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  1. I think the love theme from The Missouri Breaks sounds like a fairly typical Goldsmith love theme. That's the only one I can think of off the top of my head, but it really struck me when I heard it.
  2. I think Saving Private Ryan gets an unfair shake, mostly because it's not as thematic as Williams' other scores. Hymn to the Fallen is beautiful, there's a really grand main theme that's like a positive spin on his Nixon theme, and the brass work is absolutely fantastic, taking Coplandesque harmonies and filtering them through wartime. I remember Filmtracks reviewed Medal of Honor saying that it's the score they wished Saving Private Ryan was, to which I was incredulous. SPR may not be flashy, but it's some fantastic writing and works perfectly for the film, as it is nuanced and respectful. I think it's actually a more daring score than Schindler, though perhaps not as pleasurable to listen to.
  3. I couldn't disagree more. Run-of-the-mill Powell is, in my opinion, something like Horton which, while it is enjoyable and has tons of very good music, is schizophrenic, without a real identity of its own. It's a score that has 40 tracks that each run 1-2 minutes, so Powell is unable to really develop his ideas. This score has an average track time of over 3 minutes, and each track is an individually contained, thoroughly developed piece of music. Is there a bit of a temp track influence? Yes. Does it have the breadth that How to Train Your Dragon had? No. But honestly, it's one of the most enjoyable, thoroughly entertaining 46 minute album I've listened to in a while. Themes are developed gradually, each to its full potential, there are some great moments of reflection and emotion, and the orchestration is fantastic. So no, it doesn't have the range of Dragon, but it's still an incredible listening experience. As far as the themes go, while there is clear influence, it is nothing more than that: influence. Do you dislike Marion's theme because it's so similar to Han and Leia's theme? Not to mention that, in an era where most composers seem content using the easy i-VI-III-VII chord progression, Powell very rarely uses it. He has his own progression that he likes, sure, but so does every composer. So the temp-track influence wasn't a problem at all to me, especially because the end result is of such high quality.
  4. http://score-points.blogspot.com/2011/03/review-mars-needs-moms.html Score Points reviews John Powell's exciting and surprisingly dramatic score for Mars Needs Moms. The score is available as a digital download from Amazon, and is a must-buy for Powell fans and film score fans alike. An early contender for Score of the Year (and Powell still has three more scores coming!).
  5. For the Hook thing I was talking about, this is Delerue's Agnes of God, straight out of "You are the Pan." The similarities of the tracks aside, I also think Delerue's lush string work is very similar to Williams' lush string work.
  6. No one seems to mention Delerue as an influence, and I think he had to be (not just for the "Pan" theme either from Hook). Very similar thematic sensibilities, and I think if we're talking lush orchestrations, Delerue's are more Williams-like (or the other way around) than North's. I don't find Prokofiev or Stravinsky too similar in overall style (other than influences they've had in specific scores), while I do hear Bartok in his overall style.
  7. In both the classical and film scoring worlds, which composer do you think has had the most impact on John Williams' own writing style? Williams himself has an eclectic mix of talents, being a classical pianist, jazz pianist, film composer, concert composer, and conductor, and in any one score, I can hear influence from tons of different composers. Still, I was listening to Bartok today, and I think his voice seems to have rubbed off the most on the Maestro as far as orchestrations are concerned (thematically I think Williams owes more to early film composers and jazz men). Listen to Bartok's Concerto For Orchestra, and you'll hear the rousing horn work, the low string counterpoints, the offbeat woodwind writing, and plenty of other Williams staples, especially from his earlier works. Listen to Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta, and you hear the melancholic, contrapuntal string writing Williams developed in his later scores. Obviously, Williams is usually more tonal than Bartok, owes a lot more to fanfares in a lot of his thematic material, but I think of all the composers I've heard, Bartok and Williams seem to share the most orchestrational sensibilities.
  8. I doubt the score will be guitar-based. It will probably be more guitar-infused (think of how Zimmer used Johnny Marr in Inception). Maybe one of the characters will have a guitar-based theme that plays counterpoint to the established music of the series. I posted about this in my blog, and I think it's a very cool piece of news, bringing some excitement and originality to a series that needs it.
  9. One, I don't think it was ever illegal to buy promos, even if it was illegal to sell. Two, it's not illegal to sell promo albums. http://blogcritics.org/music/article/music-collectors-can-rejoice-promo-cds/ Cool article too. Yes, it's an official promo, but its just as illegal for you to pay an ebay seller for it as it is for you to download it. Probably more illegal when money is exchanged, actually
  10. It's an official promo, I believe. Has the WB logo and everything. But not getting into that subject at the moment, more interested in thoughts on the score proper. and buying a unofficial promo is not?
  11. I have, I even mention it in my review. The average person does not have access to Academy promos. Academy promos also tend to cost tons more to buy off sites like Ebay because there's no other option. And because it's Ebay, it's not even guaranteed you'll get it if you can actually find it (which I can't; at the moment there are two "2CD" sets but the cover art's obviously fake as it does not say "For Your Consideration" with the blank white background). If you can find me a legitimate Academy promo for less than 40 bucks (hey, even less than 50), then I'll be indebted to you. And I agree that the album itself is wonderful, near-perfect, as you say. And I'm not normally one who needs every note to every score ever. But this case is different, as there's so much material (especially big thematic material) not on the CD, and it's the rare score that I think would work as a complete release (as opposed to something like Star Wars: Episodes II and III, which would be disjointed and, despite some worthwhile unreleased music, would be unsatisfying as a flowing album. EDIT: You said heard, not heard of. No, I've never heard it, as I never was able to get it, and was not willing to DL it illegally. I came close on Ebay once, but the price just got a little too out of my range.
  12. I just reviewed A.I. for my blog, and in reviewing it, I realized how great the score actually is. I'd even go one of the top 5 of the 2000s. The film, which left me cold the first time I saw it, has also grown on me, and the score works beautifully in the film. Much of that score, unfortunately, was not represented on album; I'd say there's at least a good hour of music not on CD. What are everyone's thoughts on the score itself, and how much would you shell out for a 2CD Complete Score Soundtrack? I might go up pretty high for it, the music's just that good, a masterwork by the Maestro. I'd even say I'd take a complete A.I. over a complete Hook, and that is saying something. http://score-points.blogspot.com/2011/02/review-ai-john-williams.html for the review.
  13. Jones and Legrand are basically done scoring films though, and Schifrin is basically at one score every few years now, if that. For the generation below, I think I'd give Horner and Elfman nods as "greats", and maybe have Newman close too, but other than them, very few of the composers have had the consistency that the previous generation had. Alan Silvestri has almost gotten less interesting as a composer as he's gotten older and scores fewer films now. James Newton Howard is Jekyll and Hyde. Shore can be very boring, although he also has some greats. We're just not getting the consistently fantastic output that we once got from orchestral composers, and it's a little scary to me. Also, to the poster who replied to my post, of course many composers have classical educations. But there is a huge influx of composers who do not, and that dichotomy signals a huge shift in the industry. I'd say of young people who want to be film composers, most of them are actually musicians who view it as a gig to make money. That also is scary to me.
  14. I actually just posted about this on my blog. It seems to be that the new generation of film composers are, regardless of quality, extremely different from those who are passing on. Less classical training, more eclectic talents, lots of experience in rock, pop, and electronics. I don't know if it's a cycle, but it seems that rock/electronics today are what jazz was in the 60s and 70s. Because of the wide range of backgrounds in film composers, one wonders if the title will lose the already tenuous meaning that it had, and one wonders whether or not that's a bad thing. Barry's passing had me thinking about this a lot today, glad someone else brought it up.
  15. Hey guys, just letting you know, I've been updating the site every day, including my first soundtrack and film reviews (of Rudy and Godzilla respectively), so check it out, tell me what you think! http://score-points.blogspot.com/
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