Thursday, May 13, 2010

No Tears Please, It's a Good Waste of Suffering

My first real post here just has to highlight one of my favorite horror film scores, and that is none other than Clive Barker's Hellraiser. Hellraiser happens to also be my favorite of Clive Barker's films. It's a gothic masterpiece that indeed may have a stronger following amongst the goth/fetish/industrial club crowd than that of horror geeks. It was my time playing keyboards in an small indie industrial band that I really started to explore the nuances of this soundtrack. On many nights this soundtrack swept me off to a deep peaceful sleep. (But I was also the guy who would sleep like a baby to Nine Inch Nails.)

Each track in this score is slowly paced and deliberately haunting. Sweeping strings gently flow over soft piano stabs, while bass horns and soothing cello's carry us away in a waltz of death. This is horrifying musical erotica perfected.

While many of the tracks from this score are outstanding in their own right it is the theme track that is most instantly recognizable. The repeating theme runs through the score and surrounds the listener in a blanket of darkness and gothic morbidity. To those enchanted by death, Christopher Young's masterful soundtrack is pure heaven, (or should that be hell?)

Throughout the years the soundtrack has been a study by the gothic/industrial music subculture and the music has been covered, remixed, and sampled by a variety of bands including Skinny Puppy and Entombed.

Take a listen to the first track "Hellraiser" below and then continue on to the forth track "The Lament Configuration". Notice how through Young's configurations he presents the theme proper, and then a discordant variation filled with noisy tonal undercurrents and abrasive audio attacks, though yet throughout returns to the main theme in order to create a perfect sense of cohesiveness.

Hellraiser Track 1: Hellraiser (Main Theme)

Hellraiser 1:43
Resurrection 2:32
Hellbound Heart 5:05
The Lament Configuration 3:31
Reunion 3:11
A Quick Death 1:16
Seduction And Pursuit 3:01
In Love's Name 2:56
The Cenobites 4:13
The Rat Race Slice Quartet 3:15
Re-Resurrection 2:34
Uncle Frank 2:59
Brought On By Night 2:18
Another Puzzle 4:06
Total Album Time: 42:40

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