Much in the way that Fabio Frizzi's music built up Lucio Fulci's work on the likes of Zombie Flesh Eaters with metronomic precision and build, so does Wojciech Golczewski's score for Ted Geoghegan's latest film. Tones and drones for days highlight this '80s Fulci throwback. This score is not a collection of music, so much as this is a collection of background atmospherics for a film. Starting with opening piece The House, a listen to We Are Still Here will result in sensory experiences rather than any sense of melody.
It really reminds us an awful lot of Joseph Bishara's work for the Insidious films, but to a far more distressing extent. Whereas Bishara's work is in a loud/quiet dynamic, even the quieter passages of Golczewski's work have a high-pitched tone which allows for dissonance and disturbance the whole piece through. It's Not Bobby is a swirl of strings and tones, absolutely dissonant, yet also propulsive. While not traditionally structured, one can still discern the forward moment of the piece as it builds, falls, and rises again.
When melody does become apparent in something like closing number Accept It, it's such an unfamiliar thing that the pleasantness of its sound does the opposite of what one expect, and generates worry and fright. This particular effect is helped along by running the melody (usually a piano or keyboard) through a delay or similar process, lending the harmony an off-kilter quality. Accept It revisits the initial onslaught of The House, only toned down and working in a quiet beauty that the opening piece didn't have.
Interestingly enough, it's the pieces about the menacing Dagmars – The Dagmars, Dagmars Story – which actually most feature some form of melody. These pieces' melodic elements are buried in the mix, and more of a flourish than the dominant aspect. They seem to be a way of attempting to lend some humanity to this dimly-glimpsed menace. Additionally, Golczewski also appears to be looking to give a hint to the viewer about what's being dealt with, and providing a traditional theme for We Are Still Here's antagonist.
Above all, though, it's the low, rumbling drone that dominates. Listening to Golczewski's score, it became all the more apparent when we started the music with our speakers off but subwoofer on. The room fairly vibrated with the rumble. For those who found Disasterpeace's score to It Follows not minimalist or creepy enough, this is the score to get.
WE ARE STILL HERE (2015) / COMPOSER: WOJCIECH GOLCZEWSKI / LABEL: SCREAMWORKS RECORDS / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW