I first became aware of composer Bruno Coulais when I was transported by the remarkable film Microcosmos. Now I’m reveling in the collection Retrospective, which does a damn fine job of drawing on his many soundtracks. As Coulais remarks in the liner notes, he’s nothing if not eclectic and almost madly diverse in sound so how can all his soundtrack “monsters” live harmoniously in the same house? He does have a few mundane operatic moments and there is one vocal-number stinker, but Coulais’s flair for rolling across music cultures and sense of exactly when to go electronic or minimalist serves him well throughout. There’s science in his landscapes and bloodveins in his machines.
If you want just a sample, go for Microcosmos. But if you are already a fan, like me, go for Retrospective.