• Film: The Dark Tower
  • Soundtrack composer: Tom Holkenborg
  • Original year of release: 2017
  • Number of tracks: 29
  • Soundtrack duration: 66 mins 53 secs
  • Tracks with vocals/distracting aspects: None
  • Film score duration (with distracting tracks removed): 66 mins 53 secs
  • Suggested suitable book genres: Dark thrillers, urgent horror stories, horror/sci-fi, and epic sci-fi pieces.
DLS Summary:
The entire soundtrack is one that moves between subtle and eerie soundscapes, to much more dominant and powerful pieces of explosive urgency. Throughout the soundtrack there’s a sense of brooding and often foreboding. Occasionally we glimpse something more hopeful and delicate, however, this often moves back into a deeper and more guttural sound, plummeting us back into that dark brooding soundscape that prevails throughout the score.

For reading to, the soundtrack is excellent. It’s not necessarily a perfect fit for a novel that’s a slow burner, or indeed an eerie horror, due to the bursts of energy that leap out at the listener throughout this musical journey. But for a dark thriller, or a more urgent horror story, say a Shaun Hutson or the like, this works well. Perhaps also a post-apocalyptic or zombie novels where there’s a constant sense of urgency behind the book.

Each track on the CD is relatively short, with the tracks generally around the two-minute mark, but ranging from just 47 seconds (being the shortest) to 4 mins 51 seconds (being the longest).

DLS Review:
From the very outset you get the sense that this soundtrack is going to be one emersed in a wealth of layers and gorgeous audio soundscapes. The opening track offers just that. A magnificent masterpiece of evocative music lasting just less than two-minutes but delivering almost the ethos of the entire score in one short swallow.

Track two sets off along a similar pathway, with strings forming the beautiful backing, accompanied by harps and pianos, carefully placed to deliver a luscious track of around a minute-and-a-half.

Track three takes us to more eerie territory, building with strength but never really piquing into anything overly dominant. It’s again, a subtle and evocative piece, stamped with changing musical episodes, such as the deep thundering and clanging of some earthen rhythm, before erupting into a wall of dominance akin to something Hans Zimmer might put together. Indeed, there’s much in here that feels akin to Zimmer’s later work of his sci-fi scores.

Track four is a similarly atmospheric piece which sets down a brooding atmosphere with gentle synthesisers and deep electronic notes bringing about an overall eerie backdrop. All perfect for reading a sinister horror to.

Track five is where the pace and urgency of the soundtrack massively picks up. This is a strong and driven piece of music that hurtles along with deep bass for just over a minute.

After this, we’re submerged back into the haunting atmospheric tones of a much quieter track, with more synthesised tones and delicate notes glistening from the surface of the moody atmosphere.

This back-and-forth between dominance and subtle, from strong and demanding to delicate and eerie, really is how the entire soundtrack plays out. Each track a short episode into how the film evolves from scene to scene.

Track seven in particular leaps out at you with absolute gusto, sounding like it would be at home in a dramatic superhero film or a similarly action-rich movie. Again, it’s a short burst of activity that feels nestled amongst the warmer (or more eerie) soundscape pieces.

The soundtrack continues on in this fashion for over an hour, with episodes of explosive musical dominance bookended by subtler soundscapes. The end result is a truly magnificent musical journey that will undoubtedly fit with reading a wide spectrum of novels.

As a soundtrack for reading to:

The soundtrack as a whole:

© DLS Reviews

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