We are speaking of a mystery.
The trailer music company E.S. Posthumus, launched 2000 by the brothers Helmut and Franz Vonlichten, got popular through the internet, where they offered their first album ‘Unearthed’, which became also after it the third best-selling albums in history of CDbaby in the year 2001. After their latest release, Makara, one of the brothers died. On July 22, the company official announced that Franz died about two months ago which meant for Helmut, that he had to finish and close that project.
The style of E.S. Posthumus is different to other trailer music companies. One important thing and special character of them is, that they often don’t use any choir elements. So, it reminds at the first time more of a classical film soundtrack with elements of the music genre Rock. Actually you can say that E.S. Posthumus combine different styles of music. Another characteristic is, that their tracks are often longer than regular trailer tracks. The, I’ll call it ‘normal length’ of trailer tracks are about 1-2 minutes. But many tracks by the Vonlichten brothers are around 3-5 minutes. Because their style often reminds at the first time of traditional film music, producer Jerry Bruckheimer used the track Nara as the main theme of his television show Cold Case. Speaking about Nara… this might probably the most used track by them, because it was also in several blockbuster movie trailers such like Antwone Fisher, The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, National Treasure, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider 2, Partition and The Other Boleyn Girl.
For the album Cartographers, they got Luna Sans, who sung the vocal parts in that album. Also tracks from that album were licensed, like for example in TV shows like Lost, Law&Order and Heroes. Special songs of that company are Arise, which was written for the AFC Championship on CBS in 2008, later it was also used in one of the TV spots of James Camerons Avatar and the single Christmas Eve, which was like a tribute to Helmuts brother Franz. They planned for Christmas 2010 an Christmas album, but because of the death of Franz, Helmut cancelled that project. At that time, only one track was in the production, and the brothers favorite arranger Jeremy Lubbock should arrange that track. So… only one track was finally published, the track for Franz.
But behind the Vonlichten brothers, there’s another company with a very different style. When you think about it the first time, you can’t really believe it, because the styles are too different, but it is true; the composers and brothers behind Pfeifer Broz. Music are exactly the same like of E.S. Posthumus – and that are also their real names. Vonlichten was just a pseudonym for their project E.S. Posthumus, but with their now also closed company Pfeifer Broz. Music they composed and arranged fast, and short, mostly epic action tracks. One special characteristic of that style are the often used screaming choirs, you can say it’s like the complete opposite of E.S. Posthumus. So… after Franz Vonlichtens, or his real name – Robert Pfeiffer, death, Helmut Vonlichten (Jeffrey Pfeifer) closed and finished those two companies – but not his career as a composer. In the year 2012 he came up with a complete new album and company, called Les Friction. The for the open audience published album tells a very personally story of Jeffrey Pfeifer, therefor it is not a real trailer music album. It combines epic, fast and brilliant trailer music style tracks with vocals sung by Jeff himself.
In E.S. Posthumus album Cartographer they published a little story;
“In 1929, the ancient map “Piri Reis” was discovered in Istanbul. The map is extraordinary because it depicts bays and islands on the Antarctic coast which have been concealed under ice for at least 6,000 years. What civilization was capable of such exploration that long ago? On “Cartographer”, we imagine that these explorers were from the tiny island of Numa in the Southern Indian Ocean. As advanced seafarers, they navigated every corner of the Earth.“
And now, with Les Friction, he kinda continued it, but in the future now:
“The year is 2048 AD. Humans are now able to leave their earthly home
and travel to other dimensions. While traveling, a shell of their body
remains on earth and functions at a reduced capacity.
For most people, life is more interesting and entertaining in these
alternate dimensions; however, having neglected their loved ones at
home, society on earth begins to deteriorate. Anarchy ensues and the
travelers begin to receive millions of S.O.S.’s from their families on
earth. Now, they must fight and struggle their way back home to save
earth from certain destruction. Our story begins…………”
Here you can read the latest article about Les Friction by Trailer Music Vibe;