Wonder Eye by Little Moon
I’ve written before how, in addition to film scores, I love listening to music I’ve discovered on KCRW (NPR) here in Los Angeles. I guess I’m exactly the upscale liberal demographic for them?
One time I briefly met Chris Douridas and told him how, of all their DJs, I enjoyed listening to his shows the most. He said, matter of factly, “That just means you and I have the same taste.” Maybe so!
Last week I heard a fairly recent song that won the NPR “Tiny Desk” contest, “Wonder Eye” by the band Little Moon. More info here—I loved it!
It has a certain haunting, melancholy sound that I love in film music.
If there’s a chord change that sounds familiar here, it’s a I-iii change. In “Wonder Moon” the whole song revolves around E major to G# minor.
Same thing in Peggy Sue Got Married by John Barry, the start of the melody is C major followed by E minor.
If you have a C major triad, drop the root (the C) to a B and it changes the chord—it has that ache-in-the-stomach feeling from the top two notes staying the same, but the sonority changing to minor from the bottom falling, ever so slightly.
Like in this all-time great example—Edward Scissorhands:
...which always sounded to me like the temp-track for Randy Newman’s Pleasantville. Roll this ahead to the last 30 seconds:
Hall of fame cinematic chord change!