NEWS: Mick Harvey Announces New Soundtrack

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Mick Harvey will release his first soundtrack in ten years with Waves of ANZAC / The Journey via Mute / [PIAS]on 3 April 2020.

The album features two recent soundtracks to powerful subject matters recorded by Mick Harvey. The first, Waves of Anzac looks at Sam Neill’s personal family history interwoven with the history of the First World War and the ANZACs through to the modern era while the second, The Journey, is a four-part composition released in support of #KidsOffNauru, a campaign working for the child refugees and people seeking asylum who find themselves in offshore detention.

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Waves of ANZAC is represented by 13 tracks selected from the score for the ABC documentary on forgotten war stories and lives lost. The documentary is a personal history by the actor Sam Neill (Jurassic Park, The Piano) set against a contemporary increasingly divided political backdrop. ‘Why ANZAC? with Sam Neill’ (Dir. Kriv Stenders, 2015) is named for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who served together in the Gallipoli Campaign, their first engagement in World War I and continued as a military unit until after WW2. The film is a look at this pivotal point in our shared history, and the impact it still has on a personal and on a geopolitical level. Harvey recently examined this period via the prism of a fictional soldier/poet for his collaboration with Christopher Richard Barker, The Fall and Rise of Edgar Bourchier and the Horrors of War.

The Journey
 is a four-part composition, recorded with The Letter String Quartet, in support of people seeking asylum who have found themselves in Australia’s offshore detention program. The piece was composed as a study of the hardships endured by the detainees on Nauru, Manus Island and Christmas Island before and during their internment and as an expression of hope for a humane outcome to their plight.

Waves Of ANZAC
1. Turkish Theme
2. Waves of ANZAC
3. First Anniversary
4. The Somme
5. Archives
6. Poppies
7. The Lovells
8. The Cemetery
9. Modern War
10. Vietnam
11. Crete
12. Back at Kiatora
13. Return to Anzac Cove

The Journey 
with The Letter String Quartet 

Part 1: Conflict
Part 2: All at Sea
Part 3: Capture (Not Real Refugees)
Part 4: Hope

NEW MUSIC: Tindersticks Soundtrack ‘High Life’

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Tindersticks and Stuart A. Staples are custom built for soundtrack work, such is their ability to conjure such exquisite and restrained mood and atmosphere, both musically and vocally. They’ve worked on a number of film projects in the past and this latest one by Staples is for the movie High Life, directed by Claire Denis – who Staples has worked with on seven of her other films. His soundtrack and sound design compositions on High Life earned him the George Delerue Award for Best Music at the Gent Film Festival.

Below you can watch the video for ‘Willow’, with lead vocal from actor Robert Pattinson, and listen to the instrumental piece ‘The Garden’ which rises and falls with dramatic tension and poise, a brooding cousin to late period Talk Talk experimentations with its droning bed and searching brass.

Most of the music for High Life was made before the filming. The conversation with Claire started maybe as far back as 2012. There were many ideas I wanted to explore and I appreciated the foresight of Claire and the producers in offering me support and encouragement to do this. As well as work with usual collaborators Dan McKinna, Neil Fraser and Earl Harvin, this afforded me purely experimental recording sessions with David Coulter, Thomas Bloch, David Okumu, Julian Siegel, Seb Rochford and the BBC singers. Several long sketches / pieces were created from these sessions that the eventual score was formed from or informed by. 

And then there was ‘Willow’. a seed of a song shared by myself and Dan Mckinna that eventually grew to be the conclusion of the High life with Robert Pattinson, the lead actor, singing the song in character to his daughter Willow, a theme that runs through the film.

~ Stuart A. Staples

 

ALBUM REVIEW: Nick Cave & Warren Ellis – Loin Des Hommes

Rating7nick_cave_warren_ellis_loin_des_hommes_ostBad Seeds co-conspirators Nick Cave and Warren Ellis have created a haunting score to the film Loin Des Hommes, a French film adaptation of Albert Camus’ short story The Guest by director David Olehoffen. Experienced in isolation, without the film to provide the creative scenery, the soundtrack works as a tension-filled, primarily instrumental collection of pieces that use piano, violin, droning tones and some electronica to form a feeling of both beauty and dread. The pair have been composing soundtracks for over a decade now and over that time they’ve developed a unique style of dark and drifting moods and experimental otherworldliness that continues here.

Chris Familton

this review was first published in The Music