February 2005 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Marc Bridle
Managing Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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The Unsaid  
Music composed and conducted by Don Davis
  Performed by the Utah Studio Symphony Orchestra
  Available on Prometheus PCD 156
Running Time: 76:23
Monsters in Motion   Buy Soundtrax

This album from the little known Andy Garcia thriller, The Unsaid, will presumably sell more copies based on interest in rising star composer Don (The Matrix trilogy) Davis than in the somewhat obscure movie itself. Fans of the composer should be happy, so long as they don’t expect Matrix style action, as this is a rather introspective, melodic and melancholy thriller score. There’s little in the way of action, through the string writing sometimes touches upon Herrmann-esque suspense. In-fact, beyond fans of the composer it is hard to imagine much of an audience for the album, simply because while the music is largely attractive it is also repetitive, a lyrical, sombre mood pervading throughout, with the majority of the writing being centred around a lovely, at times heartbreaking lullaby-like melody. This theme in introduced in the opening main title cue, presented with an eloquent child-like innocence, and is put through assorted variations and developments, but always remains key to the score. The music intensifies to a truly impassioned climax with ‘Tommy and Mommy’, before the final, and best cue of the album, ‘Tommy Redeems Michael – Finale’. Here the music reaches a tragic melancholy grandeur with some of the power and feel of Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings, bringing the disc to a powerful climax.

The Unsaid is the sort of score one can imagine gracing a superior Brian De Palma film, perhaps along the lines of Patrick Doyle’s Carlito’s Way, or even earlier, something akin to a much more sombre The Fury. The romantic parts of John Williams’ score that is, with the horror stripped away. There’s some fine music here, though not enough to justify almost an hour’s playing time. That said, it would be a shame if the best of this music went unheard. While it is hard to recommend purchasing the album for all but dedicated fans of the composer, if the best of this album were to appear on a future anthology it would be most welcome indeed.

Gary Dalkin

3

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