Rob Price
Gutbrain Records
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2022 June 13 • Monday

The Intrada label's CD release of two Leonard Rosenman score, for Making Love and Race with the Devil, is the 730th Soundtrack of the Week.

The Making Love score starts with “Prelude”, which is a long exploration of the movie’s main theme, played first on piano, then flute, then by strings in a few different arrangements.

After this comes a laidback jazz clarinet and saxophone feature, “Bart”, gently swinging and very lyrical.

“Zack” explores the main theme while surrounding it with smooth and steady orchestral support while “Zack and Claire” brings the melody up an octave and adds harp and “Driving” is a more or less straight reprise.

The emotion intensifies in “Claire Sees Zack”, with beautiful interplay between strings and flute.

The long “Postlude” is more intense than the “Prelude” and goes into some dramatically heavier territories. The harpsichord is used subtly and effectively.

Also on the CD are a few alternate cues, as well as a jazz version, a ballad version and song demo of the theme.

The Race with the Devil “Main Title” is ominous, modernist, nerve jaggling tension music, all sharp angles, piercing pitches and weird sounds.

For “The Alamo” and “Crossing Bridge” we have some happy peppy vacationers having fun music.

Things get a little more sedate with the Americana of “The Campsite”, followed by the part cartoonish, part pensive “Bike Race”.

Then we’re back in horror land with the creepiness of “Devil’s Note/The Pool”, which has low rumbling percussion and some weird, hard to identify sounds from other instruments that increase the feeling of dread.

“Hanging Dog” is a shock cue that starts with some sharp and forceful blasts from various wind instruments and stretches tones for tension while also sketching out some slight lyricism.

This is followed by terror and danger music for “The Snake”, a bit similar to some of the classic monster movie music of a previous era (The Creature from the Black Lagoon, for instance).

There’s some sad and moving music for “Dog’s Grave”, which features flute and cello, and some of the same musical atmosphere is carried over into the tenser “General Store”.

“Gas Man” gets a lot out of the lower registers of the string section while the winds create some uncomfortably keening and wailing sounds accompanied by timpani.

Clavinet (I think) adds some weird texture to “The Crash” while brass and percussion intensify the atmosphere of violence and danger, building to some impressively dense eruptions of sound.

The tension continues in a similar vein for “Wizard Reacts”, which also uses percussion and brass and clarinet for tension with Rosenman using density as a tool for shaping the dynamics of the piece.

While “A Tree” still sounds dreadful and ominous, long disonant string tones and various unsettling sounds, it’s relatively quiet and laidback.

The music explodes again for “Phony Accident”, another incredibly forceful slab of clavinet, brass and percussion.

Finally there’s the “End Title Strings”, which, while short, is a very strange and unsettling cue, just strings sawing away, possibly with some electric enhancements.