Tuesday 19 September 2017

Review: John Carpenter provides musical chillers... just in time for Halloween

John Carpenter, Vicar Street, Dublin

John Carpenter
John Carpenter
Ed Power

Ed Power

John Carpenter rebooted horror cinema through the late seventies and early eighties with lean and efficient chillers such as Halloween and Christine. 

He also broke ground as a soundtrack composer. The tingling Halloween theme, composed by the director on a vintage synth, was almost as unnerving as the film’s masked serial killer antagonist while his rollicking score for Big Trouble In Little China celebrated that movie’s pulp silliness.

At a sold out Vicar Street the 68 year old now semi-retired director drew on his two recent collections of original material, Lost Themes and Lost Themes II. Yet the biggest cheers came as the white-haired icon and his band, which included son and collaborator Cody, delved into the past.

Whoops of fanboy elation greeted the title tune from Assault of Precent 13 and Pork Chop Express, the fist pumping musical centre-piece of Big Trouble In Little China.

“I like horror movies,” said Carpenter as he introduced the Halloween theme. As with the film, it was a masterpiece of terrifying understatement – and the highlight of a performance that doubled as the perfect appetite whetter for trick or treat season.

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