The Road - Original Film Score CD Review

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Reviewed by Chris McEneany, 15th January 2010
The Road is another worthy addition to the successful pairing of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis. Their distinctive brand of wistful musical mourning and lyrical harmony accurately depicts the last vestiges of humanity strung out along a wretched Road to oblivion, forlorn of all but the most meagre of hopes and, ultimately, spiritually and psychologically lost. It may not provide the most heart-warming or exciting of experiences, but the score fits the film perfectly and, in the right mood, becomes a tremendous and haunting reflection of the brave endeavour that both the book and the movie have achieved.

At first, knowing their style, I longed for a theme that would be as brilliant as the classic Song For Bob from their Jesse James collaboration, and felt somewhat disappointed. Now, however, The Road’s main phrase has become, in its own way, at least as beautiful and as profound. In fact, probably more so. Restrained and drifting, the main theme acts like a lullaby for a broken world that just wants to close its eyes for the last time. This sort of writing, like the film it lends voice to, can hit people in different ways and it would be pointless to argue the pros and cons of such a style. For me and, I hope and suspect, many others, this works extremely well. Painful, poignant and yet entrusted with a quiet dignity that shimmers somewhere between life and death, this is the moving lament for a final few who have not quite forgotten what it means to be human. The Road, courtesy of Cave and Ellis, along with Hillcoat’s wonderfully bleak yet tender film, is well worth venturing down. It is about the end of the journey … for us all.

A gentle majesty. Highly recommended.


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