It's true then. Thom Yorke is soundtracking Luca Guadagnino's reimagining of the 1977 Dario Argento horror flick. And here is as much proof as you'd need. The soundtrack is a mix of score work, interludes and some actual normal songs featuring Thom singing. If you are a Radiohead fan you should be excited. If you are a fan of the horror genre you should also be excited.
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So. Finally, here’s the latest work from Thom “Thomas, Grand old Duke of” Yorke -- and it’s his soundtrack to Luca Guadagnino’s ‘reimagining’ of the classic 1977 Dario Argento horror flick Suspiria. And very suspenseful it all is too. It begins all ominous, intensely atmospheric so that I’m actually on the edge of my seat from the outset of this review (not very comfortable, so please don’t try this at home). Jaggedly building electronics subside to let in plinking ‘droplets’ of piano and eerily dissonant strings. This is very different to Goblin’s soundtrack to the original film, of course, and pretty different to Yorke’s work with his side-project ‘Radiohead’. Bit of background info, there.
The third track in is actually a song, featuring Thom’s piano which he plays in a circling melody in 3/4 time. A spooky waltz complete with Yorke’s trademark mourn-falsetto vocal. That’s ‘Suspirium’, and yes it’s a delicate, pretty and -- appropriately enough -- haunting little tune that sees our protagonist grasping with Latin and his attempts to conjugate the verb ‘Suspiriatum’ -- literally, to make a spooky film soundtrack (with a very long, loud exhale). He also sings on ‘Has Ended’, and it’s beautiful. Oh, also on ‘Open Again’ with even more layers of melancholy, quiet guitar and swirling SpookSounds ©
Loving the little synth interludes, apparently made on ‘modular’ synths in keeping with the film’s Berlin, 1977 setting -- nicely done. Love a good staging. I love the gothic choir on track 8, ‘Sabbath Incantation’ even more (maybe I’m a secret Goth). Maybe. Anyway, this whole OST album is very very looong, and there are a whole heap of shadowy drones and little surprise noises along the way, especially on the review ‘phones. Track 20 (of 25) is the longest, all 14 minutes of it tucked away on side 4 of the vinyl -- a harrowing drone spectacular (spooktacular?) with voice, effects and other weirdness all stretched out like all the Thoms in the world howling at the moon in slow motion, over and over again into the great yonder.
All this extra drama no doubt boosts the atmospherics of Guadagnino’s masterpiece to even greater theatrical heights. Can’t wait to actually watch the film. A Halloween treat, no less.
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- Suspiria (Music for the Luca Guadagnino Film) by Thom Yorke
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