Rob Price
Gutbrain Records
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2018 July 23 • Monday

The 527th Soundtrack of the Week is another superb Barry Gray score, the new Fanderson release of the music from Doppelgänger (a.k.a. Journey to the Far Side of the Sun).

It's an interesting blend of Golden Age-style orchestral writing and Gray's very recognizable style. If I had been hearing it for the first time without knowing what it was I might have thought it was music for Space: 1999 or UFO.

The ondes Martenot plays a huge role in the music, perhaps the most prominent I've ever heard from this instrument. In "Food For Thought/Survival Test", for example, it takes on the main melody, going beyond its usual task to create eerie atmospheres and otherworldly textures (which it also does here).

Gray weaves triumphant-sounding and pulse-racing figures with sinuous and tender lines smoothly, bringing out numerous voices from the orchestra for solo moments.

The overall feel is romantic and stirring. It's certainly a wonderful addition to anybody's Barry Gray collection.

The CD presents the cues in both stereo and mono versions and, as a bonus track, Krzysztof Penderecki's intense and unsettling "Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima", of which some was apparently used in the movie. It's certainly a dramatic and potentially cinematic piece of music. It also sounds like something that has been much imitated and I'm glad to have heard something which has perhaps influenced many composers since.