The Call of Cthulhu is a silent film based on the story by H.P. Lovecraft written in 1926. The film follows the story\'s structure of a three-part narrative, and the music was composed in a similar fashion. Relatively new composers - Ben Holbrook, Troy Sterling Nies and Nicholas Pavkovic - each took a segment of the film and scored it independently of the other. The result is a similar feel to the soundtrack to Sin City, which also required three different composers. The segments are distinctly different, and yet all feature a similar tone, despite having been scored completely independently.
Holbrook\'s cues are first and he provides a haunting and moving "Main Title" that immediately sets the dark, gothic tone of the album (and the film). The feel of the music is as if it was written in the earlier parts of the twentieth century, and the composers should be commended for this, as modern ideas and tools often push a composer away from this. In this regard, the trio here accomplished this to a greater sense than Silvestri did for the opening black-and-white scene in Van Helsing. Holbrook\'s component comes to a climax in "Dreams and Dream Work", which uses a strong French horn section that follows a bit of playful music that sounds like something out of a Ray Bradbury story.
Nies\' segment opens with "Burn It" and the listener will immediately notice a change in style, though the gothic tone remains similar. Nies\' cues are tenser and use more organ, which adds to the gothic feel ("Cyclopean Dreams"). The use of synthesizers, however, in Nies\' part is the most obvious of the three. The tone shifts again with Pavkovic\'s cues, to a quieter, more woodwind-based sound. The album closes with "End Credits", which is not quite a dark as the other cues, but returns to the main thematic ideas that Holbrook introduced. This is a very interesting listen to say the least. It is grouped by composer, though some of the tracks are out of order. I like the diverse feel that the composers bring to the music and yet maintain a consistent tone for the genre. Overall, fans of darker, gothic music would enjoy this album.
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