Stealing Sheep/Radiophonic Workshop: La planete sauvage (Fire/digital outlets)

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Terr and Tiwa
Stealing Sheep/Radiophonic Workshop: La planete sauvage (Fire/digital outlets)

While we know there are few things new under the sun, the Avatar film was a jaw-dropper for it technological and visual invention.

As always, some couldn't contain their contempt for its somewhat ham-fisted message. But they were mostly cynical adults and not the 12-year olds whose eyes and minds were opened with wonder . . . and got the message.

Giant blue humanoid figures had appeared before on film, in Rene Laloux's 1973 animated feature La planete sauvage (Fantastic Planet) which also had a message and its allegorical story appealed to adults as much as children.

It was Bosch-meets-Yellow Submarine/The Point + Morlocks and Eloi if you will, erring more to the dark side . . . but with a happy ending.

The soundtrack (much sought after on original vinyl) was by Alain Gorageur and very much evoked the LSD/early Pink Floyd era with hazy instrumentals, wah-wah and ballads in short sound snippets. Of its period, we might say.

It's on Spotify here.

This new approach to a soundtrack for the film however is by Britain's electronica Stealing Sheep all-women trio from Liverpool with the famous Radiophonic Workshop experimentalists (one of whom Roger Limb acts as the narrator in brief linking passages which do require the film).

Stealing Sheep have often offered whimsical disco-influenced pop (their cover of Heart's Barracuda) and pure entertainment (check their video for Shut Eye with the inflatable suits) as much as influences from Can, Floyd and others on the loose-limbed tripped-out ambience axis.

Here they mostly tone down the pop for soundscapes to parallel the pictures which means to appreciate something like the drama of The Duel you do need to have the images in front of you.

So here's what you could do.

Just as you once cued up Dark Side of the Moon and synched it with The Wizard of Oz (didn't you?) then cue up this soundtrack from Spotify here  and watch it with the original film below.

Good luck.


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