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Scott Walker’s latest masterpiece is a tempestuous orchestral score to The Childhood of a Leader; a key and compelling component to Brady Corbet’s directorial debut, and Walker’s first O.S.T. since Pola X in 1999. If Bisch Bosch (2012) and his Soused (2014) collaboration with Sunn 0))) were a deadly one-two showing the old dog still has chops, this one is a stone cold haymaker. It’s all too rare that we’re totally wowed by movie soundtracks nowadays - Mica Levi’s Under The Skin being the most recent, memorable example - but we can safely add The Childhood of a Leader to that small, sacred pile of works which operate perfectly well when separated from their visual analog - the sort of detailed, image-rich sounds and compositions which future producers and artists will be mining for generations to come.
Taking its cues from Jean-Paul Sartre’s short story of the same title, the film’s psychological dramas are matched move for move by Walker’s arrangements, tasking a small army of 46 string players and 16 brass for the studio recording, aided by co-producer Peter Walsh and musical director Mark Warman in drawing out truly ravenous and shocking performances by all involved.
There is nothing sentimental or showy about this record, just a classicist grasp of orchestral music’s most timeless affect, filtered thru the mind of a perennial outlier and distilled to intoxicating proof with some subtle but vital electronic enhancements. 100% amazing. Do not miss!!! (Boomkat)