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

Monday, June 30, 2008


Sorry I have been awol for more than a week now, due to unforeseen circumstances. Things are likely to remain patchy for a while, but please check back as reviews will appear, and I have a whole heap of things to get through, including the following:-

Soundtracks for new and upcoming movie releases:-

The Edge of Love by Angelo Badalamenti on UCJ
Get Smart by Trevor Rabin (incorporating Irving Szathmary's well-loved theme from the original series) on Varese Sarabande
Wanted by Danny Elfman on Lakeshore Records
Hancock by John Powell on Varese Sarabande
WALL.E by Thomas Newman on Walt Disney Records
Journey to the Center of the Earth by Andrew Lockington on New Line
Meet Dave by John Debney on Varese Sarabande
Dragonlance: Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Karl Preusser on Lakeshore
The Promotion by Alex Wurman on Lakeshore

Older Scores:-

La Liceale by Vittorio Pezzolla, coupled with La Liceale nella Classe dei Ripetenti by Gianni Ferrio on Digitmovies
Buffalo Bill by Carlo Rustichelli from the GDM Hillside Series
1000 Dollari sul Nero by Michele Lacerenza, again from GDM Hillside
The Wreck of the Mary Deare by George Duning, coupled with John Green's Twlight of Honor on Film Score Monthly
Joko Invoca dio e Muori by Carlo Savina, again from the GDM Hillside Series

In addition, I'm still hoping to bring you my thoughts on Mark Griskey's music for the video game versions of Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk, so you can see that there's plenty to look forward to, and more good things are promised.

In the meantime, here's an announcement from Monstrous Movie Music:-

New from Monstrous Movie Music: Your Imagination Presents!

Dear MMM customer,

While you are familiar with our Monstrous Movie Music science fiction and horror soundtracks, my wife Kathleen and I have taken a temporary break from classic film music and are pleased to announce our latest creations!

"Your Imagination Presents" is a CD series of sci-fi musical adventure stories aimed at children 7 and older. It takes children’s audio in an incredible new direction, where the listener gets to be the star of the show by going along on the adventures!

But before you say to yourself, "I don't care about that -- I want more classic monster music!" you might want to give a quick listen to what we've done. Because if you have any kids, grandkids, cousins, nieces, or nephews, or have friends with same and you occasionally need to get them presents, then "Your Imagination Presents" might be right up your musical alley! Here's an mp3 audio sample to give you a taste of what YIP is about:

"Your Imagination Presents" provides a positive alternative to television, video games, and other toys that don’t help foster a child’s creativity and independent thinking. But while "Your Imagination Presents" is thought-provoking and is actually GOOD for kids, the main thing is that it's FUN and EXCITING. And if you love dramatic music, this is a wonderful way of helping to infuse that same love in children, so they don't grow up thinking that music is nothing more than simple songs with dumb lyrics. (How many times can you actually listen to "B-I-N-G-O" without going certifiably insane?) As if that's not enough, you get to expose children to scary monsters, futuristic rocketships, mad scientists, and all sorts of things that make classic sci-fi stories so wonderful!

The music of "Your Imagination Presents" was composed and recorded by Kathleen Mayne, who oversees the music on our MMM film music CDs. The stories and Creativity Booklet were written by David Schecter, who writes those mindnumbingly-detailed liner books for MMM. The cover art and Creativity Booklet illustrations are by Robert Aragon, whose cover art adorns all the MMM releases.

If you visit you can hear more audio samples, find out what makes "Your Imagination Presents" different from all other children's audio, and if you're excited by what you see and hear, you can order directly from our website.

Our first two CDs, “Space Flight to the Unknown” and “Mystery Island,” are on sale now. The price of each CD is $14.95 plus shipping. We can take orders by phone, fax, e-mail, PayPal, etc.

Your Imagination Presents
P. O. Box 4445
Chatsworth, CA 91313
U. S. A.
(818) 886-8863 or (800) 788-0892
FAX: (818) 886-8820

Sunday, June 22, 2008


The Ice Pirates
Music by Bruce Broughton
Film Score Monthly Vol.11 No.5 (US)
22 Tracks 66:54 mins

The Ice Pirates was a low-budget lighthearted sci-fi adventure, directed by Stewart Rafill and released in 1984. The film has something of a TV movie feel, with even its stars, Robert Urich and Mary Crosby, drawn from that medium.
Having worked extensively in TV (including having written for sci-fi series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century), the film was an early big screen opportunity for Bruce Broughton. Having said that, with the limited music budget involved, it wouldn't really be until Silverado that Broughton could really show what he was capable of.
I saw the film many moons ago, and don't remember it with any fondness. Chaotic is a good word to describe it, due to editorial decisions, with Broughton's score suffering a similar fate.
His music is somewhat of a mixed bag, being very dated by the sound of a time, resulting in some pretty awful muzaky source music, as well as other beat-driven, rock/pop pieces, and with drum loops and early electronics to the fore. Other pieces are more conventionally orchestral, with a Star Warsy character, though hindered by the small orchestra, which was mostly devoid of strings; and often rock/pop elements intrude.
Ruunning throughout are Broughton's principal themes, the first, a fun, brassy and heroic main theme; the second, an irritating pop-styled theme for Urich's character; and the third, a somewhat melancholy synth-lead love theme
There are plenty of action sequences, though these are often played for laughs, with pure moments of slapstick here and there; but also more low-key, suspenseful moments. It really is a hybrid score, stylistically all over the place, sounding at times a lot like John Williams, particularly in the orchestral colours, but at others it often resembles the TV scoring styles of the times.
If you're looking for the Bruce Broughton of Silverado, Young Sherlock Holmes and Tombstone, you will find little of him here, but it's not an unpleasant listen and has it's fun moments.
The accompanying booklet is lavishly illustrated with stills and artwork from the film, and comes with detailed notes and cue-by-cue guide, courtesy of Alexander Kaplan. Go to to hear samples, and of course to order your copy.

Thursday, June 19, 2008


Music from the films of Tim Burton
Silva Screen SILCD1261 (UK)
15 Tracks 60:33 mins

To celebrate the DVD release of directorTim Burton's latest cinematic outing Sweeney Todd, on July 7th Silva Screen will release a compilation of music from this and his past films, ranging from the early days of Pee Wee's Big Adventure, right up to date.
Of course, the lion's share of the music is written by long-time collaborator Danny Elfman, and themes and suites from his scores for The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Corpse Bride, Sleepy Hollow, the first two Batman movies, Edward Scissorhands, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Mars Attacks! and the aforementioned Pee Wee's Big Adventure, are all presented here, faithfully performed by the City of Prague Philharmonic and Choir, conducted by Nic Raine and James Fitzpatrick.
Apart from Sweeney Todd, which was of course written by Stephen Sondheim, the only other non-Elfman music to be heard is Howard Shore's "Main Title" from Ed Wood, written in the aftermath of The Nightmare Before Christmas.
Probably the most interesting pieces are the four selections from the Sondheim Sweeney Tood music, only because I suspect, if you're an Elfman fan, you will certainly have all or most of the original versions of his Burton scores. This music is quite wide ranging and entertaining, from the church organ opening of the ominous "Main Titles," to the fanfarish introduction to "No Place Lie London," to the grand waltz of "A Little Priest," to the romantic "Johanna."
The accompanying booklet features notes on the director and a guide to those films and scores selected.

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian
Music by Harry Gregson-Williams
Walt Disney records 2264610 (EU)
16 Tracks 75:09 mins

Regular visitors to the site will have read my review of this album from the copy of the American release I received. I would therefore do no more than point you in the direction of this review, posted on May 26th (go to the archive for May and scroll down, or search for "CD Review - The Chronicles of Narnia").
Suffice to say here that the EU release features exactly the same content, including the bonus material that can be accessed by your computer. Packaging is more standard than the U.S. digipack version, but the accompanying booklet content is the same, though the EU version is glossy.
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian album receives its EU release on 23rd June, so if you haven't already invested in the U.S. version, be sure to pick up a copy of this fine score.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Music by David Hirschfelder
La-La Land Records LLLCD 1069 (US)
18 Tracks 51:48 mins

Aquamarine was a 1986 release, directed by Elizabeth Allen, and featuring a young cast of Emma Roberts, Jojo and Sara Paxton as the mermaid trying to find real love to escape an arranged underwater marriage.
The score for the film was provided by Australian composer David Hirschfelder and recorded with the Sydney Orchestra, often broken down into smaller groups and then combined in the composer's studio to give a layered effect to the music. A number of featured instruments were also used, such as theramin, steel drums and piccolo, with a Celtic feel for the mermaid themes. Sarah Paxton's singing, humming and giggling were also incorporated into the music, and there are numerous unusual sounds throughout the earlier cues, where much of Hirschfelder's score is quite light and magical in feel, with a whimsical quality at times; but as the film progresses, the music can be more serious, and even quite dark when it has to be, with its share of action and intrigue, a touch of guitar-lead romance here and there, as well as moments of poignancy.
The album's final cues are heard as wall-to-wall scoring for the film's 20-minute finale, which drew praise from the director in her notes for the attractive, illustrated accompanying booklet, which also features a cue-by-cue guide to the film and its score.

Farscape Classics Volume Three
Music by Guy Gross
La-La Land Records LLLCD 1067 (US)
30 Tracks 70:54 mins

As regular readers will know from my reviews of previous releases in this series, I am not a fan, having given up on the show early in its run, but Farscape fans will no doubt welcome this third volume of music for some of the more celebrated episodes.
Featured this time are "The Locket" from Season Two and "The Choice" from Season Three.
As with previous releases, much of the music is snyths and samples based, with the odd featured instrument thrown into the mix, like piano in "The Locket," where Gross incorporates the traditional English folk tune "Maid of Amsterdam; and bell sounds, horn and violins in "The Choice," where he looked to create something of an ancient clerical flavour.
Gross' unusual and exciting main theme remains the best thing on offer and always provides some welcome life to proceedings in its few appearances.
The accompanying booklet is an impressive affair, with colour stills and portraits, Randall D. Larson's lengthy and detailed essay on the show, the featured episodes and their music.

For further details and to order these and other La-La Land Records releases, visit Next up on the label is a 3CD limited edition of Dominic Frontiere's music for the original Outer Limits, which I hope to review for you soon.

Monday, June 16, 2008


Composer Mark Griskey has been a busy man lately, having composed scores for the game versions of Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk and Disney/Walden's The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. You can get a taste of the music he composed for the latter when you visit the game's official website at, where you can find more information on the game, the characters and world of Narnia, as well as watch trailers.
Mark of course scored the Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe game and, as a long time fan of the writings of C.S.Lewis, is naturally delighted to be part of the team working on these games. For Prince Caspian, he called upon the services of the Slovak National Symphony Orchestra and the 100-minute score was recorded in December 2007 at the Slovak Radio Concert Hall in Bratislava. You can read a lavishly illustrated report on the sessions at
The Prince Caspian game, like the film, is a darker affair than The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe and, naturally, Mark's score reflects this, whilst still retaining much of the nobility of the original. Although, unfortunately, there doesn't appear to be any plans for a soundtrack release, Mark was kind enough to allow me to sample the music and, as with his LTWATW music, I was much impressed.
The Eastern European orchestras have had their share of critics in the past, but it's fair to say that everyone learns by experience and any deficiencies in standards that may have existed have long been left behind. Certainly, the orchestra and choir's performance on this soundtrack is as good as anything you will hear from any top orchestra in the world.
As for the music itself, the core of it is naturally of the action variety, propelling the player through the various levels of the game, and the composer generates much power and excitement with his writing for the likes of "The Battle of Beruna" "Assault on the Castle" and "Defend CairParavel" but, as previously mentioned, there are also moments of great nobility, no doubt representing the great lion Aslan, as well as Prince Caspian himself, often featuring the majestic sound of horns; with the highs and lows of the story also receiving suitable emotional comment. In short, it's a fine score, so play the game and check it out.
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian video game is available now on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, the Wii system, PlayStation 2, Nintendo DS and PC.
Shortly, I hope to be able to bring you coverage of Mark Griskey's other recent scores for the Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk games, with the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Unleashed to follow at the end of the summer. In the meantime, visit the composer's website at, where you can find out more about the composer and his work, listen to samples from past scores, as well as view trailers.
My thanks to Eric Wein of Disney Interactive Studios, and of course to Mark Griskey, for making this item possible.

Friday, June 13, 2008


The Happening
Music by James Newton Howard
Varese Sarabande VSD6901 (EU)
18 Tracks 50:07 mins

The release of a new M. Night Shyamalan film is always an "event." Why, I don't know, as I haven't found one of his films very worthwhile yet. Perhaps I'm too perceptive, but while everyone was raving about the twist in the tale of The Sixth Sense, I had guessed it right at the start, thus ruining the whole film for me. In fact, so telegraphed was it, that I can't believe so many people didn't get it.
Unbreakable wasn't bad, I suppose. Signs was not helped by a cast that looked as though they just couldn't take the thing seriously, or perhaps the film was intended as a comedy - if so, it wasn't funny. The Village turned out to be a whole waste of time, and that's where I gave up, not even bothering to see Lady in the Water, after the critical mauling it got.
All these films featured music by James Newton Howard, and I have read review after review praising his efforts, whilst again being totally baffled because, although each score probably served its film well enough, they just did very little for me on disc. I therefore approached his latest effort for the director's new film The Happening with dread, as I knew I would probably have a hard time writing anything good about it, and indeed this proved to be the case.
Featuring solos by Maya Beiser on cello, Howard's music lacks any great melodic material to grab on to, being largely quite stark and mysterious, with hushed, dissonant strings bringing an otherwordly quality and the melancholy sound of Beiser's cello running through it all, allied to the lonely sound of solo piano.
Only very occasionally does the score build any momentum, with some pretty menacing crescendos here and there, but such action as there is is not sustained for very long.
The best is saved for last with the highly emotional, strings-dominated, "Be With You," though the cello/piano combo plays out the remaining moments.
Unusually, an "End Title Suite" concludes the disc and plays almost like a kind of cello concerto.
Don't get me wrong, I am certainly an admirer of the composer, and enjoyed his recent efforts for I Am Legend and King Kong, whilst Dinosaur is a firm favourite. It's just that it seems his music for the films of M. Night Shyamalan are perhaps too well wedded to their subject to be enjoyed away from the images. And he is in good company, for I have said the same of many of the works of the late, great Bernard Herrmann.

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I Giganti Della Tessaglia
Music by Carlo Rustichelli
Digitmovies CDDM108 (Italy)
30 Tracks 74:05 mins

For their eighth volume of Italian Peplum scores, Digitmovies present the complete score for Riccardo Freda's 1960 film I Giganti Della Tessaglia, based on the Greek saga of Jason and the Argonauts.
The album gets off to a fine start with "Apparizione," which presents the heroic main theme, a slow march, featuring male choir. The film's luscious love theme then makes an appearance, enhanced by female choir, before the march returns to conclude the track. The march receives further variations throughout the subsequent score, including a fine ceremonial piece in "Il Vello D'Oro" and the powerful, turbulent action of "Mare in Tempesta," and the dramatic and somewhat tragic "Pioggia e Profezia di Abante;" as well as quieter versions in the likes of "Alla Deriva."
For its part, the love theme receives a more delicate, dreamy variation in "Sognando il Vello."
Here and there, vibraphone and Hammond organ add an otherwordly colour to the score, as in "Vendetta and the lengthy "Giasone Conquista Il Vello D'Oro;" and there are exciting action cues, such as ""Giasone Contro La Strega e Rebellione," "Combattimento Con Polifemo" and "La Vendetta Di Giasone." A plaintive theme, voiced by violin and clarinet, appears in "T'Attendero," and there is a furious exotic dance in "Ali Danzati." The main theme returns to end the score in fine style in "Apoteosi."
Two bonus tracks conclude the disc, the first, a stereo mix of "Combattimento Con Polifemo; the second, an alternate version of the finale.
The score was recorded in mono and holds up pretty well for its age, though there is some distortion in some tracks. It is nonetheless an entertaining score and well worth checking out.
The accompanying booklet, as susual, features colour stills and original poster artwork from the film, together with introductory notes by Claudio Fuiano and Stefan Schlegel. Visit

Winifred Phillips Scores Speed Racer

Winifred Phillips has leant her distinctive style to the Speed Racer game. You can read an interview with her in Randall D. Larson's latest column for Buysoundtrax at and also stream 12 full tracks from the score by visiting the composer's website at It's high octane, funky and fun. Check it out!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


Under Fire
Music by Jerry Goldsmith
Film Score Monthly Vol.11 No.4 (US)
12 Tracks 44:40 mins

This is a straight reissue of Jerry Goldsmith's masterful score for Roger Spottiswoode's 1983 film, which sets a menage a trois between three journalists against the 1979 Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua. Originally released on LP and later on CD in Japan and Germany, it's great to have this fine album once more readily available.
Written by a composer at the height of his powers, this has long been a favourite score of mine, and the LP has been much played over the years. Goldsmith's approach, dictated by the film's temp track, using pan flutes (or at least pseudo pan flutes, made from PVC piping, but I certainly didn't know the difference until the accompanying booklet's notes pointed that out to me), whilst not entirely accurate to the music of the location, is nevertheless perfectly appropriate and effective; also utilising electronic keyboards, as was the composer's wont at that time.
It should be said that the album does not present the complete score for the film, rather a re-recording of the basic material, arranged, as was often the custom at that time, for a better listening experience, and also to show off the contibutions of guitarist Pat Metheny. In fact, so successful was Goldsmith that some of the re-recorded tracks actually replaced music originally recorded for the picture on the film's final sound mix
The film itself is quite sparsely scored, with little music appearing until the mid-point of the film, and therefore the album's arrangements of Goldsmith's material make for a much more stasfifying listening experience than if the score were lifted from the film and presented on album, even if this were possible and it isn't as the original masters aren't available.
Although every track on the album has something to offer, the principal themes employed include the catchy march for the Sandinistas, which shines most in the concluding "Nicaragua," and the gorgeous synth-lead love theme, best heard in "House of Hammocks; whilst Metheny is given his moment in the dramatic pursuit "Bajo Fuego."
The accompanying booklet is, as usual, packed with information on the film and its score, with notes by Jeff Bond and Alexander Kaplan, including a cue-by-cue guide, and comments by the score's recording engineer, and long-time Goldsmith collaborator Bruce Botnick. The only thing missing is the absence of stills, which presumably weren't available to the producers for some reason.
If you're a Goldsmith fan, you will probably have this album in one form or another, but might like to pick up a copy of this remastered release. If you're new to the composer's work, this is definitely one you should have in your collection.
For samples, and to order your copy, visit

The Accidental Tourist
Music by John Williams
Film Score Monthly Vol.11 No.6 (US)
12 Tracks 41:41 mins

Though mostly known at the time for his epic sci-fi/fantasy scores, by the time John Williams came to score Lawrence Kasdan's 1988 film The Accidental Tourist (yet another menage a trois story), he had already written a number of more intimate scores, often based on a single theme.
Therefore this approach wasn't new for him, but was different from what his more recent fanbase had become used to. Therefore, the score is often forgotten when its composer is talked of.
The theme is largely derived from four notes and is at first quite serious and reserved, but can be developed into a more light, flowing and romantic affair, often carried by piano, or woodwinds, where it is at its most attractive. Most cues feature variations on the theme, but there are other more atmospheric moments. Perhaps unusually, Williams employed subtle electronics alongside his relatively small orchestral forces, essentially to add an underlying coldness.
The Accidental Tourist was one of the first Williams scores to be released on CD and soon went out of print, making it something of a collector's item. So, if you haven't managed to track down a copy, you now have a newly remastered representation of the album, which features nearly all the music in the film, save for a few brief cues. All this, and the usual excellent accompanying booklet, featuring detailed notes and cue-by-cue guide, courtesy of Jeff Eldridge, togather with stills and original poster artwork from the film.
Go to

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Il Rosso Segno Della Follia
Music by Sante Maria Romitelli
Digitmovies CDDM107 (Italy)
29 Tracks 61:53 mins

This latest Digitmovies release of music from the films of Mario Bava features Sante Maria Romitelli's music for 1969's Il Rosso Segno della Follia (otherwise known as Hatchet for the Honeymoon.
The score was previously issued in 1999, in stereo sound, coupled with a score by Roberto Nicolosi. This new deluxe edition makes use of the original mono master tapes, adding them to the original stereo album tracks, to present the complete score for the first time. The album tracks are represented by the first 16 tracks on the disc, with 12 previously unreleased tracks following, and a bonus mono mix of the go-go number "Hatchet Shake,"
The stereo tracks open with a sumptuous grand waltz "Il Casa Di Mode, " a piece which receives several variations throughout the subsequent score. This is immediately followed by a good example of the darker material composed for the film, "La Luna Di Miele, "which combines melody with dissonance. A good many tracks are of this nature, mixing suspense with out and out menace, but often with melodic material surfacing at some point, including the waltz theme.
"Scavare Nella Memoria..." is an interesting track, combining harsh electric guitars, with the kind of "hallucinated atmosphere" associated with Barry Gray in the likes of UFO, as pointed out in the booklet notes.
A nice, pop-styled,strings-lead romantic theme crops up in "Il Party" and "Ancora Un'Altra Vettima," with its harpsichord and guitar is an intimate, melancholy affair; with the stereo tracks concluding in similar fashion with "Un'Accetta Per la Luna Di Miele."
The mono tracks that follow are largely in the dissonant, suspenseful and menacing vein previously displayed, some of them quite experimental, often utilising electronics, as well as more of the harsh electric guitar work, but there are still moments of melodic beauty to be found here and there.
As always, the accompanying booklet, with notes by Claudio Fuiano, Tim Lucas and the film's star Stephen Forsyth, presents plenty of stills and original poster artwork. Visit

Monday, June 09, 2008


I'm back - for now, at least, and here is at least one review, and hopefully more to follow in the coming week.

Alone in the Dark
Mucis by Olivier Deriviere
Milan M2 36378 (US)
21 Tracks 66:53 mins

I was never a fan of Xena: Warrior Princess, and though Joseph LoDuca's music had its critics, sometimes sailing pretty close to other composers' work, it was always pretty enjoyable, and I enjoyed listening to the CD releases. A feature of the music was the composer's use of the Grammy Award winning choir The Mystery of Bulgarian Voices.
For this reinvention of the original Alone in the Dark game, developed by Eden Games, French composer Olivier Deriviere, who studied both at the NationalConservatory of Nice and Boston's famed Berklee, and has written a number of video game scores, most famously Obscure, has called upon their services, resulting in a largely exciting score that Xena fans will just lap up.
The elegiac "Prelude to an End," with its use of soloist and choir, gets the score off to a fine start, with "Edward Carnby" developing the theme in more heroic fashion. Other choral tracks include the exciting "The Humanz," with its tribal percussion; "Who Am I? with its very Xenaish rhythmic action; the lament that is "Crying New York;" the despairing reprise of the opening theme in "Loneliness;" the fateful "No More Humans"and "Truth;"the a cappella "Niamam" and "Shto Li;" the spiritual "The Light Carrier Test,"with its use of church organ, and proud, heroic ending; the decisive "The Final Gate" and "The Choice;" and the final, propulsive development of the main theme in "An End for a Prelude." Other tracks, those largely of a mysterious nature, feature synths and samples alone, but there are also the desperate "The Fissure," with its swirling strings; and the propulsive action of "Bethseda Fight" and "Killing the Fissure."
Prior to this release, the pioneering Sumthing Else and, to a lesser extent, La-La Land Records have been the only labels consistently supporting game music, and so it's great to have the renowned Milan Records on board. Let's hope this won't be a one-off, as there is so much excellent music being recorded for the medium these days, and it is well worth preserving on disc.
The Alone in the Dark game will be released in Europe on 20th June, with its Statesside release cfollowing some four days later. The soundtrack album is out now.

Friday, June 06, 2008



For more detailed information, click on this URL:

Thursday, June 05, 2008


From Costa Communications




In Theatres July 11, Score Available on New Line Records July 8

(Hollywood, CA) Composer Andrew Lockington scores “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” a New Line Cinema film based on the original book, starring Brendan Fraser and in theatres July 11. Although there are some correlations to the 1959 film, this film is unique and original and includes a distinctive, innovative score. Lockington’s original score for "Journey to the Center of the Earth" will be released by New Line Records on July 8.

Unlike previous live-action features, “Journey to the Center of the Earth” is the first to be entirely shot and released in 3D; other movies have shot scenes in 3D but never an entire movie. Because of this, Lockington integrated a large traditional orchestra and full choir with the orchestral percussion of the Japanese drumming ensemble Nagata Shachu. Nagata Shachu uses gongs, bells, wooden clappers, shakers and bamboo flutes – resulting in thunderous drumbeats with subtle, intricate rhythms.

As a protégé of award-winning composer Mychael Danna (Little Miss Sunshine), Lockington’s credits include the Lion’s Gate film “Skinwalkers,” Samuel Goldwyn’s “Saint Ralph,” the Sony Pictures Classic “Touch of Pink,” and the scores for the HBO features “Xchange” and “Stranger Inside.” More recently, Lockington scored the Paramount/MTV distributed “How She Move” and the not yet released Indie feature “One Week” starring Joshua Jackson.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


2 New Limited Intrada Releases!

For more detailed information, click on this URL:


For more detailed information, click on this URL:

Sorry for the lack of reviews at the moment, but other matters are having to take priority. Never fear, I'll be back in business soon, and there's plenty for me to cover, from the likes of FSM, Varese Sarabande, Digitmovies, La-La Land, Milan and UCJ. Watch this space!!

Monday, June 02, 2008


Music by Ennio Morricone
Digitmovies CDDM105 (Italy)
17 Tracks 41:37 mins

This is the premiere stereo release of Ennio Morricone's complete score for the 1968 cult movie Escalation. Although previously released on both LP and CD, the score has only been available in mono up until this time.
Morricone's main theme is a pleasant affair, starting delicately on harpsichord, which continues the be the main voice, but enhanced by a male voice from I Cantori Moderni di Alessandroni, oboe, celesta, guitar and harp. The theme is first heard as the opening title track, and returns in longer form for the closing track. In between, the theme receives something of a tense and suspenseful variation in track 13.
The composer was given free rein by director Robert Faenza and came up with a largely experimental score for the film, which includes a beat-driven choral Dies Irae. The much-used piece also appears in "Collage N.2," with all kinds of comic interludes pervading it. And there are tracks like "Luca's Sound," which is purely someone "popping" their cheeks; as well as irritating sitar work in "Senza Respiro," "Luca, Casa Londra;" and ritual pieces like "Secondo Rito" and "Primo Rito," the latter calling to mind some of the composer's western work, with its drum beat and choir.
By contrast, there is a classical-based piece "Collage N.1," with its somewhat over-the-top vocals, piano passages, and funeral march feel; and a joyful female choral "Matrimonio," though the track takes a more sinister turn later. "Carillon Erotic" is a pretty music box theme and "Funerale Nero" is an out-and-out Dixieland jazz number, with a second version an old-fashioned New Orleans-styled funeral march, with a honky-tonk piano interlude.
All-in-all a highly varied score, which has its likeable moments, as well as its more difficult ones.
As always, with Digitmovies releases, the disc is accompanied by an attractive, colourful booklet, featuring stills and original artwork from the film, plus introductory notes by Daniel Winkler and Claudio Fuiano. Keep up to date with the all the label's releases by visiting

Sunday, June 01, 2008


Sadly, we recently lost both Alexander Courage and Earle Hagen, two of the most highly regarded composers, particularly in the field of episodic TV.
Courage is of course best remembered for his work on the original Star Trek series and for its distinctive main theme, but he also worked on shows like The Waltons, going on to orchestrate in later years for Jerry Goldsmith, composer of course of the Waltons theme. His forays into the cinema were few and far between, The Left-Handed Gun, being probably his most remembered.
Hagen, who in recent years had his autobiography "Memories of a Famous Composer - Nobody Ever Heard Of," published, is remembered for a whole variety of work in the field of TV scoring, including I Spy, The Andy Griffith Show, The Mod Squad and The Dick Van Dyke Show. Both men were 88.
Archival streaming video interviews with both composers are available at