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Music Excerpts From The Exorcist Soundtrack CD Review

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In need of some spooky music? This will do the trick.

Considering today is Halloween, it feels appropriate to be reviewing the Perseverance Records re-release of the “Music Excerpts From The Exorcist” soundtrack. With few exceptions, there aren’t too many soundtracks that positively ooze a creepy atmosphere that is perfect for the Halloween season.

For those that are unaware, William Friedkin’s 1974 horror film “The Exorcist” is one of the rare films that didn’t actually have a score. There was a score composed for the film by Lalo Schifrin but it was rejected and never used. Instead, the director opted to use temp tracks from various artists and this was ultimately the music that made up the soundtrack. The soundtrack contains 10 tracks and it is common knowledge that the best and most popular tune here is Mike Oldfield’s now iconic “Tubular Bells.” The prog rock artist’s simple, short, yet eerie music is flat out iconic and has become synonymous with “The Exorcist.”

As for the other tracks, expect a lot of haunting string music. Key tracks include “Iraq” by Jack Nitzsche and Krzysztof Penederecki (which is a sort of chant that mixes in sound FX from the film), “5 Pieces For Orchestra Op. 10” by Anton Webern, “Windharp” by Harry Bee, “Night of the Electric Insects” by George Crumb, “Fantasia For Strings” by Hans Werner Henze. The artist whose works most appears on this soundtrack, however, is Polish composer Krzysztof Penederecki who has 3 tracks here titled “Polymorphia,” “String Quartet,” and “Kanon For Orchestra And Tape.” This is very much mood music that really fits the unnerving vibe of the film. The longest track “Polymorphia” (which clocks in at 11:49) in particular feels like it was tailor made for the movie even though it wasn’t.

Overall Thoughts: In the pantheon of horror film soundtracks, “The Exorcist” is easily a top tier title. Recommended.

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October 31, 2018 - Posted by | CD Review | , , , , , ,

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