Winner of the Oscar
for Best Animated Feature Film, Spirited Away tell us the story of Chihiro, a ten years
old girl that moves with her parents to the suburbs. During the trip the family
stops at a ghost town and, ignoring Chiriho warnings, the parents decide to
make a quick meal. As a result of this they fall under the spell of an evil witch called Yubaba, and are turned
into pigs. Desperate, Chihiro will be under the orders of the witch and will begin a
quest to return her parents to their human form, facing the dark forces and allying
herself to an army of fantastic creatures. With this movie Chihiro joins the
large gallery of heroins created by Japanese producer Hayao Mizayaki (something
like an Eastern version of Walt Disney), found in titles like Princess
Mononoke, Kiki Delivery´s Service or My Neighbor Totoro.
For this effort Mizayaki has contracted again the services of
his habitual composer, Joe Hishaishi, who created a score as good as the
film and which possesses great poetic value. This wonderful Joe Hishaishi´s
work is constructed over the basis of gorgeous melodies, where a melancholic piano invites
us to join the hallucinating trip, shaping in a perfec way the oniric world proposed by Miyazaki.
In "One Summer´s
Day", the track that opens the disc, we listen to the main theme for the first time,
a splendid melody played on piano which has the particularitity to be fixed
in our minds immediately. "Road To Somewhere" and "Empty
Restaurant" are some of the smoothest and most delicate passages, that
will be complemented by
another moments of vigorous orquestral quality at the most dramatic moments of the
film, like "Kaonashi (No Face)" or "Dragon Boy", managing to transmit the
epic spirit of the story. Hishaishi does not forget to include synthezyzers
in the orchestration, giving an almost comedy effect like the animated phrase
heard in "Processions of The Spirits", plus the children choir and instruments
with strong Eastern accent.
As a valuable bonus we
also have a gorgeous song by Youmi Kimura "Always With Me". Spirited Away
delivers an attractive and powerful score that will bring us the fascinating images
from the film, turning its listening a great musical experience. Once again, Joe Hishaishi
elevates himself as the ideal composer in the world of animé.