http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nswfLcROs-0 Anyone who’s played Final Fantasy VII knows the Mako Reactor theme. While it did not attain the widespread popularity and acclaim that “One-Winged Angel” did, it is still one of the most easily recognizable pieces of music to come out of the Final Fantasy series. We all know why it’s a good theme, we all know why it’s a cool theme, but do we really know why it’s been such a memorable theme? Final Fantasy VII is filled with excellent music. Not to say that all of the music is mind-numbingly awesome, but all of the location and character themes all have their own personalities and come across as distinct, yet still fitting into the same general theme. Most of the boss fights and battle music all sport their own distinct sounds that still all somehow fit together. So what makes “Mako Reactor” distinguish itself among all of these other distinct themes? It’s an interruption. While “Mako Reactor” still fits the overall musical theme of Final Fantasy VII, it’s function isn’t the same as most of the other pieces of music in the game (with the possible exception of music centered around Sephiroth). Whereas most of the music sounds natural to the world and characters, and thus transition smoothly as the player progresses from place to place, “Mako Reactor” does not. Like the Mako reactors themselves, this theme feels unnatural to the world around it. When entering an area with a Mako reactor, the transition is always jarring. It feels like an unwelcome and intentional blight on the soundscape, just as the Mako reactors themselves are a blight upon the world. It’s because of this interruption that “Mako Reactor” lingers with us. Like its namesake, this theme towers over the listener, foreboding and desolate with a sense of twisted purpose. It doesn’t care that it disrupts the players’ experience, it’s incapable of caring. It does what it was made to do, unconcerned with it’s influence. What kind of impact did “Mako Reactor” have on you when you first heard it? What sort of impression did it leave?