Clint Mansell – High-Rise OST – Album Review by Killian Laher
Clint Mansell, formerly of Pop Will Eat Itself, has moved far beyond that band with a career in film composition stretching for more than 15 years, scoring movies such as Requiem for a Dream, The Wrestler and Black Swan. For his latest he provides the soundtrack for an adaptation of a JG Ballard novel. It opens with the pompous, almost bombastic prologue of Critical Mass, a busy, string-led piece, echoed later on in A Royal Flying School. Apart from these, the album settles into downbeat, recurring keyboard motifs, on tracks like Silent Corridors and The Circle of Women, punctuated by occasional, arresting bursts of strings. Danger In The Streets of the Sky is almost cartoonish with its foreboding strings and horns, however the growling orchestration of Cine-Camera Cinema is more typical of the soundtrack.
It’s not all austerity, the lush strings of The World Beyond The High-Rise provide shards of light in the grim scheme of things. The ascending central melody to The Vertical City and “Somehow The High-Rise Played Into The Hands of the Most Petty Impulses” nod to David Bowie’s Subterraneans. If you’re in a certain mood (think oppressed, Cold War etc), you’ll really enjoy this, but the casual fan would be advised not to start here.
1. Critical Mass
2. Silent Corridors
3. The World Beyond The High-Rise
4. The Vertical City
5. The Circle of Women
6. “Built Not For Man, But For Man’s Absence”
7. Danger In The Streets of the Sky
8. “Somehow The High-Rise Played Into The Hands of the Most Petty Impulses”
9. Cine-Camera Cinema
10. A Royal Flying School
11. The Evening’s Entertainment
12. Blood Garden
The World Beyond The High-Rise: