Sunday, June 5, 2011

Film Music by Toru Takemitsu Vol. 2: Films Directed by Masahiro Shinoda

In preparation for my next few articles dedicated to the films of Masahiro Shinoda (which rejuvenated my interest in his films after Criterion's fantastic release of Pale Flower (Kawaita Hana) (1964) last month), I decided to do another music upload. This time it's the second volume of JVC's Takemitsu film score compilations with this one being devoted solely to his soundtracks for the films of Masahiro Shinoda.

This particular volume gives excellent insight alone into how Takemitsu might be one of the most versatile composers of the 20th century. While we live in an era where popular cinema soundtracks are either pop-music or post-Wagnerian compositions with loud strings and over-dramatic motifs that act like nothing more that captions for the films images, Takemitsu was able to sculpt music into being a character unto itself in the film. With unconscious ease, he could slip into the romantic strings of Ballad of Orin (Hanare Goze Orin) (1977), the jazzy flute riffs in Samurai Spy (Ibun Sarutobi Sasuke) (1965), Japanese folk music by way of John Cage in Assassination (Ansatsu) (1964) and the unexpected moment of smooth pop piano in The Petrified Forest (Kaseki no mori) (1973).

Takemitsu's credit (third from the top) in Masahiro Shinoda's Assassination (Ansatsu) (1964)

Check comments for the link to download!



  2. Excellent share Mark, in fact the whole 6 volume set in incredible and very listenable - I particulary love the first volume with Takemitsu's extraordinary and unnerving musique concrète score for Kwaidan.