When I hear collectors of soundtracks saying that film music is no longer exciting I get a little frazzled because they obviously are not listening to some of the excellent new scores that are being created by relatively new composers, all I will say at this stage is if you are disenchanted with contemporary film music please, please, take an hour of your time and sit and listen to ATLANTIS;THE LAST DAYS OF KAPTARA by composer Peter Bateman
. This is a wonderfully rich and luxurious sounding score, filled to overflowing with grand themes and epic sounding musical passages that I am sure Rozsa himself would have been proud of. It is a score that puts the power into powerhouse and evokes the richness and sumptuous thematic glory of a bygone age. The composer is no stranger to film music and the scoring of movies, in fact he has worked with a number of the worlds top film music composers as an additional music arranger and more predominantly as an orchestrator for Danny Elfman
, Christopher Young
and James Newton Howard
, he also collaborated with composer Gary Schyman on the BIOSHOCK games franchise. To achieve the grand and majestic sound for KAPTARA Batemen utilized three orchestra’s the largest of which consisted of around 70 musicians for the score Bateman increased the size of the brass section, which included 6 horns and 4 trombones. This certainly shows in the finished score, as I have said it is a throwback in a good way to the days of grand scores for imposing epic and dramatic movies, when the likes of Korngold and Steiner were kings of the sound stage, but it also contains a sound and a style that is more contemporary and Bateman fuses the two styles wonderfully creating a sound that is superbly lavish but at the same time edged with a sound that could be easily mistaken for something out of BATMAN or any such superhero of the silver screen. The score opens with THE PROLOGUE, in which the composer introduces us to the scores central and founding theme, strings, brass and percussion are fused and performed in unison and also at odds with each other to create a powerfully melodic piece that is a more than perfect opening for the score. This style of scoring continues in track number 2,SACRIFICE, but mid way through the cue there is a lull of sorts a respite if you will, that gives the composers a window to introduce more of the romantic elements that we will hear later in the soundtrack, choir and also strings are brought to the fore and together create a lush and also a melancholy sound that goes above and beyond lavish and luxurious. Track number 3, PARADE, is again a potent and commanding piece with its fair share of brass flourishes and driving strings, that are embellished by martial sounding percussion, and also within the cue we hear glimpses of Bateman’s MARCH OF THE CONSECRATED track, which is next in the running order, I thought at times these little carnival sounding interludes that seem to segue in and out of the piece were very reminiscent of John Williams
victory music for the Ewoks in THE RETURN OF THE JEDI, it has a rawness a quirkiness and an ethnic authenticity about it. The composer also at this stage introduces a female voice which is ghostlike and highly affecting. This is a score of high quality a score that should be in your collection, because if you are not prepared to listen and be amazed then you will be the poorer for it. Stunning cover art with brief notes on the movie included in the liner, a must have soundtrack.
Read other recent reviews by John Mansell: Addio, Fratello Crudele
, The Dark Side of Light