Friday, May 28, 2010

How modern "anxiety music" sounds to me

Explains a lot


Tulkinghorn said...

It's amazing what passes for 'science' these days. This isn't even good criticism. (The description of the shark motif as 'high-pitched' is a favorite.)

"Non-linear vocalization"? What the fuck does that mean? Especially when compared to the linear vocalization of animals..

What I especially loved was this:

"All land vertebrates may be hard-wired to respond."

Which is the scientific equivalent of

"All land vertebrates may not be hard-wired to respond."

Generic said...

You're attempting to obfuscate the key point, which is that all this music sounds like animal distress cries. In your heart you know this is correct. (You, too, wake up humming Puccini.)

Muffy St. Bernard said...

Interesting! I'd be interested in knowing more about which soundtracks didn't fit the "distressed animal" paradigm, if any. Because horror movies have a lot of different types of straightforward symphonic scores (which I always assumed were meant to communicate "exciting" and "gravitas") to movies like "Silent Hill" or "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" which have a more mechanical or musique concrete sound.

Also the music which we think of as "scary" because we now associate it with a scary movie ("Tubular Bells" in "The Exorcist" -- which really isn't scary when removed from the movie -- and that Bartok piece in "The Shining" -- which was probably always supposed to be a bit unsettling).

Many horror movie soundtracks rely on "stings," seemingly to the exclusion of all else. Is it "the sound of an animal in pain" or just a "sudden sharp noise which is unexpected"?

There's a thesis here. Thanks for posting the link, I've got a lot to think about!

Generic said...

A failed, over-reaching post redeemed by an excellent comment.