The Music

Our journey starts in the Summer of 2018. Darren knew he had to solve two musical problems. He knew his main character ‘Matt’ needed three key songs – to be performed as a solo singer-guitarist. He also knew the film called for a set of songs from an ’80s band’ that would add backstory, musical depth and nostalgia.

The music for ‘All Roads Lead To Home’ was always going to be vital to the story; not only because our protagonists Matt and Amy perform songs throughout the film, but because I wanted to create an ‘end to end musical odyssey’ – one where the music and songs provided a world for our characters to inhabit as well as supporting a strong narrative to the story

Darren Scott, DIrector

Darren initially tried to obtain the rights for 80s songs by various bands. This would prove difficult and also costly. So the idea came about to create a mythical band, and develop some original songs. 1st AD Geoff Saunders put Darren in touch with Nick Doyne-Ditmas – an accomplished singer and musician, who had played in bands in the 80s. That conversation led to a plan to write three new songs (including the title track) and to re-record three songs Nick had produced in 1988. The idea being that both sets of songs would sound as if they had been produced at the same time. Multi-track reel tapes of the older songs were found and sent to be ‘baked’ (the tapes were 30 years old, had oxidized, and needed to be literally baked in a special oven to allow the tapes to play again). Once completed they were then digitized track by track and work could start on them. Nick brought in Sonke Prigge – a bafta-winning composer and producer to help craft the old and new songs for the film. Zoe Gilmour would provide lyrics for two of the new songs, and Darren would write the lyrics for the film’s theme tune.

Meanwhile, Darren had approached Jason Havard to help him write the songs for ‘Matt’. They had worked together on a theatre score about a decade before, and it was felt Jason’s experience of pub gigs, armed only with a guitar would lend authenticity to the project. Work started in January 2019, and after a few tentative sessions trying to work out what was needed, Jason delivered three songs that instantly met the brief and all of them made it into the final film. This included ‘Is Anybody Listening?’ , ‘I Miss You’ and the omni-present ‘Better By Your Side’. Darren then suggested Jason stay on the project as the script had been changed and now needed additional songs. By the end of 2019, ‘Forever Chasing Rainbows’, ‘The Day Is Mine’ and ‘I Wish I Didn’t Wish My Life Away’ had been demo’ed and arranged.

January 2020. The film was planned to start filming in June of that year. Studio time was booked at Woodbine Street Studios to record all of the ‘Matt and Amy’ songs with the legendary John Rivers at the helm. Nick and Sonke had also completed their recordings (for the now named 80s legends ‘NEW TOWN SCENE’) and it was agreed these six songs would be mixed by John to provide continuity of sound. Jason and Darren went into the studio in March and recorded the music for most of the songs, ahead of actors Imogen Archer (Amy) and Fred Szkoda (Matt) coming in to do their vocals over the Easter period.

Then COVID stopped everything. The film was postponed indefinitely. John was able to mix the NEW TOWN SCENE songs during the first lock down. Imogen and Fred finally got into the studio when everything opened up briefly in July 2020 and the songs were completed for whenever the film would go ahead. This would eventually be June 2021.

The team would be back at Woodbine in April 2022 to record a new song ‘Nostalgia’ and a new version of ‘Better By Your Side’ for the film’s finale as the script had again been changed. In September 2023, Jason and Darren headed back into the studio to record the music score and to remix all of the songs ahead of the final sound mix for the film. The journey was finally completed – five years after it started.