This has somehow slipped past my radar, but let it be known now that last October the music labels Colossus and Musea presented a progressive rock album called The 7 Samurai – The Ultimate Epic. I actually found out about this all by chance while doing my usual rounds checking what sort of Kurosawa items are being sold around the world.
I cannot personally say much about the album, as my requests for a review copy have not been replied to by the companies in question. However, here is the product description that usually appears attached to the work:
Responding to the big demand, the joint-venture between Colossus (The Finnish Progressive Music Association) and Musea (Kalevala, The Spaghetti Epic, The Colossus of Rhodes…) proudly presents its brand new concept-album: The Seven Samurai – The Ultimate Epic!
Here’s a Progressive rock concept-album inspired by the famous film by Akira Kurosawa (1954). The story has been divided in three chapters, and Tempano (Venezuela), Consorzio Acqua Potabile (Italy) and Taproban (Italy) have been chosen to interpret one track [each]. The total length of each suite is around 25 minutes.
The sound remains faithful to the spirit of the Seventies Progressive rock music: original keyboards (Hammond organ, Moog, Mellotron, Fender Rhodes, Grand Piano etc.) are favoured, and the bands avoid loops, drum machines or other Eighties and Nineties digital sounds. The three groups involved have composed three magnificent Progressive rok epics, reminding all the Seventies masters (Genesis and Jethro Tull for the first named, Banco del Mutuo Soccorso or King Crimson for the second one, Emerson, Lake & Palmer for the last one, amongst others…), but each piece is also faithful to every band’s style and personality. Brilliant!
The track listing is the following:
1. Alla Corte Degli Eroi – 1550, Periodo Sengoku (I. Shimada Kambei/II. Kikuchiyo: Il Volo/III. Crepusculo – Parte Uno/IV. Il Vecchio Mulino/V. Katayama Gorobei: Le Sete Spade/VI. Fa Che Io Sia: Il Dono)
2. The Farmers (I. Farewell To The Season/II. The Lone Samurai/III. Despair, Shout !/IV. The Blind Crow)
3. The Bandits (I. First Ride/II. Eagle’s Peak Pyre/III. The Flaming Lady/IV. Last Ride)
The CD is currently available at Amazon.com for $14.90. It may of course be cheaper elsewhere.