Friday, Nov. 30, 2012

Psycho Music

Danny Elfman on Hitchcock

By David Luhrssen
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  Bernard Herrmann composed the blood-curdling score for Psycho, possibly the most familiar slice of film music ever. It’s unlikely that the original soundtrack for Hitchcock, a film set during the making of Psycho, will engrave itself so indelibly in memory. And yet, that’s less the fault of composer Danny Elfman than the drift of our culture: nothing in cinema will ever be as shocking as the shower scene from Psycho when first seen in 1960. Elfman is the most distinctive of the post-‘70s film composers, the one most dedicated to the orchestral strategies of Hollywood’s Golden Age. For Hitchcock, he paints his music from a rich sonic palette with deep woodwinds amidst the cautious yearning of darkly romantic strings. One imagines the Master of Suspense would approve.

The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack of Hitchcock is out on Sony Music. The film opens in Milwaukee on Dec. 7.

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