Paul Haslinger

TV / 2016

The Halt And Catch Fire Score Digital Soundtrack will be released by Lakeshore Records on August 19th, followed by a CD release on September 16th, and hopefully vinyl at some point.

The album combines a selection of the Musical Score from Seasons 1, 2 and 3.

Over the last few years, there have been many requests to release a soundtrack for the series and I am happy and grateful to AMC for responding to this demand. I am equally grateful to show’s creators, Christopher Cantwell and Christopher C. Rogers, for creating such a wonderful environment for music, and then letting me run with it.

The release of this album comes at an interesting point in time for me: it is almost exactly 30 years ago that I started working with Tangerine Dream, and it is the music of that period that I had the chance to revisit while working on HALT. The creators made it clear that they wanted an all electronic soundtrack.  As a result, this album is the closest to an actual release of electronic music that I’ve come to since leaving TD in 1990. I’ve had a lot of fun making it, hope you enjoy it!


03 The Senic Route
Chris McCalebChris McCalebPicture Editor
"From the opening tones of “The Scenic Route,” you feel yourself being transported into the world of Halt and Catch Fire. As we revisit the de-facto musical theme of the series, Paul deftly balances the excitement of discovery with emotional transformation, as each of our main characters reaches a turning point in their lives, setting the stage for a metamorphosis that will play out in Season 2 and beyond.
Paul’s beautiful score for Halt and Catch Fire often mirrors the journey of our characters - humanizing the machine, breathing life into the cold, digital expanse, infusing it with a heart… a soul. To this day, every time I hear “The Scenic Route,” a current of electricity runs through my body. I absolutely love this cue."
05 It Speaks
Melissa BernsteinMelissa BernsteinExecutive Producer
"As we proudly share the last few episodes of season three with our beloved audience, it has been such a pleasure for me to revisit the series to date through Paul’s music. Each song on the album allows me to free-fall into an emotional rabbit hole where I can connect with how completely committed Joe, Cameron, Gordon, Donna, and Bos are to finding their destinies and being stakeholders in the future. Paul’s compositions instantly transport you deep into our characters’ complicated psyches in the most satisfying and devastating way. This phenomenon is gorgeously realized in IT SPEAKS in the wake of Joe taking in the Macintosh literally speaking before a crowd of tech devotees at COMDEX. The song is both haunting and very personal and speaks incisively to the intense crisis washing over Joe in that very moment where this man who has exuded confidence at every turn is now doubting his entire sense of self. To my mind that is Joe’s series journey perfectly distilled into a piece of music."
06 Reverse Engineering
Kevin RossKevin RossPicture Editor
"As the picture editor, there is nothing better than seeing your work combined with the final music and sound. And when you're lucky enough to have Paul Haslinger as the composer, you're guaranteed to have a wonderful experience! I can't imagine another composer creating Halt and Catch Fire's score. He is a perfect choice. Paul brings an unparalleled expertise to the project with cues that provide the series' lifeblood with sure-handed threads that carry us from episode to episode.
His music perfectly leads the viewer along the needed path, whether it be highlighting key moments, using undercurrents to restrain broader areas or sprinkling in almost subliminal hints along the way. With REVERSE ENGINEERING, Paul's cue is a driving force behind the extended montage sequence as Joe and Gordon attempt to extract a computer's BIOS code. The score comes at you in waves that mirror the struggle, the frustration, the exhaustion and finally the exhilaration of cracking the code. Thanks to Paul's music, the sequence bursts to life. The cue becomes an inextricable part of the story. It's so embedded in the HCF world that when I hear the first few measures, my mind is already visualizing Joe and Gordon's effort. If you haven't heard it before, sit back and enjoy! --KDR"
04 First Day On The Job
Joshua HooverJoshua HooverBodie on Halt and Catch Fire
"First Day On the Job immediately takes me back to set where things are constantly moving and so much is happening that you’ve gotta keep up! It perfectly communicates the pace and tone of the show with those heavy beats that are the show’s pulse. But then, all of sudden, they drop out. It flatlines. And you don’t know what’s gonna happen next. Which defines every episode of HALT. Paul is a genius!"
12 The Slingshot
Robert KomatsuRobert KomatsuPicture Editor
"The Slingshot could easily be named The Gut Punch, because that’s what this scene is about and that’s what Paul’s cue feels like. Moments before Joe, Cameron, Gordon, and Donna present the Cardiff Giant to the world at Comdex, Hunt Whitmarsh and Brian Braswell betray them, unveiling The Slingshot, a faster, cheaper knockoff. The first low notes of the cue creep in as our leads walk towards an as yet unseen presentation, with a voice that sounds oddly familiar. As we reveal Hunt and then the Slingshot, Paul’s cue ramps up to its crescendo, and we feel emotionally wrecked, as do our heroes."
07 Security Is A Myth
Mackenzie DavisMackenzie DavisCameron Howe on Halt and Catch Fire
"Listening to Security Is A Myth is like listening to a lullaby and then looking down at yourself and realizing you're screaming. The dread that creeps in under lovely child plunking notes without you noticing your heart is beating faster - this is my favorite sort of music. Not always the dread, but the getting under your skin without you knowing what's happening. And now we're in the last half of the song and you're minutes away from solving the case that's haunted you your entire adult life, and your heart is almost exploding! I love this song."
17 Gordon Steals A Cabbage Patch
Scoot McNairyScoot McNairyGordon Clark on Halt and Catch Fire
"Paul matched his music beautifully to what I thought was one of the most moving, wonderfully written scenes I had played. Paul’s music helps the viewer imagine what my character was going through, balancing the desire of a father to provide for his children with the knowledge that he was losing his grip on reality. Having the opportunity to re-listen to the soundtrack gives me a deeper insight into my character and his relationships.
01 Golden Gate
Kerry Bishe´Kerry Bishe´Donna Clark on Halt and Catch Fire
"Listening to Golden Gate feels like going on a Vision Quest. It starts with a kind of dire problem and then gets contemplative about it. At a certain point, a synthesizer gives you the beginning of an obsessive, repetitive idea, percolating at a low level. Then the implications become clear, the bigger picture takes shape, it's got consequence and impact. This is the kind of music I'd listen to on peyote in the desert. Or on headphones on the train at night, trying hard to feel like the struggle might be worth it."
23 MacMillan Utility
Christopher CantwellChristopher CantwellCo-Creator and Executive Producer
"Paul’s latest iteration of what I feel has come to be our series anthem perfectly captures both the thrill and anxiety of the 'NEW IDEA,’ the ever-elusive thing for which all of our characters are constantly searching. At once full of hope, excitement, and tremendous potential, it also carries an ominous tone—the feeling one gets when standing on the edge of a cliff and peering over the side. When I hear this music, it gives me chills, because it not only reminds me of our characters’ journeys, but of our collective journey making this series. If this is the anthem of the yearning spirit inside Joe, Gordon, Cameron, Donna, and Bos, it’s also the anthem of all the people behind HALT AND CATCH FIRE itself. — CMC"
21 The End Of Donna's Day
Christopher C. RogersChristopher C. RogersCo-Creator and Executive Producer
"This piece has always gutted me. It’s so human and private and seems to speak directly to so many of the intimate moments of self-realization that our characters experience on Halt and Catch Fire. As such, the piece somehow manages to contain both a loneliness and an optimistic sense of growth at the same time. I don’t know how Paul did that, but it gets me every time. - CCR "