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CD Review - Joe HISAISHI The Best Of Cinema Music (review by Major Start)
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Title: Joe HISAISHI The Best Of Cinema Music
Label: Universal Sigma
Catalog no.: UMCK-1404
Release Date: 07/09/2011
Playing time: 77'21"
Tracks: 13
From: Japan
Price: 3.086¥
CDJapan Affiliate program

This live album reminds me the unforgettable charity concert of Joe HISAISHI in Paris (to Zenith Concert Hall), on 23 June 2011. It actually was the first time I meet this famous composer in person. In fact, he is the one that led me to discover my passion for Japanese/anime music (with Mononoke Hime Soundtrack), and so this is largely thanks to him that AnimeIllusion has been created (October 2001).

So, all music are composed by Joe HISAISHI (Nausicaa, Laputa, Totoro, Princess Mononoke, Hauru no Ugoku Shiro, Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi). No need to say that this symphonic CD is a real masterpiece! The concert was held at the Tokyo Kokusai Forum Hall (6 Sept. 2011) and performed by the Tokyo New City Orchestra with The Little Singers of Tokyo (LSOT) as chorus. Note 2 songs (n°2 and 11) sung by the Soprano HAYASHI Masako

The tracks you must absolutely listen to are:

- "Princess Mononoke" (n°2), divided in 3 themes: "Ashitaka sekki ending" (Mononoke Hime OST n°33), "Tatarigami" (OST n°2), from 2'15", and "Mononoke Hime (Vocal Version)" (OST n°20), sung by HAYASHI Masako. It is wonderful, especially the final part which is explosive. Tears and intense emotions guaranteed ;
- Howl's moving castle" (n°8) also regroups different themes but the best are "Hoshi o nonda shounen" (Hauru no ugoku shiro OST n°25), from 6'57" and "Jinsei no Merry-go-round" (OST n°26), from 9'03" ;
- "One summer's day" (n°9), the main theme from Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi played with piano ;
- "Summer" (n°10), other theme played with piano from the movie Kikujirô no Natsu ;
- "Ashitaka and San" (n°12), this is one of my favorite composition of HISAISHI, played with piano and here exceptionally accompanied by chorus in Japanese language, this version is incredibly beautiful ;
- And "My Neighbour Totoro" (n°13), also accompanied by chorus.

I only regret one thing: the absence of the magnificent theme from the movie "Departures" (Okuribito).

In short, this is an essential CD for all Japanese music fans or simply for fans of orchestral music. I have one word to say to HISAISHI Joe: "Thanks!"

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