World’s End Girlfriend – ‘Starry Starry Night’
Starry Starry Night — the story of 12-year-old Mei and her growing detachment with her new urban setting, all falls out of focus as soon as she finds someone she can connect to in Jie. The rest of the world’s disparaging view seems to contrast the two’s distinct frame of mind and so they both set out to escape from it all. Along the way, the music in the background highlights the film’s light-hearted charm, connecting the soft tones around a worldly withdrawn girl in her dehumanized surroundings.
It happens that I was initially drawn to this film upon reading the “Music by World’s End Girlfriend” credit. Previously, the classical work of Katsuhiko Maeda had been an amazing first experience all around. Enchanted Landscape Escape and his Air Doll soundtrack feature many of the same classical elements in Starry Starry Night‘s score. These seldom, untapped characteristics of Maeda’s compositions are most definitely worth paying attention to.
The disconnected feelings of this film’s score open the soundtrack, but the music’s disconsolate heavy downpour, attributed by the fifth-tuned instruments, only hang around until Maeda’s signature use of toy pianos and various high-pitched percussion join the composition. The soundtrack also includes a woodwind presence through the warm welcome of a tenor saxophone’s tale in “Night Floater”, as well as another particular appearance around the vocal harmonies of “Storytelling ( feat. 湯川潮音)”. The assortment of it all has each composition tugging away at the score’s disparate moods, pulling an overall overcast of a sense in all directions.
The film’s context, including its ‘Van Gogh’ referenced name and cinematography, comes a bit cliché this year, but just when any sort of emotional doubt settled with the film’s direction, World’s End Girlfriend subtly took over and communicated a sentiment anyone could relate to. I guess in the end, it’s a bit strange for anyone to approach a film’s score as strongly as a studio album, but after listening and some more listening, Starry Starry Night‘s score becomes an experience all on its own. I mean, every track scored comes in part of a larger story, but it’s significantly the music itself that you’ll end up taking with you.
The soundtrack for Starry Starry Night was released last month from Virgin Babylon Records.