On listening to the latest offering from French composer Philippe Jakko, I was immediately struck by his ability to create styles and sounds that are in effect a homage to the creative genius of Delerue, a tribute to the upbeat melodious phrases that were penned by Lai, with the composer also conveying a sense sophistication via jazz influences which could be the work of the Maestro Michel Legrand. I am not saying that Philippe Jakko has in any way plagiarized the music of these composers but when listening to this score I just cannot help but think of them and their collective genius when it came to weaving haunting and ingratiating themes for the cinema. Philippe Jakko has created a classy and wonderfully thematic work for the new French TV series Nona et Ses Filles (Nona and her Daughter’s ) it is filled with cool and ultra-elegant compositions with the composer treating us to so many styles and sounds that it’s hard to believe that the music we are listening to comes from one TV series, it is overflowing with a tasteful, effervescent and attractive style.

Composer Philippe Jakko.

With the composer fashioning so many beautifully written and refined pieces that encompass the styles of Baroque, Jazz, neo classical, dramatic, and romantic with a definite nod in the direction of J.S. Bach. There is within the score a fragility and a delicacy that shines through at key moments, with intricate but at the same time luxurious sounding phrases and interludes making an appearance as if from nowhere, the composer introducing these and weaving them into the fabric of the score alongside up-tempo pop influenced tracks. Which make the work even more alluring and attractive to listen to. I love the way in which the composer combines layered strings with an emotive piano that itself is acting as background and support to a refined and tantalizingly stylish flute performance. The soundtrack also has a up-beat and albeit short but effective opening theme, which is performed by a choir or singing group and again I think successfully sets the scene and evokes the 1970’s as it has that kind of style, a style that we all heard and loved back in the day from the already mentioned composers plus Serge Gainsbourg, Michel Magne and Francois De Roubaix. It has to it a compelling and warm aura and is also lively and spirited. The fusion of jazz, classical and more traditional film music is stunning, the composer flawlessly combines all these styles and elements and brings to fruition something that is not just special but something that is outstandingly superb.

CANNES, FRANCE – MAY 13: actress and filmmaker Valerie Donzelli attends the “Polisse” premiere at the Palais des Festivals during the 64th Cannes Film Festival on May 13, 2011 in Cannes, France. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images).

It is not very often that a score such as this comes along, and I am so grateful for the composer allowing me to hear it before the score gets a release. I found myself drifting off into a nice calm and chilled out place at times, listening to the touching piano performances, and the romantic sounding themes that populate the score. When it is released, please be sure to listen, experience, and immerse yourself in the composers eloquent, elegant, and wonderfully affecting and eclectic sounding score, it will be one I am confident that will stay in the player or on the PC for a long time, and on each listen you will discover something new, something fresh and something that is moving and mesmerizing. The series is directed by filmmaker Valérie Donzelli and tells the story of the unexpected pregnancy of a 70-year-old woman who is already the mother of 40-year-old triplets. In this, her first series, actress, director, and writer Valérie Donzelli has brought together a star-studded Franco-German cast that includes Miou-Miou, Virginie Ledoyen, Valérie Donzelli, Clotilde Hesme, Barnaby Metschurat, Rüdiger Vogler, Antoine Reinartz, Christopher Thompson, Léonie Simaga and Michel Vuillermoz, for this contemporary comedy drama that is overflowing with humour, awash with poetry and oozing with sensitivity that deals with social and universal themes. I urge you to not only listen to the marvellous score but also check out the series. Highly recommended…..

Acknowledgements and many thanks to Maestro Philippe Jakko.

THE KING’S MAN. (pre release review).

It won’t be long now before The Kingsman series of films becomes a trilogy, the soon to be released The Kings Man will we are told be in cinemas on December 22nd this year, the film, which is much anticipated by fans of the franchise, is also something that film music collectors are waiting for because the score by Dominic Lewis and Matthew Margeson has generated certain mutterings saying that it is something special. The movie was slotted for release in February then in September 2020, but the pandemic happened.

Well, I can tell you the whisperers and the rumours about the musical score are all true, it is brilliant. The work is a powerhouse of robust and vibrant themes, the composing duo never letting up and creating so many powerful and commanding moments. The opening track The Kings Man is an imposing and affecting piece for proud sounding horns that are laced with strings, creating an uplifting and I would say confident and at the same tie beautiful opening flourish for the score. It has a sound that is more than uplifting and so much more than melodic, it is totally consuming and inspiring. The cue moves into a more apprehensive and dramatic vein as it develops, the composers adding driving strings that are shadowed by brass and percussion, which give them an even greater atmospheric clout.

At times I was reminded of the work of both John Barry and John Williams and I thought there were also affiliations to the sound as in the melody to Morricone’s Ecstasy of Gold, just hints at least that evoke that wonderfully affecting four note motif from the Italian Maestro’s now iconic theme.(well I can hear it).  But I digress slightly, the music for The Kingsman is probably one of the most richly thematic scores from 2021 I say thematic as in anthem like and action packed, but even when the music becomes action motivated the themes still shine through and develop and alter throughout. What the composers have done here is create a solid score that twists and turns along with the plot and retains a melodic and attractive musical persona, that most certainly entertains without having to see the movie, which is great because it’s not yet out. But as soon as it is the score has made me want to see the film even more.

But just listening to the score, one just knows that the film is going to be a powerhouse of a production, which hurtles along at break-neck speed, never relenting or holding back, and if it does in the quieter moments then these are even more effective because of the luxurious and deeply emotional sound achieved and purveyed. It is for the majority a symphonic score, and utilises to the max strings, percussion and brass, the composers also adding little quirky nuances performed on cymbalom here and there, creating a haunting and mysterious air. I just wanted to alert you all to this wonderful score, it’s a triumph, and sorry to say you will have to wait until at least December before you are able to listen to it. But it is certainly worth waiting for.