Natural Selection

Composed By: iZLER and Curt Schneider

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            In the dramatic comedy Natural Selection, Rachel Harris is Linda White, a barren housewife living a sheltered life with her husband Abe (John Diehl) in suburban Texas.  After suffering a stroke, Abe reveals that he has a 23-year-old illegitimate son named Raymond (Matt O'Leary) living in Florida.  His dying wish is to see his son once more and, fighting off feelings of guilt and betrayal, Linda travels to Florida in an effort to bring Raymond back before Abe dies.  Their journey and strange growing relationship teaches Linda quite a bit about herself and forces her to come to grips with her troubling past.

            The musical score of Natural Selection was created by the combined efforts of iZLER and Curt Schneider.  iZLER is a Czechoslovakian-born, English-raised composer and multi-instrumentalist who has worked as a touring musician with such notable names as Robbie Williams, Ryan Adams, Kylie Minogue and more.  Selected in 2008 to be one of six up-and-coming composers invited to the Sundance Film Composer's Lab in Utah, he eventually was selected to score the Sundance-backed documentary Whatever it Takes and the thriller Off Season.  He is currently working as a composer on the hit series Revenge and Shameless and has recently received critical acclaim for his musical score of On the Ice.

            Curt Schneider is an American composer whose family is heavily steeped in the world of music spanning back several generations.  His mother had a music show and he often accompanied her to the radio station.  At the age of fifteen, a fascination with the way music is recorded led him to produce bands in his basement with recording equipment given to him by his grandfather.  At twenty, he was playing bass in some of Detroit's most respected R&B clubs.  Moving to Los Angeles, Curt began to completely immerse himself into music, working with artists like Five for Fighting, Natasha Bedingfield, Anna Nalick and Richie Sambora.  He is currently the mixer for Revenge and additional composer, engineer and mixer for Shameless.

            The combining of these two composers proved to be genius.  The first track, Rebirth, features the sounds of a church organ that come on softly at first and then rise in crescendo giving the listener the impression of a blossoming flower seen from its budding stage until spread out into full growth.  The theme found in Domestic Bliss is first featured in warm, acoustic guitar on this track.  The more I listened, the more I was convinced that this was Linda's theme.  It is found throughout the rest of the album, performed by pianos, organs, guitars and other instruments in differing styles to display the character's growth as she embarks on her journey. 

            There is an intrinsic beauty and tranquility to this soundtrack and my only complaint may be that at twenty minutes in length, it is entirely too short.  I truly enjoyed the Natural Selection musical score and felt the pairing of iZLER and Curt Schneider perfect.  They exquisitely captured the feel of the movie and created a musical score that not only enhances the film, but is just as good as a standalone album.  The Natural Selection Soundtrack is well-worth the listen.


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