I open PtP 2 with a couple of tracks that signal the album's most distinctive feature from PtP 1: using 16 bit, Sega Genesis style FM synthesis. This was one of my "top requests" so I wanted to honor it.
Open Dragon is actually a homage to a new game, Capcom's Dragon's Dogma. The inspiration is a song they used for the title screen, called "Into Free" by a metal duo called B'z, a Japanese group. It starts slow, then speeds up, which is a simple musical device I like to use.
Lightning Force is, as you might suppose, based on the Thunder Force space shooter series from the Genesis "era" (roughly). These soundtracks had pretty amazing, synthesized heavy metal guitars. But, here is were I kinda go off the "chip" track: while the metal crunchy guitars are the appropriate FM synth sound, the drums are not downsampled here... and that's me playing that guitar solo. I felt an urge to lay down a old fashioned rock guitar solo, so, you know, why not? :-)