Fred Mollin

Friday the 13th: The Series [Original TV Score]

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This is GNP Crescendo's second release from a Paramount syndicated series, and it's a corker. The music for this series, about three people charged with retrieving a series of cursed items, was written by Fred Mollin and performed almost entirely on a Kurzweil 250 music system (the exceptions are brief appearances by sax and guitar players on one track). Friday the 13th: The Series, as its devotees well know, wasn't dedicated to the antics of FT13 movie monster Jason. Instead, it went in for a more refined sort of horror story -- bloody at times, true, but relieved of budget and more tightly bounded than the movies, it often used atmosphere and suggestion, good writing and directing...and music...to achieve its effects. Mollin and album sequencer Ford Thaxton (now with Silva Screen Records) have taken Mollin's music from the series and edited it together to form a variety of suites, the longest of which is the mean-tempered, bluesy, and moody "Badge of Honor," with visits from a neurotic guitar and a snarling, growling sax. The music itself ranges from the lightly mysterious and melodic (the title music is regrettably brief, but manages to be light and gorgeous at the same time, built around harp and flute voices that weave in and out of each other) to the heavy and grim (the aforementioned "Badge of Honor" suite). The album sequencing is very smooth, moving from one atmosphere to another without jarring, with pieces often blending into each other within a suite. Overall, this is one of the best soundtracks ever to emerge from a TV series, and is certainly one of the best values for the money of any soundtrack album one is likely to come across. The CD and tape versions have all the tracks; the vinyl version eliminates about 30 minutes.

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