Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Dexter the score (tv series, not Dexter's lab)

There are 2 versions, the soundtrack and the score. Apparently I got the score, but the soundtrack and the score seem to overlap.

Dexter score

A very small synopsis snapped from tv.com:
'Based on Jeff Lindsay's novels Darkly Dreaming Dexter and Dearly Devoted Dexter this crime thriller follows Dexter Morgan. Dexter is a forensic blood spatter expert for the Miami Dade Police Department. He is the main support for his sister. He has a steady girlfriend, with two kids who adore him. He also has an active "night life". Based on a code instilled in him by his foster father, Harry, he hunts down people who have escaped justice and makes sure they don't get away with a crime again.'

About the music:
Most tracks can be put into different categories which make the score into a whole.

Tracks like Opening, Wink, Escalate, End credit and House sound sinister and dark. These are sounds which give me the eerie feeling that fit Dexter as a 'good' serial killer.

Next to the whole 'good' vs 'bad' question there's a feeling of sadness about Dexter because he has to hide his true nature. Epilogue has a Spanish sound with a half-hearted happyness to it and Party sounds a bit alike. It reminds me of the adds for depressed people who don't know 'where the fun is in a party'. Hidden falls in the same category with almost Western-like sounds with a Spanish twist of sadness.

There are a couple of tracks which describe downright drama like Need time, Changed, Deb Cries, New legs and Funny. Photo which is one of my favorites also fits this category. It just speaks drama. I love how you hear the shifting of the guitar players hand on the guitar (don't know how this is called).

Working for the police and being a serial killer at the same time brings tension and action which can be heard very well in Ending, Shipyard and Fight.

Can't hide falls in between 'action/tension' and 'strangely normal' with tense xylophone plinging switching to 'a day like every day' guitar sound.

Subwoofer darkness
Connections and Match make me happy with my subwoofer. A deep bass rumble describing darkness.

Strangely normal
Harry's rule sounds like a routine day in the life of a hidden killer, a walk in the park (Harry was Dexter's dad who taught him the craft). And so does
The Dexter Theme: watch (and listen to) it first.

Everything you see insinuates Dexter's real life: killing. The track sounds like a normal day of a normal person but you can almost hear there's more to it.

The tv series has a very dark feeling to it. Most sane people will have moments when they think..'somebody should kill that criminal because the justice system failed'. Dexter does exactly thát. We know it's wrong but in the dark corners of our mind are glad someone does the dirty job. Daniel Licht did a great job composing music which captures that feeling and Rolfe Kent made a perfect theme. If you like soundtrack/score music, this one is a must!

Tracklisting from the score
1 Daniel Licht - Opening
2 Daniel Licht - Wink
3 Daniel Licht - End credit
4 Daniel Licht - Escalate
5 Daniel Licht - Epilogue
6 Daniel Licht - Funny
7 Daniel Licht - Need Time
8 Daniel Licht - Photo
9 Daniel Licht - Hidden
10 Daniel Licht - Can't hide
11 Daniel Licht - Party
12 Daniel Licht - Changed
13 Daniel Licht - Connections
14 Daniel Licht - Deb cries
15 Daniel Licht - New legs
16 Daniel Licht - Match
17 Daniel Licht - Harry's rule
18 Daniel Licht - Ending
19 Daniel Licht - Shipyard
20 Daniel Licht - House
21 Daniel Licht - Fight
22 Rolf Kente - Dexter Theme (also on the OST)

You can at least listen to the samples which are featured on the original soundtrack here: Amazon link to the OST The 'identical' tracks seem to be longer on the soundtrack than on the score though!

I'm also getting the ost, but I won't review it. It's save to say it's great music!


Deepak Gopi said...

Happy easter to you and family.

Arjan said...

A bit late, but thanks!
Hope you had a couple of great days.

lunarpussikat said...

hi-maybe you will know this--ive been searching for months--there was a 70s song once in the episode where dexter is remembering his mum killed--and every now and then it plays slow--driving me crazy trying to find it--the words are something like"im coming home" soprano-argh!!sigh-any clue?? thanks...

Arjan said...

Do you happen to know which episode or season? I will try and find it for you.

John said...

I missed the first couple of episodes but I've found myself drawn in to Dexter. I actually like the character of his sister - more up front in some ways but still a mess of contradictions and more fragile than she appears (they compliment each other well)

John said...

... or even complement each other well, for those of you who can spell
(actually, I meant "compliment" ironically) (honest)

Arjan said...

it is certainly worth checking out completely! I dare even say that season 2 is (even) better than S1.

And yes, Dexter and his sister are a bit of opposites if you just look at their outsides but both are messed up. I can't seem to figure out if maybe Dexter ís feeling something or that it's just impossible to tell a story otherwise.

John said...

I quite like how messed up the sister is...

though I'm at the "is she gonna be OK" point right now, given who her boyfriend is... two episodes left in series 1 here (and I keep changing my mind what I think the connection between Dexter and the Ice Truck Killer might be)

Arjan said...

won't spoil it for you ;)

acglaphotis said...

I agree, s2 > s1. Especially because of Lilah ^_^.

Arjan said...

hehe yes, a shame she won't be 'around'.

Simply Agrestic said...

Hey, where did you get this "score" CD? I didn't see it at sho.com or amazon.com. I did find a torrent to download, but I'd like to have the CD if it's available for purchase.

I initially listened to all the tracks on Daniel Licht's website (http://www.danlicht.com/) but he's removed many of them. There's also a couple other tracks available at Jon Licht's website (http://www.lichtmusic.com/) including a couple from Season 2.

Arjan said...

I only got the torrent too..only halfway through my review I found the soundtrack..which seems to overlap but the titles are sometimes slightly different and the tracks (on the ost) slightly longer.

Searching on amazon and alike I can also only find the score..I guess it's down to real-life shopping to find it.
The only other option is mailing Daniel himself and ask where you can buy the score, give a heads up if you get a useful answer ;)

Thanks for those links btw!

Simply Agrestic said...


Before I downloaded the torrent, I recall Dan Licht had ~20 or so tracks on his website from Dexter. I think someone ripped them from his website and made a torrent...but the torrent is good quality, 192kbs, so that might not have been streaming audio. And Amazon almost always has everything in existence on their website, so I wonder if the score was never publicly released? I'd love to get a hold of Dan Licht and ask. :)

As far as the versions on the OST, they are longer and some are more "clean" sounding, so I think they were recorded / mixed solely for the OST. Some tracks have "eerie" or "techno" sounding outros, and there are a couple tracks that are medleys of two songs (Escalation / Opening, Deb Loves Rudy / The House, and Epilogue / Bloodroom).

I'm actually in the process of making a UST ("Unofficial" Soundtrack :)..."Music Inspired By Dexter" w/soundclips and everything...playing off the whole Dark Passenger theme. Dexter doesn't really feature any non-score music other than latin music, so I found some rock songs that fit with Dex. I'll post a torrent when I'm done. :)

Arjan said...

there's an e-mail adres of Licht on one of those pages you gave me.
I'll be looking forward to your UST!

Simply Agrestic said...


Here is a link (and some mirror links) to the UST I just finished.


Here's part of the readme.txt from the archive:

Dark Passenger: Music From and Inspired By Dexter

This is a fan-made, unofficial soundtrack to my favorite television show, Showtime's "Dexter." The score provided by Daniel Licht is amazing, and combined with the Latin music used in the show, the viewer truly gets a genuine Miami feel. Having said that, over the past year or so, I have stumbled upon various songs from other genres that I think fit well with the inner workings of Dexter's troubled mind. Interspaced throughout are some of my favorite tracks from Daniel Licht's score, as well as snippets of dialog from the show itself. I hope you all enjoy...

Kay Mawson said...

I am trying to find the sheet music for WINK. can you help me find it ?

Simply Agrestic said...



kay mawson said...

i need it for piano :( and this was for guitar. any further ideas. I appreciate your help. :D

Kay Mawson said...


this is what ive found and im trying to get it to work now :D

Arjan said...

Let me know if it worked out, if not I'll try and have a search too.

Oh and I'd like to hear it too :)

Anonymous said...

Dexter is a great show. This is the best show we have today on television. It has fun, excitement, suspense ....all the ingredients we can get in this show. I have seen Dexter Episodes online.

roger said...

Dexter TV Show is a superb show. I like all seasons and episodes of this show. Now days I am desperately waiting for its new season.

Anonymous said...

Dexter is all about a serial killer with standards who works for the Miami Metro Police Department as a blood-spatter analyst. I like the plot and always love to watch this show online.

jazzchilli said...

I'm not sure which part of the score I just heard, at the end of the latest episode shown in the UK, but it sounds very similar to a piece from Ashes to Ashes, in fact it's almost note for note.

KochalaSnide said...

Any idea about the song that comes on at the moment Debra and Anton confess their feelings to eachother in seaon 3 episode 12 at ~40:38?

PeelPub said...

@arjan any luck on season 3 episode 6 "homnecoming" the song in the bar with jimmy and kima? starts around 13:38