Infused with the brilliant atmospheric quality that made Hans Zimmer’s Inception so mesmerizing, Clint Mansell’s score for Moon (2009) is nothing less than a work of art. That is to say, fifty-five minutes of pure, unadulterated musical poetry. Eschewing lackluster conventionalism, Mansell has crafted a soundtrack that is haunting, crisp, tense, and above all, a joy to listen to. This is quiet, evocative film music at it’s best.
The album opens with Welcome to Lunar Industries, a lengthy piece dominated by atmospheric electronica, minimalist piano, and punctuated by percussion and an occasional flourish of strings – effectively setting the tone for the rest of the album. Memories is one of the loveliest, most graceful piano compositions I’ve heard in quite some time, contrasting sharply with brooding and dissonant Are You Receiving?. Tension reaches a peak in Sacrifice, erupting around the one-and-a-half minute mark into an adrenaline-fueled variation on the main theme. We’re Going Home is marked the sense of relief and hopefulness which the title suggests. The score draws to a close with a longer and more fleshed out version of Welcome to Lunar Industries, ending everything on just the right note.