A romantic crime drama that pays homage to 1970s New Hollywood, David Lowery’s AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS has been gaining plaudits left, right and centre, and much of that I imagine is down to the atmospheric and picturesque score by Daniel Hart. Hart’s music provides a strong emotional core, albeit one that is not without issues. The score itself feels charged, with a winning combination of strings, guitar and piano that moves from sweeping romance to quirky plucked guitar that brings up images of dusty highways and small Southern towns (by that I mean Southern US, not Truro). As such, it’s quite a varied listen, and while it’s never in your face, it nevertheless does well to tug at the musical heart-strings without shouting “THIS IS EMOTIONAL”.
It’s a wonderful score for sure, but that does come with one major caveat: many of the cues include clapping (it could be slapping?). Maybe this is just me, but it annoys the hell out of me. The album itself is great right up to the point where the songs kick in. I’m sure they’re appropriate, with a rural American feel, but they do nothing for me. The score is lovely, but I just can’t get past that damn clapping. Thankfully, it’s not everywhere.
AIN’T THEM BODIES SAINTS is out now from Lakeshore Records
Words: Charlie Brigden