Composed By: Jeff Rona

Distributed by: Milan Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In the action/thriller Phantom, Ed Harris is Dmitri Zubov, captain of a Soviet submarine during the Cold War.  Zubov has been suffering seizures that alter his perception of reality, mixing his tragic past with his present.  Sent on a classified mission, Zubov finds his authority challenged by a rogue KGB group led by Bruni (David Duchovny), who is bent on seizing control of the sub's nuclear missile.  The fate of humanity is in Zubov's hands, but is he up for the challenge.

                The musical score of Phantom was created by American composer Jeff Rona.  Having studied music, art and photography, Rona decided to leave school in pursuit of a career in music.  Employing traditional musicians and cutting edge technology, Rona composed for dance, theater, experimental media, galleries and contemporary concert venues, eventually molding himself into an in-demand composer, sound designer, arranger and more.  He landed his first solo scoring project in 1993 with the television series Homicide: Life on the Street.  Since then, he has composed the music for White Squall, Chicago Hope, Shelter Island, Brotherhood, God of War II and more. 

                The music of Phantom begins somewhat dark with classical leanings.  There is a felling of great sadness, as if we are looking through the haunted eyes of Captain Zubov.  Echoes and disjointed noises give the listener the feel of being underwater in a submarine.  As the sub sets sail, the music takes on a more action feel, featuring mixes of orchestral instruments and electronic sound.  There is a sense of intrigue and mistrust relayed through the music and the darkness that pervaded the early tracks finds a new intensity as the movie moves forward.

                I enjoyed the blending of orchestral and electronic sound that brought to fore the emotions of the characters and helped describe the action taking place aboard the submarine in Phantom.  Jeff Rona has created a musical score that is designed to not only enhance the visuals of the film, but to relate the film's story through music.  I have no doubt that the music fits perfectly with the film, but as a stand alone album, the Phantom Soundtrack is an excellent piece of work.  Jeff Rona deserves kudos for a job well done.  This is an elaborate musical score well-worth the listen.


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