Invaders from Mars/Oasis

Christopher Young

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Invaders from Mars/Oasis Review

by Jason Ankeny

Director Tobe Hooper rejected Christopher Young's completed score to his 1986 remake of the sci-fi classic Invaders from Mars, and the music was largely forgotten until the Cinerama label approached the composer in hopes of giving the soundtrack a proper commercial release. Young instead created a brand-new score based on the themes and ideas of the original, and the resulting music remains the most challenging and complex of his career to date -- a brilliant musique concréte mosaic of Gregorian chants, liturgical melodies, electronic loops and odd, primal percussion, Invaders from Mars in no way represents a conventional movie soundtrack, which is no doubt why Hooper dismissed it the first time around, but as a pure experiment in sound it's an unqualified success. In fact, it's so confrontational and so profoundly alien that it renders other sci-fi scores moot. Cinerama's release also includes Young's third score, Oasis -- a harsh, visceral experiment in atonality notable for its violent percussion -- as well as the non-film effort "Holy Matrimony."