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Soundtrack Review

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The Red Orchestra
Original Documentary Soundtrack


Composer: Eloi Ragot
Performed by: Budapest Symphony Orchestra
Label: Reality Bytes (MovieScore Media)
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 27 August 2021

Reality Bytes release the original score for the documentary The Red Orchestra. The movie re-examines the story of the Red Orchestra: the most important resistance network in Nazi Germany, whose operations extended from Berlin and Brussels to Paris...

Eloi Ragot's score for The Red Orchestra is the first album to be released under MovieScore Media's new documentary-focused sub-label Reality Bytes, which intends to release the best and most interesting documentary titles on the market.

Discussing the project, Ragot says: "I first thought working on a WW2 documentary was a bit tricky because of the sheer scope of the story. But Carl-Ludwig Rettinger [director] pushed me to be as near as possible to the characters, their feeling, their ideas, their love affairs, and especially one of the main founders of the Red Orchestra, Leopold Trepper. That led to the decision to have a rather small-sized orchestra, with piano as well as cimbalom, a Hungarian instrument. It brings to me this Eastern and 'film noir' sound and its bounciness underlines well how bold and courageous the members of the organization were. I based many musical themes on rhythms and ostinatos to reflect the way those people were always on the move in order not to get caught. Also, some electronic and in particular Moog synth pads and percussions were a perfect match to the many images of the films shot in the '70s about the Red Orchestra and help bringing a modern view on the events."

The themes running through the album are mainly comprised of tense moments of suspense as well as beautifully melancholic reflective pieces. It's an enjoyable and varied score that works just as well as a standalone album.

It's a great way to kick off the Reality Bytes label and I'm looking forward to hearing future releases.


Darren Rea

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