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Black Francis
The Golem - The Bureau
FILTER Grade: 84%

By Scott Thill on January 20, 2011

 

Black Francis

Although music from the legendary Pixies has shown up in films like Unbreakable and Fight Club, Black Francis scored the entirety of director Paul Wegener’s 1920 German Expressionist classic The Golem: How He Came into the World in 2008 and released the soundtrack as a limited-edition, two-disc collection in early 2010. The rest of us get a shot at this single-disc rock opera derived from the original score, which should nevertheless fit nicely in between Pistolero and Dog in the Sand on the shelves of Black Francis loyalists. Impassioned but measured strummers like “Bad News” and “The Obedient Servant” recall winsome tunes from Frank Black’s back pages, while the klezmer-rock of “The Word” and soul-pop of “Astaroth” could have shown up on Teenager of the Year. Knowledge of The Golem isn’t necessary for understanding Black Francis’ latest experiment, but it helps when peeling back the inter-textual layers of his still-impressive lyricism.

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