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The Salton Sea (OST) Soundtrack

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A second-generation member of Hollywood's preeminent musical dynasty, composer Thomas Newman carried on his family's legacy through a series of Academy Award-nominated film scores. Born in Los Angeles on October 20, 1955, he was the son of Alfred Newman and the nephew of Lionel and Emil Newman, all three renowned composers and conductors from Hollywood's golden age; Thomas' ... Read more in Amazon's Thomas Newman Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (5 Mar. 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Varese Sarabande
  • ASIN: B0000658T2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 535,949 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Product Description


This dank-as-style contemporary film noir features most of the genre's familiar ingredients: murder, creepy characters, narrative flashbacks, an identity crisis or two, and a compelling if twisted subculture, in this case the scaly underbelly of the Los Angeles some speed freaks call home. While the genre has generally relied on dark jazz shadings--or, in the case of David Lynch and Angelo Badalamenti, a hotchpotch of hellish synthscapes and nostalgic irony gone sour--the presence of Thomas Newman here guarantees something more expansive than clichés, and the young veteran delivers again. Newman's odd, percussion-reliant tack may occasionally be familiar here, but the score's unusually large ensemble allows him a wide timbral palate. He wastes no time infusing the score with jarring industrial rhythms, indistinct ethnic modalities that seem invented out whole cloth, some of Erin Brockovich's spare, Fender Rhodes-driven acid jazz shadings, and great, eerie dollops of the ominous, electro-acoustic soundscapes that have defined so many of his scores, yet without ever descending into caricature. Newman mixes it all into a hypnotic sonic cocktail that's as nervy as it is unsettling, one that zigs when you're sure it will zag, offering up some strangely reassuring musical comfort in a world of moral indifference and dramatic detachment.--Jerry McCulley

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Kitchen on 1 Feb. 2010
Format: MP3 Download
This soundtrack is so great. It enables you to recall the whole film as you listen to it. The music is so evokative of the whole atmosphere of the film but is just as enjoyable to to listen to even if you do not know the film.

Thomas Newman composed most of this soundtrack. He used lots of electro accoustic sounds to define the moment, but the trumpet
solo of Miles Davis' composition, Saeta, is the foundation for the soundtrack and also really for the film. So important is it, that Val Kilmer, the star of the film, actually learned to play it on the trumpet.

The soundtrack is an unexpected mix of sounds. That is why it fits so well with a film that has so many unexpected twists and turns.

If you find you enjoy the soundtrack, then go and watch the film. If you have already enjoyed the film, then you will love the soundtrack.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Incredible Stuff 24 Sept. 2002
By Shyam - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I had initially bought this album for Terence Blanchard's rendition of 'Saeta'. But the rest of the album is mind blowing in itslef, dark, moody. has almost a rugged ambient feel to it.
This is my first album, of thomas newman, surely not going to be the last. Its a great record, buy it after u see the movie.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
"double life and revenge delivers a graphic score" 7 May 2002
By J. Lovins - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Thomas Newman (who is from a family of composers ~ Alfred Newman of 20th Century-Fox was his father) takes this score to another level of which I've not seen before. With previous films to his credit ~ "In The Bedroom"(2001-wonderful score & film), "Pay It Forward"(2000-fair score), "Erin Brockovich"(2000-outstanding score & film), "Green Mile"(1999-good score), "American Beauty"(1999)-outstanding score, nominated by the Academy & Golden Globe for Best Original Score), "Little Women"(1994-wonderful score & film), "The Shawshank Redemption"(1994-powerful score and one of my all-time favorite films) and "Fried Green Tomatoes"(1991-another wonderful film with score to match) ~ Thomas Newman has become a constant name in the films of today, as far back as 1984.
With director D.J. Caruso, screenwriter Tony Gayton and composer Thomas Newman, we experience each character on the screen. This tense and moody story has a cast of players to match ~ Val Kilmer(Danny Parker), Peter Sarsgaard(Jimmy the Fin) and Deborah Kara Unger (Colette) ~ a modern day film noir dealing with drug trade and the answers to an unsolved murder of Kilmer's wife.
Newman's cues are dark, moody and sometimes bleak. Shades of sadistic counterpoints surface within "BADGER", percussion and guitar takes each piece of music to a dooming place ~ "LAST WIFE", piano recalls memories and strings answer the questions ~ "LINOLEUM/WALK TO BLACK", dreamlike trance voices adhere while strings swell, guitar opens the door for drums to react and all join in with a haunting tempo that grabs you, this is the highlight...ENJOY!
All in all, Newman has captured the essence of a brutal undercover story and the demons that haunt each character. Much like Jerry Goldsmith with "L.A. Confidential", the elements within the soundtrack are very sound. As a "film-score-buff", this is going into my collection as a keeper.
Total Time: 47:33 on 23 Tracks ~ Varese Sarabande 302-066-351-2 ~ (2002)
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
one of thomas newman's best 20 July 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I never saw [or really heard of] this film, but as I hear more and more contemporary film scores, Thomas Newman sticks out as the most interesting composer so far, with the most imagination --- and in this score a multiplicity of new ideas are on display. It's just exciting, and fresh... close to what classical music might have been if after serialism it hadn't been straightjacketed within minimalism for so long. The score for "In the Bedroom" is interesting in the same way.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
almost perfect 27 May 2004
By Trottin'-Butterz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
this cd is a definate must-have for newman fans,and people who enjoyed the movie starring val kilmer in one of his top 5 roles ever(i thought).my only gripe is that some of the songs end too abruptly.many are only :45 long,and though they're every bit as good as anything off "american beauty",only 5 or so are over 3 minutes long(the whole disc is about 50 minutes long).however,that means you do get many different musical "flavors" to taste by the time the album is done-and the last track is a total trip-yodeling instruction(???).I like to plop it in my changer on random for weird moments in between "regular songs".it's worth your $,and you may be mixed up about it at first but it grows on you.
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Experimental, somewhat classic Newman - an Ambient feel. 4 May 2002
By Andrew P. Alderete - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
My girlfriend and I like to call Newman "the thought composer". In light of his previous work, this is very different, yet adds a magical score to his frightning ability to be creative and experimental.
This is not the Newman that is able to include synths and rather electronic-like music along with a spellbinding theme (generally included by piano). This is a rather destructive and intrusive score, but displays some qualities heard in G. Ravell's score to "Until the End of the World". There really isn't any place to go - the listener is forced to feel the "in between-ness" which is speckled all over the theme of the actual movie.
In itself, the score is utterly dark, mysterious, and deeply hauntingly sad. I can understand why Newman would go for this type of movie - it pushes him to be very creative in dealing with visual themes.
You hear the trumpet! What the heck is Newman thinking? However, it is something that just makes him that much more of a musical genius, in my opinion.
Get this album to add to a music collection, not necessarily for something that you can listen to while doing something - but just to listen to for its musical force and strikingly haunting themes.
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