2006 Lawrence Tuczynski

Title: Akira Ifukube / Reiko Arima
Japanese Title: Akira Ifukube / Reiko Arima
CD Label: Nihon Westminster Co., Ltd.
CD Number: JXCC-1011
Music by: Akira Ifukube / Reiko Arima
Number of tracks: 5
Running time: 43:24
Number of discs: 1
Year of release/manufacture: April 19, 2006


June 03, 2006

The disc is a collaborative work between the head of the Tokyo Music University and a professor in the school's department of composition.

This is a great sounding disc containing two Akira Ifukube tracks that also appear on several other discs on this site. This time the music is conducted by Hiroshi Wakasugi with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra. The other three tracks on this disc are by Reiko Arima done by the Tokyo New City Orchestra with Akira Naito conducting.

The music on this disc has a classical feel to it with the exception of the last track, "3rd Movement - SHURI", which has more of a modern Boston Pops or film soundtrack feel to it. It's very catchy and well done. The whole disc is a very pleasant listening experience and well worth having if you are a fan of Akira Ifukube's non film music.

Additional review courtesy of David Hirsch & CD Japan

This is an interesting match of composers, whose styles are quite different, but both have drawn inspiration from ancient native melodies. The two Akira Ifukube tracks have also appeared on several other discs, but they are fine pieces of his concert work. The basic melody later became the maestro's Odo Island ritual for "Godzilla." Hiroshi Wakasugi conducts the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra for these two performances. The remaining three tracks come from long time composer Reiko Arima. The Tokyo New City Orchestra with Akira Naito conducting, offers a trio of beautiful melodies that are more modern but very memorable.

June 11, 2007Additional info courtesy of Sam Scali

The recording credits reveal another interesting aspect of this CD. The performance of Japanese Rhapsody (Tracks 1-2) was actually recorded in December 1967, slightly predating the 1968 performance that was chosen for the work's premiere LP release (arranged by Reiko Arima herself when she was Ifukube's recording director), and later reissued on CD in 1988 (CZ30-9017) and 1997 (TOCE-9434). According to the liner notes, the 1967 performance was Ifukube's favorite recording of the piece.

Reiko Arima's own composition, Symphony No. 1 "Okinawa" (Tracks 3-5) was recorded in October 2004 - though amazingly, the difference in sound quality between the two works is hard to distinguish.

Akira Ifukube / Reiko Arima

    Akira Ifukube : Japanese Rhapsody
    Hiroshi Wakasugi - Conductor, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
  1. 1st Movement - NOCTURNE
  2. 2nd Movement - FETE
  3. Reiko Arima : Symphony No. 1 "Okinawa"
    Akira Naito - Conductor, Tokyo New City Orchestra

  4. 1st Movement - MIYAKO
  5. 2nd Movement - YAEYAMA
  6. 3rd Movement - SHURI