Comes with a Smile # webexclusives
issues | the songs | interviews | reviews | images | web exclusives | top 10 | history | search

April 2006 / October 2005 / February-April 2005 / November-December 2004 / July 2004 / March-April 2004 / November-December 2003 / June-July 2003 / March-April 2003 / January-February 2003 / December 2002 / November 2002 / August 2002 / May-June 2002 / November 2001 / October 2001 / June-July 2001 / all web exclusives / search

Clint Mansell (featuring The Kronos Quartet) | Requiem For A Dream (Nonesuch)
Harrowing and suitably creeped-out, the soundtrack to Darren Aronofsky's sophomore feature is equal parts EM creature feature and chamber ensemble nightmare. Taking his cues from the darker ambiences of the Reznor school of synthtronics, Mansell's snippets scowl, brood or haunt their way around and within the Kronos Quartet's minimally sutured minor-key atmospheres. A number of themes established within the first ten cuts are enhanced, unravelled, exploded or truncated throughout the entirety of the CD, the first half of which is given a punctured, menacing tone, no doubt the result of indexing music cuts meant to be spaced on film. As the soundtrack gains speed, however, a lengthy sequence of interspliced motifs churn and develop in parallel fashion, creating an intense and fully realised atmosphere of despair, and an alienation of symphonic proportions. Soundtracks often have trouble standing on their own, but Requiem is one of the most powerful and self-contained soundtracks I've ever come across.

G. C. Weeks
June-July 2001