Cliff Martinez’s score for upcoming Nicolas Winding Refn show Too Old To Die Young is incredible — if the cue “Naked Guy Murder” is any indication of the whole album. (There’s really no doubt that it would be good.) The track went live today, about a month ahead of the Amazon series hitting Prime Video and the full soundtrack’s digital release via Milan Records. (Vinyl release is set for next month, too.)
On “Naked Guy Murder,” Martinez’s work reflects the blend of heavier, darker orchestral cues and electronic experimentation heard on his score for last year’s Drew Pearce-helmed Hotel Artemis rather than his offerings for Refn films Drive and The Neon Demon.
The track begins with a shifting drone that’s accompanied by disturbed symphonics and a haunting splash of synths. That gives way to staccato strings and a cascading synth expression that is classic Martinez. Stirring ambient sounds and analog synths fill in the blanks. It’s at once a heavily populated piece and a roomy, minimal one. And it’s fantastic.
The ten-episode TOTDY represents the fourth film or TV project Martinez has worked on with Refn. (Drive kicked it off in 2011, followed by Only God Forgives, The Neon Demon and now TOTDY, though Martinez also scored My Life by Nicolas Winding Refn, which Refn’s wife, Liv Corfixen, directed.)
Learn More About Martinez
Last year I interviewed Martinez twice. In a profile for Vehlinggo, we talked a bit about his working partnership with Refn, including Too Old To Die Young. In a Lakeshore Records Podcast episode I hosted, we focused on Hotel Artemis. In 2016 Martinez talked about Drive on its fifth anniversary.
Too Old To Die Young Album Tracklist
In keeping with recent tradition, this is the latest Refn-affiliated project Milan Records is handling. (In addition to Refn’s visual projects, Milan also releases his curated Nicolas Winding Refn Presents series.) The digital version of the Too Old To Die Young soundtrack will hit the digital realm on June 14 with a two-record, colored vinyl version to follow in July.
Here’s the full tracklist:
Naked Guy Murder
No Smoking Allowed Here
Larry Was A Family Man
Why Does Damian Have a Problem With You
Kill Me Fast and Clean
I Hereby Give You Yaritza
Mothers Favorite Skit
Get Some Ice Cream
Jesus and the Snake
High Priestess of Death
I Got Tim
Viggo and Diana
Walking to the Girl in the Ground
I Can’t Dig Her Out
I’m Not Going To Hurt You
Death By Golf Club
Summassault (performed by Julian Winding)
Oh La La (performed by Goldfrapp)
F.F.A (performed by The Leather Nun)
I Put The Blue In Her Eyes (performed by Frankie Miller)
Elvis and Marilyn (performed by Jimmy Angel and the Jason Gutierrez 3)
La Alta Sacerdota De La Muerto (performed by Carolina Hoyos)
About Nicolas Winding Refn’s Too Old To Die Young
The show premieres on June 14. Each of the 10 episodes is said to have a runtime in the 90-minute range. Famed comic book writer Ed Brubaker handles writing duties with Refn. I haven’t seen any of the show yet, so here’s the rundown of it from a press release:
This unique and visually stunning series tells the story of Martin (Miles Teller), a grieving police officer, who finds himself caught in the Los Angeles criminal underworld where various forces push towards sinister goals. William Baldwin, John Hawkes, and Jena Malone complete the stellar cast. The series includes all the elements that have made Nicolas Winding Refn so sought after among cinema lovers: stunning visuals, exhilarating sequences, exciting action, and, of course, a one-of-a-kind soundtrack.