Reviews | Written by Nick Spacek 16/04/2021


Low tones, drones, and other sounds suited for tickling the back of the listener's neck, ever-so-slightly raising one's hackles, are the name of the game here. Given the numerous lies, deceptions, and machinations at play during the first season of FX's Fargo, one can't be surprised that Jeff Russo's score plays it equally close to the vest, rarely if ever stepping out for any grandiose music statements. This is mournful, laden with violin and other bowed strings.

Fargo is dark, dark, dark, moody, and then, BAM! - "Malvo's Theme," a still-moody, yet nevertheless jazzy piece which uses just a hint of xylophone to offer up the maddening whimsy atop Billy Bob Thornton's mysterious character. It's immediately followed by the hi-hat and tom workout which is "Wrench and Numbers," before returning to the menacing tones which otherwise pervade Russo's score.

Interestingly enough, it's only when Malvo comes onto the scene that the strings are plucked, rather than bowed, which keeps the score within a certain milieu, while still differentiating between our villain and all the other characters. The sound of a plucked upright bass is so readily, jazzily indentifiable, the menace is instantly recognizable. Were that brass made more than the rare appearance they do, because although the woodwinds are rather pleasant, a bit of high-toned trumpet does give things a much-needed energetic kick in the pants.

Music on Vinyl's reissue of their original 2014 Fargo soundtrack release is limited to 666 copies on green vinyl because, "Did you know the human eye can see more shades of green than any other colour?" It included an insert with wonderful stills of all the main characters from the show's main characters. The resulting package, coming as it does on the heels of Fargo's fourth season, has us champing at the bit to go back and revisit the show from the beginning.