2007 Lawrence Tuczynski

All info for this CD courtesy of Robert Storch

Title: Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald
CD Label: Warner Music Japan Inc.
CD Number: WPC6-8400
Music by: Takayuki Hattori
Number of tracks: 24
Running time: 41:12
Number of discs: 1
Year of release/manufacture: November 25, 1997

REVIEW

October 26, 2007
Review courtesy of Robert Storch

Here we have something a little different - the soundtrack to a 1997 Toho comedy which is currently available on R2 DVD in Japan, and here in the U.S. on R1 DVD. I have not seen this film, but most of the reviews I have read on-line have been very positive, often praising the film as extremely funny. Reportedly, one of the characters is a woman who wins a radio station contest by submitting the best idea for a radio drama. The winner is suppose to have their radio drama featured on the air using professional actors, but it seems that all hell breaks loose at the station when trying to achieve this.

Once again, Takayuki Hattori takes on the scoring duties for a Toho film, and delivers one of his most enjoyable soundtracks! The CD opens with a few seconds of beeps and clicks (simulating a radio station broadcast), and the Main Title begins with Track 2. This is a very well recorded piece of music which features a mandolin playing prominently throughout, and the whole track feels like something you might hear in a restaurant or foreign film. Tracks 8 and 14 are very short fictional "radio promo ads" for the station, while Track 9 is an enjoyable female vocal song. There are also two "Hattori style marches" on Tracks 6 and 12, with the second one sounding just like an outtake from GODZILLA 2000: MILLENNIUM.

It should be mentioned that this original soundtrack CD is extremely rare now, and usually fetches very high prices when it does show up for sale in Japan. Overall, this is one of Takayuki Hattori's better, all-around scores and features a soundtrack packed with variety. Some of the music has a big band type feel, some tracks sound like beautiful orchestral themes, and there is of course, a couple of Hattori's signature marches. I have heard that the seriousness of this music doesn't always fit the visuals of what's happening on screen (perhaps the reason why some of the scenes are so funny), but as a stand alone experience on CD, this soundtrack is a winner!

Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald
English translated titles courtesy of Anthony Romero at Toho Kingdom http://www.tohokingdom.com/.

  1. Radio Beng Teng Jingle (Short Version)
  2. Radio Time - Main Theme
  3. No Problem - It's Your Cherished Work for Sure, Although...
  4. Dumpsville
  5. It's OK! - Love Theme
  6. On Standby Soon
  7. Iori's Theme - What's Your Desire?
  8. Dai-Sunda Air CM
  9. Never Refuse a Good Offer - By: Keiko Toda
  10. Guten Morgen - What's Really the Problem?
  11. There's No Sea in Chicago
  12. Kudo and Otaguro Take Flight
  13. Who Helped Me?
  14. Radio Beng Teng Jingle (Long Version)
  15. Uncertain News of the Hawaiian Skies
  16. A Certain Hand...
  17. Ushijima's Persuasion
  18. Kudo's Theme - We're Bringing Donald Back
  19. Donald McDonald Returns
  20. The Return Home - Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald
  21. I'm Not Mary Jane
  22. No Problem - Fatigue
  23. No Problem - By: Akira Fuse
  24. Radio Time - Woman of Destiny Theme