The horror director’s scores changed the landscape.

John Carpenter‘s recently released the album Anthology highlighting some of his most enduring themes. The innovative director took auteurism in a different direction than most when he began composing the scores for his films, but he also used this power to forever change how horror sounded. His synth-heavy sound is still present in modern horror TV and movies, while some pop music also cribs from the director.

The haunting theme from Halloween or the pounding taps of the Assault on Precinct 13 score are gems within gems – and every modern director hopes to ape them.

Essayist Matt Draper created a thorough, well-researched history of Carpenter’s musical journey – from origins to legacy – that deciphers and explains how the B-movie hero used his practical, creative chops in his musical life as well as his directorial career.

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