International Title
 Negotiator: Mashita Masayoshi
Music By: Akihiko Matsumoto
Record Label: Universal
Running Time: 53:00 Discs: 1
Release: April 2005 CD Number: UMCK-1187
Anthony Romero
This soundtrack for the 2005 spin-off movie from the Bayside Shakedown franchise is handled by series regular Akihiko Matsumoto. For those familiar with Matsumoto's work, they won't be disappointed to know that the score for Negotiator continues the composer's penchant for varying styles within a soundtrack. In all honesty, it's hard to think of another composer who so actively seeks to experiment with as many different genres in the same film as Matsumoto.

The disc starts off with a chorus heavy piece called "The Crook ~ Part 1 ~". The theme is very creepy and gothic in its tone, sounding at times like church hymns before becoming more sinister and eerie during its duration. The CD then instantly changes gear with the very upbeat "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town", done by The Temptations circa 1970. Following this is my favorite theme off the score, which is "The Underground Crisis". It's a great action piece, that also invokes a sense of panic that seems right at home with the film's plot of subway terrorism.

Unfortunately, it's past this point that the CD begins to lose traction. The styles are very diverse, as one would expect, with tracks like "Tequeno-man" being, not surprisingly, techno in nature while others are much more traditional, such as the piano supported "Little Lights of Love" or the march-like "Unity II". Sadly, it's just an uneven effort. Some of these tracks, like the previously mentioned "Tequeno-man", are just way too repetitive, long out lasting their welcome. In fact, this is particularly tragic in the case of "The Negotiator 2005", which starts off with a great beat and is very energizing; however, by the last minute of its runtime the track has just totally lost its momentum. The disc does have its moments, though, past the early tracks, and the inclusion of the always riveting "Bolero" (technically Boléro) by Maurice Ravel doesn't hurt either. As a whole, it's worth more than a few listens, that's for sure. However, it's certainly not as enduring as some of the other CDs in the Bayside Shakedown series, or Matsumoto's work on Returner (2002).

On a side note, this release was also issued in a two disc set (UMCK-9113) that contains the same CD soundtrack but also includes a DVD with trailers and an interview for the movie.
Rating: Star Rating
  1. The Crook ~ Part 1 ~
  2. Santa Claus is Comin' to Town
    By: The Temptations
  3. The Underground Crisis
  4. Kumo E4-600
  5. Electro
  6. Tequeno-man
  7. Mysterious Zone
  8. Chase on the Rail
  9. The Line Detectives
  10. Tribal Fair
  11. Fighting Brothers
    By: Akihiko Matsumoto and Kae.M.Black
  12. Little Lights of Love
  13. Unity II
  14. The Negotiator 2005
  15. Bolero
    By: Maurice Ravel
  16. The Crook ~ Part 2 ~
  17. Little Lights Of Love (Full Scored Ver.)
  18. Santa Claus is Comin' to Town
    By: The Jackson 5