Johan Söderqvist

" It’s a score with a very natural melting of baroque instruments, samples and sounds. "

Written by Joep de Bruijn - Review of the regular release

Tannöd is a German film based on the popular book written by Andrea Maria Schenkel. The story is about a family that was brutally murdered on the Tannöd. No one knew who was responsible and since none of the villagers liked the family, the crime was never solved. Then, Kathrin returns to her village a few years later to investigate and solve the case. Bettina Oberli directed the film in which Julia Jentsch, Monica Bleibtreu and Volker Bruch play the leading roles. It was Johan Söderqvist's second German film and second cd release (after Effi Briest) by Königskinder. The score was released on the 28th of November 2009.

Söderqvist began to envision what the film would be like based on the book and screenplay. The religious motives of the characters and the dark, cold forest environments inspired him as well in composing the score. Therefore, he chose to write music for baroque instruments, using electronic samples and religious texts/sounds to create a unique musical environment for the film. It was an idea he had thought of a long time ago and saw the opportunity to realize it for Tannöd. The interesting thing is that as the score progresses, the contrast between the melodic, pure music and samples and sounds begins to fade, and starts to form a harmonic, natural alliance.

The score is by all means to typical thriller score; the composer uses many unconventional sounds and instruments. Söderqvist recorded an incredible amount of bell samples, of which just a few were used. You can hear a lot of samples that sound like nothing you heard before, and some instruments are played in a unconventional manner. A bowed guitar became the most important instrument to convey the forest environments. When listening to this score, you will notice that even though atmosphere is can be quite dark, there’s always something subtle and beautiful going on musically.

The score's theme was borrowed from an earlier score called DeUnsygle (Troubled Water). Because the filmmakers thought the piece worked so well for Tannöd, they wanted to re-use it. So when permission was granted, Söderqvist re-wrote and re-recorded the theme to make it fit the picture. Those who are familiar with DeUnsygle and who fear the chance of being distracted can rest assured; it feels very natural. For addressing the religious motives of the characters the Swedish choir called Haga Motettkör was utilized for the score. Mikael Carlsson and Söderqvist's assistant Uno Helmersson recorded the choir that performs the Latin text from the catholic mass Libera Me, on music that Söderqvist wrote. The text smartly connects with the characters of the film, who are all in the search for absolution and salvation. For this score the composer made a choir library, of which sounds can be heard throughout the score. In some cues you can hear whispering, breathing and hissing sounds that give add greatly to the haunting atmosphere.

The music is mysterious, emotionally gripping and very inspiring. It's a score with a very natural melting of baroque instruments and interesting samples and sounds. Essential stuff really. The release by Königskinder includes a booklet with notes by several people who were involved in the making of the film(score).


1. First Prayer (2.37)
2. Arrival (2.05)
3. Betrayal I (1.26)
4. Woods (2.34)
5. Tannöd I (1.49)
6. Evil Libera (2.58)
7. Tannöd II (1.57)
8. Second Prayer (1.27)
9. Betrayal II (4.18)
10. Dream (1.51)
11. Slaughter (2.21)
12. Letters (2.22)
13. The Dog is Dead (2.03)
14. Field (0.55)
15. Discovery (2.15)
16. Johann & Katrin (1.15)
17. Decision (3.13)
18. Running from Evil (2.18)
19. Tannöd III (Main Theme) (3.08)
20. Libera Me (1.58)

Total Length: 44:42

Lyrics: Libera Me
Libera me, Domine, de morte aeterna,
in die illa tremenda,
quando coeli movendi sunt et terra.
Dum veneris judicare saeculum
per ignem.
Tremens factus sum ego, et timeo,
dum discussio venerit atque
ventura ira
quando coeli movendi sunt et terra.
Dies illa, dies irae, calamitatis et miseriae,
dies magna et amara valde.
Dum veneris judicare saeculum
per ignem.
Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine
et lux perpetua luceat eis.

Deliver (free) me, o Lord from everlasting death
on that dreadful day,
when the heavens and the earth shall be moved.
When thou shalt come to judge the world
by fire.
I quake with fear and I tremble,
awaiting the day of account and
the wrath to come
when the heavens and the earth shall be moved.
That day, the day of anger, of calamity, of misery,
that great day and most bitter.
When thou shalt come to judge the world
by fire.
Eternal rest grant them, o Lord,
and let perpetual light shine upon them.

Published: 29-11-2009
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 10 votes - average 4.7/5)

Released by

Königskinder KK 012 (regular release 2009)

Music composed, arranged and produced by

Johan Söderqvist.


Slovak National Symphony Orchestra .


Hans Ek.

Bowed Guitars/Zither/Baritone guitar:

Uno Helmersson.


Jonas Sjöblom.

Viola da Gamba:

Louise Agnani.


Katarina Widell.


Johan Alenius.


Johan Söderqvist.


Haga Motettkör.

Conductor/Choir Director:

Ulrike Heider. Recording engineer: Martin Roller.

Choir recording and producing:

Uno Helmersson/Mikael Carlsson.

Film Music Mix:

Erik Guldager.

Soundtrack Mix:

Jan Ugand.

Assistant to the composer:

Uno Helmersson.

Music supervisor:

Christoph Becker.

Music published by

Constantin Music Verlag GmbH.

Labelmanagement Königskinder Music:

:Pia Hoffmann & Markus Linde.


Jochen Nuyken.