Composer, musician and longstanding Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood is keeping busy this awards season with three new film scores, and TheWrap has an exclusive preview of his work on Jane Campion’s critically acclaimed Netflix drama “The Power of the Dog.”
Set in 1925, the film stars Benedict Cumberbatch as a charismatic rancher named Phil Burbank who, when his brother (Jesse Plemons) brings home his new wife (Kirsten Dunst) and her son (Kodi Smit-McPhee), terrorizes the trio as he inspires fear and awe.
The track above is called “West Alone” and offers a tantalizing preview of Greenwood’s score, which vacillates from beautiful and melancholy to downright sinister. Lakeshore Records and Invada Records will release “The Power of the Dog – Music From The Netflix Film” digitally on Nov. 17 with physical releases set to debut later this year.
“The main thought I kept returning to was that this film is set in the modern era,” said Greenwood in notes provided to TheWrap. “It’s too easy to assume any cowboy story takes place in the 19th century. There is so much culture in Phil’s character. He’s well read and it isn’t hard to imagine his taste in music being — alongside his proficiency on the banjo — very sophisticated. The pleasure in a character this complex and emotionally pent-up, is that it allows for complexity in some of the music, as well as simpler, sweeter things for his contrasting brother. Bouncing between these two characters, musically, generated a lot of ideas.”
Greenwood has a busy couple of months ahead, as he also composed the original scores for the Kristen Stewart Princess Diana drama “Spencer” and Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Licorice Pizza.”
“The Power of the Dog,” which was directed by Campion and has drawn significant critical praise on the film festival circuit, opens in select theaters on Nov. 17 and will be streaming on Netflix starting Dec. 1.
Listen to the track “West Alone” above.