Soundtrack collectors are indeed a strange clientele. First, everyone is - rightly - raging about the lack of a proper score release of Scream. Then, when Varèse Sarabande released selections from both the first and second score, everyone was disappointed with the short duration. Now, when the same company is trying to give Scream 3 the treatment it deserves - a full length (well, at least some 30 minutes) album - a widely available commercial release - no one cares about it. Or do you? If you're reading this review, hopefully you do.
Marco Beltrami is indeed a composer we should all follow and his work for the third installment in the Scream series easily matches the standard of the first two. It's very much based on the themes, motifs and ideas introduced in the first film, but with even bolder orchestrations than before, with a large choir on top of everything. There are some very neat arrangements of 'Sidney's Lament', the choral arrangement in 'Home Sweet Home' is very good and the eerie, string version - with its creepy glissandi - very effective.
Scream 3 is a very action-oriented horror score, with huge amounts of the straight-forward, relentless chases showcased in earlier scores in the series. Six cues, starting with 'Ghost Attacks' and ending with 'Piéd a Terror', forms a very dramatic suite filled with frenetically murderous orchestral writing. Fans will recognise snippets of 'Altered Ego' and 'Love Turns Sour' from the earlier scores, but there is no re-using per se, just small reminders. One of the more intriguing parts here is 'The Fall Girl' with its wicked and almost hysterical trumpet laughters - a very effective musical portrait of a sick humour!
From a more technical viewpoint I just have to mention that the number of orchestrators on this score is eight, which is a lot. This must have been a score written under much pressure. However, there is no doubt that Beltrami's stamp is all over the score. Now, the only problem with this album is that it probably will give a lot of listeners rather serious headaches since the music is so intense and demanding. But it's worth it!