Annihilation [OST] (CD)

In Alex Garland’s visually stunning new psych/horror/sci-fi epic, a team of female scientists must explore a lysergic no-mans-land called The Shimmer, populated by increasingly bizarre and terrifying hybrid creatures and weird flora. Paranoia, lost time, freaky colorfields and interpersonal melding abound, and it’s not clear whether anyone who enters can escape. Key to the hypnotic power of this mesmerizing tale is the spare, eerie, brooding score, crafted by Bristol buds Ben Salisbury and Portishead’s Geoff Barrow. Having studied the soundtrack work of the ‘70s and ‘80s masters, they abide by the spacious, less-is-more blueprint, using acoustic guitar, a touch of electronics, strategically deployed orchestration and a haunting four-note motif. Subtly mirroring the journey from ordinary suburbia to glowing hallucinatory swampland, the score gradually mutates and decays into an understated but nightmarish experimentation. Let Ben and Geoff guide you through.

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