The movie TULIP FEVER was originally to be released in 2014, but due to various problems and difficulties it has only just seen the light of day. The score is by much sought after and respected composer Danny Elfman, who we all know via his scores to movies such as BATMAN, BEETLEJUICE, DARKMAN, etc. But TULIP FEVER is completely removed from the style of Mr Elfman when he wrote the soundtracks to these and other action led motion pictures. Instead we have here a sound and style that maybe we would normally associate with composers such as Phillipe Rombi, George Fenton or Georges Delerue, his score for TULIP FEVER certainly has about it a style that is more classical in its overall sound and make up. Elfman’s score was briefly released back in 2014 by Sony when the film was originally slotted for its premiere, but it was soon removed and thankfully not forgotten by the label. I hear within the score references to other works by the composer in-particular his music for SOMMERSBY which seemed to have been released years and years ago, also there are certain flourishes and mystical sounding musical phrases that are reminiscent to EDWARD SCISSORHANDS, it is a soundtrack filled with fragility and also one that is haunting but saying that it is hard to pick out a resounding or reoccurring theme within the work apart from, the opening and closing tracks SOPHIAS THEME, which opens with female wordless voice that is supported by piano and strings, the voice melts away with strings and piano taking on the theme backed by subdued use of percussion, the cue builds and gains some momentum, but as I say there is no real theme as such but it remains interesting, elegant and enchanting, this is especially true in the second version of the theme which appears at the end of the album, with the composer introducing a boy soprano, that immediately evoked memories of   George Fenton’s, work on SHADOWLANDS .  MARIA’S THEME (track number 12)  seems to be a more consolidated attempt at a cue with real thematic direction, the composer fully developing the rich and near lushness of his composition in less than a minute. Track number 13, THE WAIT is too a more developed piece, and begins subdued but slightly sinister and gradually builds with strings and percussion supported by woods and voice into a fully dramatic piece. The longest cue on the album is THE GRAND FINALE, which I suppose one could say is an overture of suite of sorts that includes various themes from the score or at least hints and glimpses of them. TULIP FEVER is for me an interesting work, and generally pleasant and amiable in its sound and style, but saying that it is probably a score that one would play a couple of times then file it, but that is purely a personal opinion.

Advertisements