The Island Of Dr. Moreau - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack CD Review

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Reviewed by Chris McEneany, 17th March 2009
Rosenthal's score for The Island Of Dr. Moreau is, by turns, dynamic, mysterious, romantic and ferociously primal. His orchestration and design is impeccable, fashioning a sound that is indelibly of the seventies, but lush and exciting at the same time. The influence of Jerry Goldsmith – particularly his music for Planet Of The Apes, Logan's Run and The Cassandra Crossing - is hard to ignore, but Rosenthal still creates something that feels organic, dense and textured in a way that many modern horror scores do not. It is also possible that his haunting English horn lament inspired James Horner's signature-motif for Wolfen. Taylor's movie wasn't much cared for at the time by the public or by the critics but, in comparison to the disaster that followed in 1996, it is now ripe for reappraisal, especially as its tone and setting contain a “Lost”-style ambience.

However, this score is definitely worth seeking out. Horribly limited to only 1200 copies, it is now hard to pick up, especially as the main suppliers seemed to sell out very, very quickly – but hunting this one down is something that I recommend wholeheartedly.

An excellent and half-forgotten score that finally claws its way back with beauty, vigour, dignity and intensity.

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