Recordings / Album: A Soundtrack For The Last Werewolf
‘What does an album mean anymore unless it has a narrative?’
Soundtrack for The Last Werewolf takes Glen Duncan’s novel as the backdrop for a widescreen emotional cabaret. The album is both a high-concept single sonic journey and a diverse playlist for the eclectic of ear and heart. The book’s themes of violence, friendship, transformation, love and betrayal are recast in a suite of songs bound together by voices and readings from the text.
When we made I Lucifer as a ‘soundtrack to a book’ (maybe the first time this had been done), we believed that it would start a new bunch of literary / musical crossovers. But it didn’t and we were baffled that our respective labels and publishers did not make much more out of the creative cross-over. So forward wind a few years and Glen suggested we give it another try – in the brave new world of media and cultural cross-pollination.
For a sense of the whole thing, listen to the Moon-rising Suite to your left or Kirsty Lang’s interview with Glen and I on BBC 4’s Front Row.
As is the case with previous albums, tracks cover a spectrum of styles. Here there are thirties ballads, torch songs, gypsy-jazz and electro-swing, cut-and-past sampling and minimalist electronica. Our sonic mentors: Gainsbourg, Chopin, Django Reinhardt, Cole Porter, Springsteen, Barry Adamson and Tom Waits were invoked and hover ghostlike over the story as it develops.
Guest vocalists include long term collaborators The Puppini Sisters, Joe Guillotine Coles, Pinkie Maclure and Piney Gir. Narrators include Glen Duncan himself, David Piper, Angela Penhaligon, Don Brosnan and Serena Bubowski.
There are two versions of the album – pretty much the same in terms of tracks but if you like to own the physical object don’t bother with the US version, get the gorgeous full colour art-book from Crammed Discs with a selection of writings from the book and Catherine Anyango‘s beautiful illustrations. There are two standout videos: George Fort’s incredible Disney- noir retelling of Little Red Riding Hood: “Me and Mr Wolf’ and Alex De Campi’s heart stopping stop-motion romance: ‘Tear Us Apart”
The Lupine Waltz was recently used as the music for Apple’s I-pad mini ad. You can see the ad here