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Joe Brausam

Spartacus Anniversary Edition

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Oh the poor wallets of film music fans this year! Too much goodies released in so little time! And yet for some reason I am grinning. ;)

And the Spartacus has been rumored and rumored to be the 1000th release from Varese for a long time. It is nice that Varese is doing something very special for this score release and it is an interesting choice from Varese to include a tribute album of the Love theme variations by different artists. Did not see that coming.

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Let's hope 1000 is the release number, not the edition size. I would imagine an unlimited release for this one.

-Hedji, who confesses to have never heard the score for Spartacus, nor seen the film. (Is it all it's hyped up to be?)

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People have been thinking it's coming for a couple of years now. So with the video now confirming it sorta pointless to take it down. Ah well, no matter what I'm sure people will buy the score. Never heard of it (both film and score) to be honest.

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But *what* exactly is it? From what I've read (remember, I never saw the video), they're doing some re-recordings for a score release, but do we have any actual info of the actual score release?

From the first post (I didn't see the video either), it sounds like it's a score release with a bonus tribute score disc. I'm not 100% sure, but maybe other composers' interpretations of North's music/themes?

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Well I guess I have to listen to the original album from somewhere. From what I remember of suites re-recordings it I didn't like it too much, like much of North's music for that matter

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But *what* exactly is it? From what I've read (remember, I never saw the video), they're doing some re-recordings for a score release, but do we have any actual info of the actual score release?

Here's what Isham said more or less:

"Varese is releasing the score itself... and doing a special cd where they've asked different artists to come in and record this theme, so it will be a CD of 10 different people doing the same piece of music. All the way from us to Alexander Desplat... it's going to be a really wide variety..."

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Great news. Great score. I'm sure Olivarez is psyched about this one too.

Oh yeah.

I must admit that while I am truly excited that it is going to be Spartacus, I almost have an "I told you so mentality".

When you look at Varese's history and Robert Townson's favorite composers, Spartacus was the obvious choice. Unless he released another Goldsmith box or a 3 disc ST:TMP set, or even a Herrmann boxed set, I can't think of anything else worthy of the 1000th release.

I am truly overwhelmed, as a film score fan, with the embarrassment of riches we have received to begin 2010.

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Is the score any good? Well, allow me to answer this. For people who like brash, bold themes, lush if not atypical orchestrations, complex meters (time signatures) and yearning love themes, yes. Spartacus is ground in the harmonies of the time period. For some, it's a sentimental wonderfulness. For newbies to film scoring, or folks not familiar with the '60s, or modernist orchestral music, North's score might not delight. When I was younger, I couldn't get into the film nor score. Dragonslayer changed my view of North although I would actually say the haunting elegy from Good Morning Viet Nam really did it (I hope someone releases that score too some day). North's approach on the surface seemed antithetical to today's mandate of subtle invisible underscore. It grabbed you by the balls and said "ahem, hi there, I am your score for this film and I'm a character just like the actors, set design, lighting, etc. are".

To each his or her own though. I don't expect everyone to fawn over this as others do. My feeling is, their loss. But most definitely our gain. :P

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I must admit that while I am truly excited that it is going to be Spartacus, I almost have an "I told you so mentality".

You're right, it was never a matter of "if", but only "when". I'm happy that the moment is finally arriving.

And let me say to all the people who aren't familiar with this score: it's absolutely one of the greatest gems ever written by this genius composer. I always loved the film, it's my own favourite sword-and-sandal epic of all time (even though there's much more going on than people in skirts and papier-mache sets). It's a very audacious score, because it's written with a modern approach, like Fiery Angel said well up here. If you like Goldmith's 60s style of scoring, then you'll certainly love this. Don't look for a Miklòs Ròzsa-type of sound, this is something quite more aggressive and brash:

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Is the score any good? Well, allow me to answer this. For people who like brash, bold themes, lush if not atypical orchestrations, complex meters (time signatures) and yearning love themes, yes. Spartacus is ground in the harmonies of the time period. For some, it's a sentimental wonderfulness. For newbies to film scoring, or folks not familiar with the '60s, or modernist orchestral music, North's score might not delight. When I was younger, I couldn't get into the film nor score. Dragonslayer changed my view of North although I would actually say the haunting elegy from Good Morning Viet Nam really did it (I hope someone releases that score too some day). North's approach on the surface seemed antithetical to today's mandate of subtle invisible underscore. It grabbed you by the balls and said "ahem, hi there, I am your score for this film and I'm a character just like the actors, set design, lighting, etc. are".

To each his or her own though. I don't expect everyone to fawn over this as others do. My feeling is, their loss. But most definitely our gain. :)

Thank you for your answer. I think I will give it a chance when it will be released by Varese.

I must admit that while I am truly excited that it is going to be Spartacus, I almost have an "I told you so mentality".

You're right, it was never a matter of "if", but only "when". I'm happy that the moment is finally arriving.

And let me say to all the people who aren't familiar with this score: it's absolutely one of the greatest gems ever written by this genius composer. I always loved the film, it's my own favourite sword-and-sandal epic of all time (even though there's much more going on than people in skirts and papier-mache sets). It's a very audacious score, because it's written with a modern approach, like Fiery Angel said well up here. If you like Goldmith's 60s style of scoring, then you'll certainly love this. Don't look for a Miklòs Ròzsa-type of sound, this is something quite more aggressive and brash:

Thanks for the link, I like this opening cue very much!

Can't wait to listen to it on CD :P

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I must admit that while I am truly excited that it is going to be Spartacus, I almost have an "I told you so mentality".

Yeah, I was more or less expecting it for this year by now. Only with the cat (half) out of the bag already, I'll soon be expecting pretty much anything else this year, too.

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My greatest fear is that the tribute album is being done because all that was available to release was the original MCA album.

I hope that Varese's release will be similar to Cleopatra, in that all the material has survived in a presentable fashion. But seeing as this is the 1000 release I'm pretty sure we're getting a deluxe edition.

You can hear his influence on Goldsmith and Williams at times in Spartacus.

It would be neat to see Williams contributing to the tribute album. I bet that Jerry Goldsmith and Elmer Bernstein would have probably contributed had they been with us.

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My greatest fear is that the tribute album is being done because all that was available to release was the original MCA album.

That's what I'm slightly worried about as well, hence my asking "what is it?". Still, I imagine if substantial parts of the full score had been lost, they'd already have said something about it (even without necessarily implying that they were working on a release).

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I am truly overwhelmed, as a film score fan, with the embarrassment of riches we have received to begin 2010.

And 2009, and 2008.... :(

Like Poltiergeist I'll be picking this up without hesitation, I'm glad that there's time to plan a little for it. The only North I have right now is 2001 and I really like it.

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It is so good to see an often invisible, overlooked composer get his dues, even if it is almost 20 years after his death. The reigon 2 d.v.d has an isolated score that sounds really nice, so a reconstruction is not out of the question. What North did with such an economy of notes is simply staggering (the love theme is 3 notes, for crying out loud!). I will buy this without a moment's heaitation!

P.s., if it is possible for you to do so, synchronise North's score to "2001" with the film. It works, especially the main title, and the trip to the TMA.

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It is so good to see an often invisible, overlooked composer get his dues, even if it is almost 20 years after his death. The reigon 2 d.v.d has an isolated score that sounds really nice, so a reconstruction is not out of the question. What North did with such an economy of notes is simply staggering (the love theme is 3 notes, for crying out loud!). I will buy this without a moment's heaitation!

P.s., if it is possible for you to do so, synchronise North's score to "2001" with the film. It works, especially the main title, and the trip to the TMA.

nobody has tried ripping that spartacus dvd iso?

I mean, ok, its a holy grail, but easing the pain with a good quality iso score is healthy...

specially if the varase disc comes not being expanded at all...

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nobody has tried ripping that spartacus dvd iso?

I mean, ok, its a holy grail, but easing the pain with a good quality iso score is healthy...

specially if the varase disc comes not being expanded at all...

I didn't know the Region 2 had an isolated score.

However that explains the source material that's been warming my feet. The sound isn't that good.

I have the original CD as well. Hopefully the rest of the material is in as good of shape as that is.

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Lisbeth Scott's facebook status today...

"practising today..playing Alex North...what a genius.being here now is so much easier than wishing you were somewhere else. love to all mothers today!"

I wonder if she's involved with the tribute disc as well!

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Haha, sorry!

Someone asked what North she was performing, and she said this...

"i 'll be performing unchained melody, who's afraid and sanctuary. as well as the spartacus love theme. gorgeous!"

So I'd guess that she's probably involved with the album then. And also that there's still quite some time left before it comes, considering that it seems they're still working on getting together this tribute album.

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I think this may be a stand alone release. We could be looking at a 3 to 4 disc set.

Frankly the tribute album doesn't interest me, especially if it's just different takes of the love theme from Spartacus. I'm still curious if Varese approached Williams about contributing to the album since he and North were good friends.

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I don't think it's necessary. I usually skip the last four tracks on the Doctor Zhivago album, all the renditions of Lara's Theme in other styles...

...that is, if I can make it through the Doctor Zhivago album up to that point.

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Isham's YouTube ,video, before being pulled, had him saying about a dozen. So, the list so far:

1. Mark Isham

2. Alexandre Desplat

3. John Debney

4. Lisebeth Scott (assumed)

5. _______________

6. _______________

7. _______________

8. _______________

9. _______________

10. _______________

11. _______________

12. _______________

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Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I've been waiting for this forever. There is heeps of great music and whole themes not on the official release, I have the bootleg. It's an even worst treated score release than the old Temple of Doom and Hook. I like Spartacus score just as much as Williams best, Empire Strikes Back. So this is huge to me.

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