While Jon Brion and Michael Penn wrote some terrific film scores for Paul Thomas Anderson over the years (“Magnolia,” “Punch Drunk Love“), it’s now fairly difficult to separate the filmmaker from his Jonny Greenwood-penned scores only two films deep into their collaboration. Greenwood obviously scored “The Master” and the upcoming “Inherent Vice,” but it all started with the Daniel Day-Lewis-starring “There Will Be Blood” that PTA saw as a type of horror.
“We talked about how [Kubrick‘s] ‘The Shining‘ had lots of Penderecki in it,” Greenwood told EW in 2008. “We figured the instruments should be contemporary to the turn of the last century, but not period music. Even though you know the sounds you’re hearing are coming from very old technology, you can do things with the classical orchestra that unsettle you, that are slightly wrong, that have some kind of slightly sinister undercurrent.”
Anderson added: ”I guess when you have a title like that, the music better be a little bit scary.”
Of course, the creepy, discomfiting score—foolishly named ineligible by the music branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2008—is now a classic and in this writer’s mind helped take PTA’s films to another level. You likely own the score, most cinephiles do, but you’ve obviously never heard it live before. That could change for you if you have the means, are willing to travel, or simply live in the U.K. On August 6th and 7th in London, as part of the Roundhouse Summer Sessions, Greenwood and the London Contemporary Orchestra will perform the film score live to picture.
Greenwood will play his beloved Ondes Martenot keyboard and an orchestra of over 50 musicians, conducted by Hugh Brunt, will help him realize his vision in a live setting. It’s a once, or twice in a lifetime opportunity the likes of which I doubt we’ll see any time soon. Hope you saved your milk money. Find full details here. In case you’ve forgotten the indelible soundtrack, listen to it in full below. [Pitchfork]
Update 05/07: Jonny Greenwood will be bringing the live score of “There Will Be Blood” to the U.S., playing United Palace Theatre in Manhattan on September 19th and 20th.