BuySoundtrax Records is proud to announce the release of music from the motion picture Assault on Precinct 13 which also includes music from John Carpenter's Dark Star and is available at www.buysoundtrax.com now and digitally and via other soundtrack boutique retailers on July 13, 2012 (limited edition 1,500 units). Alan Howarth, a frequent collaborator with Carpenter, produced, arranged and performed on the recording.
Dark Star and Assault on Precinct 13 were Carpenter's first two films; the former began as a student film during his time at USC. Both provide hints at his style to come, both as a director and as a composer.
As described by Randall D. Larson in the extensive liner notes, "John Carpenter's music for Dark Star ranges from the computerized bleeps, whorls, and bell-sounds heard in the opening scene as the ship receives a delayed communication from Earth ("Dark Star Message"), which are reminiscent of the 'musical tonalities' devised by Louis and Bebe Barron for the 1956 film, Forbidden Planet, to the ominous cadence of stepping chords that accompany the first scene of the scoutship Dark Star approaching an unstable planet in space."
Written and recorded in a mere three days, the music for Assault on Precinct 13 was performed for the film by Carpenter and his friend, Tommy Lee Wallace. "It was all the time I could afford in the recording studio," Carpenter wrote in his notes for the film's 2003 French soundtrack album. "I had to compose and perform a few mood pieces that I could use again and again through the movie. I remember having great difficulty with a quiet piano sequence to be played over the death of Nancy Loomis' character Julie. The main theme was relatively easy after we established the beat."
Beginning in 1981 with Escape From New York through 1988's They Live, Alan Howarth worked with Carpenter. Because of their relationship and Howarth's past work on the BuySoundtrax Records release of The Thing in 2011, the label turned to Howarth once again to recreate these two scores.
From scores to special sound effects, from Halloween stalkers to Star Trek, Alan Howarth's electronic imagination has contributed to some of the biggest genre films of the '80s. Alternately wearing the hats of both composer and sound effects man, Howarth has collaborated with John Carpenter on music. He's provided sound design for films like Poltergeist, Raiders of the Lost Ark, all of the Star Trek movies, The Hunt For Red October, Coppola's Dracula, Total Recall, and Stargate, among others. As a composer, he's scored many genre films and well as blockbuster movies. In 2001, Alan served as Chief Audio Officer at Electronic Arts, the video game giant.
Currently, his personal and technical interests have lead to research and development and creation of an immersive audio system that plays back audio as Sound Pixels™. Surrounded by this 48.6 channel playback technology, he is also working with colleagues Wesley H. Bateman and Dr J.J.Hurtak in musicological research that has lead to RA Music™, which consists of frequencies defined by the sacred geometry of ancient structures.
"I was very familiar with the analog synthesizers of that time, so I knew where to go with that stuff," Howarth said. "The challenge was to come up with a similar sound textures in modern-day software synthesizers."
For Dark Star's countrified title song, "Benson Arizona," BSX recording artist and composer Dominik Hauser provided the arrangement and performance.
Assault on Precinct 13 / Dark Star is available at www.buysoundtrax.com now and digitally at other soundtrack boutique retailers on July 13, 2012 (limited edition 1500 units). The first 100 people to purchase the recording directly from www.buysoundtrax.com will receive their copy autographed by Alan Howarth.