Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Nicklas Barker – El Último Fin De Semana

Reviewing a soundtrack is tricky because the music is meant to be part of a greater whole; not necessarily an experience unto itself. Without having seen the movie for which this music was made, I can’t comment on how it serves the visuals and storyline, which is the true criterion for a soundtrack’s success. However, as a prog head and fan of Anekdoten, Nicklas Barker’s primary band, I declare this music to be quite fantastic on its own.

It’s mostly hushed, eerie stuff. Given titles like “Night Ambience,” “Entering the Lost Village,” and “Confrontation/Doom,” I’d guess El Último… is a pretty creepy film. Barker—a guitarist in his main gig—piles on Mellotron, Hammond, and Theremin to create these ethereal snippets. An atmosphere of melancholy pervades everything; occupying a realm between Air and Morte Macabre (the beloved Anekdoten/Landberk collaborative one-off). Fans of vintage keyboard sounds will be in their element.

“Celestial Ghost” is the longest, most “rock” track on here. Once the drums and bass kick in beneath its hypnotic organ line, it’s clear that it’s descended from the Anekdoten family. “Chase/Purgatory” is structured like its title, starting with a driving rhythm just like one of Anekdoten’s peppier songs, then giving way to massed Mellotron choirs and buzzing synthesizers. Only the comparatively jaunty bossanova of “Beach Girls” pokes through the gloom—some light relief at the end of a series of little nightmares.


invisibleoranges said...

"Celestial Ghost" is fantastic! I've put this on my to-get list. Thank you for turning me on to this.

The Mule said...

You're very welcome, and thanks for reading! This was a rare iTunes purchase for me, which is why I didn't note the record label.