AUDIO REVIEW: CAPTAIN FUTURE / MUSIC: CHRISTIAN BRUHN / LABEL: PRIVATE RECORDS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW
Private Records has dug deep into the archives to reissue this LP, originally put out on Condor in the mid-'80s. The Japanese anime series had several different versions throughout Europe. While the French and Italian versions were quite popular, it was the score to the German version which ended up being most fitting to the program – likely due to the rather more violent scenes being cut, reducing the series to something a bit more childish.
Hence, Christian Bruhn's score is less anthemic and far more appealing to a younger crowd. Its space disco. Everything has the artificiality bumped up a couple of notches, and every cut fairly thumps in 4/4 time. Hurra, wir fliegen sounds like an instrumental Abba cut – not that there's anything wrong with that, obviously.
Vor dem Start is a disco beat laid over a guitar, very, very reminiscent of David Gilmour's work on Another Brick in the Wall, Pt. 1, before everything gets a squealing, slightly squelchy electric keyboard part thrown atop all that.
The artificial flute of Joan is exotically beautiful, like a love song from the future. Strangely, the strings which back it are actually real, performed by the Munich Strings and Brass, and it only serves to make the flute sound that much more fake - which, strangely, enhances its appeal by emphasizing its otherworldly, unnatural nature.
Ken is a bit flirty and seems to be more suited to a romantic comedy – or even The Pink Panther – than something of a sci-fi cartoon. Coming as it does after the action-packed, guitar-filled Feinde grefen an!, it just seems to float along rather ethereally. The same goes for Ein trauriger Fall, which follows Der Bose, and is so near elevator music as to put one to sleep.
Planet der Kranken is a mysterious, creepy, chirping piece of music that sounds like the gurgles of an interstellar swamp. It's one of the few pieces of music that is more soundtrack and less actual dance music. It's followed by Eingeborene, which complements it with tribal drums and ethereal faux-flute,
Der Bose is an absolute stunner. All other songs aside, this is the reason to pick Captain Future up. The angular, striking synth lines, the spare yet insistent drums, and strange robotic accents just make this a dance floor must. It's the counterpart to Giorgio Moroder's The Chase you never knew you wanted.
This is actually a reissue of a reissue. Private had first repressed this in 2010, and this version is equally as limited as the first reissue. There are 250 copies each on black vinyl, as well as gold vinyl. The gold's rather lovely, and it comes with a large foldout poster version of the cover artwork, suitable for making your living room look like your bedroom circa 1986.
It's sold out already, but if you contact Private they may have a few copies squirrelled away somewhere. It's worth owning for Der Bose alone, and if you're a fan of the label's Let's Go Into Space series of compilations, then you'll enjoy oh so much of this.
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