American Record Guide
, October 2000
"Roy Webb came to RKO when Max Steiner was in charge of their music department. While the latter moved on to greater fame at Warner brothers, Webb stayed with RKO until 1955, composing for every imaginable genre of film. His music for Val Lewton's extraordinary series of horror tales reflects the approach taken on screen: understated, psychological, and without bombast.
"Webb's style has been aptly compared to Hindemith: "post-impressionist color limned with distinctly modern dissonance and bitonal harmony" (Christopher Palmer). Working with a smaller ensemble (RKO could rarely afford more than 40 players), the composer favored long, complex melody lines and unostentatious orchestrations. He makes ingenious use of a French nursery song in Cat People, summons 18th Century England in Bedlam, and conjures up gleaming instrumental hues for I Walked with a Zombie (a voodoo-themed rewrite of Jane Eyre). As these suites unfold, one can only admire the versatility and range of Webb's underrated abilities.
"The Slovak ensemble are right at home with these more restrained works. The voodoo chant from Zombie is sung here with a slight Slavic accent, but some may find that increases the frisson of this sequence. Again, Mr Stromberg's work is first-rate, as is every aspect of Marco Polo's production.
"The skill and inventiveness he brought to the table are undeniable, and we are fortunate to have a near-perfect documentation of some of his most striking efforts."