It’s Horror Week on (The) Absolute! We’re reposting some of our spookiest, creepiest recommendations every day leading up to Halloween. Enjoy!
When I was younger and more of a coward, perhaps due to my naiveté or my credulity, I would sometimes mute the television when watching a horror film, right before the imminent jump-scare. Even at a young age, I was able to determine that music was a large, contributing factor in creating the tense atmosphere that brought terror. Nowadays, I would consider doing that a shame and a disservice to the awesome musicians who compose such spine-chilling themes, and thus, I now enjoy horror films on full volume.
There is, however, one film where I can’t do that–Hellraiser. Continue Reading →
|Recommended by Stefano Llinas||Monday, October 26th, 2015||No Comments »|
I’ll admit, this recommendation is one that won’t resonate unless you’re a horror movie fan. I recently finished watching Starry Eyes, a new-ish horror film that gave me serious old school supernatural horror vibes (think Suspiria or Rosemary’s Baby). A huge part of its retro aesthetic was due in part to its ’80s-inspired synth soundtrack by Jonathan Snipes. In the film, a wannabe actress gets mixed up with a Satanic cult in hopes she can literally “sell her soul” to be famous (Tom Cruise’s life story, anyone?), but along the way she runs into detractors (mainly her loser friends) who stand in the way of stardom.
Directors Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer originally planned to use the typical orchestral score but opted to go a different path once convinced by Snipes. The decision turned out to be a good one, and the soundtrack has been getting as much praise as the film itself. The soundtrack will be released on vinyl via Waxwork Records in the near future, but in the meantime, check out the track above for a preview. This song plays during a very critical point in the film, but I won’t spoil it for you. After all, I’m not Satan.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Monday, March 23rd, 2015||No Comments »|
My favorite scene in Icelandic film Metalhead is the last one. I guess it’s only appropriate a film about music ends with awesome music, right? The movie follows Hera, a young woman who turns to heavy metal as a coping mechanism after the death of her brother. However, her rock lifestyle contradicts with the rest of her conservative village, making her an outsider. As the rest of her peers settle into boring jobs working on farms, Hera has dreams of becoming a rock star. After her demo tape lands on the desk of three foreigners, the four of them decide to perform an original song together at the town’s only music venue. The last scene in the film is Hera performing “Svarthamar,” a song so good that after watching the movie I went online to search for the full version.
The song is produced by Icelandic musician Petur Ben, who also produced the film’s soundtrack. Surprisingly, Ben’s personal music sounds quite different. In the movie, Hera wins over her town with this song, which playfully balances fragile vocals with the more abrasive side of heavy metal. However, the song’s a lot more powerful if you watch it within the context of the film. Regardless, if you’re interested in either the film or the soundtrack, I recommend you check out both. You can find the film through some creative Google searches, and the soundtrack is streaming via Bandcamp.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Monday, March 2nd, 2015||No Comments »|
British writer/producer Fin Greenall, aka Fink, is huge in the UK. But over here in the states he’s better known for being that guy whose music you always hear in TV shows and commercials but can never remember his name. From The Walking Dead to Selma, his music is everywhere, but this track from 2014′s Hard Believer is one of his best. Clocking in at over seven minutes, the song takes its time as it gradually builds to its climactic finale. Relying more on repetition and fragile vocals than knock-your-socks-off production, “Pilgrim” is the type of song that sounds like it was made for television. And his bluesy vocals are noticeably Yorke-ish here, creating a nice juxtaposition between his rock and soul roots. The whole album is currently streaming on YouTube.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Monday, February 23rd, 2015||1 Comment »|
Anyone who has played Grand Theft Auto knows that music is a huge part of its experience. I guess there’s just something about listening to good music while running over pedestrians that adds to the ambiance. The soundtrack for GTA V features all kinds of tracks by artists like Flying Lotus, Twin Shadow, and MF Doom for the game’s “driving around” music, but the background ambient tracks are composed by German ambient pioneers Tangerine Dream.
Tangerine Dream have been making music since the ’60s. The fact they’re still making music
and are not dead is nothing short of remarkable (Ed Note: see below). Even if you’re not familiar with them by name, you’ve definitely heard their music. They’ve scored soundtracks for films like Risky Business, Legend, and Firestarter. But for GTA, they boldly crossed over into the world of video games.
|Recommended by Tiffany White||Wednesday, February 11th, 2015||No Comments »|