I was first introduced to the Palace Theme in Super Smash Bros. Melee, playing in the background of the famous Temple stage. It wasn’t my favorite Zelda tune from the start, but over time I grew to like it. After finally playing the source game, the Adventures of Link, this song became very significant to me. It’s catchy, it’s adventurous, and overall everything a Legend of Zelda piece should be.
All this being said, I find that Pascal Michael Stiefel (or Plasma3Music Remixes on YouTube) does a wonderful job at remixing and orchestrating this piece. The pure power that this music delivers is just wonderful; if ever there was a remake of Zelda II, this is what I would expect to hear while exploring the temples. I honestly could even see it being used for a feature film if it were to happen. The strings and horns are used phenomenally. Stiefel knows how to pace the music as well, having some moments more calm at just the right time.
When I was in college, I had to commute by train everyday. With an iPod full of Zelda music, this specific orchestration would pop up from time to time. It always filled me with energy and excitement, but one day in particular, as soon as my train hit a tunnel, this song began to play, and I felt as though I myself had just entered a dungeon. The flickering lights along with this music had set a tone for a thrilling adventure — though I was let down when there was no big boss when I exited the train — but just the feeling this piece emulated was good enough.
Plasma3Music Remixes has many other video game music covers, including more from the Legend of Zelda, and are certainly worth a listen. The download for this cover can be found at here. You’ll need it for your next adventure!