Surgical Instruments: The Knick’s Cliff Martinez on Creating the Show’s Musical Heartbeat

Ricardo DeAratanha/Los Angeles Times/Contour by Getty Images

Cliff Martinez – Photo Ricardo DeAratanha

If you were initially thrown by the modern, electronic music used to score Steven Soderbergh’s 1900-set medical drama The Knick, you are not alone: The idea also caught the show’s composer, Cliff Martinez, off guard at first.

“The most important thing that Steven usually does that outlines the approach is that he sends me a rough cut of the picture. The big curveball in The Knick was that temporary music [he used] as he was editing — he was using my music from Drive and Contagion and Spring Breakers, which was a surprise because it didn’t acknowledge the period whatsoever. In fact, it kind of went in the opposite direction,” Martinez tells TVGuide.com. “At first it seemed like a risk because the whole idea of the show was to try to put the viewer in 1900 in New York and everything was pulling in that direction except for the music. I had a phone call with Steven and then I just said, ‘Are you sure you want to do this?’ He said, ‘Yeah. It’s going to be all electronic. It’s going to be modern. That’s intentional.’ And after a few weeks, it had become the sound of the show.”

Read the full article at TV Guide

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