Spun: Matthew Herbert

Score is a collection of work from Matthew Herbert, a collaborator with such artists as Yoko Ono and Bjork, cobbled together from his various film scores. As such, there is a strange lack of cohesion to the album. With that said, track selection is a stylistic evolution rather than an attempt to place the album in cohesive whole, although there are still strange shifts in style that come out of nowhere.

Herbert’s music runs the genre gamut from big, brassy, swing jazz to creepy electronic baroque choir. The first two film-based tracks are slow, boring, and lack anything close to emotion–they simply pale in comparison to, say, a John Williams oeuvre. But the third track is the hook: An immediately gripping, playful jazz number, both bombastic and mischievous. From there, it’s a roar of jazz, experimental electronica and classical baroque choir. John Williams comparisons are forgotten almost immediately.

The centrepiece of the album, both stylistically and numerically, is “Rendezvous,” a 10 minute track meant for the Bonacela Dance Company. With haunting vocals and a pounding electronic heartbeat, it’s the perfect track for a haunted house or a drug trip.

If the rocky start can be ignored, the album shows an amazing depth not usually found in collections of film scores. Herbert’s production is impressive, and his music is deep and exciting.

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