I don't have much more to say about Message From Space, especially since I already devoted like a lot of posts to it already (an entire category, in fact), except to say that its my favourite Japanese anything ever and the sublime Symphonic Suite LP from the Those Guys at Columbia Records is yet another contender for the title of "1978 space war soundtrack-to-beat". I could have scanned the cropped LP cover, but here's the full Toei promo art for the Golden Week release. Vic Morrow was right, you know, "There are more beautiful dreams in space...." And here's all the proof you need.
Oh wow. 2008 really IS 1978…According to Variety and numerous Japanese new sources, producer Yoshinobu Nishizaki has just announced a brand new Yamato project in the works for all good boys and girls. But don’t break out the Dessler Wine just yet…lifers know that “The Nish” has a habit of announcing rad things that don’t always materialize (like his master plan to buy an actual US battleship and refurbish it for a live action Yamato movie in the '80s) but we wish him the best in reassembling the old gang for One Last Job and hope that he remembers to throw down some proper LPs should he manage to cross the finish line. After all, Uncle Nish helped to popularize the Symphonic Suite; the highest form of art in the history of creation (still big today with Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest kids).
Consider, if you will, the final track from the Symphonic Suite Arrivederci Yamato, “From Yamato With Love”, which straddles classical, kayokyoku, Muzak, and genuine human emotion in a way that's suitable for a weepy walk home from a soul shaking experience in a movie theater circa ‘78 or simply as a musical accompaniment for eating a real nice tempura somewhere in Nikko.
Meanwhile, over at Starblazers.com, Tim Eldred the Great and superfan Steve Harrison have just finished up an “Uchu Roman” epic of their own: an obsessive book-length look at the history of Yamato music featuring…well, just about everything! Behold weird covers, the concerts, the disco album, the Yamato / Raideen piano concerto, and best of all, translations of Nish’s immortal liner notes which continually wax rhapsodic about the power of LOVE, LOVE, and LOVE as only he can (and shall once more, hopefully).
The fun starts at the link below, but be sure to click around to make the most of it.
A “super session” LP in which traditional Japanese instruments and arrangements - in addition to about a million other things - go through the mixer via producer Ohtaki Eiichi’s encyclopedic knowledge of pop music past. “Around the World in 377 Seconds” aims to do just that with quotes from Satisfaction and Purple Haze married to shakuhachi flutes and zonked out sitars, while the centerpiece is a one-two tribute to Pink Lady that crib bits from the then-massive duo’s best songs, adding lyrics about legendary thief Goemon Ishikawa for period authenticity. The finale sees Ohtaki channeling Chubby Checker in a matsuri mood as he urges us to “ondo again” like we did last summer, presumably. Shouldn't work, of course, but like one of those "Weird Al" polka medlies or a Carl Stalling cartoon soundtrack, the pieces all fit together somehow. The magic's in the music, etc al.
"Guns, death, and violence! The battling children of Okinawa! Sonny Chiba and Hiroki Matsukata star in this passionate and powerful violent action film depicting the ten year history of blood, guts, bullets, and killing. Violent gangs come together to form the Okinawa syndicate and prepare for the invasion of mainland Japan. But from the beginning of the consolidation, divisions within the ranks pile up and the group splits into two factions. Against the background of the ocean, the Hondo gang aspires for possession of Okinawa and merges with a minority faction. The climax is a firece three-way battle as the Okinawa police call out the previously unheard 'assassination order'!!! Directed by Akinori Matsuo."
NOW PLAYING AT THE SHINJUKU TOEI PALACE, THE SHIBUYA TOEI PLAZA, AND THE OKINAWA CINEPLEX ODEON!
Though science is indispensable to the progress of mankind, it will be not only that science may become a cat’s paw of wickedness but also that human beings may even be put under its rule in the end unless we take a proper way to make use of it. As a matter of real fact, we often observe grave situations arisen in connection with varied cases of pollution issues.
The confrontation of science with human beings……This is the very subject taken up in this series of “The Gatchaman Force”; it is a showdown between a group of men in concert with science fight in the cause of world peace and a gang of devilish men who commit crimes abusing the power of science. The former is symbolized by a party of five youngsters entitled Gatchaman Force who fight bravely to secure the world peace in close association with such mechanical works brought forth by modern science as aircrafts, automobiles, marine vessels, etc. while the latter is illustrated by Galactor, a gang of villains who are enslaved by computers and other kinds of ingenious equipment of their own and who incessantly attempt to deprive people of freedom and other fundamental rights.
Thus, based on the relation between mechanism and human beings, this series is to unroll drama full of actions and moving deeds.
Science Ninja Team Gatchaman: Theatrical Version
General Supervision by Kihachi Okamoto
Music by the NHK Symphony Orchestra (Prologue)
Released in 'Phoenix Sound 4ch . Stereo'