A movie that I have heard a lot about and have been waiting for is NO GOD NO MASTER, the composer Nuno Malo
has been attempting to have his eloquent and powerful score released and a few times it has almost come to fruition. At last I am pleased to say that the soundtrack has been officially released on VARESE SARABANDE. I have been privileged to have a number of tracks in my possession for some time now and have listened to Malo,s potent themes and his melodic and poignant tone poems for this particular movie. But to now have the full score on disc is a dream come true, 27 cues that are all works of art and have their own particular identity; it is a soundtrack that I could listen to all day and never tire of it.
No God, No Master
is an American independent production which is a crime suspense thriller directed, written, and produced by Terry Green, it stars David Strathairn, Ray Wise, Sam Witwer, Edoardo Ballerini and Alessandro Mario. Filmed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. When packages containing bombs are delivered to the doorsteps of prominent politicians and businessmen in the summer of 1919, The United States Bureau of Investigation assign one of their agents William Flynn (David Strathairn) to the incidents and give him the task of finding the individuals or organisations responsible and taking the appropriate steps to stop and detain them. Flynn because embroiled and completely engulfed in an investigation that uncovers an anarchist plot to destroy democracy. The movie which is based on true events that took place in the 1920's sets the stage for a timely and powerful drama which has stark similarities and resounding parallels to the contemporary war on terrorism and the role that the government plays to defeat it.Nuno Malo
has penned a soundtrack that simply oozes sophistication and emotion, it is in many ways similar to the lush and rich style employed by Ennio Morricone
in movies such as SACCO and VANZETTI and ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA with rich and vibrant thematic material performed by the string section accompanied and embellished by choir which together lay down the foundation for the score, the composer building the remainder of his soundtrack upon these firm and poignant footings. The score is also one that contains its fair share of intimate and fragile sounding moments which are not only haunting but have to them a commanding and authoritative sound. The central theme which first appears in the opening titles, is a simple but effective composition and the composer resurrects this throughout the score in various guises and arrangements, there is however one track in particular that stands out for me personally and it is one that has on a number of occasions reduced me to an emotional wreck. Track number 24,CATACOMB OF THE FLOWER OF MANKIND, is a beautifully written piece and also thoughtfully orchestrated, performed in the main by strings which are embellished by subtle use of choir and punctuated by feint piano the sound achieved here by the composer is a fusion of the styles of Morricone and James Horner
. With a strong and wonderfully lush and near luxurious central theme being played out by rich sounding strings and elevated by use of voices, in fact I would go as far as to say that it could be ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA intermingled with the more celestial sounding passages from APOLLO 13. It is cues such as this that make me remember why I love the art of film scoring and the creative force that is film music. Track number 25, WHAT ABOUT THE OTHERS is another cue that just envelopes and mesmerizes the listener, low fragile strings and accompanied and supported by choir bringing a very reverent atmosphere to the proceedings, the subtle strings soon melt away and are overpowered gently by lilting piano and increased use of voices,with a poignant and melancholy sounding solo violin being brought into the mix to underline the emotional content of the piece. There are also some accomplished and entertaining solos within the score, violin for example that is heartrending. Plaintive sounding woodwind, fragile piano, a sprinkling of harpsichord and some dramatic and more robust passages performed by brass and percussion, this is a triumph of a score and one that you should own.
Read other recent reviews by John Mansell: Erika
, Il Plenilunio delle Vergini
, Le Altre