A song is a product of design. It’s difficult to create an original melody, but that’s only the blueprint. Every element of a piece of music could be produced any number of ways, depending on which instrument plays at what time, for how long, and with what what kind of effect.
The architecture behind a piece of music can be much more involved than meets the ear, and this is what inspired Hrishikesh Hirway to start a podcast called Song Exploder, where musicians “take apart their songs, and piece by piece, tell the story of how they were made.”
Hrishikesh spoke with Jeff Beal about his collaborative process with executive producer David Fincher, how they found the mood and musical palette for the show and its theme, and how the score changed from season one to season two.
SPOILER ALERT: you may not want to listen to this if you haven’t seen the show through the first episode of the second season.
The Season 1 theme has sweeping violins.
The Season 2 theme loses the violins in favor of a full cello assault, making the mood darker.
You can buy the House of Cards score by Jeff Beal on iTunes here.
Tamborello breaks down “The District Sleeps Alone Tonight,” and reveals how to spot a loop he accidentally made a loop out of Jenny Lewis’s backing vocals.
Here’s the full Song Exploder episode:
You can purchase “The District Sleeps Along Tonight” on iTunes here.
The Song Exploder podcast is produced by Hrishikesh Hirway (who also writes music as The One AM Radio). Song Exploder is part of the Maximum Fun Network and available on iTunes or wherever you like to explode songs.