Composer Ivan Palomares is certainly no stranger to me, I had the good fortune to interview him a few years ago (2015),  and have followed his film music career ever since. One of his latest scores to be released is, EN LAS ESTRELLAS (up among the stars). I have to admit to knowing very little about the movie and I as yet have not seen it, but hopefully that will change very soon as I have many good things about it,  So, I must judge the score purely as music without knowing how it supports or enhances the picture it is intended to underline and punctuate. Well, I have to say I loved listening to the soundtrack, the music is emotive and poignant but does also at times wander into a darker more serious mood and the composer creates so many musical textures, colours and atmospheres within the work. It is weird because I found the music really moving and touching, it is a score that at times can be rather apprehensive and fearsome, the composer fashioning dark and shadowy musical passages and sounds that conjure up all sorts of menacing and harrowing thoughts. But, for most of the scores duration we are treated to luxurious and haunting themes, which are lush and filled with a romantic yet melancholy style and sound. In many ways I was reminded of the music of composer Maurice Jarre on more than one occasion, there is a grandness and a richness present throughout that is sadly lacking in many contemporary film scores, this work is bursting with themeatic material, which comes to the listener in the form of lilting and emotive romanticism that sweeps over them enveloping and mesmerising, there are also comedic passages that make one smile for no reason at all and there is also the powerful and grand sounding crescendos that take ones breath away each and every time.


The score is symphonic, which is always a good thing as far as I am concerned, the composer making effective use of the string section, with the score at times sounding more like a vintage Hollywood soundtrack from the Golden Age, with rousing and lively sections that seem to hop skip and jump along. Then there is, the sorrowful and heartfelt pieces, one of which I do not think will fail to capture anyone’s heart. EN LA CARRETERA comes in two brief cues no 1 and no 2, the latter being more heartfelt in its sound and performance, the composer employing underlying strings and subtle use of vibes to act as a background which just meanders and gradually builds but then ends as soon as it has begun, both cues are short lived but affecting. As is track number, 24, EL DECORADO DEL CINE DISOPCO, which opens in a somewhat grand manner, with soring strings and rumbling percussion, brass and epic sounding flourishes, these melt away and the composition moves into a more intimate and gentle sounding theme, performed by piano.
There is also a beguiling piece TE HAS OLVIDADO DE MI which is cue 25 on the recording, this is a sorrowful but at the same time inspiring piece, which has to it a sound that could easily be mistaken for John Barry, with strings, woods and has a twist in its tail as it draws to an end alters its mood from light and laid back into hard and slightly sinister. I really do like this score, it is a pleasure to listen to just as music, and I look forward to sitting in the cinema to sample the music in support of the images on screen. Available, on Quartet records.


Main Theme (Tema principal) [2:31]
Cinema and Escape from the Landfill (El cine y huida del vertedero) [1:14]
Neighbourhood of Old Times (Barrio de antaño) [1:41]
The Vertov Theatre (Cines Vertov) [1:20]
In the Pub (En el bar) [1:43]
Angela in the Garbage and the Kiss (Ángela en la basura y el beso) [2:45]
Victor Drunk in his Puddle (Víctor borracho en su charco) [0:59]
Shooting a Movie in the Street (Rodaje en la calle) [0:44]
Victor and Angela Dancing on the Moon (Víctor y Ángela bailando en la luna) [0:53]
Tell Me More About the Story, Victor (Sigue contándome la historia, Víctor) [0:47]
Ingmar Sleeps (Ingmar duerme) [0:52]
Angela in the Bathub (Ángela en la bañera) [1:58]
Toys (Juguetes) [1:04]
House on Fire (Casa en llamas) [1:40]
Victor in His Scorched Home (Víctor en su casa quemada) [1:33]
Victor in His Scorched Home (Víctor en su casa queamada) [1:11]
Angela in the Burnt Remnants (Ángela entre los restos quemados) [1:02]
Escape from the Gym Class (Huída de la clase de gimnasia) [1:50]
On the Road 1 (En la carretera 1) [0:37]
Dodging the Police (Esquivando a la policía) [1:05]
Ye Old Manor (El viejo caserón) [0:43]
Pictures (Fotografías) [0:53]
On the Road 2 (En la carretera 2) [0:44]
The Dystopian Movie Set (El decorado del cine distópico) [1:30]
Did You Forget About Me? (¿Te has olvidado de mi?) [3:56]
I Don’t Love You Anymore (Ya no te quiero) [2:59]
Memories in the Stars (Recuerdos en las estrellas) [2:18]
End Credits (Créditos finales) [4:15]