© 2002 Lawrence Tuczynski
|These are some of the greatest marches from the Toho Monster and Godzilla movies|
|Title||Toho Monster Marches Vol. 1|
|CD Label||Futureland / Toshiba-EMI Japan|
|Music by:||Akira Ifukube|
|Number of tracks||39|
|Number of discs||1|
|Year of release/manufacture||1992|
January 12, 2003
Review courtesy of Sam Scali
This CD is a fun, creatively-compiled anthology of Akira Ifukube's most popular SFX movie themes, taken from the original soundtracks of Toho's classic monster and sci-fi films. It primarily concentrates on movies released between 1954 and 1969, but also includes a few selections from 1975's "Terror of MechaGodzilla". It's an attractively-packaged set, with a great cover painting of the original Godzilla towering over a montage of other images.
The disc is divided into three parts. Part one features the signature themes of Toho's legendary monster characters, including a generous helping of roars and sound effects at the beginning of each track. It's interesting to hear the themes presented in this way, as it clearly illustrates Ifukube's skill in creating a wide variety of descriptive motifs. Godzilla gets the royal treatment here, with three different themes, while Rodan gets by with two. The other monsters are represented by one apiece.
The second part of the CD is devoted to Ifukube's famous military marches, arguably some of the most memorable compositions in cult movie history. For many Godzilla fans, these catchy and exciting themes are an integral part of the viewing experience, echoing in the mind long after the movie has ended. Many of the best ones are included here, and are undoubtedly the highlight of this collection.
The last part of the disc features a handful of situational themes, such as the primal native chants from "King Kong vs. Godzilla" and "Varan the Unbelievable", the serene chorus of Mothra's twin fairies in "The Sacred Fountain" and the exotic main title from "Latitude Zero". There are also a couple of classic monster battle cues, as well as one of Mr. Ifukube's typically haunting end-title themes (from "Terror of MechGodzilla").
Like most Godzilla-related CDs released in the last decade, this disc is now very rare. But it's one of the more comprehensive and entertaining collections of this material, and well worth owning if you can find it.
Toho Monster Marches Volume 1
Japanese Title: Kaiju Koshinkyoku
I. Themes (Light Motifs)
II. Marches from Select Toho Sci-Fi Films
III. Collection of Popular Situational Tunes
*1 This is a direct transliteration from the Japanese.