October 17, 2021

Whiplash – Original Soundtrack

USM   19th Feb 2016

Drawn from an indie film, this is a drum-heavy creation – and extremely cool. The story of a student jazz drummer, the whole set is jazz, often big-band jazz, with an emphasis on rhythm and makes, whether you’d expect it or not, great listening, a soundtrack to your evening at home or perhaps your journey to work.

The anti-X-Factor, this 2014 low-budget indie film got picked up for Cannes in 2015 and gained a lot of praise. Instead of some lucky auditioner facing a panel of “experts”, this is the story of a drummer working his hands to bleeding sponges to win the approval of his sadistic tutor, who then betrays him, wins him round and betrays him again. Little of this is apparent in the soundtrack, which features a succession of punchy pieces with a polished band – more the sort of thing the Brecker Brothers would be in than the Mingus Big Band. These alternate with quieter piano ballads (all instrumental) and make for a filmic atmosphere for your bachelor pad. The rehearsal drum solos only add to the atmosphere. There is no flavour of the freakishly un-jazz Jazz FM, just the sort of swing that we might have been grooving to if rock and roll hadn’t happened along.

A cool oddity.