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Soundtrack Review

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Crimes of the Future
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Composer: Howard Shore
Label: Decca Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 10 June 2022

Decca Records releases the Official Motion Picture Soundtrack to Crimes of the Future, by Howard Shore. In the dystopian sci-fi horror written and directed by award-winning filmmaker David Cronenberg, a near future scenario has humans living in a synthetic environment wherein altered biological appearance through surgery leads to the body becoming art. A performance artist showcases his metamorphosed organs, whilst an investigator tracks his movements. That is when a cloaked organisation shines a light on the next phase of human evolution. Cronenberg wrote the script in 1999 and awaited for the appropriate moment to make the movie. Howard Shore is a three-time Academy Award-winning composer and conductor most recognised for his work on The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies, but he has worked on more than 90 films. He has a long-time collaboration with David Cronenberg spanning 16 movies since 1979...

Track List: 'Crimes of the Future'; 'A Novel Organ'; 'Caprice'; 'Sark Lust'; 'Body is Reality'; 'Brecken'; 'Klinek'; 'Primordial Rapture'; 'Router & Berst'; 'Inner Beauty Pageant'; 'Deviant Digestive System'; 'Surgery Is the New Sex'; 'Odile'; 'The Old Sex'; 'First Autopsy'; 'Time to Try'; and 'The Future'.

We are presented with a very prominent electronic score. There is just sufficient melody to hook the opener onto whilst offering diverse, changeable sounds. The fluttering keys and rumbling bass back a oboe and cello sample. This sound is maintained. It’s quite an eighties or early-nineties feel. In keeping with Cronenberg’s body horror films, mild three- or four-note sequences are enough to keep that on-edge atmosphere of dark anxiety. 'Body is Reality' is a throbbing, stomping piece which wouldn’t be out of place in an Alternative music nightclub. Many of these are mood pieces designed to create an unpredictable unreality. 'Klinek' is an out-and-out Electronica dance beat – and very good it is too! A single, if ever I heard one. 'Router and Berst' begins as a tribal beat, before finishing as raucous atmospherics.

'Inner Beauty Pageant' has a simple but compelling deep electronic drum rumble accompanied by an overlaid soaring synthesiser. 'Odile' has a horror theme reminiscent of those country camera shots which seem so innocent and beautiful and yet almost certainly harbour a sinister secret. 'First Autopsy' is the longest track and is dominated with that heavy and oppressive horn-like sound. It certainly carries dark foreboding, with ringing and the return of the cello/oboe accompaniment. It is nice to hear a more sustained suite. 'The Future' wraps things up with a nice Electronica mix of orchestral and industrial trepidation. Some of these moments are returned to in other guises; however, this has to be one of the most individual listings, with nothing sounding safe or the same. There is an inherent feeling of uncertainty about the proceedings. Howard Shore has gone for ‘uncomfortable’ and pretty much succeeded.


Ty Power

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