In 2004, when the original Saw was released as a relatively unknown indie horror film, who could have predicted that in 2008 the Saw franchise would be hitting its fifth film and be all but credited with the creation of a new genre of horror – torture porn? Each subsequent film has worked to heighten the level of intensity and mystery that the film before it inspired, and Saw V is no exception. Additionally, the film’s soundtracks have worked to build on the films’ already grim but entertaining stylizations.
This album (a score/soundtrack hybrid)Â opens quickly with some hard-hitting electronic score work by Charlie Clouser (ex-Nine Inch Nails) that laws some impressive groundwork for an album that turns out to be much more listenable than non-metal fans might think at first glance. This isn’t the type of hard rock that strives for screaming vocals and overly heavy guitar. Instead, there’s a general sense of anger and struggle running through these tracks that plays nicely under the surface of the music rather than straight up front.
The music in the more electronic tracks (like “The Dawning of Doom” by Die Krupps, “ugLi” by Skinny Puppy, “Blood and Music” by Fimer/McCarthy) even come across as borderline video game style, though the haunting vocals onÂ bothÂ change that perception. William Control’s “Strangers” is more poppy than the rest of the album, though it does have dark undertones, and “Wizard of Sextown” by the Revolting Cocks is actually less revolting than their moniker suggests. “Wizard of Sextown” is actually a slightly hard psychadelic tune that stretches on for seven minutes with electronic background music and flowing vocals. In the end the album comes full circle, wrapping up with some score work by Charlie Clouser. This track is a lot quieter and contemplative at first, though, before building into a pounding crescendo that ends the album.
Bottom Line - This album is a solid mix of score and soundtrack that is not as heavy as it might be perceived.
Zach’s Rating: A-
Perfect For: A grimly driven, but quietly heavy mood album
Stay Away if: You want something screaming and pounding
If you buy only one track, make it this one: “What’s Next (The Blood & Sand Mix)” – Filter
To purchase the soundtrack for Saw V, visit Amazon