John Carpenter is famous for scoring many of his own movies — but he intended to have Italian legend Ennio Morricone score The Thing (1982). But things don’t always go as planned in the movie business. Morricone wrote a score without the benefit of having seen the film, which wasn’t completed. When Carpenter went to add Morricone’s music, he wasn’t able to use most of it, and had to drop some of his own pieces into some dead spaces.
The film’s main theme you hear in the movie is Morricone’s, but everything else he wrote went unused, though it was included in the soundtrack album. Meanwhile, master tapes of the music Carpenter composed for the film have been lost.
Waxworks Records and Sacred Bones Records have put out a treasure trove of lost/rare Thing music goodness on vinyl, in three editions: a remastered Thing soundtrack; a disc of new recordings of Carpenter’s compositions called Lost Cues; and a slipcase set with both. Finally, those who love The Thing, Carpenter and Morricone can get absolutely all of it.
Maybe you’re the kind of person who’d listen to a soundtrack album on vinyl, maybe you’re not, but the visuals by Phantom City Creative are great eye candy and deserve a look. For the packaging, they’ve taken simple, familiar shapes of Antarctica and other continents and turned them into lumps of veiny organic tissue. The records themselves are frickin’ cool as well; Waxwork discs feature “Blood Sample” and “Arctic Splatter” designs, while Sacred Bones come in the “Snowfall” and “Ice Tomb” designs.
And now the disappointing news: These were pressed in limited quantities, and are going fast. At Sacred Bones, you can still get Ennio Morricone’s soundtrack and the Morricone/Carpenter deluxe bundle. Carpenter’s Lost Cues is sold out at Sacred Bones and all three products are sold out at Waxwork.
By the time you read this, they might all be gone. At least you can enjoy the art. The last time Waxwork put out a Thing soundtrack, it sold out quickly, and the company did a re-press, so there’s hope.