An Alternative Soundtrack for Akira – Mixed by 主な戦闘 LORD TUSK
Akira is held up as one of the greatest animated films of all time.
Released in 1988, the groundbreaking anime was adapted from the manga series by Katsuhiro Otomo. Memorably set in the post-WWIII metropolis known as Neo-Tokyo, the plot is complex and muscular, like all great cyberpunk, taking in teenage bike gangs, telekinesis and top-secret military conspiracies. Yet it’s the more visceral thrills, the striking, cel-animated visuals and the music, that have made an indelible mark in pop culture’s collective memory. Just as its cult following was spread by bootlegged VHS tapes, so has its influence has filtered into pop culture.
This is certainly true for music. From Kanye West – whose fandom of Akira is well documented – to Michael Jackson, who included footage from the film in the video for Scream, musicians have been inspired by film’s cutting edge stylism. And that’s before you get to the score itself, Dr. Shoji Yamashiro, who led the collective Geinoh Yamashirogumi, created a “Symphonic Suite” that drew on choral works like Bach, Beethoven and Shostakovich – as well as Noe and prog rock.
To celebrate the film’s 30th anniversary, we called upon producer, DJ and soundtrack enthusiast Lord Tusk to create a mix. We wanted him to interpret the brief however he wanted, and he has come back with something truly special: a masterfully curated alternative soundtrack that pulls from the OST’s influences and the soundtrack itself, as well as more reflexive, impressionistic musical choices that rhyme with the film’s sensibility.
“Of all the genres of music I collect and listen to, nothing beats soundtracks,” said Lord Tusk, in a note accompanying the mix. “A good soundtrack elevates the visuals and intensifies the whole dynamic taking the audience into areas far beyond reality. I put together an alternative soundtrack mix from my own perspective and eclectic taste. As usual I live to take the listener to unknown chambers, original landscapes and challenging spheres to enhance the mind taking you out of your comfort zone to greater places you never knew existed.”