Catastrophe 1999: The Prophecies Of Nostradamus by Tomita

Premium rare soundtrack materials from Tomita. Originally released only in Japan, this Contempo reissue puts the album back into the hands of people who aren’t international collectors: at last! Catastrophe 1999: The Prophecies Of Nostradamus is something like an Ennio Morricone suite if Morricone used a lot of mellotrons, synths and funk guitar.

Vinyl LP £16.99 C02014LP

Reissue LP on Contempo.

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Catastrophe 1999: The Prophecies Of Nostradamus by Tomita
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7/10 Robin 07 January 2016

Praise be to disaster movies, am I right? I’ve watched my fair share of films like The Day After Tomorrow on Film4 at half one in x-godforsaken Leedsian takeaway, and they certainly don’t have soundtracks like this: for Catastrophe 1999, a film entirely based on the miserable future envisioned by Nostradamus, composer Iaso Tomita swerves between gorgeous choral ambience to funk-fleeced guitar riffs into reverent synth washes. At times, his score sounds like the creeping retrograde rock Ennio Morricone would’ve thrown into a Western, but there’s an artificial eeriness, and often a playful rhythmic cool, that sets Tomita’s work apart from his soundtracking peers.

Tomita’s soundtrack serves to create both an epic, grandstanding backdrop for ‘Catastrophe 1999’ and a reminder that it’s all just pulp: the drum fills and cool guitar licks take the listener out of the moment in just the right way, offering much needed levity in the face of self-serious synth washes and pieces that include airy whistling and samples of waves crashing. Combining erudite arrangements with little flourishes of silliness seems fitting for a disaster film whose premise lies on a dude predicting its disasters many years prior. If I were Jake Gyllenhaal and I was trying to outrun a devastating snowstorm I’m pretty sure I’d want Iaso Tomita behind me, telling sonic jokes and then taking me very seriously.


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