Jon Natchez: Luzzu - Official Soundtrack: Vinyl LP

Luzzu - Official Soundtrack: Vinyl LP

Jon Natchez

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  • Release Date 06 May 2022
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Vinyl LP
Phantom Limb

LA composer and musician Jon Natchez (The War On Drugs, Beirut, David Byrne, St. Vincent) scores stunning, award-winning Maltese independent movie Luzzu for Phantom Limb’s Geist im Kino soundtrack imprint.

Maltese screenwriter and director Alex Camilleri’s glorious Luzzu sits at 100% on Rotten Tomatoes. “All submerged,” writes Carlos Aguilar for the Los Angeles Times, “in Jon Natchez’s enrapturing score.” Composed for strings, flutes, clarinets, brass, synthesiser and the masterful harp of acclaimed artist Mary Lattimore, Natchez’s work for Luzzu celebrates, reflects, and glues together the gritty, loving agony of Camilleri’s staggering directorial debut.

The film tells the story of a young fisherman struggling, under the scorching Maltese sun, with the sea’s diminishing returns, with his newborn son’s illness, with his partner’s judgemental family, and with the slow death of a tradition that his family has practised for generations. As money worries tighten their grip, Jesmark - magnificently portrayed by undiscovered nonprofessional actor Jesmark Scicluna - finds himself caught between morality and tradition, survival and responsibility. Camilleri’s screenwriting is challenging and potent, his portrait of rural Malta alive with vibrancy and colour.

Jon Natchez’s soundtrack expertly interweaves these themes. Barely-whispered woodwind chords light up dusty trails of synthesis. Propulsive percussive layers chatter with heady Mediterranean clamour. Mary Lattimore’s harp peeks out from clouds of sunwashed strings. In one profoundly stirring scene, the local priest wordlessly blesses the multitude of tiny, solo fishing vessels (the luzzu of the movie’s title) heading out for the day’s catch, guarding them against the tempers of the sea as he rows from one boat the next. Natchez makes the sequence both intense and tender with gently flowering Baroquish melodies.

1 Not Even God Will Stop It  
2 The Care He Needs  
3 Knock Him Into The Sea  
4 Need Any  
5 Fill Their Nets  
6 Scraping Off  
7 The Foreign Chill  
8 Give Me The Rope  
9 Afternoon Nap  
10 Like The Other One  
11 Happy?  
1 Once There Was A Boat  
2 End Credits  
3 That's The Normal Kind  
4 This New Hawker  
5 All I've Got  
6 The Swordfish  
7 A Good Bit of Work  
8 Nothing's Biting Today