THE BEST SCORES OF 2016 – Part One

ARRIVAL soundtrack | ©2016 Deutsche Grammophon

THE BEST SCORES OF 2016 ARRIVAL  (Johann Johannsson / Deutsche Grammophon) An Icelander whose intensely psychological, yet still melodically accessible modernist scores like PRISONERS and SICARIO speak in alien languages of subsonic strings and nerve-chilling brass at last gets his actual close encounter as he translates the Rorschach Test language of obelisk / monolith dwelling inter-dimensional deities here. Johannsson brilliantly captures both a sense of wonder and fear with beholding the mind-boggling, verbally-scrambled unknown as whale cry motifs join with alternately moaning and chattering voices, backed by a strong orchestral sound that serves as a powerful universal musical translator in a way that’s […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: THE CAIRO DECLARATION soundtrack

THE CAIRO DECLARATION soundtrack | ©2016 Movie Score Media

Nothing seems to inspire glorious feelings for The Motherland like a flag-waving symphonic score, its citizens’ devotion embodied in majestically swirling melody. But then, you don’t have to open your Little Red Book to appreciate the stirring patriotism that westerner Chad Cannon, along with Chinese composer into THE CAIRO DECLARATION, creating the most sumptuous music to accompany a historical event most listeners on this side of the Atlantic have never heard of. The 1943 meeting between FDR, Churchill and soon-to-be overthrown Chinese ruler Chiang Kai-shek decided the who’d get Japan’s occupied territories once Tojo went down in flames – with the […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

ANT-MAN: Composer CHRISTOPHE BECK gets big with new Marvel movie

Ant-Man-CD-cover

Few Marvel superheroes might have an inferiority complex like Ant-Man. He’s a guy decked out in blue and red, wearing what appears to be some diver’s helmet, gifted with the ability to shrink down to insect size while still delivering a man-sized punch. Not exactly as cool as a mythic hammer, a repulsor ray equipped iron suit or an ability to turn into a big green rage engine. Plus, there’s that name, one subject to any number of self-effacing quips by Paul Rudd, an oft-comedic actor. You know THE DARK KNIGHT which is great indeed when it comes to giving […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES soundtrack

YOUNG SHERLOCK HOLMES soundtrack | ©2014 Intrada Records

The ’80s were the glory days when it came to the Amblin pictures that truly imparted company head Steven Spielberg’s handprint of thrillingly humanistic fantasy and chills to any number of movies that stand as classics for a certain generation – among them BACK TO THE FUTURE, GREMLINS and THE GOONIES. Also uniting these movies were their sweeping orchestral scores by the likes of Alan Silvestri, Jerry Goldsmith and Dave Grusin, which also resonated with a topical pop sound. But if there was one Amblin composer who stood as the answer to equaling the thrillingly lush, symphonic quality of John […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: DA VINCI’s DEMONS soundtrack

DA VINCI'S DEMONS soundtrack | ©2013 Sparks & Shadows

It’s no easy task having to score the smartest creator who’s ever walked on our planet. But given an endlessly prolific bounty of inventive TV soundtracks for the genre likes of BATTLESTAR  GALACTICA, THE WALKING DEAD and DEFIANCE,  the energy of Bear McCreary is a match well met for Leonardo Da Vinci. And we’re certainly not talking about an old guy with a beard here, but a robustly sexual scientific adventurer making a Wild West West impression on Renaissance-era Italy, courtesy of David Goyer’s imaginative historical reboot. Obviously, playing it straight with 14th century instruments isn’t going to do the […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: PET SEMATARY soundtrack (2,000 Limited Edition)

PET SEMETARY soundtrack | ©2013 La La Land Records

There are certain horror films and soundtracks that transgress barriers by blending art and shock, a la PSCYHO and THE EXORCIST. Then there are some that just plain old scare the shit out of us with the yuck factor of seeing a sweet near-toddler rip the throat out of Fred Gwynne to the accompaniment of children’s lullabye voices. Such is the unnerving, brilliantly distasteful power of Mary Lambert’s PET SEMATARY and the dawning of a composer who’d re-write the book on experimental scoring in Hollywood for Stephen King’s most unnervingly sadistic film adaptation, with a screenplay by King himself no […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: ED WOOD and JIMMY P. soundtracks

ED WOOD and JIMMY P. soundtracks | ©2013 Howe Records

When it comes to Howard Shore this holiday season, it’s going to be all about THE DESOLATION OF SMAUG. But if you’re on a quest to hear the composer’s more esoteric, but equally rewarding work, than you’ll find his Howe Records label offering a treasure trove of Shore’s past, and present scores, including COSMOPOLIS‘ trance limo ride to hell, the charming, Oscar-nominated imagination in HUGO‘s Parisian train station and the ticking clock of the worst AFTER HOURS in an NYC shlep’s life. Now Shore’s versatility sounds off with two new Howe releases, one dealing with a psychologically wounded Native American […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: THE SALAMANDER soundtrack

THE SALAMANDER soundtrack | ©2013 Prometheus Records

An entertaining, obscure 1981 political thriller that stands as one of the nuttier pictures that Jerry Goldsmith scored is now just as remarkable for becoming one of the best, and boisterously re-performed soundtracks that the legendary composer has gotten. That’s thanks to the always-excellent triple-threat of album producer James Fitzpatrick, conductor Nic Raine and the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus, who follow up their recent take on Goldsmith’s HOUR OF THE GUN with an album that will completely blow fans away. This musical masterwork accompanied Franco Nero as a hapless Italian police whose investigation into a series of […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: THE GAMBLER and BEYOND THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE soundtracks

THE GAMBLER soundtrack | ©2013 Quartet Records

Jerry Fielding was a composer who set a new high bar for tough guy expressionism in film music, taking an uncompromising, and often primally dissonant approach for such seething orchestral blood rites as THE WILD BUNCH, THE OUTFIT and LAWMAN. Now the new releases of THE GAMBLER and BEYOND THE POSEIDON ADVENTURE offer a rich contrast in Fielding intensity, subduing his voice for a modern classicist, and then pouring on the danger for the Master of Disaster. If Gustav Mahler had become a film composer, it’s arguable that his often brooding, string-heavy style might have sounded something like Jerry Fielding’s […]Read On »

COMMENTS (0)

CD Review: DESPICABLE ME 2 and THE SMURFS 2 soundtracks

DESPICABLE ME 2 soundtrack | ©2013 Universal Records

Perhaps there’s just a natural, festive spirit of his country’s carnival celebrations that’s in the musical genes of Brazilian composer Heitor Pereira. Rapidly making a name for himself in family-friendly scoring, Pereira’s work for the likes of CURIOUS GEORGE, BEVERLY HILLS CHIHUAHUA and THE LITTLE ENGINE THAT COULD comes across as being just plain “nice” in the most fun, melodic description of that word as possible – especially when dealing with a cartoon supervillain on the mend, or munchkins with playfully bad attitudes for two sequel scores that actually improve on Pereira’s original, bouncy work. Having shown sympathy for Mr. […]Read On »

COMMENTS (1)
Increase your website traffic with Attracta.com
bottom round