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Nicholas O’Toole/Jonathan Davis' After The Dark
21-Feb-2014 -

Varèse Sarabande Records will release the After The Dark - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack available digitally on February 11th, and on CD March 4, 2014. The film, which was written and directed by John Huddles, and produced by Huddles, George Zakk, and Cybill Lui, features an original score by Nicholas O’Toole and Jonathan Davis. The album features additional music by Glen Phillips (the band Toad the Wet Sprocket).

After The Dark (aka The Philosophers) is set at an international school in Jakarta, where a philosophy teacher (James D'Arcy) challenges his class of twenty students to a final thought experiment. Faced with an impending nuclear apocalypse, they must determine which ten of them would take shelter underground and reboot the human race. The decision quickly becomes deadly as each in the group turns against each other in a desperate fight for survival that blurs the lines between theory and reality.

“The sound palette of the Indonesian gamelan creates music that I’ve always loved, and since this movie is set in Indonesia, my initial urge was to score the whole film with gamelan,” said director John Huddles. “Ultimately we settled on a fusion approach that combines a synth soundscape with very sparing use of gamelan. We gave ourselves the musical freedom to hybridize sounds that originate from very different cultural sources.”
“Some of the synths are very gritty and harsh and almost passes as percussion or some intense bowed metal sound,” explained O’Toole. “There were a variety of organic elements that were used prominently and sparingly. For example, there are undertones of Tuvan harmonic throat singing beneath oddly played cello and bassi. There is one cue with Tibetan horns blaring over minimal synthetic beats in a very alerting moment. We used Gamelan instruments, which are familiar and native to the region the film is set in. It was very fun and effective mixing these elements together in a way where they complemented each other.”

This multi-cultural approach, and mix of organic and synth sounds fit very naturally for the two composers. Nicholas O’Toole has been a multi-instrumental musician since the age of 7, when he began to study piano and guitar. He graduated Cum Laude from Berklee College of Music in 2003 with a degree in film scoring and an emphasis on traditional composition, music theory and computer music technology. In 2003 he relocated to L.A. and began scoring independent films as well as ghostwriting for major composers scoring for television. Nicholas's expertise ranges from traditional orchestral scoring to modern electronic/hybrid scoring styles.

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