Barry Adamson PhotoBarry Adamson's work as a bassist for Magazine and Nick Cave's Bad Seeds gave little indication of the complex, cinematic works he has composed as a solo artist. After leaving the Bad Seeds in 1987, Adamson decided to follow the path of film composers like John Barry, Ennio Morricone, and Bernard Herrmann, whose work had intrigued him since childhood. His first full-length album, 1989's Moss Side Story (he had released one previous EP in 1988), was a tour de force, blending post-punk, industrial, spy guitar, and various classic movie composer quotes into a seamless 54-minute soundtrack to an ominous film noir that didn't exist.

This recording led to Adamson's work on soundtracks for actual films in the early '90s, including Delusion, Gas Food Lodging, and Shuttle Cock. Adamson also continued to compose quasi-cinematic recordings for imaginary films like 1996's Oedipus Shmoedipus, although none have matched the sustained excitement of Moss Side Story. As Above, So Below followed in 1998 and a best-of compilation titled The Murky World of Barry Adamson appeared a year after that. Adamson returned in 2002 with The King of Nothing Hill, his first collection of new material in four years. ~ John Bush, All Music Guide