Cheung Chung Tat's jacket art featuring the 1990s-style Godzilla.
Back on March 12th, I broke the news that UK-based Death Waltz Recording Company had negotiated the rights to the full soundtrack of Akira Ifukube's score for GODZILLA (1954). Fully remastered from Toho's original audio materials, this release boasts the very first time the complete score has been pressed on vinyl, with exclusive art by Cheung Chung Tat. Interestingly, much like the Criterion Collection packaging, the cover art features a non-1954 Godzilla — here we have a Heisei-style Big G. You have to wonder what the process was in decided this, as I would've preferred a version of the king that actually appears in the film. Still, Tat's painting is admittedly spectacular (and the anachronistic Pacific War aircraft bare, not Rising Suns, but Death Waltz symbols — a nice touch).
Famed artist, Noriyoshi Ohrai captures the 1954 Godzilla perfectly.
All that minor art quibbling aside, Death Waltz is sparing no expense in creating this special presentation, which also features both deluxe and standard packaging for this historic soundtrack. Deluxe Gatefold Edition (limited to 400 units): 180g "Atomic Breath" (blue and white) vinyl, housed in a heavyweight tip-on, case-bound gatefold jacket printed on beautiful textured Galtex Prima card containing a full-color booklet (with liner notes by Japanese cinema expert Jasper Sharp and "Film On Wax" Editor Charlie Bridgen), and wrapped in an Obi strip (MSRP: £22.00). Standard Edition (limited to 400 units): 180g green vinyl pressing, housed inside a 350gsm single pocket jacket with a poster (MSRP: £17.00).
Here are Death Waltz' track listings (English translations seem to duplicate those contained in the 50th Anniversary release from La-La Land Records in 2004):
Godzilla Main Title
Medley/ Ship Music / Sinking Of Eikou-Maru
Sinking Of Bingou Maru
Anxieties On Ootojima Island
Ootojima Temple Festival
Stormy Ootojima Island
Theme For Ootojima Island
Japanese Army March I
Horror Of The Water Tank
Godzilla Comes Ashore
Godzilla Comes To Tokyo Bay
Tragic Sight Of The Imperial Capital
Prayer For Peace
Japanese Army March II
Godzilla At The Ocean Floor
Secret Hidden Track
While these are not for sale to the US, when has that ever stopped fans from getting what they want? Until then, you can listen to the LP in full (for a limited time) on Empire Magazine online — and it sounds amazing!