Sony Masterworks announces the release of the original motion picture soundtrack to Shame, an award-winning psychological drama from acclaimed writer and director Steve McQueen (Hunger). At the 2011 Venice Film Festival, Shame received the Critics Choice award as well as the Best Actor accolade for Michael Fassbender. The soundtrack recording of Shame is available on Tuesday, December 6, 2011.
This movie – described as "a cinematic jolt" with "a brilliant, ferocious performance" by The Hollywood Reporter and "courageous and distinctive" by Time Out – is the story of Brandon (Michael Fassbender), a handsome and successful New Yorker who spends his days and nights navigating the reckless terrain of sexual obsession, on an inevitable path towards self destruction. Surrounded by a constant assault of beauty, glamour, and desire, he finds himself at a crossroads when his wayward sister Sissy (Carey Mulligan) – comes to crash at his sleek Manhattan apartment. As Brandon struggles to deal with his life of excess, his constant quest for numbness is an escape from both his present and his past. Shame provides a cinematically stunning snapshot of information-age disillusionment, and the struggle for human connection.
In this role, Michael Fassbender, known for playing Archie Hicox in Quentin Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds and Magneto in the superhero film X-Men: First Class, is brilliantly supported by Carey Mulligan (Pride and Prejudice; nominated for a Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award for her lead role in An Education in 2009) as the younger sister.
Steve McQueen, British artist and filmmaker, was awarded the Turner Prize in 1999 for his video based on a Buster Keaton film and the Camera d'Or in 2008 at the Cannes International Film Festival for his feature film Hunger.
For the original music, McQueen turned to Harry Escott, a young London-based composer best known for the original scores for Hard Candy, A Mighty Heart, Deep Water, and Shifty. Escott's compositions focus on the potential for music to function as a storyteller with the ability to convey meaning and emotion. However, this soundtrack includes much more, adding in powerful tracks from a variety of genres: from classical to rock and blues.
One of the most admired piano virtuosos of the 20th century, Glenn Gould, plays two extracts from Johann Sebastian Bach's Goldberg Variations, a work with which he is especially associated, in addition to the Bach's Prelude No. 10 in E Minor and part of the Prelude & Fugue No. 16 in G Minor.
Moreover, the mood of the film is enhanced by music from celebrated artists of recent times: Blondie's Rapture, for example, a song from the band's album Autoamerican (1980). Rapture topped the charts in the USA, the first song including rap sequences to do so. One of the outstanding saxophonists of jazz history, John Coltrane, contributes My Favorite Things, the title song of an album dating from 1961 that put Coltrane in the Grammy Hall of Fame. A further track from the world of jazz is Let's Get Lost by the legendary jazz singer and trumpeter Chet Baker.
Add to this You Can't Be Beat by blues great Howlin' Wolf and the American New Wave hit Genius Of Love by Tom Tom Club and there is something for every taste on this soundtrack. Not least there is Carey Mulligan's melting rendition of New York New York, slow and played for every last bit of pathos, to sum up the emotions and dangerous hopes that this serious and moving film expresses.