Warning Sign

Composed By: Craig Safan

Distributed by: Invada Records

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In the 1985 movie, Warning Sign, a military lab accident leads to the leak of a bacteria meant to serve as a biological agent of war.  As the leak spreads, it's up to a security guard, a former employee and the local county sheriff to somehow rescue those trapped inside while preventing the spread of the agent. 

                The musical score of Warning Sign was created by American composer Craig Safan, whose mother was a piano virtuoso.  By the age of six, Safan was performing piano pieces and had begun improvising on these pieces even then.  Graduating from classical to jazz to rock, Safan was deeply entrenched in his music, but hadn't really considered making music his career until the mid-1970s, who began composing for independent film before moving on to television and film.   Some of his composing credits include Cheers, Ripley's Believe It Or Not!, The Legend of Billie Jean, The Last Starfighter, The Twilight Zone (1985), Stand and Deliver and more.

                The Warning Sign Soundtrack was originally released in LP version in 1985, but this new digital download release by Invada Records features an expanded version of Craig Safan's original score, along with fifteen bonus track cues. 

                I actually didn't read any liner notes about this album prior to listening to it.  Immediately, I was reminded of science fiction films of old.  The score is a mix of old school electronics, electric drums, synths and ambient sounds.  The score is futuristic sounding and, depending on the speed of the music, can describe action, tension, fear and more.  The addition of ambient sound adds an element of danger to the score. 

                Picture that moment in Terminator when Sarah Connor and Kyle Reese are speeding through the tunnel, chased by the Terminator while Reese attempts to peg him with explosives.  Now picture that track, in varying versions and speeds and lengths.  Imagine how boring that could be for someone who enjoys a rich variety of music and innovative scores. 

                That's right, I was bored.  The Warning Sign Soundtrack started off interesting, but by the eighteenth track, I was done...couldn't listen to one more track.  Sometimes expanding original soundtracks for rerelease is not the best of ideas.  It's been done several times with older film scores recently and is really a recipe for disaster.  Unless an individual is really enamored by the movie (and, judging by the reviews of the film, no one was), there aren't many people out there who would want to pay upwards of $15.00 for a stretched out version of the original score.


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