A Conversation with Composer Cliff Martinez – Cool Hunting

Nicolas Winding Refn and Cliff Martinez

Nicolas Winding Refn and Cliff Martinez

The brains behind the film music for Solaris, Drive and Spring Breakers on his newest bloody project with Steven Soderbergh.

A Conversation with Composer Cliff Martinez at Moogfest this year attracted a mix of curious festival attendees and die-hard fans – many of whom cared much more for Martinez’s dark, ambient scores than the actual movie plots. The regular Steven Soderbergh collaborator (“Sex, Lies and Videotape,” “Traffic,” and “Solaris”) has reached even more prominence lately since scoring critically acclaimed films such as Nicolas Winding Refn’s “Drive” and Harmony Korine’s “Spring Breakers.” Martinez, a soft-spoken and charming speaker, was surprisingly upfront about where he gets his ideas and how he executes them. Budding film score composers, take note: Martinez uses software synths like Omnisphere and u-he, arranging in Ableton Live, but calls himself a preset guy. However, you probably don’t own a gamelan metallophone or 17 baritone steel drums from Trinidad—the latter of which are prominently featured on the “Solaris” soundtrack, which Martinez cites as his all-time favorite score: “I wish I could roll out of bed every day and write another ‘Solaris.'”  – Nara Shin

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