, as a whole the Donkey Kong Country 2 OST
is surely not a worthless endeavor. Still, even now garnering the thrills and freedom of your past childhood, where there were no worries and instead all you wanted to do is lay down on your bed while playing your favorite video games during the summer.
If anything Donkey Kong Country 2 OST
really shows how far video game soundtracks have come from each generation. Nintendo’s 8-bit masterpieces weren’t quite as captivating as the 16-bit era and as usual the next generation era that would be dominated by Sony. Donkey Kong Country 2 OST
was quite complex for its time, not individually, but as a whole. The type of variety in the game was rarely seen in video game soundtracks at the time. The keyboard piano sequences are notorious for holding the soundtrack together. The same can be said for the electronic ambience that instills fun romps that you just can’t help, but bop your head too. For the most part Donkey Kong Country 2 OST
really is sequence of events, just as they would be in the game. The music spans from the least-noteworthy parts such as from the Funky The Main Monkey’s funky bass line to vying against the evil Krock in his ship. That offers a legitimate problem on the soundtrack. You really won’t care for the short tracks (especially the last 3 tracks), but you can’t help, but be addicted to the amazing introduction that “Welcome To Crocodile Isle” brings, the dark ambient “Bayou Boogie”, the beautiful harmonic “Forest Interlude”, or the best track the synth-laden “Stickerbrush Symphony” brings to the table. All a special place in your heart, but the short thrills that end as quickly as they begin is not noteworthy or even plausible to really hammer on. After all, they were part of the game and were instrumental in every event, but it obviously causes a rift in the soundtrack as some of these songs don’t either meld well with the more established tracks or stand-out as much as you would hope for.
What is more interesting about this soundtrack is the fact it can be so funk-influenced from one track, then completely turn its back to that same formula and bring ambient or electronic buildups as seen in “Flight of The Zinger”. There are of course those playful moments of monkeys singing (Diddy, yes you) in “Cranky’s Conga” or the end of “Primal Rave” and this is where we notice the fact all of these moments were instrumental in making this game. From each noticeable track we detract the beautiful 16-bit era we all knew and loved. “Hot-Head Bop” comes completely in mind, from the lava thumps and the charming keyboard piano interludes all the way through the percussion driven background. All I can think of is those damn heat balloons! Damn you!
All in all the collaboration between David Wise, Evelyne Fischer and Robin Beanland will always hold a special part in my generation’s heart. The soundtrack itself was monumental in shaping the game, even if the game mechanics were already on par; I really can’t see myself loving the game as much as I did when I was 9. The variety the game brings to the table was really unheard of, but the seemingly useless tracks that appear throughout the soundtrack can be tedious for some. This may be the obstacle that video game soundtracks need to hurdle over to become relevant, but I still don’t see either of those really happening. That is unless you already can’t get enough of that funky bass from Funky The Main Monkey.