Erik K Skodvin's feature-length score to Thomas Roth's thriller "Schächten" feels like the epitome of all his musical projects, conjuring a dark cinematic trip through 1960's post-WWII Vienna in a film that touches on topics such as law, justice & revenge.
Releasing a soundtrack as a stand-alone album can be challenging; and "Schächten" is by no means a typical listening experience. The record contains 24 more or less short pieces evolving through dramatic movements, underlaying menace and deep emotive scenes. One thing that stands out is the linear atmosphere throughout the story which creates a wholeness that keeps your attention to the very end. Set in wintery Austrian landscapes in dimly saturated colours, the film's dramatic events with dark political undertones feels like a perfect situation for Skodvin's atmospheric collages - perhaps sounding closer than ever to his early works as Svarte Greiner or Deaf Center. Cello, violin, piano, analogue synth and plenty of hardly recognizable instrumentation come together in a record that feels very organic in its subdued tones. The score also features percussion by Andrea Belfi as well as a Chopin piano interpretation by Kelly Wyse to the bizarrely schizophrenic piece "Judenfreund".
With the contemporary world sliding into darkness again, listening to the soundtrack feels like coming to terms with ones own anxieties - something that in the end comes through as a cleansing experience. As quoted in the film "Everyone is their own devil. And we make this world our hell".
Short synopsis : "Vienna 1960s - The young Jewish business man Victor has to witness how the prosecution of a Nazi crime against his family fails. The political and legal system is still virtually run by former Nazis with large parts of society being entangled in the past. When Victor also loses his grief ridden father and his girlfriend’s family opposes their relationship and his identity, Victor begins to loose faith in formal justice and takes matters in his own hands."