Information

This article was written By Jon Jung on 06 Nov 2010, and is filed under Reviews.

Current post is tagged

, , , , , , , , ,



About Jon Jung

Jon Jung (aka “Coffin Jon”) is the producer and host of the VCinema podcast and editor-in-chief of the VCinema blog. He contributed several essays to World Film Locations: Tokyo (Intellect, 2011). Jon lives in San Francisco, but wishes he was back in Japan where he lived for seven years.

Music Review: (秘)色情めす市場 The World of Nikkatsu Roman Porno Original Soundtrack Collection

For those not familiar with roman porno (short for romantic porno – classy eh?), the term came from Nikkatsu Studio’s classification of its pinku line films produced primarily in the ’70s.  What differentiates a pinku and, by extension, roman porno film from a regular “old” porno film is the standards that the large studios set up for their production.  Directors were given near free reign in their films provided they could deliver four scenes of titillation (i.e. nudity and/or sex) in their 60 minute running times.  This, thus allowed directors  more room for characterization, drama, action, and, fitting of the times, political commentary.   Nikkatsu’s version of this film trend, roman porno, spawned several well known genre directors including Yasuharu Hasebe (Stray Cat Rock series), Noboru Tanaka (Angel Guts series), Shogoro Nishimura (Gate Of Flesh, 1977), and Masaru Konuma (Flower and Snake, 1974).

So, now we have in our hands a copy of (秘)色情めす市場 (Maruhi Shikijou Mesu Ichiba aka Confidential: Sexual Market, a 1974 roman porno directed by Tanaka) – The World of Roman Porno, a CD (and seedy) collection of various tracks from Tanaka’s film as well as others of the genre, spanning 1973-1978.  As could be expected from the era, the majority of the tracks have a hard (no pun intended), funky undertone to them, from the wailing Dennis Coffeyesque guitar fuzz of “Photograph” to the high strutting “Hitozuma Shudan Boko Chishi Jiken M1-A”.   Besides the funky stuff, there is a wide variety of moods to choose from: rock, pop, blues/enka, a very interesting sax/shamisen duet, and even a full-on lushly scored orchestral tune (which is how I’m assuming roman porno got its romantic side ).  The sound is great; I assume the tracks were digitally remastered from their analog sources and all of the tracks are in their original mono format.  The CD’s producers, Hot Wax/Ultra Vybe, did a nice job with the packaging: a glossy cardboard gatefold digipack case with a sexy quarterfold poster, liner notes, and advertisements for the the label’s other releases.

Overall, (秘)色情めす市場 The World of Nikkatsu Roman Porno is a very solid collection of music for Japanese genre film fans.  My only objection is that, with the average song length clocking in at an average of two and a half minutes, I really wish more music was included, especially considering the price – you can expect to pay $20-$25 for the CD imported.  Of course, if you need the right music for that special occasion, then money should be no object.

Related posts:

The Seaside Motel (Japan, 2010)
Flying Colors (Japan, 2015)
Tokyo.Sora (Japan, 2002)

Leave a Reply