19 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The French-born Hollywood film composer Alexandre Desplat has scored a number of major productions in recent years. Twilight Saga: New Moon, installments of the Harry Potter series, The King’s Speech, and The Tree of Life are just some of the high-profile projects he’s written music for. But he’s also worked on smaller efforts, such as 2011’s A Better Life. Directed by Chris Weitz (whose previous work includes About a Boy, The Golden Compass, and New Moon), A Better Life depicts the struggles of a Latino immigrant and his relationship with his son. The opening title track features a nicely plucked melody and a fine arrangement with brass riffs that answer the lead line. “Santiago Steals the Truck” bristles with restless percussion and surging chords while “Deportation” quietly creates a melancholy mood with its deft, spare string writing. “Coming Home” spotlights reflective piano along with woodwinds, strings, guitar, and orchestral bells as it builds to a dramatic conclusion. The Los Angeles-based multi-culti band Ozomatli's “El Jardinero” is a Spanish-language song that’s as catchy as it is blue.

EDITORS’ NOTES

The French-born Hollywood film composer Alexandre Desplat has scored a number of major productions in recent years. Twilight Saga: New Moon, installments of the Harry Potter series, The King’s Speech, and The Tree of Life are just some of the high-profile projects he’s written music for. But he’s also worked on smaller efforts, such as 2011’s A Better Life. Directed by Chris Weitz (whose previous work includes About a Boy, The Golden Compass, and New Moon), A Better Life depicts the struggles of a Latino immigrant and his relationship with his son. The opening title track features a nicely plucked melody and a fine arrangement with brass riffs that answer the lead line. “Santiago Steals the Truck” bristles with restless percussion and surging chords while “Deportation” quietly creates a melancholy mood with its deft, spare string writing. “Coming Home” spotlights reflective piano along with woodwinds, strings, guitar, and orchestral bells as it builds to a dramatic conclusion. The Los Angeles-based multi-culti band Ozomatli's “El Jardinero” is a Spanish-language song that’s as catchy as it is blue.

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