Other... - July 29, 2014

hmv.com presents… The Best Soundtracks Of All Time: Lift To The Scaffold
by Tom
Tom
by Tom hmv London, Bio hmv.com Editor. Peanut butter, punk rock and pillows.

hmv.com presents… The Best Soundtracks Of All Time: Lift To The Scaffold

With some great in-store offers coming this summer on film soundtracks as part our 'Decades' series, every day we'll be picking the best soundtrack, one for every year, starting with 1950 right through to the present day. Today we're up to 1958 and the strange French film Lift To The Scaffold with a soundtrack from jazz great Miles Davis...

 

What?

Lift To The Scaffold. Or Elevator To The Gallows as it's known in the US. You can check out the soundtrack here. 

 

When?

1958. 

 

So what’s this film?

This is a bit of an odd one. Released in 1958, as Ascenseur pour l'échafaud, which literally translates as Elevator To The Gallows, the film is directed by Louis Malle and tells the story of a cocky, self-assured business man who decides to murder his employer, who also happens to be the husband of his mistress. Needless to say, things don't go so well after that... 

 

Is this a score or soundtrack?

It's a score, a score by celebrated jazz musician Miles Davis no less. 

 

So what’s it like?

It's loose, it's sometimes graceful, sometimes sleazy and very sinister. It compliments the film's claustrophobic atmosphere perfectly. 

 

What does it give the film?

It fits the film's mood and style perfectly, with every note sounding like its drenched in bar smoke, bad liquor and dirty deeds. 

 

Has it stood the test of time?

Miles Davis fascinates people, and for good reason. His music is both experimental and seminal, this is up there with the best of it. 

 

Elevator to the Gallows
Elevator to the Gallows Elevator to the Gallows
Miles Davis - Louis Malle's Elevator To The Gallows Recording Session

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