Crying Out Love, in the Center of the World - Original Soundtrack
International Title
 Crying Out Love, in the Center of the World
Music By: Meyna Co.
Record Label: Epic Records
Running Time: 43:33 Discs: 1
Release: April 2004 CD Number: ESCL-2547
Anthony Romero
The soundtrack to the 2004 box office hit is a hodgepodge of various musical artists, some with new recordings and some with older pieces. The disc excels in a slight regard for its soothing work, but the songs are mixed and the short runtime works against the CD.

Although the disc lacks a main musical artist, the work of Meyna Co. (Yoko Kumagai and Hidehiko Urayama) are the most reoccurring. The group is known for their work on the 1997 film Cat's Eye. While that film was overly modern for its time, their style is starkly different on this release, being soft. Their work here is often soothing and the best aspect of the disc as well. The clear winner of their work is the violin rich "The Road Continues Into the Sky", which once more is night and day compared to some of their earlier work. In a similar style, Yamato Takeru (1994) composer Kiyoko Ogino does a piano version of Bach's "Ave Maria". The track is soothing and nice, although doesn't leave much of an impression. Artist Nakatsuka Takeshi does a remix of this, which is very similar although adds an upbeat tempo in the background.

The disc contains two more instrumental tracks before we go into the songs. The first is the string heavy "Romeo and Juliet" by GONTITI, which is pleasant background music that one could see in a restaurant setting. Finally, the disc also ends with a piano number by Matsutani Suguru called "Eyes Closed" which is soothing, but like some earlier tracks doesn't leave much of an impression.

For the vocal songs, the disc has four to choose from. The first of these is the dated "SOMEDAY" by Motoharu Sano, which leads in with some basic traffic sound effects. Its probably the least appealing track on the disc. This is followed up by Yoshiyuki Osawa's very catchy "And I'm at a Loss". This marks the second time the song was used in a Toho film, with the first time being 1992's Last Christmas, although it was titled in romaji as "Soshite Boku Wa, Toho Ni Kureru". Next up is the odd rock song "RASPBERRY DREAM" by REBECCA. The track stands out for its opening guitar riff, which gives off a F-Zero vibe before going into a dated sounding song. The final song is "To Meet With You" by Misato Watanabe, which is slightly soothing but utterly forgettable.

Bottom line, this disc is a borderline between a 3 and a 2.5, but optioned for the latter mostly on account of the very low runtime. The disc works as a soothing body of work for the instrumental tracks, but feels at war with the songs that just don't fit and make this feel like a more disjointed experience.
Rating: Star Rating
  1. Ave Maria ~ Remix ~
    By: Nakatsuka Takeshi
  2. The Road Continues Into the Sky
    By: Motoharu Sano
  4. Romeo and Juliet
  5. And I'm at a Loss
    By: Yoshiyuki Osawa
  7. Andante
  8. Ave Maria from the movie
    By: Kiyoko Ogino
  9. To Meet With You
    By: Misato Watanabe
  10. This Love is Started
  11. Eyes Closed
    By: Matsutani Suguru