Price(USD): $20.80

CD No: SWR11002
Release Date:
Format: 1CD

“One of the most original and terrifying horror films” (Planet of Terror) and a “psychological horror masterpiece” (All Things Horror Online), Gregg Holtgrewe’s low budget genre movie Dawning (winner of major awards at the Rhode Island International Horror Film Festival, Solstice Film Festival and Las Vegas Film Festival) features an original score that is one of the creepiest we’ve heard in a long time. Nathaniel Levisay’s music has more in common with modernist concert music than traditional film scores. Screamworks Records’ soundtrack album features the complete original score from the film which was unusually sparsely scored. Album precurses the US DVD release of the film on June 28.

Taking place at a Northern Minnesota lake cabin, Gregg Holtgrewe’s Dawning is a terrifying psychological horror drama where the dynamics of a complicated relationship between a brother, sister, their father and step-mom is explored as a mysterious stranger appears and tells the family that he has come to save them…not telling them from what.

“There are things in this film that are traditional devices, but they are only a springboard into a much deeper pool of psychological tension,” says composer Nathaniel Levisay. “One of the many unique things in the script that scintillates on screen is a sense of wonderment. There is something noble, something to be revered or respected in this primordial ‘evil’ that plagues this family out in the woods.”

Prior to Nathaniel Levisay’s scoring of the film, the director had temp-tracked the film with music by minimalist composer Arvo Part and avant garde icon Krzysztof Penderecki. “It was not filled with scores from other films. His decision somehow put me in a different place psychologically.”

Certainly, Levisay’s music for Dawning has more in common with modernist concert music than traditional film scores. “I began from my first impressions of the film, how it affected me. The overall impact upon me was that this film does need a mostly aleatoric support line, but something that is cinematic as well. Some of the music was written traditionally and other parts were created in a way reflective of musique concrete.”

There are no musical themes as such in the Dawning score, but there is, for instance, a piano chord arpeggiated which is used here and there throughout “as a sort of lamenting reflection of the corporeal innocence of life that is being decimated as the film plays on. The other motif is a very low bass drone that creeps in when this eclipsing ‘evil’ is near, or rampant, or receding…this is a subtle, almost subconscious musical element that really raises the tension level several notches as soon as your ears and your brain get a hint of it.”

Levisay recorded the score with live piano and smaller groups “made to sound as a larger whole, or made to sound like they are from another planet” in combination with some samples. The result is one of the creepiest and most challenging film scores in recent time. ---MovieScore Media

Track List

1. Dawning & Main Title 3.01
2. I Love You 2.17
3. Can’t Trust Chris With a Gun 2.04
4. The Man 3.00
5. Are You God Now? 1.58
6. Was It Beautiful? 3.57
7. She’s Dead… 2.48
8. You’re Tearing Us Apart! 4.51
9. Aurora 2.17
10. We’re All Going to Die & End Titles 4.07