Heartcatch Precure! Original Soundtrack 1 – Review

Album Title: Heartcatch Precure! Original Soundtrack 1
Anime Title: Heartcatch Precure!
Artist: Yasaharu Takanashi
Catalog Number: MJCD-20188
Release Type: Soundtrack
Release Date: June 09, 2010
Purchase at: CDJapan (out of print)

Tracklist

Show »

Track Title Artist Time
01. Precure! Open my heart! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:14
02. Precure sassou katsuyaku desu! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:43
03. Alright! Heartcatch Precure! (TV size) Aya Ikeda 1:27
04. Tsubomi ~ Cure Blossom no teema Yasuharu Takanashi 1:42
05. Kibougahana he youkoso! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:37
06. Subtitle Yasuharu Takanashi 0:11
07. Koi ni koisuru otoshigoro Yasuharu Takanashi 1:15
08. Ochikomu toki mo arundesu Yasuharu Takanashi 1:34
09. Chypre to Coffret Yasuharu Takanashi 1:36
10. Kokoro no hana yo, dete oide Yasuharu Takanashi 1:46
11. Watashi, kawarimasu! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:58
12. Precure Pink Forte Wave Yasuharu Takanashi 1:38
13. Kokoro no taiju Yasuharu Takanashi 1:40
14. Precure no densetsu Yasuharu Takanashi 1:29
15. Yasashii Coppe-sama Yasuharu Takanashi 1:50
16. Alright! Heartcatch Precure! ~Slow arrange~ Yasuharu Takanashi 2:48
17. Heartcatch! Yasuharu Takanashi 0:11
18. Mou hitotsu Heartcatch! Yasuharu Takanashi 0:11
19. Sabaku no shito Yasuharu Takanashi 1:56
20. Desertrian no odemashi da! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:45
21. Erika ~ Cure Marine no teema Yasuharu Takanashi 1:45
22. Precure Blue Forte Wave Yasuharu Takanashi 1:25
23. Erika no omoi Yasuharu Takanashi 1:42
24. Karesou na hana Yasuharu Takanashi 2:16
25. Magamagashiki takurami Yasuharu Takanashi 2:04
26. Bousou suru kokoro Yasuharu Takanashi 1:08
27. Sekai wo sabaku ni seyo Yasuharu Takanashi 1:49
28. Kanninbukuro no o ga kiremashita! Yasuharu Takanashi 1:57
29. Precure Floral Power Fortissimo Yasuharu Takanashi 1:23
30. Kokoro no tane, umaresou desu Yasuharu Takanashi 2:04
31. Futari wa Precure Yasuharu Takanashi 2:13
32. Heartcatch☆Paradise! (TV size) Mayu Kudou 1:33
33. Minna no haato wo catch da yo! Yasuharu Takanashi 0:30

 

Review: Heartcatch Precure was my first step into the Precure franchise — well, more akin to diving into the ocean. I expected the standard fare that accompanies an anime whose target audience is significantly more juvenile (and feminine) than I: a simple narrative, colorful glitz, and straightforward characters. It’s simple, but effective and entertaining. What I did not expect was an incredibly vivid and energetic soundtrack. Yasaharu Takanashi has composed for multiple Precure series, including the current incarnation: Smile Precure. Outside of this franchise, Takanashi has worked on Shiki, Jigoku ShoujoNaruto: Shippuuden, and Carnival Phantasm. Despite the expanse of his opus, I would claim that the Precure soundtracks are perhaps Takanashi’s best work.

Unlike some shows, where the soundtrack is secondary and truly “background music”, the Precure series by nature aggressively deploys its soundtrack. Thus, it is vital that the soundtrack is coherent thematically and sets the proper mood for different scenes. The soundtrack unifies fiery energy and elegant string movements to create a spirited yet graceful flavor — much like Heartcatch Precure itself.  “Precure Sassou Katsuyaku desu!” is a great example. The track seamlessly brings together a balletic viola theme with electric guitar riffs. This driving melody truly conveys the theme of Heartcatch Precure as a whole.

Precure Sassou Katsuyaku desu!

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Tsubomi and Erika are the two protagonists in Heartcatch Precure, taking the role of Cure Blossom and Cure Marine respectively. While Tsubomi is shy and introverted, she is loyal to her friends, good-natured, and holds a firm belief in what is right. Due to her experiences as a Precure, she progressively becomes more confident in herself and her identity. This is reflected in her theme, which starts with a gentle and delicate melody and gradually grows louder. The pretty starting melody represents her maiden heart, innocent but shy and lacking the courage to stand up for what she believes in. The track slowly gains strength and symbolically “blossoms” into a more vigorous sound, but retains the refrained and gentle nature of the beginning.

Erika’s theme is much more lively, opening with a guitar riff reminiscent of the early 90’s. I love the energy in this track. The rising viola theme holds the entire track together and paints Erika as a character that is not only cheerful and peppy, but also ambitious, beautiful, and dignified. It provides a great contrast that mirrors themes found in the show. The themes of Tsubomi and Erika reflects the characters’ relationship with each other: dramatically different stylistically but still unified and related thematically.

Tsubomi ~ Cure Blossom no Teema

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Erika ~ Cure Marine no Teema

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Takanishi also manages to convey the atmosphere of Heartcatch Precure through slow, mellow tracks like “Koi ni Koisuru Otoshigoro” which depict the setting rather nicely. The melody is very deliberate and sweet, and the chimes and bells give the track a nice “magical” touch. This is a magical girl anime after all, and this track definitely brings the innocent and feminine flavor to complement the anime aurally.

Koi ni Koisuru Otoshigoro

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Finally, distinctive soundtracks like Heartcatch Precure’s just pop out at you during an intense scene, and nothing is more satisfying than being serenaded by up-tempo tracks during a good ol’ fashioned fight scene against a strong opponent. “Kanninbukuro no o ga Kiremashita!” is that classic battle music. Its grand and sweeping melody instantly stands out against the backdrop, giving the listener the feeling of bearing witness to a difficult battle fought with noble intentions by characters who are determined, but not brutal. Courage, strength, purity, resolve — so much emotion can be conferred by this complex track.

Kanninbukuro no o ga Kiremashita!

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Heartcatch Precure is commonly placed within the gold standard of magical girl anime, and it’s reflected in the soundtrack. While they deal primarily in the language of cuteness, bright colors, and subliminal merchandising, magical girl anime are about inner strength as well as trust– in yourself and in your friends. It is imperative that Heartcatch Precure features a soundtrack that can reflect these themes in a way that is grand, moving, and confident while expressing a feminine motif. Yasuharu Takanashi has done just that with Heartcatch Precure, and I hope his talents will bless even more Precure series in the future.

Rating: Very Good

kevo

kevo' is a contributor for the Anime Instrumentality Blog. I usually post when I am randomly compelled to review an anime album or soundtrack, or some other special topics. Besides anime music, I like classical, pop, and electronica. kevo's blog

One thought on “Heartcatch Precure! Original Soundtrack 1 – Review

  • July 7, 2012 at 7:57 pm
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    I was going to write things about ‘…more juvenile than I’ being grammatically incorrect but then I realized it wasn’t and hit myself on the head.

    Compared to the Shiki soundtrack, this seems like it has a lot more character in it; not many tracks (aside from the first two) in the Shiki OST stood out to me, whereas this seems to… well, yeah, has a lot more character. What am I even saying

    Reply

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