Philip Selway - Let Me Go (Official Soundtrack) album review

First film score from Radiohead’s dark horse

TODO alt text

With two fine solo albums, Familial and Weatherhouse, Philip Selway has already proved that he’s a viable musical force away from the Radiohead drum stool, but this is his most impressive project yet. The soundtrack to Polly Steele’s film of Helga Schneider’s memoir, it rises to the story’s serious themes (family, loss and Auschwitz) with a refined, gentle touch, managing to stir the emotions while never sacrificing intimacy for the sake of pomp. Of course it’s foolish and reductive to box Selway as ‘the drummer’ anyway, his musical contributions to Radiohead having been so much more diverse. Here he brings in gorgeous strings (arranged by Laura Moody), electronics, glockenspiels and vibraphones. Lou Rhodes (Lamb) sings Walk with understated presence, while Selway sings two tracks with skilfully repressed urgency. His motifs find pockets of warmth within the sombre subject and while there are appropriately chilly, haunted diversions, there’s a kinship with the comforting melancholy of David Sylvian or John Martyn, or the softly invigorating atmospheres of Talk Talk. Let Me Go fills the room with a delicate grace. Jonny Greenwood, watch your back!