Every Record I Own: John Carpenter – Anthology
It was John Carpenters 75th Birthday the other day and if I realised that in advance I may have written this for that occasion, but instead here it is now.
My fave guy, Tom Breihan, who I have already mentioned once in this blog and will come up again. Used to write a column for the AV Club called A History of Violence, where he wrote about the best action film of each year from 1968 (Bullit) to 2021 (F9). And John Carpenter’s Assault on Precinct 13 is 1976’s best Action film.
Before reading this column, the only John Carpenter film I had seen was Halloween. I was aware that he made the soundtrack to most of his films and people were really into them, but I’d never really explored that. Now a couple of years on, I have still not watched any more John Carpenter films, but I have gotten very into his music.
It has become regular writing/study/working music for me. It’s the right mix of atmospheric which still propulsive. It can sit in the background or come to the center of my attention and it feels like it makes my brain think differently.
It has also been quite influential in my own music making. I have a musical instrument called a Deluge, which is a sequencer/synthesizer/drum machine/sampler which feels like it was made to make John Carpenter-esque music.
Here’s a track I made for Josiah Morgan’s Show Ponies performance in Dunedin which was pretty heavily influenced by John Carpenter.
This is one of my most recent records. I bought it over summer from the Flying Out sale. This anthology is rerecorded versions of his tracks by his current band. Sometimes I feel like it’s really well done and effective and other times it feels a bit overproduced. The synths are a bit cleaner and the drums sound much more highly produced, which leaves me missing the cheaper drum machine sounds of the originals. However it does make the album as a whole a lot more cohesive, which works when you’re listening to the record.
My new goal of 2023 is to watch Assault on Precinct 13.
Fave tracks: The Fog, Assault on Precinct 13, Halloween.