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This All-Strings Cover of MY NEIGHBOR TOTORO Music is Sonic Perfection

Certain movies would be nothing without their music. Ennio Morricone‘s rock guitar and harmonica makes Sergio Leone’s westerns pop; Atticus Ross and Trent Reznor make David Fincher movies industrial and troubling; John Williams makes every movie better. The music is so good, it can elicit emotions when just listening in isolation. This phenomenon holds especially true with composer Joe Hisaishi whose lush and touching scores for Hayao Miyazaki’s films add a richness to the gorgeous visuals. Now, an entire cover album of Ghibli music by the Vitamin String Quartet is on the way, including this track (via Slate) from My Neighbor Totoro.

Perhaps Hisaishi’s most recognizable composition, and the one most associated with Ghibli, “The Path of the Wind” from Miyazaki’s 1988 classic was a fully orchestral love letter to growing up while trying to hold on to youth. None of this is lost in Vitamin String Quartet’s version, even without the tympani drums and woodwinds. Within the first 30 seconds, I was already starting to well up, which is the sign of a great piece of music. Man, how I would love to live in a Hayao Miyazaki movie.

If you feel that same way, the entire 12-track album will be available on December 1, 2017, and will feature eight pieces of original film score (from Totoro, Kiki’s Delivery Service, Spirited Away, and others) as well as string covers of the pop and folk songs used in various Ghibli movies, such as the ubiquitous “Take Me Home, Country Roads” from Whisper of the Heart and “Fine on the Outside” from When Marnie Was There.

The album will run you a very reasonable $11.99 and will be available for download on Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon, and Spotify.

What’s your favorite piece of Studio Ghibli music? How much sobbing does it make you do? Let us know in the comments below!

Images: Studio Ghibli

Kyle Anderson is the Associate Editor for Nerdist. He’s the writer of Studio Ghibli retrospectives Miyazaki Masterclass, Takahata Textbook, and Ghibli Bits. Follow him on Twitter!

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