The Damned

Music Composed By: Frederik Wiedmann

Distributed by: Lakeshore Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


            In the horror flick, The Damned, Peter Facinelli is David Reynolds, a widowed American who, travels to Bogota with his new fiancée (Sophia Myles) to pick up his rebellious teenage daughter (Nathalia Ramos).  An accident while en route to Medellin leaves them stranded at a run-down inn, where they discover a secret being kept by the innkeepers - a young child locked in the basement.  But will setting her free be an act of kindness or an act of terror let loose on the unsuspecting world?

            The musical score of The Damned was created by German composer Frederik Wiedmann, who knew he wanted to be a composer at a very young age.  Moving to Los Angeles in 2004, Wiedmann has created a number of musical scores for film.  Known for his scoring work in animated television series like Green Lantern: The Animated Series and the animated films Beware the Batman, Son of Batman and Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox, Wiedmann is no stranger to the horror genre either.  He has composed the musical scores for such well-known horror films as Hostel: Part III, The Hills Run Red, Mirrors 2 and Return to House on Haunted Hill.

            I listened to soundtrack of The Damned on a dark, dreary morning with the lights off - what truer test of a horror film soundtrack, right?  The music of The Damned starts off as orchestral.  Dark and rich, you have the distinct idea that there is something hidden here...some sort of secret lying beneath the beautiful exterior...something about to jump out at you!  Wiedmann uses some of the tried and true secrets to creeping listeners out in a horror score like chanting kids (What's spookier than a child's voice chanting in some language you don't understand?), screeching violins, string scratching, ambient/electronic sound and blasts of noise.  In Exodus, he adds something new to the game - a woman's disjointed, worried/distressed muttering.  Downright spooky if you ask me.  To remind listeners what country the film takes place in, Wiedmann used South American woodwinds.

            There are few words that can express just how spooky The Damned Soundtrack is.  The score will send chills up your spine, raise goosebumps on your arms and make the shorthairs on the back of your neck stand at attention.  And that's with the lights on!  I listened to it in the dark!  I had the distinct impression that I needed to look over my shoulder several times while listening.  This is the mark of a great horror film score - the fact that it scared the hell out of me and that it did so not simply by using older horror cues, but by adding in some rather unique ones as well.  A job well done for Frederik Wiedmann!


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