|1.||The Omen Main Titles||2:58|
|3.||Ambassador Gets Fired||1:33|
|4.||New House / Damien's Deliverance||2:20|
|5.||The Nanny's Noose||2:04|
|6.||A Cross To Bear||2:48|
|12.||Don't Let Him Kill Me||1:29|
|13.||On The Heels Of Spiletto||6:58|
|14.||Dogs In The Cemetery||2:01|
|15.||Drive To Bugenhagen||1:30|
|17.||Altar Of Sacrifice||4:10|
| ||53:55| Submit your review
I have for a long time been a fan of composer Marco Beltrami, since the SCREAM movies I have followed and savoured his ever growing musical curriculum vitae. THE OMEN as scored by Jerry Goldsmith back in 1976 was and still is a powerhouse of a film score, so when I heard that they were going to re-make this classic horror I was a little perturbed. But I must admit I rested a little easier in my bed when I heard that Beltrami was on board as the composer. What he has done with this score is remarkable, he has not only re-created some of Goldsmiths classic cues from the original score, but has managed to weave those themes into the fabric of his own very effective and equally as powerful soundtrack. There are fragments of Goldsmiths Oscar nominated score throughout Beltrami’s work, and one only realises at times too late, that a slither of THE PIPER DREAMS is present for just a moment in a cue, or just a three note passage from it, which is familiar to the listener, but because it's accompanied by or layered over other music, it becomes a new and fresh audio experience to the listener. This is something that occurs in cue number 2, THE ADOPTION. There are also miniscule slices of the AVE SANTANI present if only for a split second, the composer has subtly planted these little excerpts and motifs and they work wonderfully. There are even references to Goldsmith’s THE FINAL CONFLICT in a handful of the cues as in track number 7 Ms. BAYLOCK, Beltrami has been involved with numerous movies of the horror variety, but there is certainly more to this composer than the normal horror flick soundtrack fodder.
His music for the OMEN is probably one of his best scores to date, and I am sure that once you listen to it, you will be wanting to investigate the composers other film works. This is not only a fitting score for the remake of this classic, but a homage to the late, great, Jerry Goldsmith. The CD is also dedicated to Goldsmith’s memory. Beltrami’s original score for the movie is an effective and interesting one, and cues such as AMBASSADOR GETS FIRED, contain Beltrami’s trade marks as in rasping and menacing sounding brass accompanied and embellished by choir and urgent sounding strings. There are some quieter respites within the score, and Beltrami has penned a particularly pleasant sounding theme which opens cue number 4, NEW HOME/DAMIENS DELIVERANCE, this quite charming but short lived theme is carried along by the string section which lend it's support to the principal instrument on the composition, the flute. The theme however does melt away and is replaced by a sinister sounding, darker and threatening cue. Track number 5 THE NANNY’S NOOSE is also an ominous sounding cue, low brass and Herrmanesque psycho sounding strings combine to relay a sense of foreboding and evil. I was interested to see how Beltrami handled the dog sequence within the movie, as on the original score by Goldsmith this along with KILLERS STORM is the most harrowing. I am glad to say that he acquits himself admirably and cue number 14, DOGS IN THE CEMETERY is one of the score’s stand out musical moments. Booming percussion joins forces with jagged sounding brass and is carried along at breakneck pace by hissing strings and chaotic sound woodwind. Track number 16, DRIVE TO BUGENHAGEN is also a riveting composition, real edge of the seat stuff, Beltrami utilising to great effect female voice which sounds to me like Hebrew, the composer combining the voice with ethnic percussions and driving strings to create a highly charged albeit brief composition. I recommend this score without reservation, and if they are to re-make the other movies in the OMEN trilogy, I just hope that Beltrami gets the gig.
The original Omen may not be one of the best horror films ever made, but it's certainly enduring, largely due to a fine cast (Gregory Peck and Lee Remmick, in particular), solid direction, some impressively gruesome, though not unbearably unpleasant, deaths and, of course, Jerry Goldsmith's Oscar winning score. In a strange twist of fate, Goldsmith's win followed John Williams' win for Jaws, both for horror films (although Jaws is arguably more action/adventure with scary bits than The Omen's darkness) and both musically represent the threat and, in the case of The Omen in particular, carrying the film. Fortunately, nobody has yet thought to remake Jaws as only the effects could really be bettered (and even then, only on a couple of occasions are they seriously flawed, by which point Spielberg has you too enthralled to care), but evidently someone couldn't resist 06-06-06 as a release date and so we have the thirty year anniversary remake.
I'm not sure that Goldsmith would have wanted to score the remake had he been around to see it (in some ways, I'm glad he wasn't) and so who better to ask than his one time pupil, Marco Beltrami. For better or worse, aside from the final track homage to Goldsmith's original, Beltrami takes a distinctly different take on the material; indeed, it's an above average 2000's horror score and not a 1970's masterpiece. The Omen was never really about 'boo' moments and, fortunately, it means there's little of the tedious skittering that besets the genre (some of Beltrami's own work included). The sound is a little more epic, portentous and, just occasionally, hair raising. The Main Titles set out Beltrami's brooding stall, although this is quickly turned around in The Adoption which is largely lighter in tone. Beltrami takes a less swooning approach to the family/romantic material than Goldsmith, but does lean on it slightly. However, underplaying the material is the right approach and it's undeniably lovely.
If underplaying the more upbeat material works, then underplaying the music accompanying Damien's dark deeds somehow stops the score ever taking off. For example, The Nanny's Noose has very little momentum in the buildup and the dramatic payoff of dissonant horn chords doesn't seem all that shocking. Having said that, Damien's Tantrum captures some of the mania of the moment with one of the score's few flirtations with the chorus (presumably a conscious choice to use it sparingly). However, many of the cues contain rather more familiar tracts of low end rumbling, although admittedly they do develop more effectively than in the hands of many of today's young horror composers. In that regard, Beltrami is more of a seasoned pro and at least has a decent amount of development as a composer behind him. Comparisons with the original aside, Beltrami's Omen has enough fine moments to be recommendable, but it just doesn't have the unnerving sense of apocalyptic destiny to it one might expect. Above average for the genre, but rarely much more.
This soundtrack trailer contains music of:The Omen
(2001), Jerry Goldsmith
De Ja Vu, Brand X Music
Highwater, Methodic Doubt
Original Trailer Music, Kevin Christopher Teasley