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Soundtrax: Special Edition
Episode 2021-2.1, April 2021

Photo credit: Melinda Lerner.

Henry Jackman (CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER, THE COMEY RULE, CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR, KONG: SKULL ISLAND, KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE) has established himself as one of today’s top composers by fusing his classical training with his experience as a successful record producer and creator of electronic music. “I’ve spent a lot of time working in the record industry,” Jackman has said, “and for my money being a film composer is way more fun. You can be working on X-MEN, and then a movie set in 17th-century Italy. It’s not about showing off what you think is cool or what you want to hear, but ‘what is this movie about, and what would best serve it?’ That process just leads to strange and remarkable places.”

Marvel Studios’ THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER stars Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson aka The Falcon, and Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes aka The Winter Soldier. The pair, who came together in the final moments of AVENGERS: ENDGAME, team up on a global adventure that tests their abilities-and their patience. Directed by Kari Skogland with Malcolm Spellman serving as head writer, the six-episode series also stars Daniel Brühl as Zemo, Emily VanCamp as Sharon Carter, and Wyatt Russell as John Walker. Hot on the heels of Marvel’s WANDAVISION, this second limited series debuted worldwide on Disney+ March 19, 2021 to critical acclaim and was ranked as the most watched series premiere ever on Disney+ during its opening weekend, and the most watched title overall for the same time period on a global basis, including in Disney+ Hotstar markets.

Marvel Music/Hollywood Records has released THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER: VOLUME 1 (Episodes 1-3) digital soundtrack featuring music by composer Henry Jackman. The soundtrack also includes “Louisiana Hero,” the end-credit track from the series. THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER: Volume 2 soundtrack (Episodes 3-6) is set for release on April 30.

Marvel Studios’ THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER streams exclusively on Disney+ with new episodes debuting Fridays (through April 23rd).

Q: What can you tell me about creating the main theme for FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER, and what it represents?

Henry Jackman: The main theme that shows up on the Main On Ends [a trend in modern cinema of presenting the main title of the film at the end of a movie rather than the beginning] has already become a hit on YouTube on its pre-release, and it was particularly satisfying for me because there are definitely aspects of some of the thematics from CAPTAIN AMERICA WINTER SOLDIER and CIVIL WAR now moving into the FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER show. Perhaps one of the most satisfying things for me is, in the score for WINTER SOLDIER, Falcon is a partner of Steve Rogers and there was a motif that I never got to fully develop, because Falcon’s moments were pretty short in that movie. I had this little heroic figure for him, and now if you listen half way into the Main on Ends in the TV series, when the brass come in after all the Louisiana guitars and whatnot, I took that motif and developed it into the full superhero theme that I thought it was always capable of being, but just had not yet had the chance to blossom. So that sort of thing, working through the movies and taking thematic elements and developing them in major iterations within the same universe, that is a really satisfying thing.

Q: What was it like for you to reprise your music and find a place for additional elements in the post-Blip landscape of FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER?

Henry Jackman: That’s a great question, because as you are implying it’s a sort of combination of bringing into the new show thematic elements from the past as appropriate, and then the other fifty percent is, of course, everything’s changed so there’s all sorts of new material. It was hugely satisfying. I can’t give too much away—we’re just past episode three now, so we’ve already had an explosive outburst from Bucky in Winter Soldier mode, and as soon as that happened, you hear the scream and the metallic percussion, all the gnarly sounds that went along with Winter Soldier from the CAPTAIN AMERICA THE WINTER SOLDIER score. Now there’s a sort of civilian Bucky tone, which is more for piano, light strings, and guitar, and it’s a much more humane idea, since he’s trying to recover from those years of assassination and neurological damage that occurred. It’s a combination of new stuff and old stuff.

Listen to “The Winter Soldier” from CAPTAIN AMERICA THE WINTER SOLDIER soundtrack:

When John Walker is revealed to be the latest choice for Captain America there’s a sort of sneaky reprise of the Steve Rogers melody but in a slightly more ambiguous/less patriotic version of it that makes you think “wait a minute, is this a good idea, or…?” I increased the snares and military aspect of Steve’s theme, so it’s a bit tougher but somehow lacks the empathy and the wisdom that Captain America had—but just subtly, because he’s a pretty aggressive chap who gets frustrated when leads dry up and when he wants to get results. It’s not long before he’s getting pretty violent. So that theme got reprised, and there was some re-texturizing of Cap’s thematic ideas. The kind of spidery, manipulative Zemo theme that shows up in CIVIL WAR is now appropriate because Zemo joins the show. It’s been really great to pull these ideas from the past since the characters are the same.

What’s interesting about the series, because it’s longer—you’ve got six 55-minute episodes—that leaves more room for those character scenes, dialog scenes, subtle drama scenes, as well as the big set pieces, which allow for the Marvel action music, heroic music, and jeopardy music that you’ve associated with the movies. You do get quieter scenes in the movies, but there’s more space for it now in the show, so the whole situation with Sam and the boat and his sister and his Louisiana roots and Bucky trying to put his head together in the shrink’s office without too much success… those sorts of scenes ask for a lighter touch with the music. which can really range from everything from more intimate—like the Bucky scene when he goes on a date—to a giant action sequence like you have at the beginning of episode one, when Falcon’s screaming through the canyons. So the range is pretty spectacular. Often with TV shows it’s all a bit more low-key drama; it stays in that smaller, more intimate feeling, whereas this show really covers everything from giant set pieces to those smaller, intimate character scenes, and that has an impact on the music. The scale ranges from high stakes Marvel action down to the slightly richer, longer explorations of our characters, and it’s all great fun musically.

Q: The characters of Falcon and the Winter Soldier have an unusual rapport in this series. How does the music serve to offset them and treat their adversarial-slash-heroic teamwork?

Henry Jackman: It very much depends on the scene. Sometimes the pair of them are caught up in some pretty stressful situations. Those situations have a pretty huge range—in episode two they were having a massive fight with Flag Smashers on the top of trucks, other times they’re arguing about the symbolism of the shield, so then the ghost of the Cap/Steve Rogers idea can be used. The themes are all very context dependent: they could be in a scenario where they’ve been manipulated by Zemo, so the Zemo theme would come to the fore; they could be scoping out the Flag Smashers, so that would have a different color, or they could be discussing the shield, or Madripoor. Obviously as they approach Madripoor it’s got elements that pertain more to dub-step and drum-and-bass—it’s more like an environmental cue, because Madripoor is like Hong Kong on crack or something! It’s a really modern but also really tech-y place.

Q: How did you treat some of the other characters, such as Sharon Carter and the sadly mistreated supersoldier Isaiah Bradley?

Henry Jackman: The character of Isaiah and what he represents—the fact that we’ve found out in episode three that there was an African American superhero who was experimented on and the whole thing was covered up—the reason it lands hard is because, even though this is a Marvel show, you know that it smells of the truth and that that sort of thing happens; not having to do with serum and supersoldiers, obviously, but the whole issue of one treatment for the Caucasian patriotic superhero and a kind of totally different, more abusive and then completely unrecognized situation for an African American who was in pretty much the same situation that Steve Rogers was. So with that in mind, and with the performance in episode three being such an authentic and powerful one, it became really important that the music was extremely respectful and not invasive, narratively. I really wanted to come up with a musical language in a cue that left maximum space for the acting performance, both because the actor himself gave such a stunning performance and because of the political and racial nature of what’s being discussed, it didn’t need a big, thick layer of narrative paint from the music, so I really wanted to tread delicately there.

With the reveal of Sharon Carter I’ve got a little motif brewing for her that will find its feet as the show progresses. One of the interesting things about Sharon is that she’s quite a bad-ass. She manages to polish off a good handful of mercenaries and bounty hunters in episode three, so a lot of her initial deployment in the show was in the context of action, but—watch this space—there’s more music to follow! It’s interesting—it depends how people enter a show, whether they come with great fanfare and you can do a massive thematic dollop of paint, or whether they kind of slip into the situation and are caught up on the action.

Q: You mentioned earlier your end credits track, “Louisiana Hero.” It has an interesting palette of textures and instrumentations, from very active orchestra to a heavy blues influence, growing into a splendid climax. How did this track come about?

Henry Jackman: When it came to the end credits of FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER, I really wanted to bring in more of Sam’s background, especially his relationship with Lisa, his sister. It was a tricky thing to do, because if you get it wrong it could be an awful hybrid. I wanted to combine a legit Louisiana feel and have some elements that were non-classical, but more like a cultural thing. When you have the big brass fanfare and the symphonic music, which I love, that comes from a world of Aaron Copland and the history of symphonic orchestral music, which is great for rousing, patriotic, lofty aspirational melodies. But then with Sam and his background, it would have felt remiss if somehow I didn’t also describe his character and get a groove feel into the mix with guitars and all these elements that don’t come from the concert world, I feel like that attaches to Sam and his background. He’s still a hero, so you need both.

Listen to “Louisiana Hero” the end title from the FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER:

Q: I understand your score was recorded in Berlin? What challenges did you face while recording the score in the midst of the COVID pandemic, and did that affect musical decisions as the score was being developed?

Henry Jackman: You’re right. When COVID first happened, the prospect of trying to record an orchestra just seemed impossible. But like all challenges, especially for everyone involved in the world of recording, you just have to adapt to the circumstances. People can be really flexible and creative, and within the constraints of the perfectly reasonable rules, they worked it out. Ordinarily, for example, you would want to record everyone in the same room, but of course under COVID, brass players and woodwind players can’t be blowing in the same room as the string players, so there were some challenges in how to put it together, but everyone was hugely accommodating, not least the orchestra in Berlin themselves. To be honest with you, at the beginning of the process I was preparing myself for an inevitable compromise in the recording process, but to be quite frank, we so got into the swing of how to accommodate the situation and put it all together, that by the end of the process, I honestly didn’t think there was any compromise at all, I felt they played fantastically. When there’s a will, there’s a way!

Q: What’s your view on the challenges and rewards of scoring music for the MCU and occasionally sharing themes between films and/or series?

Henry Jackman: I love it. Sometimes people complain about inconsistent musical consistencies between all the movies, but I think people should remember that—unlike, say, at least the first six STAR WARS movies—the Marvel Universe is actually wider—and tonally wider—so if you think of something like GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY or DOCTOR STRANGE versus the last AVENGERS movie, they’re wildly different, tonally, and I think that’s actually a strong point. GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY is a great score, but one of its musical highlights is how songs are used, and when’s the last time you heard a lot of funk music and soul music in outer space? And that’s so different from something like CAPTAIN AMERICA WINTER SOLDIER, so when Kevin Feige and the rest of the Marvel producers allowed sufficient freedom to bring in different directors, the tone of Marvel movies is never so stretched and so wide that any of them don’t feel that they’re in the Marvel Universe—but there are sufficient variations, either in the tone, style, cinematography, and in the scores that there is still a wide variety, and rightly so. Every Marvel movie is a Marvel movie, and Kevin’s got that sort of aesthetic jurisdiction that he really puts his imprint on everything, but then there’s this scope. It’s a really wide range and it requires variation, so I think, musically, the challenge with Marvel has been consistency where possible between shows, especially if it’s the same composer, obviously, but also a celebration of the variation that comes with asking completely different musical minds to engage in the process, and enjoying that plurality.

Special thanks to Kyrie Hood and Andrew Krop of White Bear PR for facilitating this interview,
Matt Justmann for coordinating the final edit, Mike Joffe for copyediting assistance, and to Henry Jackman for discussing these scores in detail and with enthusiasm.
Archival photos of Henry Jackman: b&w close-up by Melinda Lerner, b&w at mixing board by Ben Ealovega, color at mixing board via MvA Air 3, with thanks.

Watch the season finale of FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER this Friday on Disney+.


Soundtrack News

Congratulations to STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS and composer Kevin Kiner on its Annie Awards win for Best Music, TV Media, as well as to THE MANDALORIAN for Best Character Animation, Live Action. As well, the Cartoon Saloon’s adventure fantasy WOLFWALKERS won for Best Indie Feature, JURASSIC WORLD: CAMP CRETACEOUS for Best Effects For TV/Media, and Pixar’s SOUL for best animated feature film. See the full list of winners over at If you missed it, see my interview with Kevin on scoring STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS’ final season, and more, in my April/May 2020 column.

Taylor Sheridan’s new film THOSE WHO WISH ME DEAD, about a teenage murder witness who finds himself pursued by twin assassins in the Montana wilderness with a survival expert tasked with protecting him—and a forest fire threatening to consume them all, has been scored by Brian Tyler; WaterTower Music will release the Warner Bros soundtrack on May 14, same date as the film premiere. Tyler conducted the Hollywood Studio Symphony for the film.

In other WaterTower Music news, the label has released on April 16th the original motion picture soundtrack to MORTAL KOMBAT by Benjamin Wallfisch. To score the new adaptation of the popular video game, Wallfisch created a series of strong character themes for the franchise’s classic kombatants as well as lead MK newcomer Cole Young—not to mention plenty of adrenaline-pumping fight tracks. “When I was invited to come on board MORTAL KOMBAT, I was very aware of the responsibility that comes with scoring a franchise so deeply embedded in pop culture and with such a passionate fanbase,” said Wallfisch. “My first question was what can we do with ‘Techno Syndrome,’ a piece of music so much part of the DNA of the game and the original movies? What motifs could be reinvented and blown up to a full-scale symphonic sound world in the score, and might there be room for a full reinvention of the whole song as an EDM single in 2021? A huge thank you to The Immortals for giving us their blessing to reimagine their classic track in this way, as a celebration of the world of MORTAL KOMBAT and its fans, and of the uplifting power of Electronic Dance Music, which the original did so much to light the fuse of 30 years ago.” The soundtrack is now available at these links.

In other Benjamin Wallfisch news, The Hollywood Reporter has announced that Wallfisch “is speeding on to his next project [hort hort]. Wallfisch will score Warner Bros. and DC Films’ upcoming THE FLASH movie.”
The forthcoming film stars Ezra Miller as the DC superhero (last seen in ZACH SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE) and is directed by Andy Muschietti, the filmmaker behind the two successful IT movies, which Wallfisch scored. THE FLASH movie is currently filming in London, and is scheduled to be released in the United States on November 4, 2022.

MovieScore Media has announced four new releases for April: Devereux Milburn’s horror film HONEYDEW tells the story of a young couple who experience strange cravings and hallucinations after seeking shelter in the home of an aging farmer and her peculiar son. John Mehrmann’s highly unorthodox score has been hailed by an abundance of film critics using descriptions like “beautifully macabre razor-like” and “supremely off-kilter.” With a combination of mouth sounds, bodily sound effects, and percussion instruments using household objects like cutlery and water bottles, HONEYDEW pushes the envelope. MSM’s digital release is to be followed later this year by a physical release (on CD and vinyl) by Svart Records of Finland. The gritty action thriller score for TRIGGER POINT is the work of composers Andrew Lockington (JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, SAN ANDREAS) and Michael White (V-WARS, AFTERMATH). Directed by Brad Turner, the film follows a retired U.S. special operative who becomes part of an elite “invisible” team that quietly takes out the worst villains around the world—until something goes wrong. Swedish composer Oscar Fogelström (ZOMBI VIII: URBAN DECAY, CONQUERING CHINA, THE HYPNOTIST) rejoins director Yam Laranas on the score for DEATH OF A GIRLFRIEND. The film tells the story of two lovers who fall in love during a walk in a forest; but when tragedy ensues a Rashomon-inspired investigation as each participant has his own version to explain what happened to Christine in the woods… Fogelström’s main theme is based, at the director’s request, “on ‘Solveig’s Song’ from Edward Grieg’s Peer Gynt as the topics of losing a loved one and keeping her memory seemed like a natural match for this story,” said the composer. “The score also features an intercontinental collaboration between three continents—while the  movie was produced in the Philippines, I scored and recorded the live strings, the bassoon  and the oboe solos with Bylund Strings in Sweden,” explained Fogelström. “However, the Chinese instrument called Hulusi (which is a gourd flute) was recorded by George Shaw in Los Angeles so that I could  incorporate this most unusual sound into the farmer’s theme.” The label’s fourth release is the “gorgeously unnerving” music from CHARLATAN, the official submission of the Czech Republic for the 93rd Academy Awards in 2021. Directed by Polish filmmaker Agnieszka Holland, the film tells the life story of well-known Czech healer Jan Mikolášek who diagnosed and healed people using his intuition and his familiarity with herbs. “The score to CHARLATAN keeps more secret than it reveals,” explains composer Antoni  Komasa-Lazarkiewicz (ROSEMARY’S BABY TV miniseries, WARSAW ‘44, THE TURNCOAT) about how his and Mary Komasa’s music matched the mysterious  themes of the film. “The challenge was to keep it painfully restrained and yet full of paradoxical, contradictory emotions, hidden undercurrents, questions, and exclamations. The stiffness and rawness of the motives is counterbalanced by the inner life of each note, with every strike of  the bow, every phrase becoming a piece of its own.” For more details, see (not all new releases are posted on the site yet).

Mark Isham reports that he is “having a lot of fun scoring Season 2 of GODFATHER OF HARLEM. The new season, which premiered April 18 on the EPIX Network, features “new characters, new plot lines, new music!” said Isham. “?Forest Whitaker is brilliant as Bumpy! Big shout out to Chris Brancato for his extraordinary vision!”
Watch the second season trailer:

Invada and Lakeshore Records have released the soundtrack to IN THE EARTH, a film by Ben Wheatley, original music by Clint Mansell. The score is described as being both luminous and ominous with rich, organically inspired flourishes that inhabit a pronounced place in the folk horror film. Lakeshore Records has released the album digitally in the Americas and Invada Records in the rest of the world.  The NEON film, written and directed by Ben Wheatley, has to do with a worldwide search for a cure to a disastrous virus, during which a scientist and park scout venture deep in the forest for a routine equipment run. Through the night, their journey becomes a terrifying voyage through the heart of darkness, as the forest comes to life around them.
Soundtrack available here.
Watch the trailer:

In other Lakeshore Records news, the label has released the original motion picture soundtrack to Neil Burger’s VOYAGERS, featuring score by award-winning composer Trevor Gureckis (SERVANT, THE GOLDFINCH, BLOODLINE). “Neil had some ideas that we sort of honed in on,” Gureckis told Daniel Schweiger in an interview earlier this month. “When we discussed the instrumentation, humanity was always important, even though this is the future and they’re on a spaceship. A nod to a sci-fi universe is appropriate and natural. There [are] plenty of electronics and BLADE RUNNER-like tonalities but it’s always accompanied with live strings, winds, and brass… caught up in this electronic world to make a hybrid color.” About getting across a sense of wonder for the space voyage, Gureckis said: “I always find the visuals of empty space or of a ship surrounded by empty space compelling on its own, so I feel you don’t have to do much to support that. To me, it usually means quite literally slowing down the harmonic pace and having a spacious, long melody. And then if you want to get detailed in the imagery, you can always add something for the cosmic microwave background radiation. Which I’ve done with voice or violin effects.” Lakeshore’s digital album is available at these links.

Intrada’s latest release for April is an expanded 2-CD reissue of Michael Kamen’s gritty action score for MGM’s COMPANY BUSINESS (1991), directed by Nicholas Meyer. Kamen dives into the aging spy Gene Hackman vs. Soviet agent Mikail Baryshnikov fray from the outset with a staccato trombone action motif that remains a propulsive anchor to the score throughout. No matter how deep into suspense Kamen delves nor how restrained he tackles the suspense, his low brass action motif stays close at hand. Trumpets and French horns keep everything at peak excitement. Intrada premiered the score on single CD in 1991; that unique presentation is preserved on CD 1. Now, with the generous help of Michael Kamen’s Estate, an additional ten minutes of previously unreleased music was located and appears here for the first time on CD 2, which now offers the score in chronological film sequence (the original CD was reorganized). See Intrada.

Quartet Records and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer present the remastered reissue of the wonderful, memorable music composed by Miklós Rózsa for Billy Wilder´s classic THE PRIVATE LIFE OF SHERLOCK HOLMES, this time in a 2-CD set with extra material. Quartet released the first official edition of Rózsa’s original recording in 2013, sourced from music stems located at MGM (the original studio masters being lost); it quickly sold out. That CD, in spite of its less-than-ideal sound, preserved the composer’s own irreplaceable interpretation, bringing this marvelous music back to life more than 40 years after it was written. Although no new elements have magically appeared since then, audio engineer Chris Malone has applied new technology to the existing material, and the result is this new edition with greatly improved sound quality. (The label is now able to include the original version of “Gabrielle”—which was so damaged some of it had to be left off  the earlier release—now complete for the first time.) The second disc includes the premiere CD edition of the famous “Fantasy” that Rózsa recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra for his album “Rózsa Conducts Rózsa,” released on Polydor in 1977. Also included is a new remastering of the premiere recording of the violin concerto on which so much of the score is based, performed by the inimitable Jascha Heifetz. Finally, all the source music recorded and supervised by Rózsa himself is also included on the second CD. See Quartet Records.

The new music video of Diane Warren’s Oscar-nominated song, “Io Si (Seen)” from THE LIFE AHEAD, has been given an alternate life by reflecting what we have lived through for the past year-plus, showing the hope we have as well. Warren’s song “Io Si (Seen),” written for the 2020 drama about a Holocaust survivor with a daycare business in seaside Italy who takes in a 12-year-old street kid who recently robbed her. The film (starring Sophia Loren) garnered Warren her 12th Oscar nomination. Looking back at the events of 2020 and 2021, Warren wanted to release this special video to reflect the hurt and the hope that we all have experienced. “Io Si (Seen)” reminds us that even in the midst of darkness, there is hope when we are there for each other. There is healing and comfort in allowing ourselves to truly see one another, and in turn, experience the gift of being “seen.” 
Music by Diane Warren, lyrics by Warren and Laura Pausini. Watch the video here:

The CinemaScore/Soundtrack web archives, which for a couple of decades now has preserved the content of the classic film music magazines CinemaScore: The Film Music Journal and Soundtrack magazine (formerly Soundtrack Collector’s Quarterly) (plus original content) has expanded its content by archiving articles and interviews from the defunct French magazine Cinéfonia; additional content from the Soundtrack magazine’s French supplement has also been posted in an associated French website,
For the original CS/SQ archival site, see:


Documentary Soundtrack News

Holly Amber Church is scoring the new documentary THE DONN OF TIKI from Surf Monkey Films, which is about the man who started the modern tiki culture, Donn Beach. Being a huge tiki fan and having a studio that is thoroughly tiki'fied, Holly is perfectly qualified to score this film! Check out the film’s site here. - via Peter Hackman. In additional Holly Amber Church news, her score for A BAND TO HONOR (reviewed in my December 2020 column) won Best Original Score at the Hollywood Boulevard Film Festival.  That’s two best score awards for it this year and the film has won four awards as well so far. The documentary will finish its festival run soon and has distribution in place. The soundtrack album is out now from Notefornote Music on all digital and streaming platforms, and also direct from the label.

Notefornote Music has also announced a digital only soundtrack to the documentary, AGAINST THE ODDS, an inspirational eSports Cinderella story of dedication, perseverance and friendship, following an unlikely group of gamers who became legends. The doc has been viewed nearly 4 million times on YouTube. Composer Edwin Wendler has created an exciting electronic score which perfectly reflects team OG’s unbelievable ups and downs on their way to the biggest tournament in eSports.
See details here.

Cieri Torjusson has co-scored, with Jongnic Bontemps, music for the four-part CNN docuseries THE PEOPLE V. THE KLAN (produced by Blumhouse TV). Written and directed by Donnie Eichar, the show tells the little-known true story of Beulah Mae Donald, a mother in Alabama, who took down the Ku Klux Klan after the brutal murder and lynching of her son, Michael Donald. The show is exec-produced by Cornell William Brooks, Jason Blum, Jeremy Gold and Mary Lisio. “I feel honored to have contributed to this moving and important series and to work with Jongnic, Donnie and the whole team,” Torjusson told Soundtrax. “It’s a part of modern US history that should not be forgotten and I urge you all to check it out.” The film is available on both Hulu+ Live TV and Sling TV streaming services.

Hollywood Records/Disney Music Group has released the soundtrack from National Geographic’s four-part series SECRETS OF THE WHALES, featuring a score composed and produced by Raphaelle Thibaut (INTRODUCING SELMA BLAIR), is available today from. Commenting on her score Thibaut said, “Music is very often thought of as a man-made thing, but the series has taught me that music is actually all around, especially in nature, especially around the whales. To me, it was like creating music out of the ultimate original music, the whales singing, the waves crashing. I used rolls and cymbals to illustrate the waves, and lush strings to illustrate the majestic movements with these huge animals. And I did it almost instinctively, I believe because of our deep connection with them. I’ve learned so much about whales through this show. The whales’ societies are very similar to our society as humans, and it's just incredible to find out about all these cultural differences they have depending on where they live. All these things really helped me to relate even more and to convey emotion through my music and I hope the same will happen with the audience.” The Disney+ original series from National Geographic premiers on Earth Day, April 22. The three-year project is also featured in the new National Geographic book, Secrets of the Whales, on sale now, and the May issue of National Geographic magazine, The Ocean Issue, available online here. The four-part series features National Geographic Photographer and Explorer Brian Skerry, is executive produced by Academy Award®-winning filmmaker and conservationist James Cameron, and narrated by award-winning actress and conservationist Sigourney Weaver.  A clip from the series can be seen here:

Brian Satterwhite’s score to the 2019 Ice Age fossil documentary film BONEYARD ALASKA has been released digitally, and is available on Apple Music or wherever digital music is sold or streamed. “I tried to capture the sound of the mud, ice, bone, rock, and sludge using contrabass clarinet, bassoon, alto and bass flutes, marimba, synths, a string quartet, and a Fender Rhodes,” Brian said. Beneath the ever-frozen ground of Alaska lie the bones of Ice Age creatures that roamed the region tens of thousands of years ago. Stored in a permafrost deep-freeze these remains are in pristine condition and represent an unprecedented window into the life of the Pleistocene Epoch. Directed and produced by Paul Andrew Lawrence, the film follows Alaskan gold miner John Reeves, who has unearthed and assembled over a hundred thousand specimens from his mine site, “The Boneyard.” For the first time, John invites a small team of expert paleontologists to visit his site and his collection. Discoveries are made potentially re-writing the history of North America. Watch the film’s trailer (FYI: the music on the trailer is temp score, not Brian’s music):


Vinyl Soundtrack News

Varèse Sarabande Records will be releasing seven amazing soundtrack LPs on Record Store Day 2021’s newly announced release dates: THE MATRIX will be released as a deluxe 3-LP set, VILLAGE OF THE DAMNED will be released as a deluxe-edition double LP, THE IRON GIANT and THE GOONIES will get the picture disc treatment, and SHREK, GHOSTS OF MARS, and ALIENS will be released as limited-edition color LPs. This annual celebration will be held through a series of Record Store Day drops. These seven Varèse Sarabande Records titles will be available on these dates: the first four LPs drop on June 12th, with the last three listed above drop on July 17th. For a list of participating stores and more information about these special LPs, visit

Mondo and WaterTower Music present Tom Holkenborg’s epic complete 7-disc vinyl soundtrack to the fan-fueled phenomenon ZACK SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE. “As pure as any film music expression has ever existed, Holkenborg’s nearly-four hour opus is as bombastic and singular as the film it compliments, and Mondo is honored to present the premiere physical release of this staggering work of expression,” said the label. This limited edition collectible set features all four hours of Holkenborg’s score pressed across 7 discs (with a laser etched B-Side on the final disc) housed in a beautiful hard shell black, white, and silver foil stamped box set.
Thee set is available for Pre-Order beginning April 14th at Noon CST. $200. For more details, see Mondo.
Related: See my review of Holkenborg’s score for the digital release of ZACH SNYDER’S JUSTICE LEAGUE in my March-April column

Christopher Young’s soundtrack to the first episode of Quibi’s 50 STATES OF FRIGHT will soon be available in vinyl from Notefornote Music, the same label that issued the digital and CD versions of Young’s score. The vinyl LP+24 bit digital bundle is a limited edition of 200 “Blood Splattered” Gold LPs. An extremely limited amount of those 200 releases will be autographed by Christopher Young, and will be available for those who pre-order—first come, first served. LPs expected to arrive the week of August 4.

For more details or to pre-order, see

Randall D. Larson was for many years publisher of CinemaScore: The Film Music Journal, senior editor for Soundtrack Magazine, and a film music columnist for Cinefantastique magazine. A specialist on horror film music, he is the author of Musique Fantastique: 100+ Years of Fantasy, Science Fiction & Horror Film Music and Music from the House of Hammer. He currently writes articles on film music and sf/horror cinema, and has written liner notes more than 300 soundtrack CDs. He can be contacted via

Randall can be contacted at and followed on twitter at and