Click here to return to the main site.

Soundtrack Review

Cover Image

Cliff Martinez: Film Festival Gent


Composer: Cliff Martinez: Film Festival Gent
Performed by: The Brussels Philharmonic
Label: Milan Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 17 February 2015

Milan Records release Cliff Martinez: Film Festival Gent, which contains orchestral versions of Martinez’s film themes performed by The Brussels Philharmonic. Martinez, who was born in the Bronx but raised in Ohio, moved to California in 1976 landing in the middle of the punk movement. After stints as the drummer for the Weirdos, Lydia Lunch and Foetus frontman Jim Thirlwell, and the final incarnation of Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band, Martinez joined the Red Hot Chili Peppers (playing on the band’s first two albums) and later the Dickies. It was during his tenure with the Chili Peppers that Cliff began exploring the new technologies of that era, which would eventually guide him towards the film music world...

I have to admit that I'm not a huge fan of Cliff Martinez's music. With the exception of his score for the game Far Cry 4 I haven't found any of his soundtracks have made their way onto any of my playlists. While his writing is solid, for me, on the whole, it lacks any real passion and so most of his music sounds a little flatter than it should do.

Listening to this collection of some of his scores, performed by The Brussels Philharmonic, did nothing to sway my mind. A lot of these themes are really bland, and I was surprised at some of the track choices.

Of all the tracks on this album (16 in total - representing 44 min, 30 sec) 'The Green Head' (from The Underneath) and 'Can't Say I'm Happy to See You' (from The Company You Keep) are the only real tracks of note. As I mentioned in my review of the score for The Company You Keep, 'I Can't Say I'm Happy to See You' sounds very similar to a track by Howard Shore on his The Lord of the Rings scores (the ending of 'The Bridge of Khazad Dum' with the vocals removed)

It only really works as a sampler for non-Martinez converts to check out and see if his music is for them. His legions of fans will already own all the original scores.


Darren Rea

Buy this item online

Each of the store links below opens in a new window, allowing you to compare the price of this product from various online stores.

Digital album