Title
 The Inugami Clan - Original Soundtrack
International Title
 Murder of the Inugami Clan
Music By: Kensaku Tanikawa
Record Label: Sony
 
Running Time: 66:07/67:19 Discs: 2
Release: December 2006 CD Number: ESCL-2923~4
Comments
Anthony Romero
This set, released under the "Epic Records" label, is a two disc release that contains the soundtrack to the 2006 feature Murder of the Inugami Clan and the original The Inugamis (1976). The first CD contains Kensaku Tanikawa's score for the 2006 production. Tanikawa ends up being a fairly good choice for this score, as he delivers something that sounds in similar spirit to Yuji Ono's work, who composed the soundtrack for the original 1976 movie. Tanikawa's strength here comes from his beautiful and very soothing piano pieces, which greet the listener at the start of the CD with "Matsuko's Theme". The composer has a slight unorthodox nature to him, but at the same time more than a few of these themes seem cliché for the horror genre, particularly ones like "Dangerous Weapon: Flower Shears" which tend to blair the music before becoming subdued. A few of these tracks seem reminiscent to the composer's earlier work on Princess from the Moon (1987), such as "The Secret of Old Man Sahei", and consequently sound very dated today. As for the song "On & On" by Angela Aki, it's a quasi-enjoyable pop song. It feels out of place for a horror score, as they often do, but otherwise nothing to raise a fuss over. As it turns out, the strongest cue off this CD is easily the "Ending", which was originally composed by Ono as the "Ballade of Love". The new fully orchestrated version of this theme is something else though, as the new approach adds a definite layer of majesty to the track and makes this a real gem. Overall, the first disc isn't amazing, but is solid enough to merit listening from start to finish whenever one is looking for a more soothing soundtrack with a sprinkling of horror themes tossed in.

As for the second disc, this covers Ono's original stab at what would end up being the first in a series of Kindaichi films. As expected, the disc starts off with the great "Ballade of Love" theme. As previously mentioned, this cue is really fantastic, and was a wise choice for being used again on the new film. Thankfully, the new conduction for the cue is quite different from the original take here, and this allows both themes to stand on their own quite well, particularly as Ono supplies it with a very peculiarly start before diving into the "meat" of the cue. As for the rest of the CD, it's comprised of more contemporary cues from Ono that, sadly, are extremely uneven. A few of these, like "Grudge" and "Cursed Mansion", feature a lot of guitar work that just doesn't gel well with the rest of the score. Those looking for more upbeat cues like what's to be found on Ono's work on the long running Lupin the Third series will undoubtedly be disappointed as well. Sadly, a lot of this music just fails to entice. The exceptions are the previously mentioned "Ballade of Love", "Solitude" (reprisal of the Ballade of Love) and another cue called "Illusions", which is also on the soothing side. The "Theme of Hate", which is a little uneven in parts, might interest some, particularly those who might be fans of Pink Floyd as it sounds reminiscent of the song "Shine On You Crazy Diamond". However, that's only looking at the first 13 tracks. As it turns out, the remaining bonus tracks, aside from "Tragedy", are actually quite nice, and do a good job of occasionally building a feeling of mystery while still being soothing. Overall, I would say the first disc is actually more enjoyable from start to finish, but Ono's score probably has the larger number of memorable tracks, it's just a shame they are sandwiched between lackluster cues.

Bottom line, neither score is fantastic. However, this set is quite the bargain, since it contains both soundtracks, each over an hour in length, at a price that is hardly marked up from a normal retail disc in Japan. If someone is an individual who tends to splice up their soundtrack music too (either placing it on iPods, playlists, etc.) than this collection shouldn't be missed, as both renderations of the "Ballad of Love" are extraordinary.
Rating: Star Rating
Tracks
    Disc 1: Murder of the Inugami Clan (2006)
  1. Matsuko's Theme (Piano Configuration)
  2. Traveling Kindaichi
  3. The Mysterious Will
  4. Wakabayashi's Death
  5. In the Train
  6. The Legend of Sahei Inugami
  7. Sukekiyo Returns
  8. To Desire's End
  9. Black Hood
  10. The Mask is Turned Over
  11. The Lake's Surface Was Blue Like a Lapis Lazuli
  12. After the Country is Torn Apart, There Are Rivers and Mountains
  13. Tamayo's Concern
  14. The Returning Refugees
  15. Anxiety and Fear
  16. Doubt
  17. Omen
  18. Tamayo's Theme (Piano Configuration)
  19. Tamayo on Lookout
  20. Morning on Kannon Peninsula
  21. Bloodstain
  22. Kindaichi's Inference
  23. Conspiracy
  24. Matsuko's Thought
  25. Blood Relative of Nine People
  26. Kindaichi's Holiday
  27. The Secret of Old Man Sahei
  28. Dangerous Weapon: Flower Shears
  29. Ax, Koto, Chrysanthemum
  30. Doubt Again
  31. Moonlit Stroll
  32. Murderous Shadow
  33. Shizuma's Revenge
  34. Tearful Reunion
  35. On the Lakeside
  36. One's Own Confession
  37. Who is the Witness?
  38. Connection of Murderous Intentions
  39. Dreadful Accident
  40. When Something Happens...
  41. "I Beat the Entire Inugami Family!!"
  42. Love Lives On
  43. Case Resolution
  44. One Road
  45. Ending
    Composer: Yuji Ono
  46. Ending (Unused Version)
    Composer: Yuji Ono

    Bonus Tracks
  47. On & On (Soundtrack Version)
    By: Angela Aki
    Disc 2: The Inugamis (1976)
    Composer: Yuji Ono
  1. Ballade of Love
  2. Grudge
  3. Cursed Mansion
  4. Mask
  5. Demise
  6. Sad Prologue
  7. Theme of Hate
  8. Contemplation
  9. Lake Shadow
  10. Prayer (Ballade of Love)
  11. Blood Agony
  12. Illusions
  13. Solitude (Ballade of Love)

    Bonus Tracks
  14. Ballade of Love (Movie Version - Main Title)
  15. Kosuke Kindaichi of Nasu
  16. Tragedy
  17. Interim of Love and Hate
  18. Theme of Hate (Movie Version)
  19. Prayer (Ballade of Love - Movie Version)
  20. End of a Delusion
  21. Solitude (Ballade of Love - Movie Version)