The Snow Files
by Mark Snow (Soundtrack)

Mark Snow has had a long but rewarding journey over the last two dozen years. Both he and his music have weathered the years well, each benefited from their experiences. As evidenced by the versatile examples collected on this CD, Snow's varied approaches have served him - and the many films he's scored - very well.

# Title Time Listen
1 LA FEMME NIKITA - Main Theme 4:30 mp3
2 CONUNDRUM - Love Theme 3:17 mp3
3 SEDUCED AND BETRAYED - The Dark Waltz 2:30
5 CAROLINE AT MIDNIGHT - Main Title 3:18 mp3
6 THE SUBSTITUTE WIFE - Main Title 2:48
7 OLDEST LIVING CONFEDERATE WIDOW - Having A Baby/All About Ned 3:13
8 SMOKE JUMPERS - The Rescue 4:46 mp3
9 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA - Arctic Night Walk 3:16 mp3
10 DISTURBING BEHAVIOR - Main Title 3:25
11 Suite from THE X-FILES * 31:28 mp3
12 DARK JUSTICE - Main Theme 1:54
13 MAX HEADROOM - The Lost Theme 1:00
14 PEE-WEE'S PLAYHOUSE - Bye, Bye! 0:33 mp3

Album Cover

Sonic Images Records
May 11, 1999

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About the Album

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All Tracks ASCAP

Management for Mark Snow:  Robert M. Urband - Sound Image Network, Inc. Management

All tracks produced by Mark Snow,  except tracks 1 & 11 produced by John Beal

Executive Producer: Brad Pressman
Compilation Assembled and Produced by Ford A. Thaxton
Associate Producer: James Nelson
Music Mixed and Recorded by Larold Rebhun
Digitally Edited and Mastered by James Nelson at Digital Outland (Tacoma,WA)
Art Direction: Doerte Lau - Design: Wolfgang Fenchel

Sonic Images wants to thank: John Beal, Mark Banning, Luc Van De Ven, Charles Bornstein, Ann M. McCarhera, 
John J. Alcantar III, Jeff Charbonneau,  Ann Kindberg, Jeff Ringler, Richard Pierce, Robert Urband, MGM, 
Hallmark Entertainment, Patchett Kaufman Entertainment, and most of all Mark Snow  for making this CD 



"The Snow Files: The Film Music of Mark Snow" is a new release from Sonic Images showcasing the work of the
composer who's work has been in many genre movies and television shows. His most famous client, "The X 
Files," is represented by a half-hour suite of music. It is an appropriate highlight, for that series is one in which the
low-key, moody music has wonderfully helped set the mood and, along with the dark lighting and cool acting, has
saved more than one poorly written outing from unwatchability. But there are other genre shows represented here, 
as well, including "Max Headroom," "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," and "Disturbing Behavior." Non-genre
productions include "La Femme Nikita," "Oldest Living Confederate Widow," and "Pee-Wee's Playhouse." Snow's 
music is deceptively simple, setting a tone with a long-held low note that slowly moves down a notch on the scale.
(This usually accompanies Mulder and Scully getting deeper into whatever mystery confronts them this week.)
Though many collections of film and television scores make flimsy stand-alone listening music, "The Snow Files"
is quite listenable even without knowledge of the series and films involved. 

Aaron Barnhart
TV Barn
May 18, 1999

Sure, he's best known as the guy who generates music for "The X-Files," but Mark Snow isn't simply a one-series
wonder. The 14 tracks presented here showcase his work on a variety of ventures, from cues for maudlin movies
such as "Seduced And Betrayed" and "The Substitute Wife" to the upbeat harmonic hijinks of TV programs like
"La Femme Nikita" and "Pee-Wee's Playhouse."  While there's also an impressive 30-minute-plus "Suite From The
X-Files," arranged and performed by compositional colleague John Beal, folks acquainted with Snow solely
through the adventures of Mulder and Scully should find his other creations just as far-reaching and first-rate.
Rating: 7/10

Jeff Berkwits
The Illinois Entertainer
May 19, 1999

With the latest release from Sonic Images, the master of the art of "sound canvasing," Mark Snow gets to display,
with the help of John Beal and Jeff Freilich, a bit of his more famous as well as some of his little known
compositions of his career. I'd like to admit I'm not exactly a fan of some of this electro-acoustic music, but not
out of distaste, but I believe out of the fact that everybody is writing music like Mark, and sometimes it's hard to
tell the pure signal from the noise. I'd say that my small experience with Mark Snow's music would have me say
that it's not as strongly themed based as we would get from a Bernstein, Newman, or even for a Goldsmith; but it
has qualities that set it apart from the group that most listeners would tend to lump it with. The CD opens with one
of most requested tracks by fans, the "Main Theme" to the television show, La Femme Nikita. It would be honest
to say that Mark writing this theme is in natural progression of how the "Nikita" story has been done before, with
Eric Serra (Goldeneye, The Big Blue) doing the original French version and upon it's travel to America, Hans
Zimmer doing his treatment for Point Of No Return. Having been not very impressed by either composer's more
recent works, it's refreshing to hear a different take on the same story, albeit film versus television scoring
requirements. The rest of the album is broken up into segments of "Darkness And Desire", "Love And Hope", "The
Music Is Out There" and some bonus tracks. To be able to categorize these themes, you obviously must be able
to say "That sounds like a love theme" or "That's a broody piece" and this is exactly how they probably went about
titling each section. The middle section of "Love And Hope" is particularly sappy and heroic, but still is notable in
it's ability to sound sappy and heroic rather than dark and depressing, which most folks would pigeon-hole Mark
into sounding like. Nearing the end of the album we hear the greatest disjoint from what is considered typical Mark
Snow, or at least the one most folks hear every week on the X-Files. The shortest tracks on the album, " The Lost
Theme" from Max Headroom and "Bye Bye" from Pee Wee's Playhouse provide an interesting departure, with Mark
working from an Elfman-esque template for "Bye Bye", a truly odd piece demonstrating that Mark can also do 
"weird." Listening to the Max Headroom piece I'm left at a point of indecision as to which theme is better for the
Sci-Fi show, which I'm lucky to catch on the Bravo network on weekends. I like the upbeat nature of both of these
tracks, and even the preceding piece for Dark Justice which can be described as gothic-jazz, a carry-over piece
from most of the rest of the album. The big "chunk of change" on this album is definitely the thirty plus minute suite
from the X-Files rendered for our enjoyment by fellow composer, John Beal. It‚s an episode upon itself and is
expertly executed, but is not exactly for the casual listener to pick up and play in their car stereo. The entire suite
is an intertwining of several themes, developed as an amalgamation of the "best of" themes and soundscapes
from the show. It serves best as late night listening if you want to induce action-filled nightmares (you get to fill in
the Scully or Mulder characters on your own time). Although most of Mr. Snow's stuff wouldn't be the first thing I'd
pop into my CD player, it's definitely a catch all for his music and will be a nice addition to a fan's collection. I
would, to fans‚ dismay, say that the X-Files should end and run it's course so Mark can move on to some of the
other abilities he has displayed on this album.

David A. Koran
May 22, 1999

Sonic Images' latest release is a dazzling compilation of the best of Snow's scoring career to date.  With 14
impressive samples of scores written for both TV and features, this is a great collection of fantastic and
seductive themes.  Snow demonstrates an ease for melody, mood and range that deserves to be applauded.  La
Femme Nikita's "Main Theme" (from the TV series) opens the album to a captivating start.  Vocalized by Darlene
Koldenhoven, the club-dance version (created by John Beal) of Snow's techno-noir score is a passionate, hip
track with a hard, sexy edge.  Continuing on the "Darkness and Desire" theme, the album includes four additional
selections from noir thrillers centering on the dark side of passion.  This is the best section of the album, featuring
sensual, lyrical ballads with  mesmerizing melodies.  "The Love Theme" from Conundrum is lushly romantic with
wistful ardor, featuring beautiful female vocals, electric bass, and sighing percussions.  Seduced and Betrayed
slinks with erotic danger, using the waltzing strings and woodwinds to express wily charm and the lurking terror
underneath.  A Woman Scorned, a quietly foreboding theme with harps, chorals, strings, emphasizes the
dramatic undercurrents of violent movie. Caroline at Midnight, using harps and violins together with nostalgic
blues jazz (muted trumpet), round out the masterful "femme fatale" selections. Switching gears, the next section
features grand, orchestral "Love and Hope" themes.  Both The Substitute Wife (with harmonicas and strings) and
Oldest Living Confederate Widow (with piano and strings) paint broad, Americana pictures of the early west.  With
heroic snare drums, "macho hero-worship" fanfares (in Snow's words), and tender piano and woodwind
vulnerability, Smoke Jumpers is comparable in inspiration to Zimmer's classic Backdraft.  Finally, 20,000
Leagues Under the Sea is a magnificent, sweeping underscore with a wide canvas, imparting a limitless sense of
the ocean.  While these "Love and Hope" themes have the requisites of epic movements, they are shy of that
spark of brazen originality that would bump them into classic works. "The Music Is Out There" contains more
austere, chilly, ambient music, featuring one track each from Disturbing Behavior and The X-Files.  Disturbing
Behavior is accented by heavy, echoing synthesized percussions and troubled piano underscore.   The "X-Files
Suite," performed keenly by John Beal, is the longest track on this CD, with over 30 minutes of minimalist music.
It opens with two minutes of creepy underscore before the famous main theme.   There is some variety, including
short action statements, exotic Asian cues, pure romantic drama, more of the dark seductive motif.  But most of
the X-Files is atmospheric electronics and chorals.  This section is not nearly as compelling as the previous two,
but finds well-chosen expressions for subtle, reticent suspense. The album closes with three miscellaneous
cues.  Dark Jusice is a synthesized rock piece with an entrancing Gothic choir.  Max Headroom, the unused
theme for the series, is another synthesized rock melody, with an 80's TV flavor.   Finally, Pee Wee's Playhouse
is a humorous, synthesized cartoonish theme with "chipmunk" sounds representing vegetable claymation. 
Mark Snow may be best known for The X-Files and its sister show, Millennium (which is not represented on this
album), but he wants us to know he writes much more than spooky music.  We are now both convinced, and
moved.  From industrial punk to sultry dances to irreverent zaniness, this release provides clear evidence that
Snow deserves the opportunities to go beyond X-Files.  Rating:  ****

Helen San
Cinemusic Online
May 24, 1999

This is a well organized collection of music by Mark Snow for feature films and television programs.  The CD has
been carefully assembled in convenient groupings of two, three or four film scores.  The opening track is a club
version, skillfully arranged by John Beal, of the sexy theme for LA FEMME NIKITA.  The sultry 5-octave range
vocal is by LA rap session singer, Darlene Koldenhoven. The guitar solos are handled by Richard Allen. 
Depending on your musical taste, you may or may not like this "ultra-hip" track.  Nevertheless, it's a very
effectively realized treatment of the theme for this popular TV series.  The first actual group of themes is
"Darkness and Desire." They all basically concern women with some sort of trouble.  The theme I liked best in this
group was "The Dark Waltz" from SEDUCED AND BETRAYED (a 1995 TV movie starring Susan Lucci), opening
with a dreamy descending flute theme, expanding to include other instruments. I found the themes in the second
group, "Love and Hope," more appealing than the first group.  Opening with a lovely Main Title for THE
SUBSTITUTE WIFE (1994 movie starring Farrah Fawcett), which Snow says was a "very folk-oriented, Americana
type of score."  That also applies to the next track, with two simple folklike themes from OLDEST LIVING
CONFEDERATE WIDOW (1994 TV movie).  Another simple theme is the expansive one for "Artic Night Walk" from
the 4-hour TV miniseries, 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA (1997). In the third group, the two score excerpts
reflect the title: "The Music is Out There."  First off is an electronically driven Main Title, with abrupt dynamic
changes, for DISTURBING BEHAVIOR (1998).  Next is the longest track on the CD, from the very popular TV
series, THE X-FILES.  This is a very clever and inventive concert suite, based on Mark Snow's themes.  As the
arranger, John Beal, is quoted in the booklet as saying: "I selected what I felt to be the best of Mark's technique's
from the score, and created a suite which would simulate the experiences of an episode from start to finish."  It
succeeds at doing just that, with ample changes of  unusual sound environments.  This suite is the highlight of
the whole collection. The last group of "Bonus Tracks" has three lesser themes which don't add much to the
collection.  But they only last a few minutes.  The last one, a goofy theme from PEE WEE'S PLAYHOUSE, ends
this diverse collection with a humorous "Bye, Bye."  Inside the attractive 12 page booklet are a brief summary of
Mark Snow's film career and very good notes about each score by Randall D. Larson. If you want to hear cutting
edge film music of  today, then this excellent compilation of scores by Mark Snow is definitely worth adding to
your collection.  Rating:  **** [Best of the Month for June].

Roger Hall
Film Music Review
May 1999

Over the last twenty years or so, Mark Snow has become one of the most well-respected composers working in
the American television music industry. He scored his first movie, The Boy In The Plastic Bubble starring a pre-
Saturday Night Fever John Travolta, way back in 1975, and has since provided music for nearly 100 television
series, TV-movies and small theatrical features. The amazing success of the cult TV series The X-Files finally
brought Snow's music to a wider audience, and this excellent release of some of his earlier work goes some way to
dispelling the common misconception that Snow is only capable of writing dark, moody synth music to accompany
the weekly adventures of Mulder and Scully. The album is split into distinct sections, each depicting different
styles of music. The first - sub-headed "Darkness and Desire" - can be adequately described as being "seductive"
music, featuring as it does five tracks of moodily provocative themes. La Femme Nikita is the TV spin-off of Luc
Besson's classic French female assassin movie, and John Beal's specially arranged version of the Main Theme is
an amalgamation of throbbing drum n' bass, guitar licks, dreamy female vocals and peculiar sound effects (police
sirens, gunshots etc.), making for an intriguing but slightly bizarre opening. The love theme from Conundrum is
gorgeous, and features a solo female voice softly wafting above an evocative synth and piano theme. The Dark
Waltz cue from Seduced and Betrayed is an obvious but stunningly attractive re-working of Jerry Goldsmith's
Basic Instinct theme, and although the descending synth and flute motifs do eventually give way to a darkly
beautiful piano melody, the frostiness of the music from the classic Sharon Stone sex shocker is unmistakable.
The final selection of the section, the Main Title from the 1994 feature Caroline At Midnight, is described by Snow
himself as "pure film noir", and is characterised by a bluesy muted trumpet solo. The "Love and Hope" section
sees Snow in full-blown romantic mode, and features four equally gorgeous cues, my personal favourites on the
CD. The Main Title from The Substitute Wife is utterly sublime, a lovely Americana theme for oboes, strings and
eventually a harmonica which effortlessly captures the beauty and stillness of the vast frontier. The Oldest Living
Confederate Widow Tells All is a little more introspective and reflective, but equally attractive. Smoke Jumpers is
pumped-up macho action music with heavy brass stabs and a rolling percussion element accompanying the heroic
fire fighters' scenes of derring-do. The TV movie 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea was a big-budget retelling of the
classic Jules Verne tale starring Michael Caine as the unbalanced Captain Nemo. Although the full score is
already available on the Prometheus label, the cue included here - "Arctic Night Walk" - is wonderful, a hauntingly
beautiful theme for the fullest orchestra. The ambient, mesmerising main title from Disturbing Behaviour
introduces the section entitled "The Music Is Out There", a twinkly, dissonant piece for heavy synths and bells.
Then comes the centrepiece of the album, the music from The X-Files, arguably the score with which Snow will
forever be associated. This is where the problems start. Let me say first of all that I have absolutely no compaints
about Snow's music. The tone of the piece is appropriately dark, menacing, exciting, ethereal, occasionally
frightening, occasionally soothing, and features a stunning version of the now almost-legendary whistled Main
Theme which kicks in at about 2:26. In addition, John Beal's performances are impeccable throughout, and the re-
creation is true to the original score. The problem is more to do with the piece's presentation - as a 31-minute suite
of music with NO BREAKS. As much as I like the music from The X-Files, I admit I do have trouble sitting through
several minutes of harsh electronic dissonance in order to hear a specific theme or motif buried somewhere deep
within the track. One can easily identify many junctures where a track break could have been inserted to allow
listeners to skip forwards and backwards within the music, without breaking up the flow or continuity of the piece
as a whole. This ill-conceived "concert suite" idea is what stops the CD as a whole getting top marks. Three bonus
tracks, including a version of the main theme from the TV series Dark Justice co-composed by Jeff Freilich, and
Snow's rejected main title from the cult classic Max Headroom, are stuck on the end, but are neither here nor
there in musical terms. Aside from The X-Files suite, I would certainly have no hesitation in recommending this
album to all. Mark Snow is, without a doubt, one of the most talented but misunderstood composers around at the
moment, and this compilation is a perfect example of why he scores an average of 8 movies a year for TV and the
cinema. I hope it is the first of many releases. Rating: ****

Jonathan Broxton
Movie Music UK
June 2, 1999

This is one of the best compilations that this label has put out. The compact disc is neatly divided into four
categories that group Mark Snows wide range of styles accordingly. At the same time, a great sampling of this
composer's work is provided. High quality music, recording, layout and liner notes equals a must buy!
Rating: 8/10.

Christopher Coleman
June 14, 1999

Sonic Images has answered the prayers of many fans of The X-Files with their new compilation The Snow Files
(SID 8902, 71m), which features a 31 minute suite of music from the TV series without the dialogue samples that
marred The Truth and the Light. The new album is produced, arranged and performed by the talented John Beal,
with the full co-operation of Mark Snow and the series' music editor Jeff Charbonneau. The disc also contains the
Arctic Night Walk cue from 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea; an excellent version of the La Femme Nikita theme;
an unused theme written for Max Headroom and several lesser-known works which demonstrate Snow's range.
Sadly there's nothing from Millennium, which has regularly been a better showcase for the composer's talents
than its elder sibling. Now that the show has been cancelled the chances of a Millennium soundtrack CD must
sadly be greatly diminished.

Julian Knott
Shivers Magazine
June 1999

To most people the name Mark Snow is probably synonymous with The X-Files. Snow's eerie music for the show
is really an important ingredients, when it comes to creating that special "it", which makes the show so good. But
The X-Files is just a small part of Snow's portfolio - the composer has scored over 100 shows, films and TV-series 
since 1975. The Snowfiles - The Film Music of Mark Snow gives us samples from thirteen other scores by Snow,
plus, of course, The X-Files. The compilation is divided into four different parts, being "Darkness and Desire",
"Love and Hope", "The Music is Out There" and "Bonus Tracks". Each category features a certain style of music.
"Darkness and Desire" includes music from Conundrum, Seduced and Betrayed, A Woman Scorned - The Betty
Broderick Story and Caroline at Midnight. These cues all have a rather dark and sometimes even erotic, or
seductive, sound, hence the title "Darkness and Desire". The music is often performed by small ensembles. The
"Love Theme" from Conundrum, for instance, is performed by piano, female voice, and soft supportive synths.
Along with the section titled "Love and Hope" this is my favorite part of the CD. "Love and Hope" includes lush,
romantic and beautiful music from The Substitute Wife, Oldest Living Confederate Widow, Smoke Jumpers and 
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Many people probably do not know what beautiful and romantic music Snow can
write. Here they get a taste of that. The cue from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, for instance, is a wonderful,
lush and sweeping piece, dominated by strings, and very reminiscent of John Barry's epic writing. Superb! 
The highlight for most people will probably be "The Music is Out There" section, which, except the main title from
Disturbing Behavior, includes a 30 minute suite from The X-Files, arranged and performed by John Beal. To quote
the liner notes, Beal "selected what he felt to be the best of Mark's techniques from the show, and created a suite
which would simulate the experience of an episode from start to finish." The idea is really good, so it comes as no
surprise to hear that the result is splendid. First of all, Beal's version of the well-known main theme, is very true to
the original. Many cover versions of the theme, on other compilations, has a tendency to sound rather "strange",
but this is as close as it can be. The suite perfectly creates that special X-Files mood, very dark, mystical, and
sometimes quite scary. And although it isn't so thematic - it's more ambient and atmospheric - it is surprisingly 
entertaining listening to, especially if you are a X-Files fan. John Beal also produced and arranged the main theme
from Le Femme Nikita for this compilation. The result is something Beal chooses to call a "Club Version", which is
a funky rendition of Snow's theme, with heavier drums and different sound effects. The three last cues - music
from Dark Justice, Max Headroom and Pee-Wee's Playhouse - are "bonus tracks" - whatever that means. "Bye!, 
Bye!" from Pee-Wee's Playhouse is a simply hilarious cue. It is very short, just over half a minute, with quirky
orchestrations and sped-up vocals doing the melody. If you are ever feeling depressed, this cue will definitely
cheer you up. The liner notes are excellent and features comments by Randall Larson and Mark Snow himself on
every cue, as well as other basic and useful information.

Andreas Lindahl
June 21, 1999

Clearly, this album has been produced to showcase the talents of the composer of the music for the fabulously
successful TV series, The X-Files. Indeed, the most substantial track on the album is a 31+ minute suite of
Snow's music from that series produced, arranged and performed by John Beal. In this site's review pages I think
I have expressed my aversion for the dragging chains and escaping steam effects of much of the genre of synth 
music so I approached the X-Files track with some trepidation. Yet, actually I was quite agreeably surprised. I
qualify the statement with the word 'quite' because, for me, 31 minutes was rather too much and I think the suite
would have been more effective for some snipping away of less interesting, more clichéd material. Having said
that, the combination of Snow and Beal has produced music that has plenty of imagination, ingenuity, and variety
of texture, timbre and tempi. I liked the way, for instance that Beal builds up an atmosphere of mystery and
apprehension and the way he suggests an alien abduction as the music gathers to whoosh skywards before he
introduces Snow's famous "whistling" main X-Files theme, which he then proceeds to develop at some length.
Elsewhere one can appreciate the debt Snow must owe to John Williams's score for Close Encounters of the Third
Kind. The opening Main theme - La Femme Nikita again employs synth music imaginatively in a tense Gallic-
flavoured essay with interesting urban effects like police sirens to the heighten atmosphere. Four tracks follow
under the collective title 'Darkness and Desire.' 'The Dark Waltz' from Seduced and Betrayed dances
uncomfortably close to Jerry Goldsmith's sensuous lines for Basic Instinct. I enjoyed the sultry ballad that is the
love theme from Conundrum with the smoky voice of Cassandra Crossland. An imaginative dark use of the harp
lifts the music for A Woman Scorned: The Betty Broderick Story. Jagged outbursts effectively penetrate the
textures of the score for Caroline at Midnight. A further four tracks are gathered under the umbrella appellation of 
'Love and Hope.' Snow's high-strings orientated music for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea score echoes John
Barry's style. I liked the more tenderly romantic folksy material for The Substitute Wife. Oldest Living 
Confederate Widow is even more folksy and reminded me very much of David Mansfield's score for Heaven's
Gate. Smoke Jumpers, a 1996 TV movie about a crew of parachute fire-fighters, has a rather routine heroics
score. The collection closes with three diverse tracks. Dark Justice is gothic and zombie-like; 
Max Headroom is headache-provoking heavy rock and Pee-wee is sheer comic madness in the Danny Elfman 
tadition - a quirky 
piece of music using speeded-up vocal samples.

Ian Lace 
Film Music on The Web
June 29,1999

Mark Snow may be best known for The X-Files, but he wants us to know he writes much more than creepy music.  
We know the truth.  From industrial punk to sultry dances to splendid epics, this release provides clear evidence 
that Snow has a stunning ease for melody, mood and range.  Sonic Images' latest release is an impressive 
compilation of 14 selections written for both TV and features.  The album is divided into four general themes: 
Darkness and Desire, Love and Hope, The Music is Out There and Bonus Tracks.  The Darkness and Desire 
section includes five samples from noir thrillers centering on the dark side of passion, features sensual, lyrical 
ballads with mezmerizing melodies.  Switching gears, the next section features grand, orchestral Love and Hope 
themes, including broad, western Americana and magnificent, sweeping heroism.  The Music is Out There 
contains more austere, chilly, ambient music, featuring one track each from Disturbing Behavior and The X-Files.
The X-Files Suite, well performed by Jonh Beal, contains over 30 minutes of minimalist music.  Surprisingly, the 
earlier seductive suspense and the large-canvas drama quite overshadow the subtle, reticent suspicion for 
which Snow is most famous.  If anyone deserves to be given breaks beyond typecasting, it would be Mark Snow.
Rating: ****.

Helen San
Soundtrack Magazine
Summer 1999

Sure, after "The X-Files," everyone knew who Mark Snow was. But, as evidenced by this new anthology, Snow's
output is vast, stretching from "La Femme Nikita" to "Max  Headroom." Snow's music borders on the ethereal, but
it's never boring. Take note, "X- Files" fans: included is Snow's 30-minute "Suite from the X-Files," produced and
performed by John Beal.

Jason Verlinde Delivers Soundtracks
July 6, 1999

Anyone who is familiar with the sci-fi series The X-Files, has undoubtedly heard of Mark Snow. He is a big name in
TV scores, and this compilation contains music from some of his most notable efforts. While most compilation
CDs very in style between track, this album manages to keep things more or less coherent until the bonus tracks,
of which the Pee-wee's Playhouse track is zany and a total departure from everything else. The X-Files suite is
nice, as it doesn‚t contain any dialogue, but it's really long with a thirty-minute runtime and should‚ve been split 
up among multiple tracks. I found the X-Files music to be mostly ambiance oriented, with only a few interesting
sections. The best track by far on the whole CD is Arctic Night Walk from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. It is a
beautiful piece of music that is a little more conventional than the others. If you are a fan of Snow's work and you
like the selections that are on this CD, then you can't go wrong with this one.  Rating: ***

Gary Huff
Soundtrack Review Central
July 20, 1999

Snow shows that there is far more to him than just The X-Files.  Mark Snow has been a composer for about 25 
years, and yet people still seem to think of him as just the guy responsible for The X-Files.  Hopefully, this album 
will set the record straight. Snow was actually Michael Kamen's roommate at Juillard, and together they set up 
the New York Rock and Roll Ensemble. (It was during this time that the pair wrote "Beside You", a song which 
would go on to form the basis for Kamen's excellent score for What Dreams May Come.)  This album, The Snow 
Files, starts with a weird "club version" of Snow's theme for the tv show La Femme Nikita. There is a techno rhythm 
track, erotic female voices and whispers, and electric guitars, and this forms an effective combination to produce 
an appropriately dark theme. At four-and-a-half minutes, it goes on a little too long and some of its effect is lost, 
but it remains a surprisingly effective piece.  Conundrum's love theme is one of the album's more attractive 
melody, with an almost Morricone-style female voice over a simple, repeating piano melody. "The Dark Waltz" from 
"Seduced and Betrayed" is a clear paraphrase of Jerry Goldsmith's marvellous theme from Basic Instinct, when 
perhaps the director forced Snow to work within a very tight boundary around the temp-track. The main title from 
The Substitute Wife, a 1994 movie starring Farrah Fawcett, is a very beautiful, fully orchestral, piece of 
Americana, perhaps the album's highlight. Oldest Living Confederate Widow is a fairly similar piece, and is 
virtually as good. The Snow Jumpers, which sounds a little like James Horner's more attractive scores, is another 
fine cue. The 1997 tv movie version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, starring Michael Caine, seems to be one of 
Snow's more popular efforts, and it's obvious why. The music, not a million miles from John Barry, is very 
beautiful.  Following these excellent selections comes easily the biggest disappointment, "The Music is Out 
There" section, featuring the goes nowhere, does nothing theme from Disturbing Behaviour and then a thirty-odd 
minute, continuous suite from The X-Files, which faithfully recreates the ambience of the early series, but seems 
to miss out any music from more recent series, which were far more interesting from a melodic point of view.  It is 
ironic that, by a long way, the best section of this disc is "Love and Hope", given that Snow is usually thought of 
as an atmospheric-type composer. It is a generally enjoyable disc, but the suite from The X-Files, which occupies 
almost half of it, is not.  Rating ***

James Southall
July 26, 1999

Mark Snow isn't very well represented on CD.  In the TV series and movies he scores, the music works wonders to 
enhance the visuals on screen, but album releases typically sound boring, ambient, and somewhat one-
dimensional.  However, this release rectifies the situation by providing samples from a wide spectrum of Snow's 
composition, the centerpiece being a 30-minute concert suite from his most renown work, The X-Files.  
This is an impressive, diverse collection of an extremely talented composer's work.  Some of the synth 
instruments sound very realistic, and sometimes I can't tell between them and the acoustic ones.  Finally, Sonic 
Images has given us attractive, colorful packaging, and a lavish, informative, 12-page liner booklet.  2 of the 
tracks were arranged by John Beal, Sonic Images' resident synthesizer expert and trailer composer.  While I can't 
stand the La Femme Nikita "Club Version," Beal gives us the ultimate presentation of X-Files music. In Seduced 
and Betrayed - The Dark Waltz we move into this elegant and yearning waltz.  The influence of Jerry Goldsmith's 
Basic Instinct main title sequence is quite evident in the opening smooth woodwind passage, except it's in 3/4 
waltz time.  However, Snow builds upon what Goldsmith has done previously instead of just emulating it, taking 
the melody one step further after the opening.  The Goldsmithian melody is stated twice, then segues into a dark, 
passionate true waltz based on the material, going through several major and minor key variations.  There's two 
great solo performances of the theme, one by a low flute and one by an oboe.  In the second section the melody is 
accompanied by a synthesized piano, which doesn't detract as much as you expect, and the piece ends on a 
major cadence.  Continuing with the darkly intriguing theme of the first sectionon the album, A Woman Scorned - 
The Betty Broderick Story: The Murder is another extremely creative track.  For the main murder sequence of the
movie, Snow fights the urge to launch into a fast action cue, instead focusing in on the motives of the killer.  This 
composition gives the killer a slight tragic edge.  There's a great theme, first stated on some kind of guitar (not 
electric) which is kind of like a dissonant pastoral melody.  It's later stated in various permutations, sometimes 
accompanied by fitting electronic strings that Snow uses in The X-Files.  The track is almost like a dark, Gothic 
dance, giving all kinds of awesome minor key string chords.  The Substitute Wife - Main Title is one of the best 
tracks on the CD, and one of the most deeply moving compositions in Snow's body of work.  Evidently the movie 
was set in the west or something, since a harmonica becomes the central instrument about halfway through.  First, 
though, are two statements of an achingly yearning pastoral melody, almost like a hymn.  I can't tell if the string 
accompaniment is synth or not, but if it is, it's quite realistic.  The first solo is on a flute, and the second on a 
clarinet.  After these two solos, the strings continue the chord progressions, finally coming to a solo harmonica.  
It begins as if about to do the solo a third time, but goes off on something completely different. Smoke Jumpers - 
The Rescue could be described as Mark Snow's answer to Horner's Apollo 13.  It's another one of the best tracks, 
based on a single major chord progression in the strings and woodwinds under a trumpet solo.  Later the flutes/
oboes get it, and a bass ostinato enters.  Like Apollo 13's launch sequence, the ostinato leads into an orchestral 
chorale.  After it's stated a few times, an intimate solo piano melody enters and carries the rest of the track.  
Again, this just goes to show how diverse a composer Mark Snow is.  Suite from The X-Files: first of all, let me say 
how ingenious it was to begin this with a musical "teaser," much like a real episode.  The suite opens with a metallic 
synth sound, segueing into an awesome, lone piano solo melody accompanied by all kinds of synth sounds as 
well as strings.  Next comes various disturbing noises, climaxing in the presentation of The X-Files theme.  This 
arrangement is impeccably produced, extending it for a few minutes.  My only qualm is that the trademark synth 
whistling is mixed much lower than the accompaniment.  The variations used in the extended version are quite 
excellent, like added piano flourishes, as well as new trademark Mark Snow chord progressions.  One of the main 
things to listen for while playing this is all the ingenious ways Snow interpolates various snatches of the X-Files 
theme into the action.  Some of the highlights are a few chase sequences, a pastoral flute melody accompanied 
by synth effects, a plucked version of the opening piano theme much like the stuff in Darkness and Desire 
above, a pounding dissonant piano section, an Alien-esque section for pizzicato strings, a melody for ethnic 
flute, a chillingly dissonant section droning synth male chorus, a string chorale during the last few minutes, and
 finally the intensely moving piano/synth chorus theme near the very end.  He ends it fittingly with a major key 
version of the X-Files theme.  Wow, that was one long sentence. John Beal and Mark Snow should be lauded for 
giving us the most coherent presentation of X-Files music ever produced. Mulder and Scully would be proud! 

Andrew Drannon
Score Sheet
September 1999

Horror buffs will know Mark Snow, of course, from X-Files, but apparently the composer's range also 
encompassed La Femme Nikita, Caroline At Midnight, 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, Disturbing Behavior and
Pee-Wee's Playhouse, among others.  This disc aims to expand the public's knowledge of Snow's output, which
tends towards mood, slow tempo and lavish orchestration.  Ultimately, his music is attractive by itself and worth
checking out.  Includes a half hour-long X-Files Suite structured around a typical show.

Gregorius Chant
Rue Morgue Magazine
December 1999

The closest we've gotten to a real soundtrack to THE X-FILES TV music was the excellent 31-minute concert 
suite, recorded and performed, with Snow's input, by John Beal, on The Snow Files, a collection of Mark Snow's 
film music (Sonic Images SID-8902). The rendition was very faithful and captures the essence of Snow's eerie 
musical ambiences for the show and its conspiratorial mythologies. The collection also includes original 
soundtrack material from DISTURBING BEHAVIOR and, what was perhaps most interesting on the CD, cues from 
a number of moody mysteries Snow scored for television, such as CONUNDRUM and SEDUCED AND BETRAYED. 
Snow's gloomy melodies are lyrically pretty but main a dark edge, relaying the dark motives of sinister characters.

Randall D. Larson
Fandom, Inc.  (1999 Year-End Soundtrack Reviews)
January 6, 2000

The Snow Files collects the finest moments of Mark Snow's 25-year career as a composer for the silver screen. 
Snow's works for films such as La Femme Nikita, X-Files: Fight the Future and…  Well, this is the CD every Snow 
fan has been waiting for! It contains over 70 minutes of wonderful Snow music and it will leave you begging for 
more. It contains an extended club mix of the popular "La Femme Nikita" TV series theme. There is also a full-
length "X-Files" suite that runs for more than 30 minutes WITHOUT ANY SPOKEN WORDS. Both tracks were done 
by the trailer-music maestro, John Beal. There are also wonderful music from TV-movies such as "20,000 
Leagues Under the Sea", "Smokejumpers", "Oldest Living Confederate Widow" (nominated for an Emmy award) 
and "Conundrum".  There are also bonus tracks released for the first time on CD. Get this today and enjoy a wide 
variety of music from Mark Snow. 

Encore Ultimate Mark Snow Page
March 2000

What is not commonly known is that Mark Snow has been composing music for films sincle 1975 and this 
compilation album aims to redress the balance by giving us a slice of the scoring of Snow.  The first track opens
out with a club mix of 1: "La Femme Nikita," one of the few tracks on this disc produced and arranged by John
Beal, and a very faithful job he does too.  Tracks 2-5 bannered under the title Darkness And Desire contain some
beautiful melodic work (especially 3: "Seduced and Betrayed" and 4: "A Woman Scorned") echoing slightly of his
later "X Files" music especially in regard to 5: "Caroline at Midnight" which was utilised in a different guise for
Scully.  The next section of tracks 6-9 under the title Love And Hope contains music from "The Substitute Wife,"
"Oldest Living Confederate Widow," "Smoke Jumpers" and the Michael Caine starrer "20,000 Leagues Under The
Sea."  The first two 6: "The Substitute Wife" and 7: "Oldest Living Confederate Widow" give that old west feeling
to the msuic and have delightful compositions on playful piano and warm strings.  "Smoke Jumpers" raises the
game though, with proud statements on brass coupled with a militaristic drumbeat describing the heroics of the
parachute firefighters, yet gentle with the woodwind reflecting their camaradery.  9: "20,000 Leagues Under The
Sea - Arctic Night Walk" is a stunningly beautiful composition primarily on strings and french horn giving a sense 
of wonder to the arctic landscape.  It's here that the album changes tack with eerie passages for 10: "Disturbing
Behavior" with synth echoey blasts and a dancing synth piano sound.  Mind you, it was describing a film about a
high school counsellor turning kids into zombies!  Then in 11: "Suite from the X Files" we get John Beal's
arrangement from Snow's "X Files" starting off with the dancing piano from "Roland" in season one, then "Duane
Barry"'s abduction before segueing into the extended end title guise we all know and love.  As this suite covers
31 minutes we then get treated to the unearthly sounds from the series specifically from seasons 1-5.  Highlights
from it include synth drum chase sequences, the choral segments more often describing Scully's religious 
interludes, further eerie chase segments from "Beyond the Sea," the repeating synth tone from "Anasazi" and
subsequent militaristic cues as the military close in, closing out on the "Hardlight" melody and piano and vocal
led ending to "Emily."  There's a lot more than what I've just described here, however it's spot on and far more
illuminating that the previously released "X Files" album proper, complete with annoying voices!  The final few 
bonus tracks 12-14 cover 12: "Dark Justice," the ill-fated alternate version of 13: "Max Headroom" and 14: "Pee-
Wee's Playhouse" and a bouncy thing that piece is!  It's a moody album but a superb listening experience and 
really illuminates the talents of one Mr. Mark Snow and for once this album truly does him justice.  Superb.

Russell C. Thewlis
Legend Magazine
March 2000