Saturday, July 16, 2016

Interstellar OST (2014) - Hans Zimmer

Review #24

Artiste:  Hans Zimmer
Year:  2014
Genre:  Soundtrack
Duration:  72 mins
Label:  WaterTower Music
Format:  CD

  1. ‘Dreaming of the Crash’ – 3:55
  2. ‘Cornfield Chase’ – 2:07
  3. ‘Dust’ – 5:41
  4. ‘Day One’ – 3:19
  5. ‘Stay’ – 6:52
  6. ‘Message from Home’ – 1:40
  7. ‘The Wormhole’ – 1:30
  8. ‘Mountains’ – 3:39
  9. ‘Afraid of Time’ – 2:32
  10. ‘A Place Among the Stars’ – 3:27
  11. ‘Running Out’ – 1:57
  12. ‘I’m Going Home’ – 5:48
  13. ‘Coward’ – 8:26
  14. ‘Detach’ – 6:42
  15. ‘S.T.A.Y.’ – 6:23
  16. ‘Where We’re Going’ – 7:41
Listen on Spotify:

Composer Hans Zimmer and director Christopher Nolan has been a match in heaven since the duo’s first collaboration on Batman Begins in 2005.  Since then, we had amazing music to behold from the rest of the ‘The Dark Knight’ trilogy (2008 & 2012), Inception (2010), and Interstellar.  He is also scoring Nolan’s upcoming war epic Dunkirk (2017). 

Zimmer’s work on Interstellar takes a less bombastic shift into more haunting and evocative territory, perhaps in a bid to capture the film’s themes of time, memory and vast uncertainty.  The church organ is especially noticeable in the score, alluding to the spirituality of connection through time and space.  Overall, the music is fantastic to behold.

But… the standard album doesn’t include the full selection of tracks (available only digitally in the deluxe edition) used in the film, particularly suspenseful tracks like ‘Imperfect Lock’ and ‘No Time for Caution’, the latter being one of Zimmer’s most stunning compositions.  Much of the album may seem bereft of ‘action’ tracks, with quieter, atmospheric music selected instead.  This is probably the only downer in an otherwise excellent album.  I would give the Deluxe Edition 4.5 stars instead.

‘Cornfield Chase’ – Features the score’s most fascinating theme, a kind of rumination on the ephemeral and mysterious nature of time.  Breathtaking is the word. 

‘Dust’ – Captures the dark uncertainty of space, with a feeling of glowing light in the opening couple of minutes.  It then segues into one of the score’s more ominous melodies, performed with deep, beautiful strings.

‘Mountains’ – Astonishing music on show here, one of the score’s throwback to Zimmer’s trademark bombast.  Starts off soft with a ticking clock rhythm, and explodes into life as if we are witnessing the birth of the universe.  Performed masterfully with the church organ and synths. 

‘Detach’ – My favourite track.  With a recurring deep bass that sets the pacing, the music builds up with great force, only to settle for a moment of solitude.  It then picks up with one of the most emotional cues Zimmer has ever written, a sort of epiphany and realization that you are welcomed, in all of its majesty, to another world. 

Reviewed on Luxman Stereo Integrated Amplifier A-383, Marantz Compact Disc Player CD-63SE, and a pair of 1973 New Advent Loudspeakers.

Sound Quality:  As with most albums by Hans Zimmer, the bass is stronger than usual, so do listen with caution.  The audio balancing can be a bit frustrating—when it’s soft, it’s really soft; when it’s loud, it’s really loud.


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