In late May of 2021, while working with the owner of the website "Promote Horror" to get promotion for my "Horror Re-Scored" albums, I was put in contact with a filmmaker who was in need of music for his upcoming supernatural horror film. The individual is a gentleman who goes by a stage name himself, like me. That name is Strange Nocturnal.
What is interesting about this project, besides it being my first official film score (outside of all the concept soundtrack scores I do), but I was composing the music before any of the film was shot. The filmmaker requested about 20 minutes of music from which he could choreograph fight scenes to as well as storyboard scenes and ultimately shoot and edit the to the music. So it was like a form of creating an original temp score that would ultimately get hacked up and re-edited to suit the needs f the film.
After composing the 30 minutes of music, I was really digging my musical ideas as was the filmmaker. I proposed to him to expand the musical composition to a more full-length score of which an album could also be sold in conjunction with the promotion of the film or prior to the film's release to help drum up early awareness for his film.
So over an hour of music was created. This allowed for more musical variety to be heard and used throughout the film. Also, it allowed for me to develop many of the themes and motifs further. The filmmaker was quite impressed with what I did as well as the passion I exhibited for working on his project.
What was challenging here was I had no visuals to go on, just his plot synopsis and specific story details. There were no storyboards, no concept art, nothing. While he provided me with initial notes on what each original cue was to be (trailer, chaos and horror, melancholy and dramatic, fast-techno/dance, etc.), the end result could be anything still and potentially not the direction or tone he might be looking for.
Knowing he was a composer as well, I listened to his music on YouTube and Spotify. His style is quite dark, very industrial and gothic, at times lots of screaming, others, demonic groans and grunts with lots of drumming and guitar as well as dark synth instruments layered in. this was my stepping stone form which I created my own style and voice for the complete score. I did not copy his style but rather approached the music as if I were this filmmaker / composer doing the music himself.
What resulted is a interesting mixture of Industrial, Techno, Horror, Action, Sound Design and maybe even a little homage to 80s synth wave.