Poltergeist - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - 1982 Marc Streitenfeld Audiophile Red 180 gram LP
Poltergeist - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Music By Marc Streitenfeld
Label: Music On Vinyl
Series: At The Movies
Format: Vinyl, LP, Limited Edition, Numbered, Red & Black Mixed
180 gram audiophile vinyl
Gatefold sleeve / insert
PVC protective sleeve
Limited Edition of 750 numbered copies on red & black mixed vinyl
Released: 31 Aug 2015
Genre: Stage & Screen
A1 Poltergeist Opening 1:41
A2 They're Here 2:04
A3 Angry Spirits 1:39
A4 Electronics Awakening 1:47
A5 They're Not Pretend, Mommy 1:25
A6 The Storm Is Coming 1:18
A7 Clown Attack 2:44
A8 Into The Closest 2:08
A9 Maddy Is On TV 3:19
A10 You Have To Get My Sister Back 1:22
A11 A Poltergeist Intrusion 2:17
B1 Home Improvements 3:33
B2 Somebody Is With Her 1:49
B3 Take A Peek 2:14
B4 I Feel A Little Braver 0:58
B5 Into The Portal 2:08
B6 The Other Side 2:48
B7 Reunited 1:27
B8 Let Her Go 4:34
B9 Home Free 2:59
This score really surprised me. I was expecting a horror dud full of boring musical yuck. Not saying that Marc Streitenfeld isn't a capable composer for this task because I've enjoyed other work by him such as "The Grey" and "Prometheus". I guess I went into this expecting to be disappointed. Let's face it, horror scores can be pretty tricky. Especially when you are going to give an updated version of a classic horror film that was composed by one of the greatest movie composers of all time, Jerry Goldsmith. I had to prep myself before I popped this LP in by accepting that this was not Jerry Goldsmith and it wouldn't be fair to expect Streitenfeld to emulate what Goldsmith had already done. I want to see how this composer musically tells this story. Going in with that mindset, I'm telling you that this is an outstanding score that is truly impressive. I haven't seen the movie yet, so I hope it matches the quality of work that Streitenfeld has put into this music.
Although Streitenfeld is giving his own original interpretation there is one similarity that I found between both composers. Goldsmith's score centered around the very popular "Carol Anne's Theme" which was child like, innocent, and edged with supernatural horror. Streitenfeld's score seems to pay homage to the original by playing with this same idea as well. The difference between the two is that while Goldsmith has a more supernatural horror, Streitenfeld's is based more in a horror that seems to represent the terror of a child's dreams. It's a little weird trying to describe different "levels" of horror but I think you can hear the difference when you give this score a listen. The opening of the score begins with creepy child toy instrumentation that sets things off with a sinister feel.
For a moment, I thought we were going to hear an alternate "Carol Anne" theme here but no....Streitenfeld is his own man and this is his story now! He quickly takes it into track 2, "They're Here", and Streitenfeld begins to dig in his bag of tricks and successfully captures this scene with music. The electric static, pops, and eerie hollowness of a tube TV (it might be a flat screen in the movie...but this is just the imaginary the music conjured in my mind) helps to establish this big moment in the story. This particular climaxes with a surprising jolt and tampers back to the childlike toy box music presented earlier in the opening titles. It sounds really cool and is pretty effective in creating some awesome suspense. Track 7, "Clown Attack", is definitely the highlight of the score. Sit down and put your seatbelt on for this one. This one ranks right up there with Bishara's "Insidious" and Christopher Young's "Sinister" scores. It's a super freaky piece that is orchestrated with a combination of horror bangs and several chilling sound effects. It is quite obvious that Streitenfeld put a lot of clever planning into this one. Breaking glass, stretching effects, circus sounds, and a very weird moaning sound put the icing on this piece. This moaning sound is heard several times later in other cues and it's always a spine tingling affair.
Streitenfeld's score uses a lot of carefully crafted tricks that give the story an updated ultra horrific sound. The cool thing is that he is wise enough to never stray too far from also giving the audience the emotional themes so they can connect with the characters and this bizarre situation they are encountering. There are plenty of themes and melodies that appear briefly to calm things down and give everyone a chance to breathe again. The score doesn't give you a chance to get bored with it either because it is so diverse with tempo changes, themes, jolts, and "what was that" moments. His layered effects within the tense sequences of the score add to the chaos of the poltergeist. There is so much going on sometimes that this swirling chaos filled with sound becomes the poltergeist itself. I like it when a composer can give me the story and characters in a musical form. I haven't seen this particular movie yet, but I do know the story and when I can clearly "see" the story through the music...then you've done something awesome.
Streitenfeld closes the score with the last track entitled "Home Free". It's a great bookend for the music and it is especially creepy with it's closing moments that would send any child running in another direction. I won't spoil it for you. Just be sure to turn it up really loud.
It's a impressive score and was a great surprise. I personally have enjoyed listing to it and think it is a worthy update. It's not a Goldsmith score for sure, but it is a great score given to us by a different musical storyteller. It's fun to listen to and when I am in the mood to kick back and appreciate some good horror music...I'll be grabbing this one. I am really excited to see the movie now too.
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