Anime Soundtrack Review: Pokemon The First Movie Soundtrack

The soundtrack CD for Pokemon The First Movie was released around the same time that the film was released to American theaters. The soundtrack is labeled as “music from and inspired by the motion picture,” but it’s really more like, “music from the motion picture, and some random songs that have absolutely nothing to do with the movie whatsoever.”

Pokemon The First Movie Soundtrack
Publisher: Atlantic
Release Date: November 9, 1999

For example, B*Witched’s “Get Happy” appears on this CD, but the song itself was first released about a year earlier as a b-side to the US pressing of the “C’est La Vie” single. Another example is Britney Spears’ “Soda Pop”; it was released on the …Baby One More Time album about 10 months before the film was released to theaters.

Of the 16 songs that appear on the soundtrack CD, only six songs make some kind of an appearance in the film: Billy Crawford’s rendition of the Pokemon theme song, M2M’s “Don’t Say You Love Me” (which was promoted as a single from the soundtrack), Christina Aguilera’s “We’re a Miracle,” Vitamin C’s “Vacation” (which appeared in the “Pikachu’s Vacation” short), Angela Via’s “Catch Me if You Can,” and Blessid Union of Souls’ “Brother My Brother.” The other 10 songs appear to be songs that these artists’ labels wanted to include on the soundtrack in the hopes of gaining more exposure for these artists by being associated with the Pokemon franchise.

It’s obvious by the artists included on this disc that the soundtrack was being aimed at a young audience. Besides the artists listed above, this CD also features such artists as *NSYNC, Emma Bunton (formerly Baby Spice from the Spice Girls), 98 Degrees, Aaron Carter, Billie, Mandah (now known as Willa Ford), and Ashley Ballard.

When I listened to this CD, the standout tracks to me were the songs by M2M, Christina Aguilera, Vitamin C, Angela Via, Midnight Songs, and Blessid Union of Souls. Billy Crawford’s version of the Pokemon theme song was tolerable; while it wasn’t bad, it wasn’t great, either. And the remaining songs on the disc just sounded like generic, throwaway late 1990s teen pop songs. Unfortunately, the standout songs don’t make me want to rush out and buy this soundtrack, because they are outnumbered by the songs I’d be more likely to skip.

The disc also includes Hyperlock software, which enables the owner of the CD to access special film footage through a special website available only to people who own the soundtrack CD.

If you’re a Pokemon fan who wants to own every item that’s Pokemon-related, then this CD is for you. If you’re a fan of the late 1990s American teen pop sound, then you will also find this CD to be enjoyable. If you’re a fan of one of the artists on the CD, and the song that’s included here is hard to obtain elsewhere, then this CD is also for you. If you don’t fall into one of these three categories, then you probably won’t have much of an interest in the soundtrack for Pokemon The First Movie.

I wrote this review after listening to a copy of the Pokemon The First Movie soundtrack that I checked out through the King County Library System.

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