Spring 2005 Film Music CD Reviews

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

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Return of the Aliens: The Deadly Spawn  
Music composed by Michael Perilstein
  Available on Perseverance Records (PRD 005)
Running Time: 44:14
Amazon UK   Amazon US

A low budget production with a low budget score does not necessarily mean music without quality. I still hope for a release of Chuck Cirino's catchy score for 976-Evil II (1991), Dan Wyman's end title theme from The Warning (AKA: Without Warning) (1980) or the eminently obscure The Redeemer (AKA: The Redeemer: Son of Satan) (1978) by Phil Gallo and Clem Vicari jr. But these minor, unsung gems are few and far between and all too often low-budget horror movies are saddled with low talent soundtracks. Sadly, this is the case here.

How on earth this score ever got a release baffles me. The label, Perseverance Records, are new to me and I sincerely wish them all the best. In fact, perhaps they should take a look at the aforementioned films and see if they can release some of that material (I have more suggestions if anyone's interested!), but why they felt that there was a market for this particular score is a mystery. From the track titles, tongues are obviously firmly embedded in cheeks with 'Spawn with the Wind' and 'Here Today, Spawn Tomorrow' two good examples of inferior sci-fi/horror scoring. To be fair, the main theme introduced on 'Afternoon of a Spawn' is not too bad in melodic terms, but so many of the suspense cues like 'All that Slithers is Not Good' and 'Creeping Right Along' are primitively constructed and the score as a whole just does not have enough charm or imagination to overcome its all too obvious shortcomings.

If this was a student film, with a teenager experimenting on a synth in his bedroom with no budget, I would probably say good effort. But however low the budget was on this production, I'm sure there are many such teenagers (and a few older guys like myself) that could have come up with something infinitely better than what is on offer here.

Mark Hockley

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