S. Peace Nistades is an award-winning film composer who has collaborated with various filmmakers in over seven countries worldwide based out of his music production facility, Alkaloide Music Productions in Los Angeles, CA. Over the past few years, films which he has scored have gone on to screen in over 30 film festivals worldwide including the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. He has collaborated with such artists as Lisbeth Scott (The Passion of the Christ, Munich, Avatar), Karen Han (The Hurt Locker, Kung Fu Panda), Gingger Shankar (Charlie Wilson’s War) and Grammy Award-winning artist Darlene Koldenhoven to name a few.
We caught up with S. Peace Nistades to get the down low on his fave musicians and why he loves them.
Top Five Fav Musicians (and why)
-Herbert von Karajan
Without a doubt, Herbert von Karajan is probably my number one conductor and musicians, for many reasons. The sound he crafted from his orchestra (the Berlin Philharmonic) was fresh, muscular, exact and yet with incredible passion. Hearing his legendary Beethoven symphony cycle changed everything for me growing up and his ongoing fascination and pioneering collaboration with recording technology is particularly inspiring. I love to think what he would do if he were still alive today. The experiments with his tonmeisters in his recordings are incredible, particularly in his recordings of the Second Viennese School; Schoenberg and Berg in particular.
Similarly to Karajan, but obviously in a completely different musical way, discovering Trent Reznor’s music, both in his records with Nine Inch Nails and later in his film scores, was another revolutionary turn for me musically. He has such a unique musical and sonic voice that just a few seconds of his music are instantly recognizable as his. It’s also a very fresh blend, to me, of the old and the new in an incredibly relevant way. I love the aesthetic.
Jonny Greenwood is another musician/composer among the top five on my list, one that has revitalized film music (and music in general) for me in a very special way. His musical voice, constantly re-imagining acoustic and electronic manipulation in a new way, particularly in his collaborations with Paul Thomas Anderson, is as distinct as it is beautiful and evocative. There Will Be Blood changed everything. His latest, Phantom Thread, is my favorite score of year, along with the film itself. I also particularly love his 48 Responses to Penderecki’s Polymorphiaand the fact that they were on the same album, a passing of the torch in some sense, a conversation between generations, is incredible.
Speaking of a conversation between generation bridges perfectly to my next favorite, Max Richter. His Vivaldi Four Seasons, Recomposed is still my favorite classical album that’s come out in the past decade. A contemporary point of view of history and not merely a revisiting, but a re-exploring, a re-exposing and a re-evaluation of it at the same time finding a new way for it to have a fresh dialogue with us in the present is precisely what I’m interested in both musically and in storytelling as well. This was a masterpiece from top to bottom.
-Lana Del Rey
To round off my list, being a more or less assimilated LA-er, it’s hard to escape the haunting melancholy of Lana Del Rey. I love her voice but it’s not just that. Her musical imprint, both haunting and sad, simultaneously hopeful and mournful, seems inextricably one with the heartbeat and pulse of this city and has echoed my own experiences here in a deeply personal way.