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Sonya Belousova & Giona Ostinelli's THE WITCHER (2019)


TheUlyssesian
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18 minutes ago, Richard Penna said:

Holy cow, that release is 3 hours long! That's astonishing for a new series with unknown composers.

I guess they can throw 3 hours at us in digital format pretty easily.

 

Since I haven't seen the series I have no idea how the score is. I guess I'll have to take a listen to some of this soundtrack tonight. 

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Lots of the trailers and promotional material for this show made it look kinda trashy, but I watched the whole season and actually it's quite good! I would have hoped for a couple more episodes in the season because one character's journey in particular felt very rushed (while another's was very drawn out), but overall I thought it was very good setup for greater things to come. And I really liked the scoring, overall, recognizing multiple repeating themes and motifs and some powerful musical moments.

Re: the "Toss a Coin to Your Witcher" song -- it works better in context, as just something a silly character is making up on the spot, which makes me forgive its poor rhyme and meter.

Yavar

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Track 3 is really beautiful.

 

From the first handful of tracks there seems to be a mix of really nice folky music and downright bizarre stuff with vocals and almost rocky percussion.

 

The song is ok - it's not stuck in my head.

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1 hour ago, First TROS March Accolyte said:

Bizarre, but kind of great. Ha! Love this.

:lol:

 

:lovethis:

 

In its variety and melodic and rhytmic competence, this Witcher score is like one of those really good videogame scores that "they don't make anymore", or Zimmer's pirate adventures.

 

Violin solo that would make Anne-Sophie Mutter blush!

 

The second one is memorable in context. Scores a scene of celebratory survival sex between the two leads. Can't place the first one.

 

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5 hours ago, Arpy said:

Can't say I'm a fan of this, especially in context of the show where it sounds cheap. 

Yeah not my cup of tea either, for the most part, based on a sampling of the lengthy soundtrack album.

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The score is actually pretty good, despite the show being a little wonky! I wish the album was in chronological order because it just doesn't make sense to me as it's presented--certain themes are completely developed, then five tracks later they're half-developed, and so on. I made a mostly chronological edit, if anyone would like to use it; the tracks I couldn't place are in their approximate positions, but it's probably not 100% accurate. I starred the tracks whose positions are uncertain.

 

Spoiler

1.    Today Isn't Your Day Is It
2.    Geralt of Rivia
3.    Blaviken Inn
4.    Marilka That's My Name
5.    Late Wee Pups Don't Get to Bark
6.    The Curse of the Black Sun
7.    Pretty Ballads Hide Bastard Truths
8.    Would You Honor Me with a Dance
9.    Battle of Marnadal
10.    You Will Rule This Land Someday
11.    Tomorrow I'll Leave Blaviken for Good
12.    It's an Ultimatum
13.    The End's Beginning
14.    Four Marks*
15.    Chaos Is All Around Us
16.    He's One of the Clean Ones
17.    Do You Actually Have What It Takes
18.    The Great Cleansing
19.    Rewriting History
20.    Toss a Coin to Your Witcher
21.    Shouldn't You Know When Someone Is Pretending*
22.    Point Me to Temeria
23.    Round of Applause
24.    Giltine the Artist
25.    You Lost Your Chance to Be Beautiful
26.    A Gift for the Princess
27.    You'll Have to Fight It Until Dawn
28.    Yennefer of Vengerberg
29.    You're in Brokilon Forest
30.    Bread Breasts and Beer*
31.    The Fishmonger's Daughter
32.    Man in Black*
33.    I'm Helping the Idiot
34.    Lovely Rendez-vous à la Montagne*
35.    Here's Your Destiny
36.    Two Vows Here Tonight
37.    The Law of Surprise*
38.    Children Are Our Favourite
39.    Djinni Djinn Djinn
40.    Ragamuffin
41.    Happy Childhoods Make for Dull Company
42.    I'm the One with whe Wishes
43.    They're Alive
44.    The Last Rose of Cintra
45.    The Pensive Dragon Inn
46.    Gold Dragons Are the Rarest
47.    Everytime You Leave
48.    The White Flame Has Brought Us Together
49.    The Knight Who Was Taught to Save Dragons
50.    Her Sweet Kiss
51.    Blame Destiny
52.    The Time of Axe And Sword Is Now*
53.    Bonfire
54.    Battle of Soden
55.    The Song of the White Wolf

 

I think Four Marks is my favorite, especially the part with what I've been calling the main theme, from 3:00 onward:

 

 

And that same theme shows up again in this track with a thrilling variation:

 

 

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I'm going to episode 7 of the show, and I'm liking the score so far. It's more varied, bold, interesting and "rock and roll" than Djawadi's Game of Thrones, specially on its first seasons. It's more in line with Tyler Bates' 300 (without copying Goldenthal, lol) on mixing old instruments with a more modern, agressive approach.

 

I haven't heard all of the OST yet, but there's three themes I could identify, at least based on the music as heard on the show:

 

-Main Theme /Geralt's theme - not only the theme for the opening titles, but also acts as an action theme when Geralt is kicking ass. Heard on the first track of the OST

 

-Yenner's theme - used on the first episodes, usually on a oboe (?), when she is in that magic academy, learning how to be a mage. That's probably my favorite of the score, very exotic. Here:

 

 

-Yennefer and Geralt love theme - also includes an oboe as a link to Yennefer's previous theme.

 

 

I'm pretty certain that Ciri has a theme as well, but I haven't identified it yet.

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That list seems pretty accurate

 

But it should be noted that 3 tracks seemed to be 2tracks stitched together

 

(Curse of the Black Sun from 3:26 plays in episode 3 instead, it would go before `You Lost Your Chance to Be Beautiful`)

(speaking of which, `You Lost Your Chance to Be Beautiful`'s 2nd part is used in episode 3, but the first segment (0:00-2:10) only shows up in episode 6, twice even)

(also `Gold Dragons Are the Rarest` is divided in 2 segments as well during episode 6 at 2:54, the 2nd part plays before the first earlier in the episode)

 

Also Axe and Sword makes an earlier appearance in episode 1, except there it has music tracked in from 'White Flame' (and neither scene seems to keep the singing voice)

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26 minutes ago, MedigoScan said:

That list seems pretty accurate

 

But it should be noted that 3 tracks seemed to be 2tracks stitched together

 

(Curse of the Black Sun from 3:26 plays in episode 3 instead, it would go before `You Lost Your Chance to Be Beautiful`)

(speaking of which, `You Lost Your Chance to Be Beautiful`'s 2nd part is used in episode 3, but the first segment (0:00-2:10) only shows up in episode 6, twice even)

(also `Gold Dragons Are the Rarest` is divided in 2 segments as well during episode 6 at 2:54, the 2nd part plays before the first earlier in the episode)

 

Also Axe and Sword makes an earlier appearance in episode 1, except there it has music tracked in from 'White Flame' (and neither scene seems to keep the singing voice)

 

Thanks. I wasn't planning on editing the individual tracks--I felt like that would be too counterproductive to the album!

 

Any idea when Four Marks plays? I couldn't find the last minute or so in episode 2, but I also didn't look in any of the other episodes.

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I could have sworn it did play in the Blaviken Inn

 

Then again I also think Bonfire played in episode 1 instead in that Inn, now that I think about it.

I also at the time felt like the 2nd part of Four Marks played in episode 2 when Ciri meets Dara, just edited slightly

But now I am not so sure anymore. 

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  • 1 month later...

I got back into this score and can still say that it's really good. The oboe really, really sounds like Yennefer's voice to me, especially in "Happy Childhoods Make for Dull Company." Perfect choice of instrument for her

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  • 3 months later...
  • 5 months later...
  • 11 months later...

Was it known before that Joseph Trapanese is taking over scoring duties for season 2?

 

Quote

First Track from Joseph Trapanese’s ‘The Witcher’ Season 2 Score Released

Milan Records has released the first track from the soundtrack for the second season of the Netflix original series The Witcher. Available to stream/download now on all major digital music platforms is Power and Purpose written by the new season’s composer Joseph Trapanese (Shadow and Bone, Oblivion, The Greatest Showman, Straight Outta Compton, Lady and the Tramp, The Raid: Redemption, Project Power). Listen to the full track after the jump and check back on this page for the full details of a full soundtrack album. The Witcher is created by Lauren Schmidt Hissrich based on the book series by Andrzej Sapkowski and stars Henry Cavill, Freya Allan, Anya Chalotra, Mimî M Khayisa, MyAnna Buring, Anna Shaffer, Eamon Farren, Mahesh Jadu, Joey Batey and Royce Pierreso. Season 2 will premiere on December 17 on Netflix.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Jay said:

Was it known before that Joseph Trapanese is taking over scoring duties for season 2?

 

Yes. I haven't heard why, though... Sonya and Giona seemed very committed to the score. Just look at their website: https://www.belousova-ostinelli.com/

 

I'm probably not the only one who's mildly annoyed about the change.

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Oh no! Why. Will they throw out the themes. Season 1 had several well established themes for several of the characters and concepts. Why do franchises today do this. If the actor can't be discarded wily nily and replaced (nor the showrunner) then neither can be the composer or at the very least the musical themes.

 

So disappointing!

 

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Maybe they figured that they wanted a sound closer to the games?

Hell if I know a better reason for why they did it. But this sounds a lot more generic and safe and ugh I dont like it.

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So thankfully at least some of the main themes are returning even with a new composer. Specially Geralt's theme and the main theme.

 

I think the main theme is a keeper. It is a very good theme.

 

 

 

Full soundtrack coming Dec 17, same day as the series, it will have 32 tracks and an hour 42 minutes of music. Jaskier will perform 3 new songs.

 

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4 hours ago, TheUlyssesian said:

 

There's something really odd about all this. Because they replaced the original composers, but this video clearly shows that their themes are going to be used again in the new season, so why didn't they just keep the composers to score Season 2? Scheduling problems? Some contract-related problem?

 

And what's weird is that Sonya Belousova, one of the original composers, is teasing something on her instagram page that really looks like The Witcher, and is associated with Sony, who recently released that Trapanese track

 

https://www.instagram.com/sonya_belousova/

 

I don't know what this means, and I'm disappointed they are not keeping the original composers as I think they did afabulous job, but at least their themes will not be lost and replaced like I first feared.

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Which makes me sad, because I think she achieved a unique soundscape in the first season that, at times, really elevated some scenes, and really felt like it could have come out of The Witcher universe.

 

And I like some of Trapanese' works, but it looks like he's going to update that sound to fit into more modern scoring sensibilities, which is just generic and bland.

 

Anyway, I will not judge it until I've heard the whole thing and how it works in context, but my expectations are low.

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I liked the odd cue from the first season's score; never saw the show though. Definitely didn't get the appeal of that song that everyone loved :\

 

A potential, charitable explanation - the original composers knew they had a hit, and wanted more money than Netflix was prepared to pay? Or maybe Netflix decided to play it safe with the music now they nad a hit.

 

If it's neither of those two, then it's anyone's guess why.

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On 05/12/2021 at 10:58 AM, TheUlyssesian said:

So thankfully at least some of the main themes are returning even with a new composer. Specially Geralt's theme and the main theme.

 

Wow, I'm surprised that they were able to keep the major themes of the show—especially Yennefer's theme, though the oboe player for the new rendition in that video doesn't sound as good as Rodion Belousov (the previous oboist).

 

12 hours ago, Richard Penna said:

A potential, charitable explanation - the original composers knew they had a hit, and wanted more money than Netflix was prepared to pay?

 

While I'm biased to give Sonya and Giona the benefit of the doubt, this is certainly a possibility, and a pretty reasonable one, too, if they haven't publicly stated that they were "wronged" by not being asked to compose for the second season.

 

I hardly care about the show—it seems to be just a blend of five other TV shows, much like Stranger Things—but the score is noteworthy and memorable, and it'll be the reason I watch the second season.

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Everything about Season 2 (music, effects, make up, editing) is more refined, polished, and perfect. 

 

It’s like the whole production has been put through auto-tune and a quantizer. 

 

I’m not sure how I feel about that. Trapanese is awesome and will do a great job…but why did we need him to begin with? Sonya and Gion brought a more formula-breaking approach that was refreshing. The charm of season 1 was that it felt like a group of amateur filmmakers with no preconception of how a big-budget Netflix production should be like had stumbled on a boatload of money and had fun with it. 

 

On 25/1/20 at 4:20 AM, Incanus said:

Yeah not my cup of tea either, for the most part, based on a sampling of the lengthy soundtrack album.

 

This score has a lot of intricate thematic development going on. If you’re into that sort of thing, I’d invite you to do more than sample. 

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Here's the tracklist for season 2. Note the three tracks with Sonya and Giona—and it's not just giving credit for the themes they composed for season 1. They're new collaborations.

 

1. The Golden One – Joseph Trapanese & Joey Batey (3:23)
2. Nilfgaard Attacks (2:38)
3. Nivellen (3:28)
4. Some Wounds Can’t Be Healed (1:32)
5. Kaer Morhen (1:43)
6. Leshen (6:10)
7. Power and Purpose (4:42)
8. Aretuza Loses Another (1:35)
9. The Pendulum – Joseph Trapanese, Sonya Belousova & Giona Ostinelli (2:17)
10. Witcher Training (2:11)
11. Myrapod Chase (3:12)
12. Stay With Me (3:11)
13. Who Did This to You? (1:46)
14. The Key to the Future (1:44)
15. Done Dealing in Debts (4:50)
16. Burn Butcher Burn – Joseph Trapanese & Joey Batey (2:39)
17. Remembering Cintra – Joseph Trapanese, Sonya Belousova & Giona Ostinelli (4:39)
18. Elder Blood (2:43)
19. Chernobog (2:14)
20. Melitele (4:02)
21. Fire Fucker (4:53)
22. Whoreson Prison Blues – Joseph Trapanese & Joey Batey (2:07)
23. Sworn to Protect – Joseph Trapanese, Sonya Belousova & Giona Ostinelli (4:36)
24. Elves’ Allegiance (1:34)
25. I Believe in You (2:33)
26. Pain and Desperation (5:20)
27. Tell Me What You Want (3:19)
28. Basilisks (6:59)
29. We’re Your Family (3:01)
30. You Belong With Us (1:36)
31. The Wild Hunt (2:25)
32. The White Flame (2:48)

https://filmmusicreporter.com/2021/12/16/details-for-the-witcher-season-2-soundtrack-album-revealed/

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I have watched the series.

Trapanese used a lot of pre-existing themes from Season 1. The music is very much in the same soundscape, but for me personally a bit more polished and easier to listen to.

 

The score album is very strong on it's own. Great work!

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The score for season 2 is okay; it has plenty of decent moments, especially the theme for Ciri using magic ("Power and Purpose," "I Believe in You"). If Joseph Trapanese had scored season 1, I think I'd like it way more. I just can't get over how well Sonya and Giona used and developed themes and created masterpieces like this:

 

 

Maybe there's a tiny chance they'd return for season 3

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Season 2 was the show sitting with the popular kids and dressing in popular kids clothing and listening to popular kids music. 
 

The charm of the first season is lingering by a thread. 

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  • 10 months later...

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