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Soundtrack Review

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Shaky Shivers
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Composer: Timo Chen
Label: Plaza Mayor Company Ltd
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 24 November 2023

Timo Chen's original score for Shaky Shivers is available via Plaza Mayor Company. Two young women find themselves at an abandoned camp in the woods with a book of magical spells surrounded by classic monsters in this comedic send up of ‘80s horror films...

The music for Shaky Shivers is upbeat, jovial and just the sort of score you need to blow away the cobwebs if you're feeling a little below par. Composer Timo Chen really gets to play with all the tools of his trade here. While there's the occasional cliched Horror theme (as can be witnessed on tracks like 'Back in the Dorm'), even these stand out as using the "cliche" tropes associate with the genre and then managing to deliver something much deeper and heavily layered.

Songs 'Why am I Doing This?', 'I Know I Should Be Happy' and 'Bumbling Bad Bigfoot' add to the diversity on offer. In fact, 'I Know I Should Be Happy' illustrate perfectly Chen's ability to write wonderfully tongue-in-cheek pop songs with real earworm characteristics. This is certainly a collection of tracks that keeps getting better the more times you revisit it. Whilst there is the occasional background atmospheric music cue on offer, these are few and far between. What we end up with is a wonderful collection of memorable themes and set pieces. And, it's almost certain that you'll be smiling at many of the musical choices - most notably the ending of 'RIP Eric'.

Discussing the direction of the music, Chen says: "[Director] Sung Kang called me up and asked me to write music that was reminiscent of summer camp in the deep woods, but with hints of horror, comedy, and absurdity to it. How appropriate the timing of this call was as we were just getting out of the pandemic - a time of horror, comedy, and absurdity, where some folks sought refuge isolating in the woods. So here is some fun quaint and rustic music that can get a little eerie at times, but hopefully leave you laughing."

I really enjoyed this against type style. And the fact that from track to track you're never sure what you'll be listening to, made this one album I'll be happy to revisit time and again in the future.


Darren Rea

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