Ash Vs Evil Dead
Musical Score By: Joseph LoDuca
Distributed by: Varese Sarabande Records
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Finally, after years of waiting, fans of the horror franchise The Evil Dead have been given what they’ve asked for. Starz has broadcast an original television series follow-up to the movie franchise with Bruce Campbell reprising his role as Ash, stock boy, ladies’ man and chainsaw-handed monster hunter. After thirty years of avoiding responsibility, Ash is forced to face his demons when a Deadite plague threatens to destroy all of mankind.
The musical score of Ash Vs. Evil Dead was created by American composer Joseph LoDuca. Growing up in the Motor City and studying music composition and guitar in New York inspired his love of rock and jazz, while a trip to the Middle East, India and Asia expanded his musical palette. LoDuca is incredibly familiar with Ash and his antics, having written the musical score for The Evil Dead trilogy of films. He has also created musical score for Spartacus, Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, The Legend of the Seeker, Xena :Warrior Princess, The Librarians and Pay the Ghost.
Being a comedic take on horror, one would expect the music of Ash Vs. Evil Dead to be comedic in nature, but there is no hint of comedy on this soundtrack. According to LoDuca, “The score is like films in its approach: The music plays the straight man. That means the drama is dead serious; the action is intense; and the horror is treated with shock and dread. As a result, the humor lies in its juxtaposition to the music, and only on rare occasions does the music give in.” There’s an old-school horror sound to this score, especially the first track, Sheet Show, with its dark and distorted orchestral sound dusted with moans and whispers.
Sawing, plucking and scratching of violin strings causes chills to run up your spine. Horns blast out of nowhere. Slamming percussion offers up the idea of extreme action and danger. Modifying between slow and faster paces and quieter and louder crescendos keep you on the edge of your seat wondering what’s happening at any given moment and raising the hairs on the back of your neck. Quieter moments featuring ethereal vocals, pianos and harps give way to heavy percussion, low registry notes from horns, blasts from trumpets, fast-paced strings and more.
Listening to the Ash Vs. Evil Dead is an incredible roller coaster ride that never expresses the comedic side of the film. Instead, this score defines an action hero in a classic horror setting. I loved listening to the Ash Vs Evil Dead Soundtrack and have no doubt that fans of the series will definitely want to get their hands on the album.