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

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Music by Christopher Lennertz & various artists
Nettwerk 0 6700 30865 2 3 (US)
12 Tracks 47:21 mins

Christopher Lennertz is currently one of my favourite game music composers, having written fine scores for a couple of James Bond games, Gun, Godfather II, The Simpsons and some of the Medal of Honor series. But his talents don't stop there, as his music for the popular TV series Supernatural has earned him an Emmy nomination and he's also been very active on the big screen, with enjoyable offerings for the likes of The Comebacks, Alvin & the Chipmunks and Meet the Spartans. His latest cinematic offering is for the romantic dramedy Adam, written and directed by Max Mayer, which stars Hugh Dancy as the title character, who is afflicted by Asperger's Syndrome, a high functioning form of autism, and his relationship with a young woman, played by Rose Byrne.
Rather than utilising orchestra, Lennertz instead has scored the picture for a small ensemble of guitar, upright piano, cello, bass, drums, mellotron, marimba, celeste, and a bansuri (Indian bamboo flute. For the more romantic scenes, a small six-piece string section has been added; and to represent Adam's love of astronomy, the composer uses some experimental techniques to create a somewhat otherworldly feel, and unusual and unsettling organic sounds for Adam's terrifying episodes caused by his condition.
There's obviously good deal more score in the film than is included on the soundtrack album, where only 5 cues, totalling just under 25 minutes, are given over to Lennertz's music, the other 7 being songs by a variety of artists, whose names mean absolutely nothing to me. Some of them are quite easy on the ear, but none of them remarkable. As for the score tracks, they are described as "Score Medleys" and seem to concentrate on the more melodic, romantic side of the score, with little or none of the experimental music described above featuring. They commence with "Prologue Main Theme," at the heart of which is a simple, straightforward little melody, carried by guitar and piano. The "Planetarium Suite" opens optimistically on piano, before settling into a romantic guitar-lead mood, which carries one warmly to the end of the cue. "Courtroom Suite" continues in the same easy, guitar-lead mood, with cello and piano notably contributing to the mix. "Adam's Journey" is initially quite hesitant, but soon gains purpose and flows optimistically to its conclusion. The final cue, "Reflection," touches on much of what's gone before, including of course the main theme to provide a satisfying ending.
Whilst it obviously would have been favourite to have a complete representation of Lennertz's score for the film, for myself, coming from a predisposition toward melody, the material chosen for this album I find eminently suitable to my tastes and, if you too like gentle, melodic music, you can't go far wrong here.


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