Director Scott Sanders made 'Black Dynamite' as a parody of the Blaxploitation genre, about a spy on a mission to take revenge on his brother's murderer. The score was composed by Adrian Younge, and was his first ever release. Like Sanders' film, it's inspired by and sends up the music of Blaxploitation cinema, utilising synth, keyboards and organs as well as sax and soft percussion. 'Black Dynamite' shows that Younge has a firm understanding of the tropes that made this genre so prominent.
Vinyl LP £28.99 LL009PDLP
Picture disc LP on Linear Labs.
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CD £12.49 LL009CD
Deluxe Edition 2CD on Linear Labs.
Nice to see Adrian Younge on my review pile today. Last year this guy put out an album with Ghostface Killah, '12 Reasons To Die', which I listened to incessantly, a gruesome Italo-horror/soul/hip-hop concept album about a fictionalised Ghostface coming back from the dead to wreak vengeance on the gangsters who double-crossed him. Before that, though, Younge made the soundtrack to the 2009 blaxploitation pastiche 'Black Dynamite', in which the titular character exacts vengeance on the fiendish Dr Wu in a garishly hilarious explosion of sex, violence, intentionally dreadful acting and wobbly sets, doing for the genre what Garth Marenghi's Darkplace did for procedural horror. That soundtrack finally finds its way onto vinyl this week courtesy of Younge's own Linear Labs.
Younge not only pretty much single-handedly created the soundtrack, playing almost every instrument, but also edited the film (which was shot on Super 16 film but mercifully transferred to digital for the editing process), all whilst still working as an entertainment law professor. He made life extra hard for himself by insisting on doing it all on vintage analogue equipment - from instruments to mics to tape machines, everything heard here is pre-1980.
As for the music itself, it's hard not to compare it to that Ghostface album because I've listened to it so much, and it shares a lot of the same tropes of soul and European horror soundtracking, but perhaps unsurprisingly there's more of a sleaze-funk vibe here with plenty of slinky wah guitar and jazz flute. 'Jimmy's Dead (interlude)' on side B notably has some quite baroque-sounding harpsichord rubbing against some slow-grinding fuzz guitar. Younge's one of the most distinctive producers out there right now. His single-minded obsession with analogue sounds and scholarly appreciation of the history of recorded music really shine through and this soundtrack is indulgently fun even when removed from its intended context.
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- Black Dynamite (Original Motion Picture Score) by Adrian Younge
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