David Thrussell

The Hard Word [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

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Like most musicians with a single message that they're desperate to get across (in this case, anticapitalism), David Thrussell can be repetitive and tiresome enough to drive you crazy, and he often does so when recording as his alter ego, Snog. But he's also talented enough that, when you take him out of his usual context and make him shut up, he can produce music of surprising subtlety and wit. His score to the movie The Hard Word is a case in point: drawing on influences as disparate as spy music, 1970s lounge disco, and the orchestral soundtrack compositions of James Horner and John Williams, Thrussell creates a consistently interesting and mostly engaging pastiche of sounds and styles. At times the music is downright pastoral, as on "Motherly Love," which features rich strings and lots of oboe. At other times, it revels in cheesy lounge-music horns, as on the album's closing "End Theme." And at others it suffers from being separated from the film, as on the tedious "Horses Are on the Track" and "The Big Heist." Snog fans may be disappointed at the easygoing nature of most of this music, but those who have always found Snog to be a bit much may listen to this album and find that they like Thrussell more than they thought.

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