Philip Glass’s soundtrack for Stephen Daldry’s movie The Hours (Nonesuch) is a good airing of this one-time minimalist’s feminine side — none of that heavy equestrian bobbing and galloping that we heard in the Mybridge epic Photographer and none of the maddening repetitiousness that characterised his magnum opus Einstein on the Beach. Instead, we have the Glass of Glassworks — a little bit Eric Satie, a little bit Sleepy Shores.
The slow, enduring drama provided by the Lyric Quartet, with Michael Riesman on piano, amounts to delicious, womanly melodrama. There are no abrupt highs or lows, just steadily maudlin studies in neo-classicism. More drama, but certainly not slow, can be found on The Matrix Reloaded: The Album (Maverick), an energetic collection of tracks that doesn’t pack as mean a punch as the first Matrix soundtrack, but still leaves a lasting impression with its mix of rock, metal, industrial beats and a healthy dose of techno and electronica. It starts with the scratchy, scrambled electronic sound of Linkin Park’s Session, before slamming into Marilyn Manson’s powerful new single This Is the New Shit and Rob Zombie’s ear-blasting rock track Reload.
However, like the movie has its slow and talky bits, so does the soundtrack: the Deftones’s Lucky You hints at drifting Nine Inch Nails but gets lost along the way; Team Sleep’s The Passportal is an atmospheric but anemic creation of chilled beats. POD and ÃƒÅ“nloco weigh in with lively tracks and Rage against the Machine shake it up with Calm Like a Bomb. Also fun are dance man Paul Oakenfold’s Dread Rock and his creepy mix of the usually clean-cut Dave Matthews Band. The double-CD edition has, on disc two, instrumental soundtrack music, mostly by Don Davis and Juno Reactor, as well as tantalising previews of the Animatrix collection of shorts and the new Matrix video game. — Ã‚