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La Hora Cero by Freddy Sheinfeld & Gabriel Velasco (Review)

posted Mar 7, 2012, 5:52 PM by Kaya Savas

The Zero Hour (English translation) is an action thriller that tells the story of a hitman who takes a hospital hostage in order to save his girlfriend. What follows is a high voltage ride that combines fast paced editing and a thrilling score from Freddy Sheinfeld and Gabriel Velasco. The score is a fantastic and energetic ride that strives in its simplicity. Propulsive strings, guitar bursts and percussion fuel the opening as the music slows down and finds its pace for the rest of the story. The score listening experience as a whole is presented greatly on album.

The score starts off with a visceral intensity that leads to a very emotional body that takes up most of the running time. Sheinfeld and Velasco know exactly how to play each instrument to its strengths. For example there are some beautiful piano passages in the score, but the piano is also used slightly in a high-octane track. The soundscape has a bold voice and utilizes simple melodies to echo big emotions. There is always a bubbling tension throughout and it leads us to the dreary conclusion that acts more as a "fade to black" than a "cut to black". The album also has some other songs sprinkled throughout and they fit in the soundscape of the score. Some people may scoff at the dialogue bits included, but in this day and age you can easily build a playlist to not include them. At least they aren't part of the musical tracks like in Rango. The short track times shouldn't be a deterrent either. In most cases short track times fail to capture a listener since it's hard to grasp a flow, but here that's not the case. There is a really precise flow to the album and never did I feel it was choppy. Overall the score has a lot to offer from two great talents.

La Hora Cero is by no means a big score, but that's what makes it so great. It's an intimate journey that plays heavily on character and emotion. The simple instrumentation and execution makes it a very fine-tuned experience. Freddy Sheinfeld and Gabriel Velasco have demonstrated amazing control and structure here and it's a score worth checking out.
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