SHIVER.

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Released in 2012, SHIVER is based upon the novel of the same name and is a thriller/serial killer movie which at times hits the mark but for the most part falls short of its target. The main problem for the film not delivering is that the script is just not worthy of the actual book, with a number of the characters being presented as either incompetent cops or rather boring and flat individuals with no real character. The musical score by veteran composer Richard Band is probably the best thing about the production, with Band delivering a suitably chilling and on the edge sounding score that has some nice set themes throughout, but for the most part is what one would expect for a film such as this. Band is known for his work on relatively low budget movies and I have to say that he always amazes me getting the results he does on these somewhat lean budgets. The score is a combination of both the symphonic and the electronic, but as per usual Mr Band is able to fuse the two mediums together with consummate ease. At times I was reminded of the style of Jerry Goldsmith when he was involved on movies such as BASIC INSTINCT, it has that kind of steamy, sultry air to it that is tinged with an aura or hint of sensuality. There are also however present fragments of past Richard Band scores such as THE PIT AND THE PENDULUM there is a definite presence of that particular theme within the score for SHIVER, albeit a slower tempo arrangement also a glimpse of styles employed in movies such as THE ALCHEMIST and THE CALLER.

 

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The composer manages to create a score that is entertaining to listen to as a stand-alone piece as well as being a strong and supportive component of the movie and although a lot of the music is what many would call atonal, it is still interesting and entertaining. The composer making good use of driving strings and imposing and tense sounding brass flourishes. Which can be heard within cues such as PRISON BUS BREAK, WENDY GRABS THE GUN and THE OFFICE MASSACRE. The soundtrack also includes a handful of songs, which are all at the end of the recording, the first of which also acts as the END TITLES (TWILIGHT GREEN) and begins as an instrumental but after the initial introduction which is apprehensive and menacing, segues into a laid back vocal performance by an uncredited female singer, the song reminded me a lot of SUGAR IN THE RAIN from the movie STILLETTO it has that kind of sweet and too good to be true sound, but saying this is easy on the ear and pleasant enough, oddly the song then reverts back to the instrumental score and again we hear a threatening and tense style employed by Band.

Other songs include YOU MADE ME LOVE YOU, WE’LL ALWAYS HAVE THE MOON, AFTER YOUV’E GONE all performed by the same vocalist and are jazz influenced, with the final cue being an instrumental which again is jazz orientated entitled POOR BUTTERFLY all pleasant enough to listen to but a little out of kilter with the main score. An interesting score, check it out, Its on INTRADA.

1.
Rude Fantasy
0:51
2.
The Killing
2:02
3.
Main Title
1:19
4.
Decapitated?
0:26
5.
Police Briefing
1:59
6.
Wendy Views The Necklace
0:23
7.
Gryphon’s Playground Flashback
1:00
8.
Break In
1:25
9.
Gryphon Attacks Wendy
2:47
10.
Jennifer Death
2:50
11.
Recalling The Event
1:54
12.
The Shack No. 1
0:48
13.
Wendy Rests In Police Station
0:35
14.
Killing Spree
4:39
15.
Transporting Wendy
5:41
16.
Here We Go
0:26
17.
Road To The Shack
1:02
18.
The Shack No. 2
0:30
19.
Entering The Shack
0:31
20.
Wendy Grabs The Gun
1:54
21.
Searching The Apartment
1:02
22.
The Rape
3:58
23.
His Show Of Heads
1:56
24.
The Saw And Fight For Life
2:26
25.
Delgado Finds Wendy In Shack
0:48
26.
The Prison Bus Break
1:22
27.
The Office Massacre
4:50
28.
Wendy Approaches The Gryphon
0:51
29.
End Titles (Twilight Green)
3:33
30.
You Made Me Love You
2:27
31.
We’ll Always Have The Moon
3:05
32.
After You’ve Gone
3:32
33.
Poor Butterfly
3:30

Total Album Time:
66:22

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INFERNO.

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At last INFERNO the third in the series which began a few years ago with THE DA VINCI CODE has hit the screen and along with it comes the release of Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack. Like with the previous two movies Zimmer has enlisted and fashioned a score from a fusion of electronic and also more conventional instrumentation, but this time I think personally that the synthetic at times has the upper hand over the symphonic. This is not necessarily a bad thing because the composer has created a score that is at times very fast moving and exciting with the accent being upon the use of action type music and musical sounds that have the listener on the edge of their seat without even seeing any of the images and sequences from the movie. I would say that this is a score that is more sound design rather than actual music, but saying that there are a number of cues that are mesmerising and quite serene and celestial sounding with Zimmer bringing into the proceedings choir (not sure if this too is synthetic) and heartrending and subdued violin solos to purvey an atmosphere and mood that is far from apprehensive and tense. There are also I have to say an equal amount of compositions which are shall we say less than shy and retiring, in fact I did find a few rather tough going and dare I say it grating upon one’s ears. I am not going to say I am a great fan of this composers scores or his at times rather offbeat and oddball approaches to film scoring, what I will say however is that every movie I have seen which has been scored by him has always received great support from his music, it’s a case of it works well in the movie but maybe not away from it, (yes I know that’s the idea of movie music). This does not apply to all of his work for the cinema I have to say as many of his scores are a delight to sit and listen to, as in GLADIATOR, BACKDRAFT, LAST SAMURI etc. Zimmer is a master of introducing a fragment of a theme and then repeating this and gradually building the piece until it becomes more developed and complete he kind of chips away at the listeners subconscious and plants the hint of a theme then builds upon its subtle beginnings until it becomes this full blown and at times epic sounding piece, the track VENICE from INFERNO is one such example it has a slow and rather unassuming beginning but as it progresses the composer adds layers and various sounds and colours to bring it out into the open as it were, a lilting piano opens VENICE which is underlined by strings the piano performance is then developed more and becomes more pronounced and dominant, percussion and choir are then brought into the equation with rising strings giving the cue a more prominent and vigorous sound, it then falls back to a subdued and slight sounding interlude with strings still acting as a background, these then fade away and re-enter the piano momentarily with strings and synthetic elements adding their weight to the piece, like his TIME theme from INCEPTION the cue continues to build and gain strength without really sounding as if is going anywhere.

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Effective and also affecting this is a trademark of Zimmer, which we hear again in the cue REMOVE LANGDON mainly electronic with piano laced throughout this is a pulsating and tense track that switches from low and sombre sounding moments to action fuelled peaks. The highlight of the score me is track number 16, LIFE MUST HAVE IT’S MYSTERIES, again this is a gradual builder of od cue, piano once again opens the cue, strings again are added and underline and punctuate, what sounds like synth woodwind is then introduced but soon give way to strings which launch into a full working of what is one of the core themes of the soundtrack, solo violin is then introduced above the strings and percussive elements lend their support as choir too steps into the musical arena, the cue building and gaining momentum until the strings, choir, solo violin and also percussion are performing in unison bringing the piece to a crescendo and its end. Overall I have to say I enjoyed listening to this score, although as I did remark earlier there are a few moments that I found a little hard on the ear. But this taken into account INFERNO is certainly worth a listen.