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What Is The Last Score You Listened To? (older scores)


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The Adventures of Tintin and War Horse. 2011 was an excellent year for John Williams fans. Both albums are hugely enjoyable.   Karol

Elmer Bernstein - The Unused Scores   This set spans three Bernstein rejections, starting in 1985 - probably his first - to 1995, when he already became notorious for being thrown off as muc

LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring (CR) by Howard Shore   Damn, is this shit good. I've waxed enough poetic about these scores, but this time, I'm especially struck by how FOTR works as a mood

I don't have much patience for the Americana material. But the first half of that score is some of Williams' finest dramatic scoring. Cinque's theme is haunting stuff. "Crossing the Atlantic" is brilliant.

 

And clichés aside, I've always had a soft spot for "Dry Your Tears, Afrika".

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The movie was unspeakably dull, but upon seeing parts of it i instantly returned to the score which may not be a beacon of complexity, but is still a shining recent example of great movie scoring. Scenes like the 'Houston' sequence just have this special crackle a well-done Horner or Goldsmith cue would offer and Hurwitz's tunes are not shabby, either. It's the best thing about the movie. You have to build a 30-minute album out of the awfully put-together release, though.

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4 minutes ago, Jurassic Shark said:

US Marshals?

Oh shit... I forgot about that. Eh... it doesn't count due to the producers' lack of competence. It's actually 27 tracks.

 

3 hours ago, publicist said:

[First Man] was unspeakably dull.

Do you like Whiplash or La La Land?

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The Ten Commandments, Elmer Bernstein

 

Air Force One, The Swarm and Escape from the Planet of the Apes- Goldsmith

 

selected tracks Last Jedi, Force Awakens and Star Wars/A New Hope

 

but the usual from Empire: Clash of Lightsabers, Rescue from Cloud City and Finale

 

The second of those Empire tracks starts off in a way that for some reason made me think it was Princess Leia's Theme but that's lockdown for you. However, the measure of the genius of Mr Williams in my humblest opinion is the fact pieces still pack a wallop. Example: when Han Solo & The Princess builds at about 1.35 in the Finale track and becomes more up to the end credits. Feels emotional, wrenching -on one hand Han is gone and on the other, some hope that the Rebels will triumph another day. 

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The River - John Williams

 

It had been a year or so since I’d listened to it, wanted to re-familiarize myself with it ahead of the Intrada.  The more “pop orchestra” sections might not be for everyone, but I find them charming, and the rest of the score is so soulful and thoughtful.  

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:music: The Empire Strikes Back. Even after 23 years the 1997 album is still the best release of this score. To be honest, I never had any complaints about this one, or the first one (Jedi is another story). Yes, I know, sound was better elsewhere in many places but this is by far the most powerful assembly of a score with a beautiful clear story structure. I actually had this album on a cassette set (!) first where the first side ended on the battle of Hoth and the last side started with Carbon Freeze. You couldn't divide it better if you tried.

 

Karol

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:music: Return of the Jedi (RCA). A problematic album but I'm still grateful that it exists. The score itself is very good but it feels like a notch or two below the first two. But then, it actually reflects the quality of the very lacklustre film.

 

Karol

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1 hour ago, crocodile said:

:music: Return of the Jedi (RCA). A problematic album but I'm still grateful that it exists. The score itself is very good but it feels like a notch or two below the first two. But then, it actually reflects the quality of the very lacklustre film.

 

It has more filler (which certainly goes hand in hand with the film), but the highlights are up there with the best from the trilogy (that actually goes for the film as well, but as whole it's much more lacklustre than the music).

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:music: Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire. Now, I never really thought it sounds much like SW but it is nevertheless a very cool album and McNeely's finest work. In fact I sort of appreciate it more for not getting too close to Williams, it's just getting bit tiresome when people try to ape Johnny verbatim in all those video games. I prefer an original take as the only viable artistic choice, and it must the right one because this is particular work remains one of the few examples that stound out even after 24 years. Always loved the half-score/half-tone poem feel of this. Pity they didn't do any more of those.

 

Karol

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7 hours ago, crocodile said:

:music: Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire. Now, I never really thought it sounds much like SW but it is nevertheless a very cool album and McNeely's finest work. In fact I sort of appreciate it more for not getting too close to Williams, it's just getting bit tiresome when people try to ape Johnny verbatim in all those video games. I prefer an original take as the only viable artistic choice, and it must the right one because this is particular work remains one of the few examples that stound out even after 24 years. Always loved the half-score/half-tone poem feel of this. Pity they didn't do any more of those.

 

Karol

 

I also love how you can feel the space of the room in the recording

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1 hour ago, Romão said:

 

I also love how you can feel the space of the room in the recording

I actually always liked those old "concert hall-like" Varese recordings. They were less bothered about recreating every minutiae of the original film score and instead treated film music in the same way you would concert music. As an autonomous piece of work, if that makes sense. I like they performed and recorded these scores in unique ways because that is what made them stand out.

 

Karol

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10 minutes ago, crocodile said:

I actually always liked those old "concert hall-like" Varese recordings. They were less bothered about recreating every minutiae of the original film score and instead treated film music in the same way you would concert music. As an autonomous piece of work, if that makes sense. I like they performed and recorded these scores in unique ways because that is what made them stand out.

 

Karol

 

Very much so. You get the same feeling with Gerhardt's ESB re-recording

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Amazing Spider-Man 2 - Hans Zimmer, et al.

 

One of Zimmer's more out-of-the-box scores, making it more pleasing to the ears than a Snyder or Nolan film. Some of it doesn't work (too much dubstep), but Zimmer tries to avoid repeating himself too much. Even if it doesn't work for some folks, it's less abrasive and droning than The Dark Knight Rises or Batman v. Superman.

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It's probably objectively the most disjointed Spidey score of the lot, but there's a lot that I do enjoy about it. It manages to exemplify what I like about Zimmer as a composer, and does far more for me than some of his more popular works. Really makes me want to see him do more bad films down the road (or at least the ones where has free reign to do whatever).

I like the general sound of Rises, but the actual score probably isn't as well put together as Begins or TDK are. There's only so many times I can hear Bane's theme be used before it gets monotonous.

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Austin Wintory's Banner Saga (1-3)

 

Listened to each one after finishing its game. Love it.

 

I was honestly too drawn into the first to really notice the music but after that ending I just had to give it a try. Then by 3 I spent half the combat thinking "Ooh, this sounds so fun!" It's definitely a very fitting, well-executed needle-sharp vision. The obligatory wintry string but with that plucked instrument, the voice bits, that frothing brass, the more out there instruments where needed, the heavily distorted electric guitar, the definitely noticeable development in complexity and gradual shift towards lower more aggressive stuff in general by the third (probably best exemplified by the main menu, Steps, Into Memory, the first one's main theme (We Will Not Be Forgotten) on the same brass getting lost in dissonance, creating a dark underlayer for other instruments to pick the theme up again over) the Icelandic ballads, the rythmic kickass action, all get together into not exactly easy listening but a bleak but rewarding and enjoyable atmosphere. The peak for me is still Of Our Bones, The Hills/We Are All Guests Upon The Land, though, on this first listen.

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The Witches of Eastwick

 

I miss when great directors like George Miller could challenge Williams to step out of his comfort zone and produce unique scores. This one is great, and doesn't feel like it was written in the 80s, it sounds more like an ancestor to the first three Potters and Tintin.

 

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:music: The Agony and the Ecstasy. Possibly one of the finest film scores ever written. It's devilishly intelligent and elegant music that beautifully stands on its own. I wish I could track down a reasonably priced DE disc. I'm not paying £80 for this.

 

Karol

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On 5/7/2020 at 2:50 AM, HunterTech said:

I like the general sound of Rises, but the actual score probably isn't as well put together as Begins or TDK are. There's only so many times I can hear Bane's theme be used before it gets monotonous.

 

The thing that irritates me about Rises is that, aside from the Catwoman and Bane material, a lot of material is simply pasted in from the previous two scores. 

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