- Review by Kaya Savas - January 24, 2018
Amazon’s The Man In The High Castle continues on in its third season, following Juliana and her journey within the resistance into new territory along with a new showrunner. The series has always been one of the more engaging and well-done shows on TV despite not being talked about as much around the water cooler. From the start, The Man In The High Castle demonstrated excellent writing, directing, production design, acting and of course score. Creator Frank Spotnitz was the showrunner for seasons 1 and 2, but he departed the series after the second season. Writer and producer Eric Overmyer was brought in as showrunner for season 3, which continues to evolve the series further into the character-driven but world-building plot. One thing that didn’t change was Dominic Lewis at the helm of the music, which has become one of the most important aspects of this series. Season 3’s music continues to build on the brilliant execution and emotionally-driven storytelling that has come before.
Lewis has always been able to weave tension, intrigue and emotion with ease. Season 3 is no different as he crafts an intricate web of music that takes us down into the depths and darkness while also crafting emotionally engaging character arcs. The emotions are born from the characters, and Lewis easily connects his music to the stellar performances onscreen.
Season 3’s plot introduces some science fiction elements into the already “alternate history” fantasy storyline. However, the score still remains born of this time and place in "history". What makes the music of The Man In The High Castle standout is the structure, and how strong the bond is between score and picture. Lewis can build a scene like no other, laying down the foundation and then building an arc with so many intricate details that you swear the show was edited directly to the music. Season 2 may have had some bigger swells of dread and gravitas, but Season 3 finds a way to tap into this sense of hope. We feel the fire has been lit, and we can feel the flame building just till the end when some stuff goes down and darkness falls over to close the season. Some highlights of the album are tracks like “Reichsmarschall”, “Requiem” and “Lights Out”.
I think many of us also forget that Dominic is vocalist who has performed on his own scores in the past as well as on scores for composers like Hans Zimmer and Henry Jackman. Here, it was great to hear Dominic performing vocal touches to “Requiem”, adding a layer of emotion that only the human voice can add. It makes it even more special knowing the voice of the composer is there adding a layer of haunting beauty.
The Man In The High Castle continues to be some of the finest TV scoring out there. Dominic Lewis has an amazing canvas to paint this score on, and he seizes every opportunity to do something memorable with this expertly crafted series. The way the music crafts those chill-inducing builds, or injects a deep emotional core to the story is always memorable. You’ll pick up on some old motifs here, and enjoy the new places that Dominic takes the music to. The Man In The High Castle continues to owe a lot to Dominic Lewis’ musical storytelling, and Season 3 shows the score shining just as bright as it has been in the past 2 seasons. The album has a great selection from season 3, but the series is worth watching to see the score in action.