L.A. indie-rock iconoclast Petra Haden is tapping a childhood musical pastime in her new album coming out early next year, "Petra Goes to the Movies," which finds her singing classic movie themes. Not movie songs, but the instrumental themes from the likes of "Taxi Driver," "Rebel Without a Cause," "Superman," "A Fistful of Dollars" and, yes, even "Psycho" in mostly a cappella vocal arrangements.
The album isn't the first time Haden has stretched the boundaries of vocals as an interpretive instrument. In 2005 she recorded an a cappella reimagining of "The Who Sell Out," which re-created the band's 1967 album using only her voice and an eight-track recorder.
Now, just in time for Halloween, Pop & Hiss is exclusively premiering her take on the theme from Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 suspense classic "Psycho." The celebrated original score was composed by Bernard Herrmann in what has been described as "perhaps Herrmann's most spectacular Hitchcock achievement."
For Haden, the daughter of jazz bassist Charlie Haden, "Petra Goes to the Movies" represents one from the heart — and perhaps, the gut.