When HEALTH toured with Nine Inch Nails a few years ago, there was a lot of talk about how Trent Reznor’s industrial project might influence the L.A. noisemakers. As it turns out, the parallels between the groups have been greater than expected, with HEALTH following Reznor into the world of soundtrack composition. While Max Payne 3 isn’t exactly The Social Network, Rockstar’s videogame still gives HEALTH a palate to expand their music, both toward extended textural pieces and industrial rockers.
The first single from the soundtrack is “Tears,” a throbbing loop-driven piece of noise-pop that behaves something like a starker, less dancey version of “USA Boys,” the band’s original contribution to the DISCO2 remix album. The track’s tightly mechanical rhythm is offset by droning, groaning synths, while trademark ghostly vocals hang like a cool mist above the fray. It’s a great track without the videogame tie-in, but given the context it was written for, “Tears” fortunately works well for watching computer-generated heads explode in slow motion. Then again, so does pretty much everything else they've recorded.
HEALTH—Max Payne 3 Soundtrack
Photo: Courtesy of HEALTH