Phantom Thread (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
If The Master soundtrack was where it was confirmed that Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood was more than moonlighting, was in fact an actual film score composer, then his soundtrack for Phantom Thread certainly builds on that; is in fact his finest film score to date.
The movie is a masterpiece and its music is indeed a character in the film; deserves fourth billing behind the three main stars, for it’s there seeping deep in every frame of the film. The movie would not work without the music.
And though I’ve had this album – and enjoyed it – long before I saw the film it of course makes further sense to revisit it after seeing the movie.
There are moments – as on the gorgeous cue Alma, where you can hear glimpses, still, of Radiohead, or rather, could imagine the soft padding of the keyboard setting up an instrumental texture within a Radiohead piece. And there are fractious pieces (Boletus Felleus) that recall Greenwood’s earliest stepping-out-from-behind-the-band composer duties (Bodysong) but for the most part it’s the elegant sweep of Phantom Thread’s classical and jazz waft that intoxicates. Here Greenwood makes melodies, stitching together fragments, in a doff of the cap to the main character’s profession obsession. He creates something beautiful out of the threads of Berlioz and Oscar Peterson, from Mozart and Gorecki, Faure…the works…very much the contemporary classical works in fact.
Phantom Thread II is almost Radiohead’s Exit Music (For A Film) unplugged, a crunch of guitar replaced by the delicate sawing of a violin.
Beautiful music from a beautiful film – it’s style-over-content with content. Greenwood and Anderson’s collaboration across a small handful of movies has resulted in intriguing, brilliant films and scores. Long may it continue.
You can support Off The Tracks via PressPatron