MUD – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
One of the masterstrokes of the near-meteoric rise of Jeff Nichols was borrowing a composer from friend and collaborator David Gordon Green. David Wingo scored many of Green’s early films, as far as back as “George Washington” (recently reteaming with him for “Prince Avalanche”—see below), and came up with one of the most memorable scores of 2011 at his first time at bat with Nichols on “Take Shelter.” We hope the collaboration with Nichols is as long-running as the one with Green, because they’ve come up with gold again for “Mud.” Even more so that its predecessor, it’s real country-fried stuff, with Wingo combining bluegrass banjo and fiddle with persistent percussion and foreboding strings. The latter in particular is crucial to the film: even at its most carefree, the filmmaker and his composer don’t let you forget that something terrible is coming.
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Ain’t Them Bodies Saints – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
The moody and mystical “Ain’t Them Bodies Saints” features a trifecta of lived-in performances, sun-dappled cinematography, and a lilting, lovely score by Daniel Hart. Layers of strings, from violins and cellos to the higher ranges of bluegrass-inspired mandolin is buttressed by rhythmic hand-clapping, creating a totally unique and hypnotic sound. The score colors in all the elements of time and place, at once authentic and at other times magical and fairy-like, sounding of winged creatures taking flight. And yet, it feels organic, real, and worn, much like the aesthetic of the picture. Hart, another of ourOn The Rise composers this year, is a violinist and composer who also worked on David Lowery’s feature “St. Nick,” and short “Pioneer,” and it’s clear that the two artists’ work informs each other, fitting together seamlessly. Intimate, organic, grounded, and yet airy, the score of “Aint Them Bodies Saints” is what makes that film such a specific and unique piece.
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The Spectacular Now – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Indie composer Rob Simonsen is becoming quite ubiquitous. In 2013, he wrote music for “Girl Most Likely,” “The Way Way Back” and “The English Teacher” among others, but it’s his dreamy and emotional work in “The Spectacular Now” that really caught our ear.
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