80s Croatian science-fiction classic Visitors from the Galaxy has had its soundtrack premiere on vinyl 36 years after its cinema release.
The ground-breaking early electronica work by Croatian composer Tomislav Simovic was considered lost and was never before published.
Fox & His Friends label team found the original master reels, restored it at the famous Cedar Audio studio in Cambridge and released it as a special edition 180g audiophile LP in gatefold cover with hype sticker, including rare photographs, insert with liner notes by Zeljko Luketic and Irena Paulus, and colour poster with the galactic heroine Andra.
Visitors from the Galaxy (Gosti iz galaksije) was a 1981 science-fiction extravaganza in eastern Europe. It was a success at specialist fantasy film festivals in Madrid, Trieste, and Brussels, but confused a lot of home audiences with the specific mixture of bizarre characters, including man with breasts, nudists welcoming extraterrestrials, beautiful alien heroine with her children behaving improperly and a huge, violent monster on killing spree.
The creature design, made of plants and artificial human parts was the work of famous Czech filmmaker Jan Svankmajer. The film was a co-production with Czechoslovakia and was partially shot in Barrandov Studios, with exteriors done in Game of Thrones favoured location Dubrovnik and it’s hidden caves and surroundings. It was distributed in Czechoslovakia, West Germany, Poland, Spain, Italy and Cuba.
The late director Dusan Vukotic (1927-1998) remained until now the only Oscar winner from ex-Yugoslavia for his celebrated and influential 1962 animated short Ersatz. It pushed the phenomena of Zagreb School of Animation internationally, gathering praise for unique anti-Disney style full of abstraction, reduced movement and themes dealing with grown-up, darker subjects.
The main composer for these films was Tomislav Simovic (1931-2014), Zagreb born musician with 300+ film scores in his biography. He was also a well-known jazz composer in his Tomislav Simovic Orchestra and is remembered as one of the most prominent and highly awarded among Croatian composers.
Simovic is also the author of the theme for animated series Professor Balthazar, probably the most famous piece of cartoon music in the region. He was one of the collaborators of the New York music magazine EAR for which he wrote essays for the column Composer and Moving Image.
The Visitors from the Galaxy soundtrack LP selects the most memorable cues from the feature film. It was researched and programmed by Fox & His Friends label owners, Leri Ahel and Zeljko Luketic.
Check out the original soundtrack preview below: