|Red Like Roses|
The music starts off at 70 bpm with an acoustic guitar playing a distinctive, sad-sounding melody over arpeggiated guitar chords, followed by the verse.
After the verse, the music's tempo considerably picks up to 200 bpm (with a time signature of 6/4), in sync with the action of the battle. An extended Spanish-tinged acoustic guitar solo plays over strings and heavy percussion, lending a rather romantic and exciting feel to the piece.
The music then rests momentarily, before continuing with a faster tempo (201bpm), in a reprise of the opening melody in a fast-paced string arrangement.
Musically, the intro and first part of the verse are in B minor, with a key change to D minor occurring halfway through the first verse (at the line "Black the beast..."). The majority of the solo stays in the key of D minor, but the song momentarily returns to its original key at the beginning of the 'reprise' section, before again changing to D minor.
The verse and reprise sections are in 4/4 time (at different tempos), with the solo in 6/4 time.
The opening melody is a leitmotif of sorts for Ruby, and arrangements of it can be found in many places on the RWBY Soundtrack, especially during scenes focusing on the character.
Red like roses fills my dreams and brings me to the place you rest.
White is cold and always yearning, burdened by a royal test.
Black the beast descends from shadows.
Yellow beauty burns gold.
- The lyrics indirectly describe the four main characters as Red, White, Black and Yellow.
- Red Like Roses Part II, another song on the RWBY soundtrack, is a thematic follow-up to this song, specifically the Red verse. The song plays as Ruby decapitates the Nevermore in the Players and Pieces.
- Judging from Red Like Roses Part II and Jeff Williams' explanation of that song, the first verse of the lyrics may be a reference to Ruby and the death of Summer Rose.
- "Red like roses" is a reference to blood.
- "Fills my dreams" means that she dreams about the day that Summer died.
- "And brings me to the place you rest" means the memory causes her to revisit Summer's grave.