Soundtracks

CD Review: KING SOLOMON’S MINES (1,000 edition) soundtrack

KING SOLOMON'S MINES soundtrack | ©2014 Quartet Records

They were musical equals in my opinion. Yet for the better part of the careers of John Williams and Jerry Goldsmith, it always seemed that the latter was chasing the coattails of the first when it came to picture quality. For if John got Irwin Allen’s THE TOWERING INFERNO, then Jerry received that producers’ dog called THE SWARM. While John flew with SUPERMAN, Jerry remained earthbound in the enjoyably silly company of SUPERGIRL. But perhaps no second-cousin removed picture that Goldsmith got to score was a ludicrously close to aping a way better picture than when it came to comparing […]Read On »

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CD Review: EX-MACHINA soundtrack

EX-MACHINA soundtrack | ©2015 Back Lot Music

28 DAYS LATER and SUNSHINE writer Alex Garland makes a gradually impressive directing debut in front of the lens with this beautifully appointed, but at-first sterile adult sci-fi picture that gradually builds to end on a memorable high note. And it’s exactly the film’s overwhelming, creepy blankness that co-composers Geoff Barrow and Ben Salisbury are effectively playing to. It’s an interesting, and impressive dynamic, with Barrow essentially making his scoring debut here after writing tunes that have appeared in such films as TANK GIRL, THE CRAFT and LORD OF WAR, while Salisbury is the more seasoned component with his copious […]Read On »

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CD Review: OLD BOYFRIENDS soundtrack

OLD BOYFRIENDS soundtrack | ©2015 Intrada Records

In one of the more ironic scoring assignments, David Shire was put in the position of scoring his then-wife Talia as a character who sorts her romantic love life out on screen, here playing a psychiatrist who flees her husband, bounding about the county to do some serious self-therapy with a rogues gallery of exes that include the acting likes of Richard Jordan, Keith Carradine and even John Belushi. With the actress capitalizing on her ROCKY role as Adrian to show she had far more range in this and her other star vehicle WINDOWS, one might expect a somewhat treacly […]Read On »

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CD Review: AFTER THE FALL soundtrack

AFTER THE FALL soundtrack | ©2014 Lakeshore Records

Marc Streitenfeld has provided muted, morally ambiguous scores before to oil workers facing off against killer wolves in THE GREY and a professional hitman wanting his pay in KILLING THEM SOFTLY, scores filled with truly interesting “ambiences” and unexpected instrumentation. But perhaps none of Streitenfeld’s experimentally minded scores of this nature hits more weirdly, or more effectively at home than AFTER THE FALL, wherein Wes Bentley’s suburban dad truly goes off the criminal rails to avoid falling into poverty after his firing. Perhaps one way to describe Streitenfeld’s unique work at its most effective here is to imagine Carl Orff […]Read On »

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CD Review: FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD soundtrack

FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD soundtrack | ©2015 Sony Classical Music

The beautiful, slow-moving string melodies of English composer Craig Armstrong have made him a favorite when it comes to the many shades of romance. And while he’s had his share of cheerful, kiss-filled endings with LOVE, ACTUALLY and FEVER PITCH, most often it’s his poignant talent for melody that has ripped romance asunder, most often in the company of Baz Luhrmann for MOULIN ROUGE! and THE GREAT GATSBY, Armstrong’s beautiful melancholy couldn’t be better suited than for this latest cinematic trip to Thomas Hardy’s countryside with FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD, the story of a woman torn asunder between an […]Read On »

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CD Review: BISEXUAL and TAROT (500 edition) soundtrack

TAROT soundtrack | ©2014 Music Box Records

One of France’s most overlooked imports to Hollywood might be the late Michel Colombier, whose pop sensibilities particularly rocked the 80s with the funky synths of PURPLE RAIN, THE MONEY PIT‘s jazzy comedy and AGAINST ALL ODD‘s sensual Latin exotica – easily one of the era’s sexiest, and literally heavy breathing scores. But Colombier was just as lustful in the 70s even after stroking the ego of Hollywood’s biggest evil computer for COLOSSUS: THE FORBIN PROJECT a carnal talent that Music Box reminds us of in the release of 1975s LES ONZE MILLE VERGES (aka THE 11,000 SEXES or the […]Read On »

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CD Review: STORMY WEATHER soundtrack

STORMY WEATHER soundtrack | ©2015 Kritzerland

After their terrific release of Patrick Williams’ Italian-flavored underscore for BREAKING AWAY that coincided with Twilight Time’s blu ray movie edition, Kritzerland once again works in conjunction with the label to put out a truly historical, two-CD of one of mainstream Hollywood’s few forays into black entertainment. But beyond the song made eternal by Lena Horne for this 1943 20th Century Fox production, STORMY WEATHER also stands as one of the great American songbook scores when it came to showing black culture’s big splash on the nation’s music songbook. Done in the all-star cavalcade style made popular from the advent […]Read On »

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CD Review: QUEENIE and TO KILL A PRIEST (1,000 edition)

QUEENIE soundtrack | ©2015 Intrada Records

Georges Delerue wrote an astonish 18 scores alone from 1987-88. Two reality-based scores from that time now show his versatility, first making an emotionally empowering Indian passage to Hollywood, and then movingly martyring a leader doomed against totalitarian odds. Even given his French birthright, few composers had a naturally feminine quality to their work like Delerue, whose string, violin and flute empathy embodies an ersatz Merle Oberon (in the exotic form of Mia Sara) in his score for QUEENIE, one of those passion-filled TV miniseries of yore involving a woman climbing her way to the top through beauty and bedroom, […]Read On »

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CD Review: STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE (3,000 edition) soundtrack

STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE soundtrack | ©2015 La La Land Records

Since the days the U.S.S. Enterprise set space sail on vinyl, the franchise’s TV music universe has beamed from Varese Sarabande to GNP/Crescendo and Film Score Monthly, but perhaps not so exhaustively as in the good hands of La La Land Records, who beyond their releases of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION, DEEP SAPCE NINE and VOYAGER could lay claim to releasing just about every note of Classic Trek music in an astounding box set, which offered 15 CD’s suffused with the kind of distinctive themes and melody that would essentially be phasered out when the show was reborn in […]Read On »

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CD Review: WOLF HALL soundtrack

WOLF HALL soundtrack | ©2015 Silva Screen Records

It’s understandable that the BBC (let alone America) can’t get enough of the wildest member of England’s Royal Family and his entourage, who helped the lusty Henry VIII break from the Roman Catholic Church. The chief architect in his court who enabled is wife-laden plans was Thomas Cromwell, not exactly a babe magnet himself, but serpentine in his machinations that changed the fate of Britain. Given this interior, oft-villainized figure who spawned Hilary Mantle’s novels and this six-episode adaptation, it’s understood that a big, robust orchestral score might not be the way to go, or either the kind of contemporiazed […]Read On »

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