P-Vock's Music Box: Let's Traverse to Traverse
Hello and welcome back to P-Vock's Music Box, the weekly blog where I give you some wonderful music to get you set for the weekend. October is over, which means being spooky is now illegal. So I think it's about time we all just relax a little and take a trip. A trip to one of my favourite locations with music that is absolutely incredible.
I've mentioned a few times at BRD that I am a big fan of the Kingdom Hearts series. The story is all kinds of bonkers, the fanservice is ridiculous, the gameplay is extra as hell, and I love every second of it. What kind of insane series lets a buff man who basically wields lightsabers grab Mickey Mouse by the neck and pin him against a wall before being attacked from above?
The best damn kind of insane series, of course! Seriously, this entire franchise is outrageous and I love it to bits because of it. Seriously, who would have thought melding the settings of classic Disney films, Final Fantasy, The World Ends With You, and a ton of original edgy characters would work out so well?
In the first Kingdom Hearts game, your little dumbass anime protagonist watches as his homeworld gets swallowed by pure Darkness and is whisked away to the land where people with no world to call home end up. Traverse Town. After you land, you're off to search for what to do next. Before you meet your party members of Donald and Goofy, before you meet a collection of edgy Final Fantasy characters, you are greeted by my favourite piece of music in the whole damn series.
There is not a single piece of music, video game or otherwise, that connected with me as fast as the theme to Traverse Town. Holy shit, I was jamming immediately and knew this was something special. It just clicked with me, and it gets blasted by me consistently to this day all these years later. I think the team behind this series knew how good it was since they have rarely tried to top it.
Eleven years and six games later would see Sora, Donald, and Goofy return to Traverse Town in Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance. Yeah, I won't lie, the version of this theme we got in DDD doesn't hit anywhere near as hard as the original. That said, I think it still jams and is still something I will never skip if it comes up on a playlist (unless the original version is next).
It's much slower and much more relaxed. This is fitting for a game about being trapped in dream worlds and I do genuinely adore this version quite a bit. While the original version feels like a bustling city district at night that you just want to explore, this version feels more akin to just sitting back on a balcony while having a nice beverage and a good chat with some people.
Hitting the streets of Traverse Town made me enamored with this strange video game concept and really made me want to keep playing the series. I kept hoping that some game would let me return to this wonderful place and vibe once again. It took many games, but it was worth the wait for me when we returned in Dream Drop Distance.
Kingdom Hearts has so much music I fucking adore, but I had to pick my favourite track for the column. I hope your weekend is as fantastic as this music, and I'll see you right back here next week with another suggestion from my Music Box. Stay Brutal!
P.S. Jesus Christ, I just gotta share one more because I love this music so much. Thankfully, I found a wonderful cover that brilliantly combines the vibes of both official versions of Traverse Town's theme from a content creator who deserves a metric fuckton more followers. I was beyond blown away with this masterful remix and have jammed to this on repeat for hours and hours ever since.