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Johann Johannsson on 'Arrival' score / Vulture - Song Exploder podcast

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This fall, Vulture is partnering with the podcast Song Exploder for a series of episodes on the most interesting film scores of the year. Here, host Hrishikesh Hirway interviews Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson about the music of Arrival, his third collaboration with director Denis Villeneuve. (His fourth, the Blade Runner sequel, is coming in 2017.) Jóhannsson was nominated twice in the Oscars' Best Score category last year, and his minimalist arrangements for Arrival have made him one of the front runners in this year's race as well. Below, Jóhannsson walks Hirway through the structure of the soundtrack's "Heptapod B," explaining how he drew from the film's linguistic themes in its composition.

This episode is part of a series I'm doing over the next few months, highlighting film music that I think could and should be considered for an Oscar. In the film Arrival, Amy Adams plays a linguist trying to decode an alien language. The score was composed by Jóhann Jóhannsson, his third film collaborating with director Denis Villeneuve. In this episode, Johann breaks down a piece from the score called "Heptapod B," and how, like the film, it revolves around the concept of language.

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