Jon Hopkins Monsters

Jon Hopkins Monsters
Hot on the heels of his recent collaboration with Brian Eno, electronic musician/pianist Jon Hopkins brings us Monsters, the soundtrack to the British sci-fi film about the Earth coping with an alien invasion. Goldfrapp's Davide Rossi (the man responsible for adding string arrangements for artists ranging from Coldplay to Röyksopp) adds his distinctive touch, augmenting Hopkins' ambient compositions. With the strings and piano very much at the forefront, Monsters isn't as gritty or as overtly electronic as his previous releases, such as 2009's Insides, but it is a powerful, absorbing work that expands upon his distinctive sound by successfully combining the familiar, grandiose, emotive soundscapes you'd expect from a motion picture soundtrack with Hopkins' trademark, Eno-esque ambient introspection. Spooky, atmospheric, intense and melancholic, it's a score that pulls off the rare trick of flowing surprisingly well as a standalone album. (Domino)