October 2003 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Gary S. Dalkin
Managing Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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Creepshow  
Music composed by John Harrison
  Available on La-La Land Records (LLLCD 1007)  
Running Time: 65:44
Purchase from: http://www.lalalandrecords.com/creepshow.html

creepshow

I still recall quite vividly sitting in a darkened cinema as Creepshow began, full of expectation and hope. You see, back in 1982, I considered Stephen King to be something of a genius. His novels 'Salem's Lot', 'The Shining' and 'The Stand' had redefined horror fiction for me and anything the maestro had a hand in was a promise of greatness as far as I was concerned. So as I watched as the opening of the movie began, a kind of thrill went through me as I heard the first strains of John Harrison's wistful, seductively menacing main theme. If I say that for me the promise of the music was never fulfilled by what was an enjoyable but somewhat minor effort for both King and his cinematic collaborator George A. Romero, I can at least report that the score itself remains the highlight of the production.

Using what would now be considered to be dated synthesizer techniques and devising different musical segments to reflect the episodic structure of the film, the composer creates a wonderful, distinctive evocation of intrigue, mystery and terror that is a tremendous accomplishment on such a limited budget, especially when you consider, as I discovered upon reading the informative sleeve notes, that Harrison's score was a last minute undertaking, replacing the intended source music that Romero had originally envisaged. Add to this some interesting bonus material taken from Harrison's work on the Tales from the Darkside television series and a couple of unrealised projects he had in development and you get a thoroughly compelling and entertaining CD that I can wholeheartedly recommend.

Rich in imagination, charm (not often achieved in this genre), sheer energy and vitality. A joy!

****(*) 41/2

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