Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Biweekly Music Wednesday! No. 45 ~Knitty Knotty Windmill Hill~ (Yoshi's Woolly World)

: Yoshi's Woolly World
Plays In: Knitty Knotty Windmill Hill/Wobbly Mobile Jaunt
Status: Original Composition
Composed By: Tomoya Tomita

It only makes sense this installment of Biweekly Music Wednesday! would feature a song by Tomita-san, right? I figured it should be a song from a series I haven't visited much.

Much of the music in Yoshi's Woolly World evokes to me an image of summer hayrides, like the ones you may've had as a child. Some songs render these rides a bit bumpier than others, but this one is certainly more gentle. I can picture it now: infants snoozing in their mothers' arms, children excitedly pointing out the sights and sounds, and parents echoing their fascination without a care in the world.

Being that they're by the same composer, it's no surprise Yoshi's Woolly World instills much of the same calm present in Kirby's Epic Yarn, yet there's undeniably more of an active feel going on in the soundtrack. That shouldn't be a surprise: Epic Yarn does not employ death or game overs, while Woolly World is more punishing as an action game thanks to Yoshi's health bar.

Not that the levels this song plays in (Knitty Knotty Windmill Hill and Wobbly Mobile Jaunt) are particularly tough--that honor goes to the game's Special Courses--but there's certainly some activity going on within. It helps that their respective set-pieces are among some of the game's best; particularly with Wobbly Mobile Jaunt's sky-bound spaceships and celestial bodies.

There's many reasons why Yoshi's Woolly World is the best Yoshi game since Yoshi's Island debuted back in 1995, and the music is probably one of the best reasons why. No longer are there homogenized scores accompanying the entire game or boring, sleepy tunes that could never dream of surpassing Koji Kondo's '95 masterpiece; it's a score that echoes the whimsicality and wonder present in each and every stage.

Knitty Knotty Windmill Hill is one of my favorites for this very reason: the likes of silky windmills and yarn rockets are nostalgic symbols in themselves, and so the song must bring that nostalgia to life. This was a quality previously stitched into the heart of Epic Yarn, and so it's no surprise Tomita-san succeeds with flying colors.

There are other songs that instill the aforementioned "hayride" quality, but I think this song is particularly representative of that theme. Is it a coincidence it's named after a structure one might spot on such ventures? Hmm.

Final Thoughts: You can definitely bet this will pop up in my interview with Tomita-san! 

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