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Soundtrack Review

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Not Afraid, Not Afraid
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Composer: Gabriel Yared
Performed by: Modigliani Quartet
Label: Caldera Records
RRP: £13.99
Click here to buy -
4 260352 760250
Release Date: 22 July 2018

Caldera Records present the original score for the motion picture Not Afraid, Not Afraid from 2001, directed by Annette Carducci, featuring music by Gabriel Yared. It is a dramedy about a highly dysfunctional family, and a woman who must learn to become a better person when facing death. Paula is an attractive and smart psychologist whose series of self-help parenting guides are a big hit. Unfortunately, her own family life is quite catastrophic as her relationship with her own children and the husband she is divorced from is practically non-existent. When she gets convinced that she is suffering from cancer, Paula decides to solve at least some of her problems, but an attempt at reconciling her differences with her grown-up children Sarah and Matthew leads to more grievance and quarrels...

I always look forward to Caldera's releases. They always manage to mine the perfect gems; usually albums you'd never have discovered for yourself. When I learned that the latest was an album by Gabrial Yared I was looking forward to find out what that project would be. His previous Caldera releases (Adam Resurrected, Belle du Seigneur, Lisa) have all been incredible scores.

Not Afraid, Not Afraid is a movie I'd never heard of. Not surprising really as it was never released in theatres. So here, the music must be strong enough to stand on its own two feet. For the composer, this was a smaller, personal project and he employed the Modigliani Quartet to bring his compositions to life.

I have to say I wasn't overly a fan of this score. The main theme is a little over used and it reminded me, rather annoyingly, of Simon May's theme tune to BBC's short lived soap opera Eldorado (1992-1993). It also brought to mind 'Love Makes the World Brand New' from the TV series Galavant. It's only a few notes, but once that lodged in my head I found it hard to hear anything else.

I understand that the film is set in Ireland, but the music has all the flavours you'd expect of a sunny Mediterranean island setting. The score is built around a main theme that’s deceptively simple, as a piano motive receives some folksy undertones by the harmonica. In the end it just didn't hold my attention and it's not, sad to say, an album I'll be listening to very often, if at all, in the future. It's not a bad score, just nothing overly interesting.

Personally I don't think this is one of Yared's career highlights, but if you're a huge fan of his work it's worth buying in order to hear a different side to the composer's work.


Darren Rea