The Killing Fields (soundtrack)

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The Killing Fields
A rectangular slit on a grey background featuring a sunset photo of a work site. Yellow text is at the bottom of the image; "This is a story of war and friendship, anguish and honour. A ruined country and one man's will to live...". Two red squares at the top left and right say the album title The Killing Fields and Mike Oldfield Original Film Soundtrack.
Soundtrack album by
Released3 December 1984 (1984-12-03)
RecordedEngland, Germany & Switzerland 1984
GenreWorld music
ProducerMike Oldfield
Mike Oldfield chronology
The Killing Fields
Singles from The Killing Fields
  1. "Étude"
    Released: 26 November 1984
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4/5 stars[1]

The Killing Fields is the 10th record album by Mike Oldfield, released in 1984 on Virgin Records. It was the soundtrack album for the British drama film of the same name based on the experiences of two journalists in the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia. It is the only full-length film score written by Oldfield.

The music was orchestrated by David Bedford. The Killing Fields was re-released in a remastered edition format on 29 January 2016, as per all previous albums which were originally released on the Virgin label.


Though Oldfield's music had been used in films before (see The Exorcist and The Space Movie), this was the first time he had written specifically for film, and so far the only time. Oldfield composed the album on a Fairlight CMI.[2]

Like many movies, the album is not a comprehensive record of all the Oldfield soundtrack music used in the film. Most notably, the music accompanying the darkroom sequence does not feature on the album. The single from the album, "Étude", is taken from the Francisco Tarrega piece "Recuerdos de la Alhambra".

Oldfield's work on the score was partially instigated by Virgin boss Richard Branson when he took Oldfield to see David Puttnam, a producer on the film, which then secured him the role.[3]

Oldfield spent six months working on the score for The Killing Fields before going on tour, but when Oldfield returned, the producers of the film asked for more music to be written, prompting Oldfield to ask for the use of an orchestra and a choir; three months later the score was finished.[4] It was released just a few months after Oldfield's previous album, Discovery.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Mike Oldfield, except where stated.

Side one[edit]

  1. "Pran's Theme" – 0:44
  2. "Requiem for a City" – 2:11
  3. "Evacuation" – 5:14
  4. "Pran's Theme 2" – 1:41
  5. "Capture" – 2:24
  6. "Execution" – 4:47
  7. "Bad News" – 1:14
  8. "Pran's Departure" – 2:08

Side two[edit]

  1. "Worksite" – 1:16
  2. "The Year Zero" – 0:28 (David Bedford)
  3. "Blood Sucking" – 1:19
  4. "The Year Zero 2" – 0:37
  5. "Pran's Escape" / "The Killing Fields" – 3:17
  6. "The Trek" – 2:02
  7. "The Boy's Burial" / "Pran Sees the Red Cross" – 2:24
  8. "Good News" – 1:46
  9. "Étude" – 4:37 (Francisco Tárrega, arranged by Mike Oldfield)

2016 remaster[edit]

  1. "Pran's Theme"
  2. "Requiem for a City"
  3. "Evacuation"
  4. "Pran's Theme 2"
  5. "Capture"
  6. "Execution"
  7. "Bad News"
  8. "Pran's Departure"
  9. "Worksite"
  10. "The Year Zero"
  11. "Blood Sucking"
  12. "The Year Zero 2"
  13. "Pran's Escape" / "The Killing Fields"
  14. "The Trek"
  15. "The Boy's Burial" / "Pran Sees the Red Cross"
  16. "Good News"
  17. "Étude"
  18. "Evacuation (Single edit)" (Bonus track)
  19. "Étude (Single edit)" (Bonus track)



  1. ^ The Killing Fields at AllMusic
  2. ^ Tim Oakes (September 1984). "Mike Oldfield". Guitarist.
  3. ^ Mike Oldfield (2 August 2012), Two Sides Sleeve Notes, Mercury Records, retrieved 3 January 2015
  4. ^ "Interview with Mike Oldfield". Roland Power-on magazine. 6 June 1999. Retrieved 12 July 2008.

External links[edit]