Radwimps – Your Name (orig. 君の名は。[Kimi no Nama wa.]): sudle enchantment through compositional simplicity and far-reaching sonic carpets

If you are open to watch Japanese animation movies, I highly recommend to watch the 2016 Japanese anime blockbuster Your Name (orig. 君の名は。[Kimi no Nama wa.]). It is one of my favourite movies in recent times due to the fantastic story, production, mood and feel, and because of the music composed and performed by Japanese rock band Radwimps.

The soundtrack was released on 24 Aug 2016 through Universal Music Japan and runs for 73 minutes and 14 seconds. It encompasses 27 tracks and sees a mixture of instrumental and band-played score ranging anywhere from string-only arrangements, acoustic jazz intermezzos to uplifting or dramatic piano interludes and a few Radwimps trademark rock songs. Despite the variety in genres, the 27-song album radiates a clear distinct musical aura. The instrumentals serve as pathfinders to Radwimps’ band-played songs, which I consider to be among the best songs the band has ever released.

Highlights

前前前世, track 8, is an uptempo rock song that conquers every rock heart with its energy and subliminal melancholy. The wordless, piano-based デート, track 10, will challenge anyone to keep their eyes from running like fountains. 作戦会議, track 19, experiments with production and composition in known Radwimps manner; maybe not everyone’s cup of tea, but definitely mine. 三葉のテーマ, track 21, picks up where デート, track 10, left off – a beautifully dramatic, piano-based instrumental playing with the listener’s emotions. The 8 minutes and 57 seconds epic スパークル, track 24, is my favourite song on this album – a band-played song that depicts exactly what the soundtrack wants to portray: sudle enchantment through compositional simplicity and far-reaching sonic carpets.

In conclusion

I can only suggest anyone who likes a good soundtrack to pick this one up and listen to it in its entirety. And, if you can get a hold of the movie, watch the movie afterwards. The experience will be even more intense when the soundtrack hits the screen. Try it and feel free to quote me on that.

Sebastiano Mereu

YouTuber + host of the #FHTZ online music show with co-producer @simonkurt + marketing & digital content producer + university lecturer