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'Our Club' Composer: It's Been A Fantastic Journey

Thurston Shacklady explains his process behind the soundtrack

12 December 2019

Thurston Shacklady, the composer behind hit Pompey documentary Our Club, has explained the process of creating – and inspirations behind – the soundtrack.

He worked alongside director Barney Fox to create the soundtrack (which is available to listen to here) six months before the release of the film, which centres around Pompey's plight following the 2008 FA Cup final and journey to becoming the largest community-owned club in the country.

Shacklady said: "Barney contacted me just before Christmas 2018, asking if I’d be up for making the soundtrack for a football documentary and he kept it very vague.

"At first, I wasn’t so sure as I don’t really watch football, nor have I played any since my schooling days.

"Somehow even though I mentioned this, Barney was still adamant that I’d be perfect for the job."

Despite Shacklady's lack of football knowledge, he drew inspiration from Pompey's most iconic chant as a constant throughout the 23 tracks that feature in the film.

"The main theme for Our Club focuses on Portsmouth’s chant 'Play Up Pompey, Pompey Play Up'," he added. "You’ll hear this throughout the film, but in different guises.

"The opening track 'Island City' uses this theme, but played slowly using low synthesisers and brass in different octaves.

"The main theme for Our Club focuses on Portsmouth’s chant 'Play up Pompey, Play up Pompey' and you’ll hear this throughout the film but in different guises."

Thurston Shacklady, Our Club composer

"This entire score was made using a Mac and Logic Pro. Obviously we’d have loved to have used a real orchestra, but by using a vast library of orchestral sampling, we got pretty close.

"My specialty is being able to make my demos sound as realistic as possible – that way Barney could really feel the emotion properly and cut the film to music.

"It's been a fantastic journey and Barney has already teased me with a potential new project, sadly I can’t share with you just yet!"

The DVD for Our Club is available to purchase here, and is also available to stream on iTunes, Vimeo and Amazon


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