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In lockdown from 27 March - which Williams release should I catch up first?


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As from midnight 26 March, my country goes into a three week lockdown so I'm stuck at home. I have a large number of Williams releases that I have not yet listened to (both OSTs and expansions). Fortunately I have them all ripped to digital as I will not be able to access the physical discs during this time.

 

Where do I start?

 

OSTs:

Munich?

Memoirs of a Geisha?

Catch Me If You Can?

The BFG?

Lincoln?

The Book Thief?

 

Expansions:

Empire of the Sun?

A.I.?

Monsignor?

E.T.?

CE3K?

Rosewood?

Jaws?

Jaws 2?

 

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I vote for Empire of the Sun! And Geisha! Yeah, OK, and CE3K.

I'd start with Empire of the Sun, for its melancholic, yet hopeful grandeur.    

Geisha, Lincoln, A.I. and Jaws.

Might as well start with some of the best (although I guess they all are, right?). 

 

ET the Extra Terrestrial and Close Encounters of the Third Kind make for a great pair back-to-back. I almost always listen to them in tandem now- the quality of each set is top-notch too (no surprise from LLL & MM). 

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10 minutes ago, JTWfan77 said:

As from midnight 26 June

 

I assume you mean March, not June.

 

You could always just listen to them by dates released. Makes it a neat journey through time.

 

If it were me, I'd chuck the expansions in the trash bin (;)), but you can just let them be part of the journey too.

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3 minutes ago, Thor said:

 

I assume you mean March, not June.

 

You could always just listen to them by dates released. Makes it a neat journey through time.

 

If it were me, I'd chuck the expansions in the trash bin (;)), but you can just let them be part of the journey too.

 

Yep, sorry typo now fixed. Good idea to take the chronological approach.

 

Wow, lots of love for CE3K. I think we have a winner! In this case I think the OST is a terrible representation of the score (with horrible sound and lots of pops and artifacts - not to mention that dreadful editorially created end credits suite) so I look forward to hearing the expansion.

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30 minutes ago, JTWfan77 said:

 

Yep, sorry typo now fixed. Good idea to take the chronological approach.

 

Wow, lots of love for CE3K. I think we have a winner! In this case I think the OST is a terrible representation of the score (with horrible sound and lots of pops and artifacts - not to mention that dreadful editorially created end credits suite) so I look forward to hearing the expansion.

 

The CE3K OST is perfection! OK, I could be without the disco version of theme at the end, but no worries. It's cute, and I can easily program it out.

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4 minutes ago, JTWfan77 said:

I've always preferred the Gerhardt CE3K suite to the OST.

 

The Gerhardt suite is fine too, but I will always prefer the OST. I had the expanded version once (the one that came out in the 90s), but I sold it off relatively quickly.

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Just now, JTWfan77 said:

All good suggestions, thanks.

 

At this stage I'll start with CE3K (disc 1), then move onto Lincoln, followed by Empire of the Sun (a favourite score of mine based on the OST).

 

I slept on Memoirs of a Geisha for way too long and now it's in my top 10 of JW's.

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So at the end of my first day of lockdown, I settled in and listened, for the first time, to La-La Land's Close Encounters (disc one). It is sublime. The sound quality and presentation are outstanding, a far cry from the very brief and rather problematic OST release. To be fair, this score needs room to breathe, and a 40 minute presentation was never going to serve it well. This score should have won Williams the Oscar (as much as I adore Star Wars, the score that introduced me to Williams and film music in 1977 at the age of 5). I very much look forward to listening to the alternates tomorrow.

 

I have to say, though, I still prefer the Charles Gerhardt / NPO presentation and performance of the final 25 odd minutes of the score. The pacing is more deliberate and somehow the score just breathes better when freed from the constraints of conforming to the events happening on screen. The choral work has far more gravitas in the Barnstorming segment (presumably due to the presence of male voices rather than soley female performers) and there are some lovely additional piccolo flourishes in that same piece (I wonder who added those). Lastly, the end credits flow much more naturally on the Gerhardt. It has always seemed to me that Williams was rushing the performance, as if he was late for an appointment, the minute the director credit appears on screen. It comes off as almost comical to me. Even the theme associated with Gillian has a tempo that robs it of it's beauty. Anyway, I'll probably be evicerated for this paragraph, but I stand by my opinion.

 

Thanks to everyone for the suggestions, at a stressful time such as this, with all that is taking place in the world, it is a joy to be able to experience the wonderful music that the Maestro has produced and that has been so lovingly cared for and presented by those that champion this art form. Thank you LLL and Mike Matessino!

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