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.
8/10 Derek Gray 15th November 2018
A cd of two halves. The first disk seems the more 'complete' one, the more listenable, its 14 tracks containing four that are sung by Thom (all superb) and another two beautiful choral pieces. The rest is all instrumental and there are some great pieces like "Klemperer Walks", "The Jumps", and "Olga's Destruction" (spoiler alert!). Then go on to the second disk and it all changes. Apart from only one Thom-sung song (a longer version of "Suspirium") it is all instrumental or, in the case of the 14-minute "A Choir of One", a single treated choral-style 'voice' with drones, slowly rising and falling, and this half of the soundtrack is very, very strange. But bear with it and everything starts to fit into place, even the very short and abstract pieces like "Synthesiser Speaks" and "A Soft Hand Across Your Face" which initially come across as barely listenable. This is not a cd to dip into and cherry pick tracks; instead once you begin to become familiar with it, this second cd starts to come across like a long, continuous, avante garde suite of atmosphere, drones, bleeps, bloops, echoes and starts and stops. And it's no bad thing. Originally I thought, as George Martin did about The White Album, that perhaps it should've been tightened up, separate the wheat from the chaff and produce a far tighter, more succinct single album packed with more recognisable and stronger cuts, but that kind of misses the point. Suspiria is an album to immerse yourself in, witchy warts and all.
9/10 Sean 9th November 2018
I loved the original Goblin soundtrack to the Dario Argenta movie, looking forward to seeing the new version, this soundtrack is amazing though. Never really been a Thom Yorke fan but Im newly converted this is excellent.
10/10 LoveGod 8th November 2018
What a masterpiece..!
I can’t believe that a piece of vinyl almost made me hide behind the sofa..
Super scary and evocative. It will make the little hairs everywhere stand on end
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