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Soundtrack to Leif Jonker's 'Darkness' available on vinyl this weekend

Courtesy photo

Leif Jonker and members of Apostasy, The Grunge, Scepter and Knight will be on hand to sign records.

Leif Jonker was still a teenager when he began work on his 1992 horror film "Darkness." He not only wrote and directed the picture but he and friend Michael Curtis composed the score. No mean feat considering that they couldn't afford a professional recording studio and that Jonker wasn't a musician.

"It's kind of funny because I'm not a musician but now I have an album out with my name on it," said Jonker, speaking with KMUW earlier this week about the new vinyl release of the "Darkness" soundtrack.

Issued as a two-LP set by Mystic Vault, the collection features not only the original compositions from Jonker and Curtis but also original compositions from Wichita bands Apostasy, The Grunge, Scepter, and Knight. Jonker and several of the musicians involved in the soundtrack will be signing copies of the record on Friday, June 7 and Saturday, June 8 at a variety of Wichita locations, starting with Spektrum Muzik at 7 p.m. on Friday and ending Saturday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Kirby's Beer Store. (See full schedule below.)

In addition, there are 19x13" soundtrack posters with 14 signatures of the musicians involved (including Curtis who won't be at the events this weekend) available.

Curtis had worked as a sound engineer and performed with the band Vampire Rodents (as Victor Wulf) as well as being a major horror film fanatic. He seemed a natural choice to score the film. With some expensive gear, some synthesizers, and space that Curtis' parents had at their home, the duo worked diligently on producing the music heard in "Darkness."

That appears on LP in the new vinyl set while original songs from the aforementioned bands appear on the second, giving not only "Darkness" enthusiasts a chance to focus on the score but Wichita music scene stalwarts the opportunity to hear bands whose work had not been widely documented.

"The record sounds great," said Jonker.

The full schedule for signings is as follows: Friday at Spektrum Muzik at 7 p.m., followed by CD Tradepost (West) from 12 p.m. until 1 p.m. on Saturday, CD Tradepost (East) from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. and Kirby's Beer Store from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Members of Apostasy, The Grunge, and Knight will be on hand on Friday, while Jeff Kirby from Scepter will join his fellow musicians and Jonker on Saturday.

"We may have more musicians around than people buying the record," he joked.

Jedd Beaudoin is host/producer of the nationally syndicated program Strange Currency. He has also served as an arts reporter, a producer of A Musical Life and a founding member of the KMUW Movie Club. As a music journalist, his work has appeared in Pop Matters, Vox, No Depression and Keyboard Magazine.