After just a few film projects, Japanese anime director Makoto Shinkai apparently has become anime's next big thing, with several critics hailing him as the new Miyazaki. In how far this is justified in the case of a director who was born in 1973 and arguably still has to reach his full artistic potential remains debatable, but there's no denying that Shinkai has made a splash with his visually distinct tales of young lovers separated by circumstances beyond their control. The fact that he created his breakthrough short Voices of a Distant Star all by himself on his personal computer and a variety of software programs certainly helped creating an auteur persona around Shinkai and raised interest in this self-taught filmmaker.
One of Shinkai's closest and most regular creative collaborators has been composer Tenmon, who scoed almost every single one of Shinkai's works so far: She and Her Cat (1999), Voices of a Distant Star (2001), The Place Promised in Our Early Days (2004) and 5 Centimetres per Second (2006). Tenmon and Shinkai met while working at Japanese software producer Falcom, where Tenmon — as a lead of the Falcom Sound Team J.D.K. — had been involved in creating music ranging from Brandish to Zwei!!. His work for Shinkai's movie output has frequently met with praise and has been credited for enhancing the films' emotional impact. To celebrate the tenth anniversary of this creative partnership, CoMix Wave Studios released Promise Project: 10 Years of Makoto Shinkai & Tenmon, bringing together original arrangements of compositions from all of Tenmon's works for Shinkai. Arrangement duties were handled by an illustrious team comprised of Shiro Hamaguchi, Akifumi Tada, and Yasunori Iwasaki, while Australia's by now ubiquitous Eminence Symphony Orchestra performed the works.