International Title
Music By: Godiego
Record Label: Super Fuji
Running Time: 42:24 Discs: 1
Release: April 2008 CD Number: GMT-002
Anthony Romero
This release marks the first time this soundtrack has hit CD, and the first time the score itself has been released since its debut on LP some 31 years earlier. As it turns out, Super Fuji has also gone to some lengths in order to stay faithful to that original LP. Besides the duplicated content on the disc itself, the package, including inserts, are also reproduced here, with even the back containing the original "Side A" and "Side B" listing for the tracks. The casing itself deserves some discussion too, as rather than the usual CD jewel case the disc comes in a cardboard slip to help further recreate the LP feel.

Design choices for the release aside, how does the actual music holdup? Well, first, to preface the review a little, I must admit that I'm a big fan of soundtracks from the 1970's. In fact, Prophecies of Nostradamus (1974) and Lupin the 3rd: The Castle of Cagliostro (1979) are among some of my favorite scores of all time. That said, though, the soundtrack for the 1977 horror movie House left me fairly unimpressed. It was created by the cult favorite group Godiego, who was fairly popular in the late 1970's and early 1980's in both the UK and Japan although today most fans of Japanese cinema will probably know them best for their work on the Galaxy Express 999 series. To Godiego's credit, they are a diverse group, and that diversity translates into the body of work included on this disc. However, how does the CD hold up as a whole package? Unfortunately, the disc manages with fairly mixed results in the end.

Now, to be fair to Godiego, there are a few decent tracks included on this disc. "Eat", for example, is a fairly energetic theme, which is nicely supported by guitars and drum work. "Sweet Dreams of Days Gone By" is another nice theme, with a more laid back tempo that works well. Regrettably, there are also a few themes here which just aren't all that pleasant. Leading the way in this respect is "Hungry House Blues", sang by Steve Fox of the group. This track goes on for six minutes and, sadly, Fox long outstays his welcome during this duration. To be honest, Fox has a very deep voice, but yet it almost sounds like he is parodying legendary musician Louis Armstrong here as he just comes off as goofy. If this was his intent, then the song lacked a punch line or anything to redeem it in this regard. Furthermore, it gets laughably bad around the four minute mark, as Fox starts to slur his speech briefly, making the deep voice sound very forced. "Eat Eat Eat" is also another of this tracks that simply miss their mark, although in this case it's largely because the instruments all seem to be marching to their "own beat" causing an unpleasant clash to one's ears. The same criticism can also be applied to "Oriental Melon Man", which almost sounds creepy but there is just so much going on in the theme that it's hard to take it in.

Still, a review of this disc probably couldn't get away without talking about the "Cherries Were Made for Eating" and "Love Theme" songs, both of which also enjoyed releases on single LPs back in the day. As it turns out, both are fairly pleasant. "Cherries Were Made for Eating" is especially catchy, sporting that distinctly "bouncy" quality that one could expect from some of the pop work done from this era. Suffice to say, it's probably the highlight of this CD. As for "Love Theme", which is actually the only song done in Japanese here, it's decent as well. Not particularly memorable, but the background music is soothing and Ken Narita has a pleasant voice that helps carry the track.

Overall, this disc isn't horrible, but it's hard to recommend. Fans of the group will likely eat this release up, but others will probably have trouble meriting its addition into their collection. Consequently, it's not surprising that this is a limited release, as its appeal is likewise somewhat narrow. The choice to make this an exact replica of the LP, while enticing to fans of the format, is also probably going to turn others off. The fact that it's only 40 minutes, while faithful to the LP source, is also another strike against it. Still, it's nice to see a previously unavailable soundtrack make its appearance on the CD format. One probably can't expect more of this from the company at hand here, Super Fuji, since their other releases in the GMT line are all Godiego titles, but hopefully some other firm makes an initiative to release more of these early Japanese soundtrack that are only available on the aged format today.
Rating: Star Rating
  1. Main Theme
  2. Buggy Boogie
  3. Hungry House Blues
    By: Steve Fox
  4. Eat
  5. Sweet Dreams of Days Gone By
  6. A Letter in the Past
  7. Cherries Were Made for Eating
    By: Yukihide Takekawa
  8. Eat Eat
  9. In the Evening Mist
  10. Oriental Melon Man
  11. Eat Eat Eat
  12. Love Theme
    By: Ken Narita