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‘Tree on a Hill / Pren ar y Bryn’ original soundtrack album set for release

05 Apr 2024 4 minute read

Fans of the dark humoured and original Tree on a Hill / Pren ar y Bryn TV series are celebrating the announcement that the soundtrack is to be released later this month.

Both series have been a runaway success for S4C and the BBC, with viewers remarking on the original score which is an integral element of the production which stars Rhodri Meilir, Richard Harrington, Hannah Daniel, and Nia Roberts.

Crafted by a seasoned team of composers, Tic Ashfield, Sam Barnes, and John Hardy, under the collective name of JOHNHARDYMUSIC, the album will stream on all platforms from Wednesday April 10 with exclusive vinyl records and CDs available to purchase.

Nia Roberts and Rhodri Meilir who play Clive and Margaret Lewis in Pren ar y Bryn/Tree on a Hill. Photography: Warren Orchard / BBC Wales /S4C/ All3media Int

Its official launch will take place that evening in a special event at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama with tickets available via their website. 

Distinctive soundtrack

Tree on a Hill / Pren ar y Bryn is a mischievous off beat crime drama series set in the upper Swansea Valley and is writer/director Ed Thomas’ first TV drama since crime hit ‘Hinterland/ Y Gwyll’

The music for the series has been lauded for its distinctive approach, seamlessly weaving through the ups and downs of the drama while capturing the essence of the community where the story unfolds.

In their quest to create a sound-world unlike conventional drama scoring, the composers utilized acoustic, ancient, and found instruments, eschewing big orchestral gestures and sample pack sounds familiar from other genres.

Pren ar y Bryn / Tree on a Hill

Having collaborated on numerous films, TV dramas, documentaries, and theatre productions over the past decade, Tic, Sam, and John bring a wealth of experience and creativity to the project. 

Reflecting on the creative process, lead composer, John Hardy said: “We were inspired by the vision of writer-director Ed Thomas and the unique ‘world’ of the community portrayed in ‘Tree on a Hill’.

“Our collaboration allowed us to push the boundaries of traditional scoring, resulting in a soundtrack that complements the narrative and is truly unique. We’ve been thrilled with the response so far!”

Recording of the soundtrack. Image: Warren Orchard

Instruments such as a pedal harmonium, clarinet, trumpet, lysarden, crumhorn, a battered ukulele, a Dobro resonator guitar and a variety of historic and non-standard percussion instruments were used to establish a unique sonic landscape that brings the town of Penwyllt and its people alive.

“Mesmerising”

The series writer, director & producer, Ed Thomas, who worked closely with John Hardy Music to create the soundscape and score said: “The music plays an integral part in bolstering the playful and absurdist tone of the series.

“I like to call it the Orchestra of broken sound, because the score by John Hardy music at times sounds like an old brass band playing with broken instruments that they’ve picked up from an ash tip. And its mesmerising.”

Tree on a Hill

Tree on a Hill / Pren ar y Bryn – music from the original TV series – will be launched in a special event at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Cardiff on April 10 and tickets are on sale now.

The album will stream on all platforms from that date and is currently available to pre-order through Ffin Records on Bandcamp.

Pre-order a copy of the new album here: https://ffinrecords.bandcamp.com/album/tree-on-a-hill-pren-ar-y-bryn-music-from-the-original-tv-series

Purchase tickets for the album launch here: https://www.rwcmd.ac.uk/events/tree-on-a-hill-pren-ar-y-bryn-official-album-launch

‘Tree on a Hill’ debuted on BBC One Wales this week and the entire series is available to watch on iPlayer, along with ‘Pren ar y Bryn’ which aired on S4C last year and is available to watch in full on S4C Clic and iPlayer.


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Rhosddu
Rhosddu
1 month ago

Great Welsh noir serial, very well acted, and with good opening/closing soundtrack. My guess is that there’ll be a second series.

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