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Track title preferences/pet peeves


WampaRat
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Warning: a very silly OCD problem.
 

Certain composers seem to have their particular way of naming the tracks on their score albums. Or it’s the soundtrack producer or whoever assembles/names the tracks. I’m sure others have noticed this.  
 

“The something something and the blah blah/finale” seems to be a common template for a Williams track.

 

There’s of course Elfman’s classic “Final confrontation” track that pops up on a lot of his soundtracks. 
 

Giacchino obviously is the pun- maestro on all his tracks. 
 

Horner would have a very long/dramatic name for a lot of his finale cues.

 

I’ve realized that I prefer track names that describe the overall scene the score relates to. Or perhaps it’s from a piece of dialogue that corresponds  with the scene. It helps reinforce that narrative a bit for me and helps me place it in context. 
 

What drives me up the wall is when the track name doesn’t really describe the scene. I feel Thomas Newman and Goldsmith often do this often. Like in the Shadow for example,  there’s a track named “Chest Pains” but its the music when the shadow is breaking into the lab and stopping all the bad guys. A guy does get thrown out a window and the shadow lands on top. I guess that would cause chest pains? 
Or “Blossoms” in Mulan? I guess they symbolize what’s going on in that scene lol. 
 

I should probably name more examples lol. But does anyone else feel the same way? Silly I know…

Any other preferences/peeves for how tracks are named? 

 

 

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Haha. You know what? Now that you mention it, I’m not sure why we don’t include “The” more often when alphabetizing. Probably to help cut down on the amount of titles? Since there’s a million works that start with “The”(?) lol.

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When I ripped the Williams Vienna concert Blu-ray, I named track 5 "Guten Tag" and Introducing Anne-Sophie Mutter.

 

16 minutes ago, WampaRat said:

Haha. You know what? Now that you mention it, I’m not sure why we don’t include “The” more often when alphabetizing. Probably to help cut down on the amount of titles? Since there’s a million works that start with “The”(?) lol.

 

Obviously. It's a real pain to browse shops/lists/databases that don't exclude articles from sorting.

 

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Not a fan of Gia's puns, personally.

 

I'm also not particularly a fan of 'poetic' track titles, like Zimmer's one-word titles for a suite that covers 3 cues. Ideally the title would be an event or phrase spoken in the scene so that once you've seen the film you don't have to be a detective to find that bit on the soundtrack.

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I have to admit: I hate Giacchino's puntastic track titles. A few of them may be clever or amusing, but most are just cringeworthy. 

 

I mean, just look at some of these names:

 

"Pin-Ultimate Experience"

"The Teeth Degree"

"Hippocratic Hypocrite"

"Declaration of Indo-Pendence"

"Live and Let Jedi" (alternate track title for Rogue One's Hope)

"No Vault of His Own"

"Jaylah House Rock"

 

Argh!

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Same! Yep. When the puns create more work for you to determine what scene they accompany, it’s the worst. I am a fan of “The Incredits” however. Just the right amount of pun on that one ;)

 

Also forgot an obvious pet peeve, when the track is misnamed and the music is for a completely different scene than the track indicates. 
 

The track names for POTC: Curse of the Black Pearl are all over the place. A classic example.

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1 hour ago, Mephariel said:

Am I the only one who alphabetize digital track names by including "The?" For example, The Matrix will be in the "T" section not the "M."

 

It just never seem right to be to not include "The" as part of the title.

 

 

Your analogy starts by talking about track names, but then you throw in an album name. Okay... 

 

I never remove "The" from the start of a track name. "The Last Battle" from Star Wars should never be tagged as "Last Battle, The." 

 

I used to meticulously rename my albums, artists, and album artists to move "The" to end, as in "Goonies, The" or "Beatles, The." That way, Windows file structures would sort them correctly. But more sophisticated systems like car head units, iPods, and mp3 software don't blink and can handle it either way. 

 

For the real group known as The The (they're British), that system just throws in a garbage comma. 

 

Now that I use primarily either Poweramp (if I'm conserving data) or PlexAmp (if I'm on Wi-Fi), I put "The" back where it belongs. 

 

It's easy to tell which albums I've retagged recently, and which use the old method(s). 

 

Poweramp:

Screenshot_2021-07-06_181726a.jpg

 

PlexAmp:

Screenshot_2021-07-06_182049.jpg

 

PlexAmp treats The Goonies as two albums because the compilation and/or album artist tag is hosed on the Cyndi Lauper song that I tacked onto the end. You CAN use the Compilation tag of 1 without needing to use Various or Various Artists as the Album Artist. But all the tracks need tagged the same way or you get that small mess. 

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The further away from the movie, the better. So I don’t like scene-specific descriptions and prefer poetic and/or musicological titles (like Goldenthal used to do).

 

But I don’t look at track titles much anyway.

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Ah, Poweramp... a world of tagging complexities. When I first started to use it, my collection collapsed in a heap when I realised it was using 'album artist' to collate albums. Took a lot of retagging to tidy that up.

 

But once you get used to that, the issue of songs and other tracks not by the composer stop being a problem. I've developed a habit of setting 'album artist' just to the album name, then setting 'artist' to anything at all.

 

5 hours ago, Thor said:

The further away from the movie, the better. So I don’t like scene-specific descriptions and prefer poetic and/or musicological titles (like Goldenthal used to do).

 

But I don’t look at track titles much anyway.

 

Yes, I can see your viewpoint very easily. I think it works for more concept albums, such as The New World, where half the album probably isn't even in the film.

 

The one that always wound me up was Batman Begins, which I believe is different bat species. King Arthur is another one which has a half-pun, half humourous ('Budget Meeting') naming style, and Dark Phoenix seems to have equally abstract names. I'm absolutely picking on Zimmer here, although for once not for musical reasons :P

 

My approach is 100% that I like to be able to easily link tracks to their scenes (possibly in a minority, I really like the new Varese style). In a process that I may be overthinking (I do that a lot), I get the sense that when the track names are more poetic and abstract, the composer is somehow saying 'oh you don't want to hear everything I wrote... here's some rearrangements you might like'.

 

Although, when a track name is 'The Rescue' or 'The Battle' or 'The <common domestic situation> scene', there's also something a bit lacking.

 

Can't please everyone :) 

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At the end of the day, tagging is a personal decision. It helps you find your music quickly and reduce the amount of redundant duplicates. 

 

Tagging is about how to present the information that you are most interested in. 

 

Sure, you can blindly trust iTunes, Amazon, or Discogs to tag for you, but even they are inconsistent. Or you can mix up your rules and evolve your system as the hardware and software you use changes. 

 

Once you have 12+ different recordings of the Star Wars Main Theme, do you care that they're all written by John Williams, or conducted by different people?  Okay sure, there's the Composer tag, but who uses that consistently, if at all? 

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4 hours ago, Positivatee said:

Okay sure, there's the Composer tag, but who uses that consistently, if at all? 

I use it all the time, on everything I import into iTunes, er, Music. But I’m pretty OCD about my music library. I used to use those DougScripts a lot to help me organize and prune my library.

 

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I’m always amused by Bernard Herrmann’s habit of almost every track being “The [Something]” so you get 30 or 40 tracks all starting with “The…”. He didn’t didn’t really go for poetry but titles as concise as his writing.

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28 minutes ago, Richard Penna said:

Me too, although only because filenames can't contain '/'. I have a preset in mp3Tag which converts various disallowed characters into '-'.

That’s cool! Does this app work with non mp3 files like m4a or flac as well?

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3 hours ago, Mr. Who said:

I prefer when scores are tagged using - instead of / if a track contains 2 cues.

 

You monster!

 

2 hours ago, Mr. Who said:

That’s cool! Does this app work with non mp3 files like m4a or flac as well?

 

Yea

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The / should be replaced by an "and" or "," if there's more than two cues, like on RotS.

For exemple:

  • Main Title/The Ice Planet Hoth -> Main Title and the Ice Planet Hoth
  • The Wampa's Lair/Vision Of Obi-Wan/Snowspeeders Take Flight -> The Wampa's Lair, Vision of Obi-Wan and Snowspeeders Take Flight

 

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On 7/6/2021 at 5:13 PM, WampaRat said:

Warning: a very silly OCD problem.
 

Certain composers seem to have their particular way of naming the tracks on their score albums. Or it’s the soundtrack producer or whoever assembles/names the tracks. I’m sure others have noticed this.  
 

“The something something and the blah blah/finale” seems to be a common template for a Williams track.

 

There’s of course Elfman’s classic “Final confrontation” track that pops up on a lot of his soundtracks. 
 

Giacchino obviously is the pun- maestro on all his tracks. 
 

Horner would have a very long/dramatic name for a lot of his finale cues.

 

I’ve realized that I prefer track names that describe the overall scene the score relates to. Or perhaps it’s from a piece of dialogue that corresponds  with the scene. It helps reinforce that narrative a bit for me and helps me place it in context. 
 

What drives me up the wall is when the track name doesn’t really describe the scene. I feel Thomas Newman and Goldsmith often do this often. Like in the Shadow for example,  there’s a track named “Chest Pains” but its the music when the shadow is breaking into the lab and stopping all the bad guys. A guy does get thrown out a window and the shadow lands on top. I guess that would cause chest pains? 
Or “Blossoms” in Mulan? I guess they symbolize what’s going on in that scene lol. 
 

I should probably name more examples lol. But does anyone else feel the same way? Silly I know…

Any other preferences/peeves for how tracks are named? 

 

 

Weepy Donuts anyone?  🙂

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22 hours ago, May the Force be with You said:

Agreed. Two cue by track is largely sufficient

You probably hate JNH's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, lol. Here's some of the tracks in the album:

 

"There Are Witches Among Us / The Bank / The Niffler"   

"Tina and Newt Trial / Let's Get The Good Stuff Out / You're One of Us Now / Swooping Evil"

"Relieve Him of His Wand / Newt Releases The Thunderbird / Jacob's Farewell"

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2 hours ago, Edmilson said:

You probably hate JNH's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, lol. Here's some of the tracks in the album:

 

"There Are Witches Among Us / The Bank / The Niffler"   

"Tina and Newt Trial / Let's Get The Good Stuff Out / You're One of Us Now / Swooping Evil"

"Relieve Him of His Wand / Newt Releases The Thunderbird / Jacob's Farewell"

Yeah that's awfull to rename:

Tina and Newt Trial, Let's Get the Good Stuff Out, "You're One of Us Now" and Swooping Evil

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Interestingly enough, I was looking through my set of Soundtrack Library boots (proudly procured from Craig at SAE years back).. but that aside, a lot of them have super long track titles.  Time after Time, and Land of the Pharaohs come to mind. for example. 

 

A few titles, even, wouldn't register b/c the track name was super long in characters.

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On 7/9/2021 at 4:44 PM, ymenard said:

I hate tracks with " / " because that character isn't supported in the file system, so I have to always rename my MP3 files.  I usually put " - " instead

 

If Microsoft can do one thing in Windows 11, it's stop fucking around with the UI, and allow '/' in filenames.

 

Seriously!

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On 7/7/2021 at 4:02 PM, Positivatee said:

Okay sure, there's the Composer tag, but who uses that consistently, if at all? 

 

That would be me.

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On 7/9/2021 at 8:36 AM, DeltaPupJux said:

Weepy Donuts anyone?  🙂

Yeah, someone please explain what the fuck Danny Elfman means by those two words.

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On 7/10/2021 at 3:29 PM, Richard Penna said:

If Microsoft can do one thing in Windows 11, it's stop fucking around with the UI, and allow '/' in filenames.

 

Seriously!

 

I encountered a weird mess the other day where I had filenames containing the colon symbol. Some of them played fine, but one or two would not play until I erased the colon. A few minutes of online research revealed that there are at least two different colon characters. The one generated by your keyboard will not work in a file, but the other will. 

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