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‘Babylon’ Composer Justin Hurwitz On Mixing Diverse and Multicultural Sounds To Craft The Score Of The Silent Era — Exclusive Video

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Oscar-winning composer Justin Hurwitz has found himself back in the awards race this season, having garnered both a Golden Globe win and an Oscar nomination for his lavish Babylon score.

Creating music that complemented the decadence and destructive glamor of 1920s Hollywood found in Damien Chazelle’s Babylon required a lot of experimentation.

From using “kazoos and slide whistles” to “wooden floorboards” and multicultural percussionists amongst other unique instruments, Hurwitz and his 98-piece orchestra managed to execute the larger-than-life sounds and eclectic mix of tunes throughout the score, especially that of soundtrack highlight “Voodoo Mama.” In the behind-the-scenes video featured above, Hurwitz provides an in-depth look at the rich and explosive ensemble of harmonies influenced by diverse and modern sounds. “Babylon mixes up a lot of influences,” he tells Deadline. “It has some jazz influences, rock ‘n’ roll, and contemporary dance music in the music.

There’s a lot of Middle Eastern and Latin flavors, orchestral cues, and a lot of circus sounds in the score.”   Hurwitz talks more about his frequent collaboration with Chazelle, taking himself seriously as an artist, and crafting the perfect amount of cacophony for Babylon.   DEADLINE: How would you say your working relationship with Damien has changed throughout the years?

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