Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Fahrenheit 9/11 Original by Jeff Gibbs and Various Artists

Michael Moore's indictment of the Bush administration's post-9/11 fear-mongering and rush to war in Iraq was the most unlikely blockbuster of its crucial election year, a human-scaled, deeply patriotic American reflection that became the most successful documentary in history within days of its release. Its soundtrack is arguably the most understated, if shrewdly effective, component of Moore's potent agitprop. 

Composer Jeff Gibbs' brooding synth washes give the score an appropriate center of gravitas, lending an even more ironic tone to the almost obscenely bright pop and rock chestnuts (The Go Go's "Vacation," Joey Scarbury's "Theme From Greatest American Hero," REM's "Shiny Happy People," Elmer Bernstein's timeless theme from The Magnificent Seven) Moore uses to skewer his targets. Perhaps most notable is the chilling use of Arvo Part's Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten to underscore the film's stark, restrained evocation of the horrors of 9/11. Neil Young's "Rockin' in the Free World" closes matters out with a blast of bracing, if ever cynical, hope. --Jerry McCulley (Amazon)

1. The Un-President -- Jeff Gibbs
2. Vacation -- The Go-Gos
3. Bush Waits...And Waits- -- Jeff Gibbs
4. Cantus in Memory of Benjamin Britten, for String Orchestra and Bell -- Paavo Jarvi/Estonian National Symphony Orchestra
5. We Gotta Get Out of this Place -- Eric Burdon
6. Weapons of Deceit -- Jeff Gibbs
7. Deserter -- Jeff Gibbs
8. Cocaine -- J.J. Cale
9. Shiny Happy People -- R.E.M.
10. Magnificent Sevent Theme -- Elmer Bernstein
11. Afghan Victory Dance -- Jeff Gibbs
12. Fire Water Burn -- Bloodhound Gang
13. Theme from "Greatest American Hero" -- Joey Scarbury
14. Aqualung -- Jetthro Tull
15. All They Ask -- Jeff Gibbs
16. Rockin' In the Free World -- Neil Young


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