Peter Thomas

Futuremuzik

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This excellent compilation provides a thumbnail sketch of the career of Peter Thomas, a German musician whose film scores contain some of the most adventurous and unusual music to ever be fit under the lounge banner. Lounge fans will probably be familiar with the music presented from Raumpatrouille, a German sci-fi series whose soundtrack has become a cult favorite with fans of avant-garde lounge music. Cues like "Lancet Bossa Nova" and "Space Patrol" mix the kind of swinging brass and organ passages one expects from lounge music with forward-thinking touches like vocoder-ized vocals and bursts of Joe Meek-styled mechanical white noise. However, it's the lengthy suites from Thomas' film scores that show off his command of different musical genres; for instance, the suite "The Spell of the Sinister One" encompasses such genres as jazz, instrumental rock, lounge-pop, and even a touch of Indian music. Another trait that makes Thomas stand out among other composers in the lounge/soundtrack genre is the freewheeling sense of humor he incorporates into his music. A good example is the first part of "The Hound of Blackwood Castle" suite, which features one of the musicians shouting gibberish about the titular location over a wild jazz instrumental. Futuremuzik also shows off Thomas' chops as an arranger with "Pardon Me, Ms. Carmen," a fun cut that reworks themes from Bizet's "Carmen" into a finger-popping three-minute pop instrumental. The set is completed by a nice set of liner notes that include a recent interview with Thomas and reveal some interesting trivia about the musician pool he drew from for the recordings (the cast included the likes of Giorgio Moroder and Jan Hammer). All in all, Futuremuzik is a smart, attractively packaged compilation that is guaranteed to please adventurous lounge and soundtrack fans.

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