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Everything posted by Seth

  1. Yep. TFA was a very pleasant surprise to me and I would love to experience that again (still my favorite post-2005 Williams score, tied with Lincoln). But more specifically, I am very interested in Ahch-To and what he's done in that regard.
  2. I seriously doubt that the Jedi Steps theme will reappear, but I do hope his approach to that cue informs his writing for the training scenes and the aspects of the plot dealing with Luke and the Force. I would love to hear his music in that area take a "mystical" approach, maybe with some of the same timbres and harmonic language as Seven Years in Tibet or Memoirs of a Geisha. I suspect Rian Johnson will have paced the film in a way that gives the music more room to breathe than J.J. Abrams did ( or I hope that's the case, at least), and I would really like to get one or two well-developed l
  3. Not that it matters, but I never get a shipping notice when I buy from LLL. I sometimes get a notice saying it will ship in the next few days, but usually it just shows up in my mailbox.
  4. I believe Munich was recorded quite late, since he did Memoirs of a Geisha earlier that fall. A similar situation happened with War of the Worlds being written on the heels of the ROTS recording sessions and then recorded in late spring 2005. (I think there is a moment in the score featurette where you can see a May timestamp). For some reason I want to say Lincoln was recorded fairly early, sometime in spring 2012. But I am less clear on that one.
  5. I'll second that about Wes Anderson. I might even call his ability to choose and place songs a gift. Even Moonrise Kingdom, which uses selections by Benjamin Britten instead of conventional pop songs, is effective in that regard (I'm not a fan of that particular film, but his musical choices were pretty much perfect). He's even able to get his composers to write scores that mesh well with the songs, even though they don't draw on the same instrumental resources or anything. I would also say The Five-year Engagement (an overlong, frustrating, not especially funny comedy) had strong
  6. I'm definitely looking forward to what be has done with ET! The notes he wrote for the 1997 Star Wars sets are my gold standard, so if ET is anywhere near those I will be very happy.
  7. I do remember seeing the two timpanists in some of the ROTS scoring session photos from the old Hyperspace site, but I never did figure out what the second one was doing, even after poring over the leaked sheet music. Ah well. It really isn't worth worrying about.
  8. I really enjoyed the first season of this and am looking forward to the next, despite some misgivings (one specific to the show, the other a larger-scale wondering). Related to the show itself, I wonder if an anthology approach may have suited it better (and I think I have seen this suggested elsewhere). I don't know how big a story the Duffer Brothers had planned from the start; I get the impression they have always had a general arc in mind, but season 1 still felt self-contained until the coda in the last episode involving Will and his psychological state. Maybe it will all turn right in th
  9. Thanks for that; I think I vaguely remember reading that article around the time the film came out. I'm not necessarily surprised to learn it was a smaller string section this time.
  10. I only got it because of a goof on my part--I didn't realize it was going on sale the same day as ET so wound up doing them as separate orders. Which LLL did not bundle (not that I am complaining, especially given the delay with ET.)
  11. I don't want to come across as too pedantic, but this is the third or fourth suggestion I've seen here recently regarding the size of the orchestra on TFA. I don't think it was prequel-sized or anything, but assuming a full string section (60-64 pieces), a normal woodwind section and large brass section (6/4/4/2, I think, based on the videos that were released, though it could just be one tuba), plus the percussion, two harps, and two keyboards, that's pushing 100 pieces. Is there a firm source on an average ensemble size for this score? Just curious.
  12. I've been playing this for the first time this afternoon. It's a terrific release of a really fine score. Sound-wise, it feels like the bass here is a little more present than on the original album, but there is an impressive amount of clarity and detail across the entire orchestra and it's a very spacious recording, for lack of a better word. I'm not in a position to answer a lot of detailed questions because I haven't played the 2004 album in quite some time, but I think that this new edition actually plays better as a presentation. My (and many others, I think too) big complaint was that th
  13. I really wonder what Edward Shearmur's career would look like had Sky Captain been a success. I like to think that he might have been in a place to get some of the jobs that have gone to Michael Giacchino. Based on Sky Captain and The Count of Monte Cristo, he's a talented guy with good dramatic instincts who deserved more high-profile assignments. I do wonder about the new Sky Captain release. I thought the original album was more or less complete; maybe there are alternates?
  14. I agree with all of this and I think it's why the ending Nolan made worked so well. The film had such a narrow focus and I think widening the perspective at the end--which is what I think the "real" Elgar or Churchill would have done--would have been a misstep. I didn't expect there to be any sense of emotional release, but he made some good choices for the end of this one (and I really admired Wallfisch's handling of Elgar there too, even though I could have used less music throughout as a general rule).
  15. The most recent one that sticks out to me is the album version of "I Can Fly Anything" from The Force Awakens. The film version as heard on the FYC site has such a solid structure and I think it's a great cue. It's a shame to me that the album version cuts so much out. There are also the frequently mentioned microedits at the end of "Anakin's Dark Deeds" that drive me and so many others nuts. I don't know why he felt the need to pare down those fanfares. I also wish the album of Revenge of the Sith had featured the film version of the end credits and used the extra space for something like "I
  16. I'm going to be a bit of a heretic here and say I would rather have someone like Thomas Newman do this than Williams. The only way I would be interested in a Williams score for this is if the movie would allow him to write a score that is a crossbreed of Munich and David Shire's 70s thriller scores like All the President's Men or The Conversation. But I honestly can't imagine Williams being able to stretch that far based on what I expect of Spielberg for this (and I liked both Lincoln and Bridge of Spies). This project just doesn't sound that interesting, but I would love to be proved wrong. I
  17. In America, at least, the first significant woman was Amy Cheney Beach (1867-1944). There was also Ethel Smyth in England and Lili Boulanger in France. I've not heard anything by Smyth, but what I've heard of Beach's is rather like Brahms. I did like the one work of Boulanger's I've heard.
  18. This is such a neat little piece; I really appreciate that he kept it from being too self-serious and ponderous, which could have been a real temptation given the situation. It really reminds me of a more grown-up version of the Amazing Stories theme--it wouldn't sound too out of place mixed in with a lot of his work from the mid-80s, I don't think. The behind-the-scenes stuff is really great too; his process is just fascinating to me.
  19. That's true of John's SW, not Howard's LOTR. Hmm. I won't argue with the assertion that Williams elevated the Star Wars films. I think that is absolutely true. When I say that Shore was reaching for depth, I don't mean to say the same thing as elevating a lightweight film. A better way to say it may have been to say that Shore was trying to impose profundity on a film that couldn't quite handle it. I like how put it here: Either way, no harm no foul. I think this discussion has been more interesting than it had any right to be, actually.
  20. Star Wars, absolutely. While I think it's fair to say that Shore's narrative cohesion and ambition are impressive, I'm not sure it should affect how we evaluate the score. Shore knew from the start where he was going, while Williams probably thought Star Wars would just be another assignment instead of what it turned into. Establishing connections as you go isn't the same as starting out knowing how things should join up and relate, if that makes sense. I appreciate the conceptual approach to LOTR, and there is some really beautiful stuff in there (I'm especially fond of the Lothlorien and Roh
  21. Not to sound like an idiot, but which Blu-ray of Close Encounters is the one to have? Amazon isn't clear (to me, at any rate) on what set has what. I assume one of the releases has all 3 cuts?
  22. When it started I honestly thought I was hearing an alternate from Memoirs. It sounds like the changes are only in the outer movements. I do think that the opening of the work more effectively sets up the tutti in the first movement by establishing some rhythmic motion from the outset. I'm less sold on the addition of tam-tam to the ending roll; it was already a pretty ominous ending and that addition only makes it heavier. To me it seems like the concerto ends in a bleak place, at least compared to where it begins. The work as a whole doesn't hold together as well as I would like.
  23. When did he rewrite the beginning of the Cello Concerto? I don't like it. It's a work I'm ambivalent towards on the best days, but the new beginning sounds so indifferent as opposed to the brass that used to open the work. It's a little too unassuming, especially compared to the theme that the cello opens with.
  24. That's a technique I'm fond of as well. I especially like the example you gave from ESB, where it's piccolo and bass clarinet. Also from that score, I really like the rendition of Yoda's theme in violin harmonics at 2:55 of "City in the Clouds." That score is full of really interesting orchestrations. Whenever I listen to it from beginning to end I'm struck by how much interesting writing there is in between the action cues. Lots of colorful stuff for harp, synth, celeste (even electric piano, according to the sketches, which astonished me) and various mallet percussion instruments. In terms o
  25. Barry's Kidnapping. Hands down. Though I have yet to hear Images.
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