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VARÈSE SARABANDE RECORDS: "THE MATRIX 2CD (THE COMPLETE EDITION)" and "PAYCHECK 2CD (THE DELUXE EDITION)" (CLUB TITLES FOR JUNE)

Varèse Sarabande Records is thrilled to announce its June 2021 CD Club titles: The Matrix (The Complete Edition) by Don Davis and Paycheck (The Deluxe Edition) by John Powell. These titles are available today, June 11, exclusively on VareseSarabande.com and internationally on Intl.VareseSarabande.com. The CD Club launched its official start in 1989 and has been a staple of the label ever since, relaunching classic titles from renowned composers such as John Williams and Ennio Morricone, among many others.

 
The Matrix (The Complete Edition): Few blockbusters can claim to be as influential as The Matrix (1999), written and directed by the Wachowskis. From its super high concept that has wormed its way into the public’s imagination (what if we’re all just living in a computer simulation?), to Keanu Reeves’ iconic hero Neo, to the brilliant, jaw-dropping and story-based visual effects, The Matrix delivered on all fronts. Its three films grossed over $1.6 billion worldwide, and a fourth is on the way.
 
The Matrix demanded a score that was as unique, sophisticated and imaginative as its concept and action—and that’s exactly what composer Don Davis delivered. Davis, who scored the Wachowskis’ Bound (1996), reinvented the symphonic language of the action blockbuster by drawing on cutting-edge concert-hall minimalism and his own background as an avant-garde composer, while maintaining the energy, pace and density required of a studio action film.
 
From the clashing-brass “reflections,” to the racing strings, pounding percussion and flittering, repeating musical “cells,” the Matrix score fits hand-in-glove with the film’s concept of a computer-controlled reality—and offers a unique musical thumbprint that is recognizable sometimes only from a single note or chord. It is the rare commercial triumph that is also an artistic landmark.
 
“One thing the Wachowskis did want was something new and different. Every director will tell you they want that something new and different until they actually hear it. But I took that to heart, and it was clear that a unique approach really was right for that film. I’ve kept my hand in composing concert music from the beginning, so I was aware of what was going on in that arena. [We] were working in a style that some were calling ‘postmodern,’ which seemed to be fitting for a postmodern film like The Matrix. And I saw this as an opportunity to take it in a stylistic direction that wouldn’t work in other films but specifically did work in this film,” says composer Don Davis.
 
The Matrix was released by Varèse Sarabande at the time of the film, and then in a Deluxe Edition that fit as much of the score as possible on one CD. By popular demand, this new 2-CD set presents the complete score. This version is also available through Record Store Day 2021 as a 3-LP set releasing on July 17. Visit RecordStoreDay.com to find a participating retailer. Liner notes feature a new interview with Don Davis conducted by Kaya Savas.
 
*Standard CD limited to 2,000 copies
*SACD limited to 1,000 copies


Paycheck (The Deluxe Edition): John Powell burst into film scoring with a magnificent, emotional and modern soundtrack to John Woo’s iconic hit, Face/Off (1997). Six years later, Woo and Powell reunited for Paycheck (2003), a sci-fi techno-thriller based on a 1953 short story by Philip K. Dick (Blade Runner, Total Recall).
 
Ben Affleck stars as a programming engineer who undergoes a voluntary memory wipe to protect his client’s secrets—but upon going to collect his paycheck, he is given an envelope of seemingly random trinkets and items. He must use these clues to unearth the terrible secrets of his own project.
 
By 2003, John Powell had already scored The Bourne Identity and had his finger on the pulse of the modern action-thriller score. Paycheck blends synth and pop-rhythms with orchestral scope and, most importantly, Powell’s impeccable sense of taste. Despite almost non-stop action and suspense, he focuses on emotion and utilizes melody to elevate the proceedings.
 
“I’ve always wanted to do a ballet, so I had been fascinated by choreographers and dance for quite some time. I utilized that conversation with John [Woo] as an inspiration to create the drama of a danced story,” says John Powell.
 
He explains, “This album has everything on it. It gives me a slight panic attack looking at how much music there is on this album. It all sounds very good to me and at the same time like utter nonsense. I’ve always tried to be better at harmony. A lot of composers I admire have this incredible sense of harmonic flow and flexibility. When I achieve that on occasion, it makes me happy.”

 
Paycheck was released by Varèse Sarabande at the time of the film. This 2-CD set Deluxe Edition greatly expands the playing time to over 95 minutes, and features new liner notes by Daniel Schweiger, incorporating new interview comments with Powell.

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Varèse Sarabande is one of the leading and most prolific producers of film and television soundtracks. The label was formed as a merger between Varèse International Records (named for composer Edgar Varèse) and Sarabande Records (named after a musical dance form). The label’s iconic logo – a frequent curiosity of fans around the globe -is actually an inkblot created by blowing a straw on a piece of paper with India ink.
 
Initially a classical label, Varèse Sarabande released its first album of film music in June 1978. Since then, Varèse Sarabande has released thousands of soundtracks and new recordings of classic film scores conducted by celebrated composers with the world’s best-known orchestras.
 
The label upped the ante for fans by creating the Varèse Sarabande CD Club—releasing exclusive limited-edition deluxe soundtracks featuring rare and long-requested titles. The CD Club ran initially from 1989–92 and was restarted in 2001, and Varèse continues to create Deluxe Editions of cherished scores that might otherwise never see a release.

Since joining Concord in 2018, Varèse Sarabande continues to release new television and film scores, high-quality vinyl and Deluxe Edition soundtracks.
  
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Buy:  varesesarabande.com / intl.varesesarabande.com 
 
Whooaaaaaa, just whoa!
Jeremy [Six Strings]

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