Audio: On the Score with Tyler Bates and William Friedkin

By • July 17, 2012

ON THE SCORE is sponsored by La-La Land Records

If there are any two artists in Hollywood who thrive on unconventionality, then they’re filmmaker William Friedkin and composer Tyler Bates. Both have delighted and confronted by turning The Rules on their head. For Friedkin, it’s been such brilliantly explicit outrages as the obscene possession of innocent adolescence, thrusting a mainstream audience into the S & M subculture, and making cops and villains one and the same. Friedkin’s soundtrack choices film have been just as iconoclastic, with the stylized likes of Mike Oldfeld (“The Exorcist”), Tangerine Dream (“Sorcerer”), The Germs (“Cruising”) and Wang Chung (“To Live and Die in L.A.”) accompanying his imagery’s visceral rush.

The director’s shock of the new musical sensibility couldn’t be better suited for Tyler Bates. From the alt. comic book music of “Super” and “Watchmen” to the porno depravity of “Rated X” and gnarled sampling of “Halloween” and “The Devil’s Madness,” few subjects bring out Bates’ best like wanton bad behavior. And the human trash of “Killer Joe” couldn’t be a riper for the composer to strut his mean edge for Friedkin. The director’s latest outrage is based on the stage play by Tracy Letts, whose “Bug” Friedkin last adapted for the big screen.

But where that movie’s chamber drama of motel madness featured an utterly nerve-rending score by Brian Tyler, “Killer Joe”’s more expansive setting of dive bars and trailer trash brings a grindingly melodic, if no less twisted score by Bates. With his badass mutation of such instruments as the Marxophone, Melodica and a voice boxed Baritone electric guitar, Bates allows Letts’ dialogue-driven story to sing, and simmer in an atmosphere of regional menace. It’s the perfect, lethally unconventional style for Friedkin’s jaw-dropping, chicken-fried approach to this collection of ruthlessly inept people, and the seemingly suave assassin they’ve made the big mistake of bringing into their trailer.

Now on a new edition of On the Score, William Friedkin and Tyler Bates talk about a “Killer” match made in heaven, as brought down to the intoxicating, raw beauty of redneck hell.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Click above to Listen Now or Click Here to Download

a Buy the Soundtrack: KILLER JOE (available July 24)
a Buy the Soundtrack: THE DEVIL’S REJECTS
a Buy the Soundtrack: WATCHMEN
a Buy the Soundtrack: SUPER
a Buy the Soundtrack: THE WAY
a Visit Tyler Bates’ website

Leave a Comment