Sound Design Records / Japan
Year of release:
The "Four Seasons Of Quality" is a kind of soundtrack that Kitaro created for the underground shopping mall "Tenjin Chikagai" in Fukuoka / Japan. The 33⅓ RPM EP (single size) was distributed in Japan only and it was "not for sale". There is no CD release. From time to time a EP is offered on japanese second hand websites, outside of Japan it's very rare and hard to find. There is no publishing date on the cover or the record itself and Westwood Records don't answer questions about it. You can find hints in the Internet that the disc was published in 1984. And this would fit, because the whole side A was taken from the album Towards the West, which was published in 1985.
Both songs on side A can be found on the album Towards the West. The first piece of side A ("Winter") is the song "Melancholy" and the second piece ("Spring") is "Utopia". On side B is also a known song: the first piece is the song "Tree" from the album Ki without synthesizer sounds.
I don't like it when songs are reused or pre-published with new/different names. This is exactely what was done on side A, because both
songs are taken from Towards the West.
So let's talk about side B, this is more interesting. Song 1 ("Summer") is known as "Tree" on the album Ki, but the version here is played on a guitar only. All or most of the synthesizer sounds from the Ki version are missing. Maybe this is a very early version of "Tree" or Kitaro made a "guitar only" version of it. Song 2 ("Autumn") cannot be found on any Kitaro album. The song remembers me a little bit of "Noah's Ark" (from Silver Cloud), but the melody is different and it's based on basic sounding drums. Maybe Kitaro created this song originally for an album without using it, so he took it later for this EP.
I think the "Four Seasons" can be interesting for Kitaro collectors or fans of his typical 80ths sound. But don't expect too much :-)