Greed, Lust & Cloning

Don Bodin

Independent Release, 2006

REVIEW BY: Vish Iyer


On Greed Lust & Cloning, an exciting soundtrack for an imaginary science fiction film, music composer Don Bodin brings a wide range of influences to the record. He blends opera, classical, jazz and modern rock in a blender, and allows this mix to frolic with his true love, techno, to conjure up a style that’s as vibrant as it is intense.

While on one hand Bodin and his band find themselves revving up the guitars on “Punishment” to produce some jangle with the beats surrounding it going hyper-fast in an Earthling-style Bowie manner, on the other hand, as on “Open Title,” they allow an almost muted aria to play the leading role as the focal point of the whole song.

Almost as noticeable as the influence of electronica on this album is the influence of jazz. Even in the complex layers of its music, my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Greed Lust & Cloning possesses the fluidity and the spontaneity of jazz. The element of unpredictability of jazz comes in the form of cellos and violins that manifest in the weirdest forms amid the electronica rock onslaught. On “Chasing Cohen,” the immediacy of the electronica beats is teased by some violin sections on their worst panic attacks, fuelling the craziness of the music with some really beautiful orchestral bombast.

But amid the unexpectedness and the chaos of the record, it is during times when it slows down its pace and decides to be very very sexy and predictable that it sounds best. “Pneuma” is not as complex as other tracks, but the sheer sensuousness that it exudes, especially when the calming music gets a dose of crisp drums and sticky cello, makes it completely unforgettable. “Belly Of The Beast,” another comparatively simple cut, is very sensuous but in the most unconventional manner due to its absolute moroseness, provided by some very low-key piano and eerie cello work making it very appealing.

Bodin may be the only creative brain behind Greed Lust & Cloning, but only a part of the actual brilliance that results in the music can be attributed to him. That is because of the talented musicians involved in the album that make it sound so damn good. Even if they haven’t composed the music, these musicians have brought their own individual stylistic elements to the record, giving it that extra edge.

However, the credit ultimately goes to Bodin. He has given Elif Savas on vocals, Leah Nelson on viola, Alisha Bauer on cello, Chris Schleyer on guitars and bass and Garret Hammond on drums complete freedom to express themselves in their own respective aspects of the music, giving scope for more creative opportunities and room for greater experimentation.

A sci-fi soundtrack without many vocals relying purely on ambience can be a difficult affair and can easily get uninteresting. But Bodin’s superb music sense, coupled with his arsenal of amazing musicians, has resulted in an album that is nothing short of extraordinary. This is soundtrack music, no doubt, but is much more interesting than your average movie soundtrack.

Rating: A-

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© 2006 Vish Iyer and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Independent Release, and is used for informational purposes only.