Soundtrack supplement is seventy-four this Christmas, not in years but that’s the total of official Soundtrack Supplements that have been published here on MMI. I hope that we have entertained you, informed you and maybe guided you to your soundtrack purchases during these installments. This edition is shorter than usual but I am anticipating a deluge of new material in the days leading to the big day so we will be back!!!!. (sorry that was a pathetic Schwarzenegger impersonation).
We go straight to a score that I think is extremely good. Imperative by composer Richi Carter who also provided a luscious and rich sounding score for the 2021 movie The Great Artist is one to watch out for, it’s now available on Spotify etc, as is The Great Artist. I feel it’s a well-balanced and wonderfully written and structured score, which by the sound of things is a fusion of conventional instrumentation and electronic components throughout, the striking Main Title sets the scene for much of what is to follow with the composer creating a stirring and richly thematic piece, that verges upon the operatic and the epic.
A score well worth checking out and the same can also be said for his music to The Great Artist. In Lilburn, GA, a suburb of Atlanta, lies one of the state’s most hidden gems. The movies storyline follows the journey of a father and son’s dream of transporting their fifty-foot Ark from Lilburn, GA to Knoxville, TN down to it’s final destination in Tampa, FL.
That’s the synopsis of the 2022 documentary The Ark of Lilburn, it’s a film that contains a haunting score by Jordan Bennet, who employs a kind of folk/country sound throughout that is accompanied and interwoven with a definite Italian western score flavour. Guitars, whistling, harmonica, and synth voices work well and create a genuine spaghetti western feel to the work. The composer including passages that are akin to Morricone, Nicolai and De Masi employing an Alessandroni like whistle which mimics the work of both Morricone and Nicolai on the A Professional Gun soundtrack, and a piano track that could be straight out of The Big Gundown, and also cues such as Daylights Wasting and A Fistful of Gravel in which we hear a homage to Once Upon a Time in The West, complete with harmonica fuzzy sounding guitar and dark electric bass.
I love the way that the composer integrates so many varying styles and sounds into what is quite a lengthy score. It’s not just entertaining but is also a score that engages the listener straight away, I love it and I think you will too. Available on digital platforms.
The series The Confessions of Frannie Langton is adapted by the author Sara Collins from her own novel of the same name. The central character Frannie Langton is a heroine very much depicted in a similar way to that of Jane Eyre, as she too faces a life that is filled with trials, tribulations and challenges that are unjust. She is accused of taking the life of her Mistress who just happened to also be her lover.
The series which will begin to air over the Christmas period is a strong and hard hitting one and takes us back to the early life of Frannie through her childhood and into adulthood and up util the murders and what really took place. The initial episode took a while for me to get into and I was not entirely convinced that I wanted to continue to watch, I was quite restless during this first visit, but it soon settles down and we are treated to an engrossing and thought-provoking story as it unfolds, and we are drawn even further into the life of the central character. It is a well-made and extremely well-acted romance and also a gothic drama that has to it some Agatha Christie type whodunnit moments. It has a strong cast, and the production is also well done, the musical score is by award winning composer Dominik Scherrer, who has penned a sensitive and an alluring work, the composer employing a string section, piano and woods to create a lilting but also a romantically apprehensive and haunting soundtrack. The music is quite subdued at times but posses a rich thematic quality, with cello solo performances fashioning dark shadings but at the same time these are filled with melancholy, the score is touching and wonderfully appealing.
I think the subtleness of the music is part of that appeal as I found myself immersed in the mystery and the romantically laced musical notions of the score, especially in cues such as I became Langton’s Creature, and Amorous Waltz, which are both almost hypnotic and draw the listener in as they progress and build slowly but effectively, it is certainly one to check out, available on digital platforms.
The official theme from the Paramount + Stallone starrer series Tulsa King has been released digitally, and if this the standard of the music for the rest of the series, then I can’t wait for a full score release. Music is by Danni Bensi and Saunder Jurrianns, the theme is immediately striking with a solo whistler performing the central melody, with a mid-upbeat backing of guitars which are then joined by saxophone that performs the same central theme as the whistler, again the influence of the Italian western score strikes, an appealing and infectious theme take a listen.
Composer Rob Simonsen is one of those composers who is consistently producing wonderful music, yet he is very rarely mentioned in reviews or articles or if he is I have not seen that many. His music I feel is perfect for cinema and TV and he seldom writes a bum note as they say, his score for The Whale has been released onto various digital platforms I found it on Spotify. Again, the composer serves up an emotive and affecting selection of music and layered sounds that straight away catch one’s attention. It is a subtle yet powerful work, and although there are soundscape elements within the work there are also real thematic passages and moments. I dislike intensely the use of drone like interludes that are basically just installed on some movies as a filler for the composer so there is background sound present but its not what I would call music, in The Whale there is some of this type of scoring, but even though it can be described as drone influenced it still has to it a morsel of thematic content.
The composer works in solo performances at certain points from violin which is a welcome sound and adds melancholy and a real sense of emotion to the proceedings, every so often the music alters to something that is vaguely theme driven, albeit short lived it is there. Take a listen, as it is an inventive score.