The Loft

Composed By: John Frizzell

Distributed by: Varese Sarabande Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In the psychological thriller, The Loft, five married men (Karl Urban, James Marsden, Wentworth Miller, Eric Stonestreet and Matthias Shoenaerts) devise a way they can cheat on their wives discreetly, going in together on a loft in the city where they can meet their mistresses and indulge in secret fantasies.  All is going well until the day an unknown woman's dead body is found in the loft.  Realizing that one of the five men has to be involved, paranoia ensues as each member of the group begins to point their finger at the other.

                The musical score of The Loft was created by American composer John Frizzell who began his career in music by singing soprano in a number of opera companies.  Following college at the USC School of Music and the Manhattan School of Music, he began working for Michael Mainieri, acclaimed producer and vibrophonist and owner of Synclavier, the first digital music workstation.  Becoming a skilled synthesist and eventually moving to Los Angeles, Frizzell began working with James Newton Howard, collaborating on the scores for The Rich Man's Wife and Dante's Peak.  Since then, Frizzell has created a number of musical scores for television and film, including The Following, Stalker, Alien Resurrection, Office Space, Cradle 2 the Grave, Gods and Generals and more.

                The Loft Soundtrack features quite an interesting musical score - a mix of orchestral sound, ambient reverb and distorted sound.  According to Frizzell, the distorted sound comes from "live strings and low brass mixed with a panoply of oddball things. A solo violin plays one of the main tension riffs. The sound of the fiddle is manipulated and distorted to make it almost unrecognizable.  Many of the pulsing tonal sounds come from an upright piano that I sawed the keyboard out of to expose the strings and then played with mallets and my hands.  There is a good amount of guitarviol in the score which is an instrument that is more or less a cross between a guitar and a cello."

                I love the strings, especially the fast tempo with which the strings are employed in tracks like The Loft Main Titles, Casino Night Parts 1 and 2.  There is a lot going on in these tracks which are interspersed with the more ominous sounding tracks on the album.  It is in these fast tempo string performances that we learn what has happened in this loft, but it is also in these tracks that we tend to see the sense of urgency and paranoia emerge amongst the various players in the film. 

                I was not interested in seeing The Loft based upon its trailer alone, but after listening to The Loft Soundtrack, I can honestly say that I would like to see this film.  But what more could I expect from creator of the score of The Following, a series in which danger, paranoia and a sense of urgency are in abundance.


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