What Comes Back - Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross

original score to the soundtrack for The Vietnam War (2017)

What a challenge it must have been to compose the soundtrack for Ken Burn's extended documentary on The Vietnam War.  I am not sure that many artists would take on this project, let alone deliver such an outstanding product.  Hats off to Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross !!!

For the past week, I have been playing this soundtrack in my headphones as I ride a crowded rail to work.  In this context, I become both detached - and highly tuned into - my surroundings.  I imagine this is what it must have felt like to be on patrol in a Vietnamese village.

The men I know who actually had that experience prefer not to talk about it.  As much as I respect their silence, I wish they would share their experiences.

My favorite song on the soundtrack is What Comes Back.  I really dig its craft.  The song has a menacing quality.  One part of it is the deliberate tempo and the dull thud of the snare.  The other part are the two guitar voices, one playing an abrasive western guitar and the other laying down a quasi-psychedelic eastern vibe.

The soundscape then expands to include piano and other instrumentation.  Every piece is perfectly placed, lending itself to the composition.  It is stunning.

I also dig that this composition is completely modern.  How easy would it be to go old school and lay down some 60s vibe.  This is completely fresh.  Even the closing mayhem, evoking Hendrix, is modern and new.

Great stuff.

Click Here to listen to What Comes Back.