With Eraserhead Finally Coming, Here Are 6 More Soundtracks That Need To Be Reissued

01/12/2012 12:59 PM |

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Last week came news that David Lynch has remixed Zola Jesus’s “In Your Nature.” Further down in the same press release was an even more interesting piece of news: later this year, Sacred Bones Records would be reissuing the soundtrack to Lynch’s Eraserhead on vinyl.

That news, in turn, prompted a question about other soundtracks currently clamoring for some sort of reissue campaign. Below, we’ll look at six, ranging in tone from expansive soundscapes to punk-era surveys to brooding, crushing drone.

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Ravenous
Michael Nyman and Damon Albarn

Though the soundtrack is credited to minimalist composer Nyman and Blur/Gorillaz vocalist Albarn, the work as a whole is less a collaboration and more of a patchwork affair to which both men contributed individual compositions. This makes for a stylistically bewildering album, ranging from blearily-played arrangements of 19th-century standards to precise, blissfully catchy numbers such as the oft-covered “Boyd’s Journey. “Given the surreal and grotesque approach taken by Antonia Bird to her film—a riff on cannibalism and Manifest Destiny—it seems entirely appropriate.

Sample: Boyd’s Journey

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Urgh! A Music War
Various Artists

This 1982 documentary features performances from the likes of Echo & the Bunnymen, Klaus Nomi, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, the Dead Kennedys, XTC, the Au Pairs, and more. After long being commercially unavailable, the film itself was released on DVD in 2009. The soundtrack, however, remains out of print.

Sample: The Au Pairs, “Come Again”

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La Planete Sauvage
Alain Goraguer

Alain Goraguer’s 1973 soundtrack to the animated science fiction film La Planète Sauvage (Fantastic Planet for the non-Francophiles among us) moves from light, jazzy passages to denser and more psychedelic sections, remaining weird and compelling throughout. Last year, the album saw a low-key digital reissue, but given the prices the LP and CD versions fetch online, it seems likely that demand for a reissue across multiple formats exists.

Sample:

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The Phantom Carriage
KTL

In its Criterion edition, this 1921 silent film from director Victor Sjöström, comes accompanied by a soundtrack from the experimental metal duo KTL. (Peter Rehberg and Sunn 0)))’s Stephen O’Malley.) It’s never been released in LP/CD/MP3 form, however. Which is a shame, as the soundtrack oscillates between brooding, ominous passages and quiet moments of grace. It’s well-suited to accompany a film about despair and immortal burdens, but it works equally well on its own. Listen to a sample here.

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Kids
Various Artists

Until researching this piece, I hadn’t realized that this particular soundtrack had gone out of print. Which is a shame: besides striking individual songs from the likes of Slint, Daniel Johnston, and Sebadoh, it features music and songs by the duo of Folk Implosion, including the inescapable-for-one-summer “Natural One.” It’s a good survey of outsider rock circa 1995.

Sample: The Folk Implosion, “Natural One”

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Valhalla Rising
Peter Peter and Peter Kyed

At this point, director Nicholas Winding Refn is probably best-known in the US for Drive. In 2009. he co-wrote and directed this stark, surreal account of a one-eyed Viking who falls in with a group of would-be Crusaders. The soundtrack, from Peter Peter and Peter Kyed, tears into lower registers, its booming drone crossing into doom-metal territory more than once. For a film that features sudden brutal violence and descents into madness, it seems entirely appropriate. It’s also surprising, given the appeal to those who like their drone with a sinister tinge, that this has never seen commercial release.

Sample: