LISTEN: The Rover score + Interview with David Michôd talking about the feel of the music and why Pretty Girl Rock

If you’ve seen The Rover, then you know the score and music are another character in the film. The tone of The Rover is greatly complimented and reenforced by Antony Partos’ score and sound designer, Sam Petty. Hit Fix has an exclusive sampling of the score that takes you right into the world of The Rover. Additionally, David Michôd and Partos shared a bit more about the music and mood in the film.

Excerpt from HitFix:

Michôd initially presented his cast with previously recorded and powerful songs from accomplished saxophonists and composers Colin Stetson and William Basinski, post-rockers Tortoise, Italian composer Giacinto Scelsi and — yup — pop star Keri Hilson. Partos and Petty chewed on them too, and riffed on the descending scenery for Pattinson’s Rey and Pearce’s Eric. What they weaved in became a gorgeous black mass of ominous, dissonant, agitated and aggressive compositions to rove to in the Australian outback.

David, you had given songs from Colin Stetson, Tortoise, etc. to the cast as “mood signifiers.” Had you always known that you definitely wanted some of those songs to end up in the movie too? What was your vision of how those songs would blend with Antony and Sam‘s original work, or was that planned?

David Michôd: I find music the the clearest and easiest way in to what a movie will feel like – more so than visual references or other movies or dense dossiers of research material. Every now and then I’ll send a piece of music or two to people I’m working with — actors or heads of department – when I think it’ll help them get a sense of the kind of movie I’m proposing. Often those pieces will end up in the movie — sometimes they won’t. I build big playlists while I’m writing — stuff from all over the place, stuff I suspect I’ll never use — and then, as we get closer to production and then the edit, I whittle that list down to the key pieces that somehow embody the movie and its key scenes.

So, yeah, those tracks — the Stetson, Basinski, Tortoise etc — were ones I had hoped would find their way into the finished cut. I always knew, however, that there would be strange gaps that needed to be filled — connecting tissues or pieces requiring something very specific that I hadn’t been able to find. That’s where the exceptional talents of Antony Partos and Sam Petty come in.

What were the other songs you could have potentially gone with for Robert/Rey’s “Pretty Girl Rock” scene? Why and how did you settle on that one?

Michôd: I think once upon a time I had “Don’t Cha” by The Pussycat Dolls down for that scene. It was just a signpost in the script. I can’t remember how and when Keri Hilson found herself in the mix. I wanted that moment in the movie to function as a potent reminder of the fact that Rob’s character is a kid who in different circumstances would just be doing the kinds of things kids do everywhere — thinking about girls, playing with his hair, listening to music. Instead, he has found himself in the middle of nowhere, tethered to a monstrously damaged drifter.

Click HERE to keep reading and find out what Antony Partos has to say about The Rover score!

A fun aside about Pretty Girl Rock, during one of the numerous press junket interviews, Robert Pattinson was asked about Keri Hilson mentioning the scene. She hadn’t commented at the time of the interview and the following hilarity ensues:

Wouldn’t you know…Keri finally DID tweet about The Rover.