John Carpenter – Lost Themes II
There's always a strong sense of trepidation when it comes to approaching any sequel; difficult to supress the scepticism that it's not the usual indolent offering of dusted-down scraps from the cutting room floor, dredged up in the name of a quick and easy buck.
Not so with Lost Themes II, the companion and in every way equal counterpart to horror legend John Carpenter's surprise (and superb) release of last year. The unashamedly 80s aesthetic – which hallmarked the first Lost Themes – is pleasingly and emphatically recurrent on the second. From the minimalist noir of Dark Blues, to the glacial synth of Persia Rising, and the electric pulse of Virtual Survivor, it's reassuring, irresistable sci-fi nostaglia.
With two studio records, a remix album and a full tour unveiled in little over a year, it's a buzz to see Carpenter finally embrace the alternate career path that was there from those foreboding first chimes of Halloween. [Claire Francis]