"There is so much writing in English on Japanese cinema that can't be accepted at face value — not because the writers are careless, but because the differences in culture and language are just too intricate. When I see August Ragone's name on a piece of writing, it gives me permission to place my faith in it completely. Among Japanese fantasy film historians, he's the best working in English." —Tim Lucas, Video Watchdog

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The "Bloodthirsty Music" Soundtrack Collection!


The "Bloodthirsty Music Collection" CD coming from Cinema-kan.

If you're into Japanese cinema and classic horror films, you should be excited by this release. I am. My first exposure to these films were in the pages of Greg Shoemaker's Japanese Fantasy Film Journal. Toho produced three films over four years, directed by Michio Yamamoto, and best described as latter-day Hammer Horrors: Japanese-style. By the late 1970s, I had seen the second and third films at the Kokusai Theater, and Riichiro Manabe's scores were a key element to them.

THE BLOODTHIRSTY DOLL (1970) DVD jacket art by Masano Koga.

Now, all the soundtracks will be issued in one CD collection! Cinema-kan's press release states: Riichiro Manabe carved his name into the world of horror film history with these everlasting cult works! Now, the first-ever complete compilation of Toho's "Bloodthirsty" Music Collection is finally issued! Now, after 45 years, the pinnacle of Japanese vampire films, also known as the "Bloodthirsty" trilogy, receives its first stand-alone soundtrack release!

THE BLOODTHIRSTY EYES (1971) DVD jacket art by Masano Koga.

This CD-only release includes tracks from THE BLOODTHIRSTY DOLL: TERROR IN THE HAUNTED HOUSE (1970), THE BLOODTHIRSTY EYES: THE CURSED MANSION (1971), and THE BLOODTHIRSTY ROSES (1974), sourced from the original, recently-unearthed 6mm tape masters. This successful remastering of these tracks by Maestro Manabe (Godzilla vs. Hedorah, Cruel Story of Youth) has resurrected the complete scores for all three films.

THE BLOODTHIRSTY ROSES (1974) DVD jacket art by Masano Koga.

Avant-garde, gothic with a dash of bossa nova?! This is the only music quite like this in Maestro Manabe's world. This premiere release is scheduled to feature over 60 tracks, plus host of bonus tracks to be determined.

Bloodthirsty Music: Toho's "Bloodthirsty" Series Music Collection: MSRP ¥2,991 (including tax). Label: Cinema-kan. Catalogue: CINK-7. Mail Order: 006840785. EAN: 4988044020429. Release: November 25, 2015.

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