Text by CLOT Magazine
In our 10th Mixtape, Phantom Limb presents composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Bryan Senti who has prepared a selection with some of his favourite film tracks and scores. Bryan shares that when he thinks about the film music that truly inspires him, there’s not all that much actually: I think the reason for this is that it’s relatively easy to make something that “works”, that doesn’t offend, that’s forgettable. In fact, a studio executive once told me, and I’m not exaggerating, that they wanted the music to be unnoticeable.
So this list I put together is the exact opposite of that. Music that is entirely unforgettable and yet, despite its bold approach, works synergistically with the film to truly make it better than the sum of both its parts. It’s not only an artistic achievement but often a political one.
Bryan has recently released a powerful soundtrack to Derrick Borte’s newest picture American Dreamer, starring Jim Gaffigan, which launches Phantom Limb’ new film score imprint Geist im Kino.Bryan Senti’s eloquent soundtrack matches the pace and architecture of the film, conjuring breathtaking beauty, heartbreaking sadness and nailbiting tautness.
Removed from the movie, Senti’s score carries the same depth of meaning, playing like a stirring, emotive solo album by a highly creative, widely skilled composer/performer. It is comprised chiefly of analogue & modular synthesis and piano, bringing to mind the work of Alessandro Cortini or Tim Hecker, tethered to an intuitive understanding of songwriting musicality, in a similar school to the filmscore work of Johann Johannsson, Dustin O’Halloran or Ryuichi Sakamoto, whose careers – like Senti’s – began as much with playing and writing with bands as with academic studies at the conservatoire. And like theirs, Senti’s soundtracks make for arresting listening even without the movie.