Gutbrain Records

Monday, 17 November 2008

The thirty-fifth Soundtrack of the Week is the music from Koji Wakamatsu's United Red Army, scored by Jim O'Rourke.

O'Rourke plays a lot of different instruments and also sings on the last track, a song called "Pictures of Adolf Again". Karen Waltuch and Chris Corsano are among the other musicians.

I really loved listening to the whole thing except the last track, the song. I think it's very well done, it's just not my kind of thing.

There are some spooky/bluesy solo guitar pieces, delicate ensemble playing and, in what I assume is meant to evoke the soundtracks for Wakamatsu's infamous political pinku movies from the '60s, some free jazz and psychedelic rock.

If you're interested in the soundtracks to some of those notorious earlier Wakamatsu films, you can check out these three CDs that came out in Japan recently. The music was always my favorite part of any Wakamatsu film I've seen. (I haven't seen United Red Army.)

Harakashionna (A Womb to Let) is by a band called Jacks, who sound like they're Les Rallizes Dénudés making a surf album.

Tenshi no kokotsu (Ecstasy of the Angels) has what sounds like a Cecil Taylor-inspired piano trio (the Yosuke Yamashita Trio) combined with some moody pop songs.

Shinjuku mad (Shinjuku Maniac) is mostly a psychedelic rock assault by a band called Food Brain, though there are some mellower blues and jazz tracks.