Tag Archives: Daniel Pemberton

Daniel Pemberton talks The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (2019)

If you weren’t already excited about the imminent release of The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance on Netflix next week, then this news about the soundtrack should do the trick. The soundtrack, which is being released on August 30th, was composed by Daniel Pemberton (with help from fellow composer Samuel Sim).

For those who may have forgotten, the 10-episode show is a prequel to the groundbreaking 1982 fan favorite The Dark Crystal, and takes place many years before the events of the film. Leading the voice cast in the series will be Kingsman star Taron Egerton, The Witch actress Anya Taylor-Joy and Game of Thrones’ Nathalie Emmanuel, as ‘Gelfling’ heroes Rian, Brea and Deet. Star Wars’ Mark Hamill, Harry Potter’s Helena Bonham-Carter, Tomb Raider star Alicia Vikander and Outlander’s Caitriona Balfe provide additional voice performances in the new fantasy epic.

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For director Louis Leterrier, Pemberton was the natural choice:

I approached the music the same way I approached the filming and the puppetry. I wanted somebody to come on this journey that would be willing to take big risks. I wanted something that was almost tribal. I wanted to hear the strings being plucked and the skin wrapped over the drum. At the same time, I wanted somebody who could write beautiful melodies, understood music, and was a lover of beautiful music. I wanted someone who would approach it in a very organic way and who would tell the story through the score. My search led me to Daniel.

Daniel Pemberton is rapidly becoming one of my favorite composers, as he has previously scored The Man from U.N.C.L.E, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and Ocean’s 8, just to name a few. Hearing his thoughts on how he approached the score for The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance, makes me even more excited to experience the prequel series (and I don’t often say that about prequels).

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Daniel had this to say about scoring The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance:

I wanted the music to be as magical as Thra itself – organic, imperfect, strange, mystical, otherworldly and wonderful. I wanted to create new sounds that felt like they came from the world itself, as well as using thematic large scale orchestral elements to bring an emotion to the journey of the characters. I wanted music and sounds that would fill you with wonder, but also terrify you. It was very important to me that all the sounds felt like they could only be from Thra itself – no grand pianos or overtly electronic elements. Every sound had to feel organic and visceral, from the dark detuned glissando cello sounds made for the Skeksis, to the upbeat flutes from the Podling’s bar. We created noises out of wine glasses, metal chains, wooden drums, metal sculptures on a snow covered mountain and old creaky medieval instruments to try and make a sonic world as unique as the visual one.

The soundtrack will be released in two volumes; volume 1 will have tracks composed only by Pemberton, while volume 2 will have tracks composed by Pemberton and Sim. Both volumes will be available on August 30th, the same day the series becomes available on Netflix.

Let me know if you’re just as excited to see The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Daniel Pemberton talks The Man from U.N.C.L.E (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Steve Jobs (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Gold (2016)

Daniel Pemberton talks King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

Become a Patron of the blog at patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

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Daniel Pemberton talks Gold (2016)

*the links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

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Gold is a 2016 American crime drama film loosely based on a true story about a fraudulent gold mine established in Indonesia and the aftermath when the fraud is uncovered. The film was directed by Stephen Gaghan and stars Matthew McConaughey, Édgar Ramírez, and Bryce Dallas Howard. The musical score for Gold was composed by Daniel Pemberton (Steve Jobs, The Man from U.N.C.L.E) and in this video Pemberton talks at length about how he got started with creating the music for this film.

 

Daniel Pemberton explains that his initial concept for the score was the sound of bells (which in themselves can create a myriad of sounds). What fascinated me about Pemberton’s approach to the score is the way he incorporated the sound of the New York Stock Exchange opening bell into the music. That sound is, as Pemberton puts it, the essence of capitalism and greed, which makes it perfect for the score. What’s also interesting is the way the composer manipulates the sound of the stock exchange bell. By altering the sound, the composer can create entirely different effects and meanings. This is one of the reasons Daniel Pemberton is quickly becoming one of my favorite film composers, he can take unusual sounds and instruments and fully incorporate them into the score (and you’d never know unless he told you).

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Let me know what you think about Gold and Daniel Pemberton’s interview in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Daniel Pemberton talks The Man from U.N.C.L.E (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Steve Jobs (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

Become a Patron of the blog at patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

Daniel Pemberton talks Steve Jobs (2015)

Steve Jobs (2015) marked the first collaboration between director Danny Boyle and composer Daniel Pemberton (their second team-up, Yesterday, comes out in June). In this behind-the-scenes video, the composer discusses how he divided the film’s score into three distinct parts, each one corresponding to one of the three acts of the film. The first act (he explains) is full of synthesizers to match the vibe of 1984. The second act (and the one I like best) is purely orchestral. Not just orchestral, it’s more of a miniature opera (complete with singers). And the third act is squarely placed in the digital medium, referencing how just about everything in our lives has gone digital, thanks in large part to the real Steve Jobs.

 

I’m fascinated at how Pemberton essentially created three different scores for this film, that’s not something you come across very often (in fact I’m hard pressed to name another example). Daniel Pemberton is very quickly becoming one of my favorite film composers and I for one am excited to learn more about him. I hope you enjoyed the video! Let me know what you think about Steve Jobs (and it’s score) in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Daniel Pemberton talks The Man from U.N.C.L.E (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Gold (2016)

Daniel Pemberton talks King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

Become a Patron of the blog at patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

Daniel Pemberton talks King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

While it’s no secret that Guy Ritchie’s retelling of the King Arthur legend was a colossal flop at the box office, that shouldn’t stop you from learning about what went into making the film’s soundtrack. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword marked the second collaboration between Guy Ritchie and Daniel Pemberton and just like he did with The Man from U.N.C.L.E, the composer went all out in putting the music together.

Daniel Pemberton employed a variety of musical instruments both ancient and modern. As he says in the video, he sought to make the score visceral and gritty, something that felt distinctly unpolished. If the excerpts heard in this video are any indication, I think the composer succeeded in that aspect. It’s a shame the film flopped so badly, it sounds like Pemberton’s score for the film is really good (and it’s not that uncommon to find a great score hiding in a terrible film). I find myself hoping that Ritchie and Pemberton will collaborate again (hopefully on The Man from U.N.C.L.E 2), though hopefully the resulting film will do much better than this one did.

Let me know what you think of this behind the scenes look at the music for King Arthur: Legend of the Sword in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Daniel Pemberton talks The Man from U.N.C.L.E (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Gold (2016)

Daniel Pemberton talks Steve Jobs (2015)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

Become a Patron of the blog at patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

Daniel Pemberton talks The Man from U.N.C.L.E (2015)

I’m fairly certain that The Man from U.N.C.L.E served as my introduction to the film music of Daniel Pemberton. I first watched the film about three years ago and while the story took some time to grow on me, the score immediately grabbed my attention. Pemberton (I’ve since discovered), has this talent for creating quirky and memorable scores that stick in your mind. Such is the case with the score for The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

 

In the making of featurette which you can access above, Daniel explains that director Guy Ritchie requested a score in which every cue feels iconic. And on that point alone I think the composer succeeded, because none of the music in this film feels “throwaway,” it all feels very necessary. You’ll also learn that Pemberton employed a lot of unique instruments to create the film’s distinctive 1960s-like sound. While there are traditional orchestral elements in certain places, the lion’s share of the music comes from non-traditional instruments, which is really cool.

I hope watching this behind-the-scenes video gives you an even deeper appreciation of Daniel Pemberton’s score for what I consider a highly underrated film. Let me know what you think of the music for The Man from U.N.C.L.E in the comments below and have a great day!

See also:

Daniel Pemberton talks Steve Jobs (2015)

Daniel Pemberton talks Gold (2016)

Daniel Pemberton talks King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

Become a Patron of the blog at patreon.com/musicgamer460

Check out the YouTube channel (and consider hitting the subscribe button)

Don’t forget to like Film Music Central on Facebook

Soundtrack Review: Molly’s Game (2017)

*the links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Molly’s Game is a 2017 American crime drama film based on the memoir Molly’s Game: From Hollywood’s Elite to Wall Street’s Billionaire Boys Club, My High-Stakes Adventure in the World of Underground Poker by Molly Bloom. The movie stars Jessica Chastain as Molly Bloom, Idris Elba, Kevin Costner, Michael Cera and Brian D’Arcy, among others. The film follows Bloom as she comes under investigation from the FBI for running underground poker games for Hollywood celebrities, athletes, wealthy businessmen…and the Russian mob. The film was initially screened at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 8th, 2017 and was released to theaters on December 25th, 2017.

The score for Molly’s Game was written by English composer Daniel Pemberton. Pemberton is an Ivor Novello-winning and multiple Golden Globe and BAFTA Award-nominated composer who has been regularly cited as one of the most exciting and original new voices working in modern film scoring today. His bold writing and unusual and innovative arrangements on scores for movies have seen the soundtracks constantly singled out for critical acclaim. Pemberton’s mix of opera and electronics for Danny Boyle’s Steve Jobs (starring Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet) not only garnered him a Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Score but so impressed writer Aaron Sorkin that Pemberton was invited to score his much anticipated directorial debut, the recently completed Molly’s Game. Pemberton’s recent scores also include: The Man From UNCLE (2015); King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017) and All the Money in the World (2017).

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From the moment I started listening to the score for Molly’s Game, it instantly sounded familiar to me, though it took some digging before I could pin down the reason why. As soon as I looked up Pemberton’s filmography my eyes jumped to The Man From UNCLE (a film I like every much) which I’d thought of repeatedly while listening to the score for Molly’s Game. It’s very obvious to my ears that these two scores come from the same composer, they have the same…frenetic (for lack of a better word) style with a modern feeling “edge” to the music.

Honestly I still have a hard time describing Daniel Pemberton’s film scores and that’s because they sound so different from what I normally listen to. I think it would be fair to say I’m a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to film music; I like full-bodied symphonic scores a la John Williams, Miklos Rozsa and especially Erich Wolfgang Korngold. And Pemberton’s music, so far as I can tell, is very non-traditional, non-symphonic and just…different. But that’s not a bad thing, not at all! Even though I have a hard time describing this new, modernist style that Pemberton is pushing, I can say for certain that I love what I’m hearing.

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Most of the tracks in this score have a similar sound to what I heard in The Man From UNCLE, which is that fast-paced style that ranges between extremely light synthetic rock and electronic dancing music. Some of my favorite tracks in this style included “House of Cards,” “The Russians,” and “Red & Black.” However some, like “Molly’s Dream” and “Scars” are slower, more melodic. I like “Molly’s Dream” in particular because it explicitly features the piano, a marked contrast from the bulk of the score.

If you’ve enjoyed Pemberton’s work up to this point, then his score for Molly’s Game will please you immensely. If you’re unfamiliar with Pemberton’s work, I still think you’ll enjoy it. It’s refreshing to listen to film scores that aren’t loaded to the gills with symphonic instruments and pounding drums. I can’t wait to see what Pemberton brings to the field in the future (his next project is listed as Ocean’s 8, the all-female remake of Ocean’s 11). I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on the score for Molly’s Game. If you’d like to discuss it further, let me know in the comments below 🙂

 

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