Various Artists - The Body of Horror - Music Inspired by the Cinema [Eight Tower Records - 2022]
Eighth Tower has been putting out some fantastic collections with music inspired by famous artists, and The Body of Horror is no exception. Drawing upon the films of David Cronenberg, the ten works on display here utilize Cronenberg's unique look at the human body, something that although beautiful and wondrous, is at the same time terrifying and alien. Varying in approach, much like Cronenberg's oeuvre, the artists on The Body of Horror utilize vast and horrifying themes and imagery to craft their grim compositions.
Cronenberg's body horror films ran the gamut in demonstrations of how one could be affected, be it medical (Rabid), sexual (Shivers), metaphysical (The Brood), or technological (Videodrome, eXistenZ), to name a few, and each artist on The Body of Horror takes their own personal, unique approach to crafting their offering. Much like the terrifying leitmotif that exists in the Cronenberg films, there is a connection between these ten works, albeit more on the listener to seek it out. There is darkness, fear, longing, despair, and technology, all excellent but hard to wield tools used in finding oneself and understanding what it is to be human, and even tougher, living among humans. While the title of the compilation refers to Cronenberg's body horror period, this last note is the real, overarching theme to Cronenberg's cinema, and should be addressed as a number of pieces on this compilation are inspired by films that don't fall in Dave's body horror period (Scanners, Naked Lunch, Dead Zone). Thick and grim, as introspection should be, each piece allows the listener to interpret the song as not only through the lens of Cronenberg's films, but how the work affects themselves. Because, in spite of the fantastic visuals that are on the screen, the main message is separate and more intense - the images are just the letters used to represent the ideas.
Raffaele Pezzella has, in pure, body horror fashion, has used wire, electronics, and technology to stitch together varied pieces to make a complete whole. Different styles and approaches, when sewn correctly, move and act as one. The Eighth Tower compilations are very well put together and if you're lucky enough to get a physical copy, you'd see the care put into those packages as well. The Body of Horror is also available with a book containing horror and sci-fi inspired by Cronenberg, so you can see that Eighth Tower has pulled out all the stops for this release. Head here to check it outPaul Casey