Film scores

Soundtrack review: Camino (Kreng – 2016)

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Keep the lights on for this one and a water bottle nearby because your throat might dry up pretty fast. The tense moments are almost unbearable while the quieter ambient pieces and brilliant. Definitely try this one.

“Camino” is a 2015 movie directed by Josh C Waller. In the jungles of Colombia, a photojournalist captures the truth behind a group of missionaries who may not be what they seem. The score was written by Belgian artist Kreng who made quite an impression on me with last year’s “Cooties” which was made by the same director.

Somehow I expecting the score to sound the way it does. Somehow what the composer created here fits my image of the story at hand: a combination between uncomfortable and scary moments and emotional, ambient pieces. The opening of the score might have been a little abrasive but the theme for “Daniel” helps me ease into the water and find my comfort zone. This is the kind of atmospheric piano piece I always fall for from the first seconds. With every cue that’s written in this sound I get more and more confident about the score and I wish the mood wouldn’t change. I am almost afraid that the dream will end and the dreamy state, dark as it is, will have to end.

It does end, of course, or, better said it’s interrupted because this album was written to serve a story, not me. Fortunately I am into experimental and uncomfortable film music so a dense and suffocating cue like “Justicial” works for me. It remind me of the choking atmosphere in “Sicario” so if you enjoyed that one you can listen to “Camino” without worries. The discomfort reaches frightening peaks sometimes and I feel the walls moving and the earth shaking as every single element of the world around me seems to be out to get me. Kreng doesn’t spare his listeners and there’s no way out of this musical swamp.

This score is all about the atmosphere. Don’t expect themes or epic moments or memorable cues. “Camino” wasn’t written to impress; it was written to make the listener feel what the film audience will feel and, even deeper, what the characters in the story feel. There’s no light in Kreng’s music and barely any hope. There’s a lot of things to be afraid off and a lot of things to be intrigued by. There are times when it doesn’t even feel like music but just creepy and distorted sounds heard by someone who has just woken up from a night mare and doesn’t understand if what he hears is real or just reminiscent of what he just dreamt.

Keep the lights on for this one and a water bottle nearby because your throat might dry up pretty fast. The tense moments are almost unbearable while the quieter ambient pieces and brilliant. Definitely try this one.

Cue rating: 87 / 100

Total minutes of excellence: 25 / 63

Album excellence: 39%

Highlights:

02 Daniel

03 I Want To Make A Toast

07 The Chase

14 Can You See The Spiral Now

16 I Was Innocent

17 Back In A Flash

19 The Bottom Of The Spiral

20 Arturo Guillermo Dias Rohas

About the author

Mihnea Manduteanu

I have been listening to film music for 25 years and writing about it since 2014. I've written over 1000 reviews and I can't imagine myself doing anything else. I am also a member of IFMCA (International Film Music Critics Association).

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