Dedicated to reviews and news of music for film, TV and games

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

CD REVIEW - The Grudge 2 and News from Costa Communications

The Grudge 2
Music by Chrisopher Young
Varese Sarabande VSD 6771 (EU)
12 Tracks 45:46 mins

Fans of Young's music for the first Grudge movie, and of his horror/thriller scores in general, will be delighted that he got the call to score this sequel.
For those not so familiar with his work, they may find this anything but an easy listen, as it is filled with the composer's customary eerie and downright terrifying music for this genre, with much emphasis on the strings, but sometimes the orchestra is enhanced by electronics and choir, with Japanese instruments also added to the mix, really creating some weird sounds. When the score is not creeping one out, there are nicely flowing, mysterious passages, often subtly piano-lead, and some fateful moments for strings. In short, Young's many fans will love it.
As always, the composer comes up with anything but straightforward titles for his cues. This time they are in Japanese, so you'll have to work on their translations to try to make any sense of them.


(Los Angeles, CA) This past year proves to be more than just busy for composer John Powell as three of the films he scored in 2006 earn top honors. Powell received an Annie Award nomination for Music in an Animated Feature Production for "Ice Age: The Meltdown." Both "Happy Feet," which Powell scored, arranged, orchestrated and acted as musical director, and "United 93" were among AFI's top 10 films of the year. In addition, "Happy Feet" earned the title of Best Animated Film from the New York Film Critics Circle and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, and received a nomination for the Annie Awards' Best Animated Feature. "United 93" was named Best Picture by the New York Film Critics Circle and runner-up Best Picture by the Boston Society of Film Critics.

In less than ten years, Powell has established himself as a leading composer with nearly fifty films to his credit. Powell has demonstrated his flair for melody, layers and sonic textures in virtually every genre from action, "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" and "The Bourne Identity," to comedies, including "Shrek" and "Robots." Other films include "Two Weeks Notice," "I Am Sam" and Drumline."

Powell began his career composing music for commercials and television at London's Air-Edel Music in 1988. Later, he started his own jingle house with longtime collaborator, Gavin Greenaway and worked on many mixed media art installation works with artist Michael Petry as well as the opera An Englishman, an Irishman and a Frenchman. After moving to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film music, Powell immediately scored several projects for DreamWorks Television, but it was his stirring score for John Woo's blockbuster Face/Off that put him on Hollywood's short list.

John Powell is currently working on "Horton Hears a Who" for Fox/Bluesky Studios animation and will be continuing the "Bourne" series with "The Bourne Ultimatum" next year. Several of his film scores were highlighted at a special concert for the World Soundtrack Awards in Belgium recently.


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