Z FOR ZACHARIAH: Composer Heather McIntosh survives with the last woman on Earth – Interview in Z FOR ZACHARIAH

Z FOR ZACHARIAH soundtrack | ©2015 Varese Sarabande Records

With female driven, YA dystopian fiction being all the rage at the multiplex, one of the genre’s first, unintended entries was a 1973 post-nuke diary written by a sixteen year-old survivor named Ann Burden. As penned by MRS. FRISBY AND THE RATS OF N.I.M.H. author Robert C. O’Brien, (and posthumously completed by his wife and daughter), the award winning book Z FOR ZACHARIAH details the the life of Ann and her beloved dog Faro in a radiation-free Shangri La. located somewhere in rural America, She’s settled into a comfortable, if yearning existence since her family vanished years ago seeking civilization. […]Read On »

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CD Review: AFTER THE DARK (THE PHILOSOPHERS) soundtrack

AFTER THE DARK soundtrack | ©2014 Varese Sarabande Records

A group of handsomely fresh-scrubbed western students gather in a Jakarta classroom to play mental doomsday games about which few of them will get to squeeze into an imaginary bunker. Heady stuff indeed for a surreal apocalypse film as it were, mind games that are given a creepily meditative, futuristic pulse by co-composers Nicholas O’Toole (HOW TO BE A SERIAL KILLER) and Jonathan Davis, here contributing his first score since 2002s QUEEN OF THE DAMNED (then done alongside Richard Gibbs). Better known among concertgoers for being front and center with the group Korn, Davis also gets additional music assistance from […]Read On »

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CD Review: FRANKENSTEIN UNBOUND soundtrack

FRANKENSTEIN UNBOUND soundtrack | ©2013 Buysoundtrax

After directing over 50 movies that encompassed every exploitable subject from drag racing to drug trips and race baiting, Roger Corman retired from filmmaking with a classy bang in the horror genre that arguably brought him his greatest artistic rewards – especially when dealing with the work of such famed authors as Edgar Allen Poe and H.P. Lovecraft. For FRANKENSTEIN UNBOUND, Corman took on Mary Shelley’s seminal work, but ingeniously time-twisted it via Brian Aldiss’ novel to have a future inventor meet an 17th century blend of factual and fictional characters – let alone the era’s most notorious stitched-together monster. […]Read On »

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CD Review: KILLER FORCE / THE CORRUPT ONES – 500 limited edition soundtrack

KILLER FORCE / THE CORRUPT ONES soundtrack | ©2013 Music Box Records

Sure they might release such elegantly prestigious Euro scores as Georges Delerue’s THE CONFORMIST and Philippe Rombi’s WAR OF THE BUTTONS. But Music Box Records is perhaps even more fun when handle kitschily entertaining works by such composers us Yanks have never heard of like Michael Magne’s EMMANUEL 4 and Serge Franklin’s LE GRANDE PARDON. Now of particular, disco-ish delight is George Garvarentz’s score to 1976s KILLER FORCE (aka THE DIAMOND MERCENARIES), one of those all-star Anglo thrillers that provided fun South African vacations to such Americans as Telly Savalas, Peter Fonda and O.J. Simpson, here ripping off some precious […]Read On »

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CD Review: HAMMERSMITH IS OUT and WOMAN TIMES SEVEN soundtracks

HAMMERSMITH IS OUT soundtrack | ©2013 Quartet Records

Quartet Records continues their mission of putting out swinging comedy scores from the 60s and 70s from Burt Bacharach’s CASINO ROYALE to John Addison’s THE AMOROUS ADVENTURES OF MOLL FLANDERS. These entries don’t get more deliciously hep than when they’re playing the devil, or the devil as a woman. 1972s HAMMERSMITH IS OUT is a full-on Faustian lark as Richard Burton’s satanic asylum inmate gains egress via Beau Bridges’ country bumpkin orderly – a pairing of ancient evil and American hayseed that allows Dominic Frontiere to go for a swinging combo of Baroque stylings with country twang. Having played the […]Read On »

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Interview: BYZANTIUM composer Javier Navarrete hears vampire grrll power

BYZANTIUM | ©2013 IFC Entertainment

America might have its upstart, sparkly rock-and-roll vampires. However in Europe the cinematic myths surrounding these creatures tend to be somewhat more romantically sophisticated, encouraging their scores to be similarly cloaked in poetic refinement. It’s a crimson wellspring where Intimately Baroque instrumentations conjure images of corseted eroticism and raging orchestras relish in unholy evil, all while a chorus simultaneously evokes the undead’s transgression against God, and their impossible dream of returning to his good graces. With his music’s striking mix of tenderness and savagery, Javier Navarrete takes on feminine, melodic shape to tap into the jugular of time-honored vampire music […]Read On »

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CD Review: HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER soundtrack

HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER soundtrack | ©2012 Intrada Records

Intrada’s new partnership with Universal to celebrate the studio’s 100th anniversary has yielded many blasts from the company’s musical past, but none so singularly vengeful-minded, or more crazy fun than Dee Barton’s score for Clint Eastwood’s Stranger, the undead sheriff who paints a godforsaken town hell red in 1973’s HIGH PLAINS DRIFTER. Playing, and directing a character who was easily the most sadistic Man With No Name in his cannon, Eastwood deconstructed the genre that made his bones with a picture that was just as much horror as it was western, a genre mix for which his frequent musical collaborator […]Read On »

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CD Review: CONQUEST 1453 soundtrack

CONQUEST 1453 soundtrack | ©2012 Movie Score Media

Turkish nationalism gets a powerhouse score from English composer Benjamin Wallfisch with CONQUEST 1453, who turns sultan Mehmet II’s invasion of Constantinople during that titular year into a first-rate, rah-rah epic that’s made his country cheer like never before at their cinemas. It’s a considerable step up in musical scale for Wallfisch from the idiosyncratic music he provided for the exceptional prison break movie THE ESCAPIST. With CONQUEST 1453, it’s all about bringing out the symphonic artillery, conjuring a siege of heroically mighty themes, raging brass, beating drums, a biblical chorus, and proud ethnic identity – music mighty enough to […]Read On »

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Interview: BRAVE composer Patrick Doyle bears the highlands

Patrick Doyle | ©2012 Patrick Doyle

If there’s one picture that Patrick Doyle was fated to be the composer of, then it’s no contest that movie is BRAVE, Pixar’s animated salute to all things Scottish in the form of a feisty lass named Merida. Like all modern, high-born Disney heroines, this red hair rebels against the chauvinist-conformist path set by her well-meaning royal parents, with her archery skills representing the sharply pointed spirit of her determination. Not only does Merida’s shooting skill outrage her highland clansmen and intended suitors, but her unbreakable will also ends up incurring a witch’s ursine curse- the rampaging results of which […]Read On »

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CD Review: TAG: THE ASSASSINATION GAME soundtrack

TAG: THE ASSASSINATION GAME soundtrack | ©2012 Buysoundtrax Records

For a label that’s continually unearthing a certain generation’s cult obscurities like HARDLY WORKING and STARCHASER: THE LEGEND OF ORIN, Buysoundtrax makes one of their most pleasurably eccentric discoveries with 1982’s TAG: THE ASSASSINATION GAME. Written and directed by former Shape star Nick Castle to capitalize on the then-phenomena of “Assassin” games sweeping college campuses, TAG of course has those suction cup hijinx turn to real ammunition, the game going awry to the alternately satirical and lethally chilling strains of composer Craig Safan. Like the crazy kids who play at being as cool as the murderous big boys, Safan is […]Read On »

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