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The "Here They Come" Appreciation Thread


Edmilson
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50 minutes ago, Edmilson said:

It's a fast paced, energetic cue brilliantly performed by the LSO and it fits the movie very well.

 

The energy of the OST performance is great, but I really don't like the ugly muted horn sound the LSO has there. The Skywalker Symphony recording is too slow (unlike the rest of that album, where I enjoy the slower tempi). So I'm sticking to this:

 

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My appreciation for this cue (and the lead-in from "Ben's Death") just keeps getting stronger and stronger as the years pass. It's too bad both TLJ and Solo decided to play the same nostalgia card just 6 months apart - otherwise, I really like both takes on the material.

 

Anyway, some Williams action music can start to sound slightly interchangeable. Happens to the best composers; it's all good. But this writing is quite unique amongst all his works I've heard. And it perfectly demonstrates what I love most about Williams: his balance between accessibility and interestingness.

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2 hours ago, Datameister said:

My appreciation for this cue (and the lead-in from "Ben's Death") just keeps getting stronger and stronger as the years pass. It's too bad both TLJ and Solo decided to play the same nostalgia card just 6 months apart - otherwise, I really like both takes on the material.

 

Its been used as a recurring theme since Return of the Jedi, which is fine by me: its a great piece that really suits these kinds of spaceship dogfights.

 

If you really want to talk the "Nostalgia card" there's Binary Sunset...

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On 13/11/2021 at 3:37 PM, Chen G. said:

 

Its been used as a recurring theme since Return of the Jedi, which is fine by me: its a great piece that really suits these kinds of spaceship dogfights.

 

If you really want to talk the "Nostalgia card" there's Binary Sunset...

 

The issue I was talking about was timing. There were 34 years between ROTJ's use of that music and TLJ's. There were only 6 months or so between TLJ and Solo, so when I saw Solo, the moment lost some of its impact. (Which is a pity, because I really dig Powell's take on it!)

 

The overuse of the Force theme in the sequel trilogy is a different discussion altogether, but...yes.

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28 minutes ago, Datameister said:

The issue I was talking about was timing. There were 34 years between ROTJ's use of that music and TLJ's. There were only 6 months or so between TLJ and Solo, so when I saw Solo, the moment lost some of its impact. (Which is a pity, because I really dig Powell's take on it!)

 

I dunno. These are leitmotivic scores after all, and the whole point of leitmotives is repitition (and variation, which is not the case here but nevermind). So its hard for me to begrudge such scores for repeating material, since that's literally the whole point of how they function.

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29 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

 

I dunno. These are leitmotivic scores after all, and the whole point of leitmotives is repitition (and variation, which is not the case here but nevermind). So its hard for me to begrudge such scores for repeating material, since that's literally the whole point of how they function.

 

You dismiss the importance of variation, but I think that's a key issue. This isn't a leitmotif that Williams has developed in a variety of ways to clearly represent the notion of space combat per se; it's a single cue that's been directly quoted in a few other films.

 

Anyway, I'll echo the love for The Asteroid Field and Attacking a Star Destroyer. And the entire Battle of Hoth. And Yavin.

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5 hours ago, Edmilson said:

Of all the action music Williams wrote for Star Wars, one of my very favorite cues is Here They Come from A New Hope:

 

 

It's a fast paced, energetic cue brilliantly performed by the LSO and it fits the movie very well.

 

Also, I think this cue encapsulates the very spirit of Star Wars: the Rebels' daring escapades from the Empire, the sense of adventure and fun, the sheer spectacle of it... It's Star Wars at its best.

 

I also really like the Here They Come version from The Last Jedi:

 

 

What about you? Post your favorite performances of Here They Come!

I left work early at 3 pm for a double showing of The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, and when this played I went 'Yessssssss!!!!' The Falcon chase in the salt caverns on Crait was stunning to watch and listen to. That was a great addition to the score.

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6 minutes ago, Datameister said:

 

You dismiss the importance of variation, but I think that's a key issue. This isn't a leitmotif that Williams has developed in a variety of ways to clearly represent the notion of space combat per se; it's a single cue that's been directly quoted in a few other films.

 

Anyway, I'll echo the love for The Asteroid Field and Attacking a Star Destroyer. And the entire Battle of Hoth. And Yavin.

Luke's. First. Crash.

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1 hour ago, Datameister said:

You dismiss the importance of variation, but I think that's a key issue. This isn't a leitmotif that Williams has developed in a variety of ways to clearly represent the notion of space combat per se; it's a single cue that's been directly quoted in a few other films.

 

I don't dismiss it at all. For instance, that's the big issue with the overuse of Binary Sunset: that a theme that had otherwise been presented in multiple guises (at least orchestrationally) had suddenly reverted to a very specific iteration that seems to have been pasted time and again, without variation, over any vaguely-impactful moment.

 

That's not the case, for me, of the "Here they Come!" ostinato. Yes, it doesn't change. But then, even in pieces where the motives are constantly changing, some of the motives remain the same: off the top of my head, the Curse motive in the Ring cycle doesn't change: whenever something really bad happens or is waiting to happen, we hear a quotation of it. Doesn't make it any less effective.

 

Really, its not used that much at all: from memory, its quoted twice in Return of the Jedi, once in The Last Jedi and in Solo. Across some twenty hours of music, its completely negligible.

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Ultimately, @Chen G., this issue is gonna be a very subjective one. But for me, the joy of hearing it quoted in TLJ was the well-placed surprise dose of nostalgia. Suddenly I was hearing an amazing piece of Star Wars musical history that hadn't poked its head out in a long time. I could have just as easily had the same reaction to Solo if it'd been released first, or if the films had been separated by enough years. But with them being released so close together, Solo's scene ended up feeling like kind of a cheap shot to me on first viewing. Like, "Hey, you just used that move on me a few months ago!"

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This was a very popular cue during it's time.  In fact, I think it was the B side of the single if I recall correctly.  For those of you not old enough to remember, there were Long Play (LP) albums but also singles which were far more popular but topped out at 4 or 5 minutes.  I recall this was the other side of the single.  It was a VERY popular track.  I personally prefer The Asteroid field due to its superior virtuosity but "here they come" was mind blowing in its day.  It was a unique action set piece.  The big shoot out in the salon.  

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I also prefer The Asteroid Field cue and Attacking a Star Destroyer but Here They Come! is certainly an absolute masterpiece.

My favourite performance is actually the original heard in the movie, probably because I associate it more with my childhood memories but I'm also a big fan of the Skywalker Orchestra performance (although it's a bit too slow).

 

I surprised no one here mentioned the action cue of Grievous from RotS and Battle of Endor which are also two favourite of mine

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7 hours ago, Datameister said:

the joy of hearing it quoted in TLJ was the well-placed surprise dose of nostalgia. Suddenly I was hearing an amazing piece of Star Wars musical history that hadn't poked its head out in a long time.

 

I see.

 

Some of Williams' themes gain greater resonance precisely because we go a long time without hearing them again. For me, that happened not with this ostinato but with the reprise of the Luke and Leia theme in The Last Jedi.

 

I can see how going back to such material soon afterwards could feel a bit cheap: that's certainly what I think about the reprise of the Luke and Leia theme for the victory celebrations in The Rise of Skywalker.

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7 hours ago, Datameister said:

Ultimately, @Chen G., this issue is gonna be a very subjective one. But for me, the joy of hearing it quoted in TLJ was the well-placed surprise dose of nostalgia. Suddenly I was hearing an amazing piece of Star Wars musical history that hadn't poked its head out in a long time. I could have just as easily had the same reaction to Solo if it'd been released first, or if the films had been separated by enough years. But with them being released so close together, Solo's scene ended up feeling like kind of a cheap shot to me on first viewing. Like, "Hey, you just used that move on me a few months ago!"

 

Totally agree about the unfortunate timeline of these two musical nostalgia bursts.  I actually find the reuse in ROTJ lazier from a musical standpoint, particularly since it shows up in both Sail Barge Assault and Superstructure Chase (right?).

 

Honestly, what marred the appearance in TLJ for me was more that it was the third major needle-drop of that score, after the concert suite appearances for Leia and Yoda (with all those scenes' attendant baggage in the lore).  By the time the salt cave chase arrived, TLJ had so thoroughly lost me that the recycled music hit differently than it would have in a film I was enjoying.  Regardless of my reaction to TLJ's plot, though, I also found the staging of that sequence so similar to the Star Destroyer wreckage chase from the immediately prior film (Millennium Falcon dueling a small number of TIE fighters in a long, narrow tunnel) that it struck me as a boring choice in the middle of an already derivative speeders-and-walkers battle.

 

This is off-topic, but it leads me to articulate a particular bugaboo of mine about TLJ that I don't think I'd thought of before: for a film that was so determined to torch the Star Wars playbook (and received nonstop fawning in the entertainment press for doing just that), nearly every major sequence in it has an immediate analogue in either ESB or ROTJ: base escape, reluctant mentor meeting, protracted space pursuit, opulent resort interlude, abortive departure from would-be mentor, self-turn-in to woo villain to the light, throne room torture/betrayal scene, infiltration of enemy capital ship (that's from ANH), "snow" battle with speeders and walkers.  The two lightsaber duels are the film's most iconic scenes because they're two of its only totally original ideas.

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1 hour ago, igger6 said:

 

Totally agree about the unfortunate timeline of these two musical nostalgia bursts.  I actually find the reuse in ROTJ lazier from a musical standpoint, particularly since it shows up in both Sail Barge Assault and Superstructure Chase (right?).

 

 

The direct copy/paste only happens in Superstructure Chase, which I find appropriate as a way to finish the trilogy going full circle. 

Sail Barge Assault (the new version) had to be composed in between sessions because the original piece was rejected, so Williams ended up using every material he could to create the 5-minute action cue in just a couple of days. (However, it is NOT a copy of Here They Come)

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1 hour ago, igger6 said:

I actually find the reuse in ROTJ lazier from a musical standpoint, particularly since it shows up in both Sail Barge Assault and Superstructure Chase (right?).

 

Honestly, what marred the appearance in TLJ for me was more that it was the third major needle-drop of that score, after the concert suite appearances for Leia and Yoda (with all those scenes' attendant baggage in the lore).  By the time the salt cave chase arrived, TLJ had so thoroughly lost me that the recycled music hit differently than it would have in a film I was enjoying.

 

The use in Return of the Jedi is kinda lazy in that Williams had been asked to reuse material directly from the original film (in one of Return of the Jedi's many overdone attempts to model itself on the original film) and then use the same music again at the end of the film. But again, since leitmotives are based on repetition, I think it ultimately works.

 

And yes, The Last Jedi is definitely the least "original" Star Wars score: so many themes returning too often in too familiar a guise, often lifted directly from existing cues and concert arrangements. When it happens once or twice a-la "Here They Come!" its fine; or when it happens tongue-in-cheek like the quote of the Emperor theme (always reminds me of "von Tristan und Isolde kenn' ich ein traurig Stück") its great. But when its really just "ah, a vaguely-impactful moment! I know what to do, Binary Sunset!", a piece that was already become formulaic in its use as the finale of both Revenge of the Sith and The Force Awakens, it gets to be a little much.

 

But then, there are moments of tremendous pathos like the Luke and Leia material. Very hard to describe that moment: we haven't heard it since Return of the Jedi, and even in that we barely got to hear it much. So to hear it all this time later was truly a coup.

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2 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

The use in Return of the Jedi is kinda lazy in that Williams had been asked to reuse material directly from the original film

But Here They Come" was also contained in the alternate of the Sail Barque Assault, that was written by Williams before he was asked to use more music from the first film. So, it's still kind of lazy. ;)

But it fits well in there. 

But in the Battle of Crait and the TLJ end titles it really felt out of place to me, since this is kind of "Luke, Han and fellows fight their enemies" theme.

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I've always liked the use in ROTJ. It works like a theme reprise within a single work, and is something of a payback time for the rebels.

 

The TLJ use meanwhile is a copy of ROTJ down to flying through confined spaces, and is very much this film's TFA moment. Solo re-using action music from (in-story) chronologically later films and superior action sequences is even worse.

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2 minutes ago, GerateWohl said:

But Here They Come" was also contained in the alternate of the Sail Barque Assault, that was written by Williams before he was asked to use more music from the first film.

 

Well, Williams does occasionally go back and revisit moments that weren't initially concieved of as thematic: The Throne Room music, the "Holstian chords" from the opening of Star Wars, and in the prequel trilogy the funeral music, some of the writing for Shmi and one of the fanfares we associate with Curoscant.

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1 minute ago, Chen G. said:

 

Well, Williams does occasionally go back and revisit moments that weren't initially concieved of as thematic: The Throne Room music, the "Holstian chords" from the opening of Star Wars, and in the prequel trilogy the funeral music, some of the writing for Shmi and one of the fanfares we associate with Curoscant.

Sure. And as I said, in ROTJ the quote even make sense. But in TLJ it is just pushing the nostalgia button.

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But "pushing the nostalgia button" is literally how leitmotives work.

 

Like, if its really a case of the same leitmotif being repeated ad nauseam in close proximity and in a very specific, unchanged form - as is the case of Binary Sunset - I get it.

 

But something like this? Its literally the whole point of leitmotives!

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14 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

But "pushing the nostalgia button" is literally how leitmotives work.

 

Like, if its really a case of the same leitmotif being repeated ad nauseam in close proximity and in a very specific, unchanged form - as is the case of Binary Sunset - I get it.

 

But something like this? Its literally the whole point of leitmotives!

I know. But too often in the sequels I was missing the actual reference of the leitmotiv. As I wrote, Here They Come was for me always connected to Luke and Han. You could say, my mistake, it is just the Falcon. 

But why did Luke and Leia play, when Lando talked to his"daughter"? Why did Yoda's Theme appear when Luke lifted his X-Wing with the Force? 

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1 hour ago, GerateWohl said:

I know. But too often in the sequels I was missing the actual reference of the leitmotiv. As I wrote, Here They Come was for me always connected to Luke and Han.

 

Its an action ostinato, mostly to do with Spaceship dogfights.

 

Besides, leitmotives do sometimes change their associations across a long cycle such as this: I mean, the Rebel Fanfare started life as a theme for the blockade runner, morphed in the scoring process into a theme for the Rebels and, come the sequel trilogy, became the theme of the Falcon.

 

I mean, why do we hear the theme of the magic gold when Siegfried confronts the Wanderer? Because after an 11-year hiatus from the Ring, Wagner came back to his themes and decided that this theme, which was associated with the Rhinedaughters' joyous call to the gold, worked better as a more general "joy" theme.

 

Its the same kind of dramatic association, only more generalized as opposed to specific. The same is true here.

 

1 hour ago, GerateWohl said:

Why did Yoda's Theme appear when Luke lifted his X-Wing with the Force? 

 

As a paralle to the same moment in The Empire Strikes Back. Again, why does the "Renounciation [of love]" theme appears when Siegmund pulls the sword from the tree in the name of love? The theme conveys the opposite message to the intent of the scene. Its there as a parallel of Alberich cursing love in the same spot in the previous evening.

 

1 hour ago, GerateWohl said:

why did Luke and Leia play, when Lando talked to his"daughter"? 

 

That's really just for affect. Williams had been doing this ever since Leia's theme for Ben's death; and again, its not unheard of as a practice. I mean, why do we hear the Tarnhelm when Waltraute says that Wotan came back with the spear in pieces? That has nothing to do with the Tarnhelm, and very little even to do with magic in general, and its not making some kind of palpable parallel: its really just there for affect.

 

Its a device that I only like when used in extreme moderation, which is not the case with some Williams scores, but nevertheless is something composers do.

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3 hours ago, GerateWohl said:

 

By the way, the rythm pattern of Here They Come Williams also used as action cue in Black Sunday, which Williams wrote at the same time. At least it always reminded me of Here They Come.

He wrote BS first, but, yes, it does seem like a dry run for several SW ideas--including the force theme itself.  

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4 hours ago, Chen G. said:

 

Well, Williams does occasionally go back and revisit moments that weren't initially concieved of as thematic: The Throne Room music, the "Holstian chords" from the opening of Star Wars, and in the prequel trilogy the funeral music, some of the writing for Shmi and one of the fanfares we associate with Curoscant.

Shmi already had thematic material in TPM....

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1 hour ago, Grace Under Pressure said:

Shmi already had thematic material in TPM....

 

As I recall it, she has a lot of very sad woodwind writing, but nothing that really comes back within the film: it takes until Attack of the Clones for a figure that we associate with her to reappear, and its reprised at least once more within that film and is arguably echoed in Revenge of the Sith.

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1 minute ago, Chen G. said:

 

As I recall it, she has a lot of very sad woodwind writing, but nothing that really comes back within the film: it takes until Attack of the Clones for a figure that we associate with her to reappear, and its reprised at least once more within that film and is arguably echoed in Revenge of the Sith.

The opening of "Its Working" is reprised in "Anakin is Free"

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3 hours ago, Fabulin said:

The Force Theme I haven't noticed... Which track?

This track has both the "Here They Come" precursor and the Force theme, though the latter is not as direct--a cross between what will be the force theme and Dracula.  

 

 

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8 hours ago, Grace Under Pressure said:

The opening of "Its Working" is reprised in "Anakin is Free"

Yes, but it's only the first five notes of the melody (and with different chords), and it's not the same melody that is reprised as Shmi's theme in AOTC. 

 

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Just now, oierem said:

Yes, but it's only the first five notes of the melody (and with different chords), and it's not the same melody that is reprised as Shmi's theme in AOTC. 

 

Right, but the argument was whether Shmi had any thematic material in TPM

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When shmi dies or anakin finds her, thats tpm music, no? Wasnt that her theme?

 

yes, i checked thats the its working-anakin is free motif. And used when palpatine talks about her i rots.

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2 hours ago, Luke Skywalker said:

When shmi dies or anakin finds her, thats tpm music, no? Wasnt that her theme?

 

This is what we've been calling Shmi's theme. 

6 Shmi.png...

 

Unless I've tallied wrong, it's used:

  • On one occasion in TPM (so def. not a leitmotif at that point),
  • Four distinct times in AOTC (def. a leitmotif),
  • And maybe once, vaguely, in ROTS. I go back and forth on whether this was an intentional reference or just four notes that coincidentally resemble her theme. 

The "It's Working" theme is, as far as I remember, totally restricted to TPM. It goes like this:
 

46 Its Working.png

 

You get it once in "Anakin's Racer Roars to Life," and then a variant of it is developed as the main tune in "Anakin is Free." The middle phrase is very close to ROTJ:SE's Victory Celebration and the end of the first phrase of Across the Stars, though this is probably a case of Williams's consistent harmonic language more than an intentional reference.

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Curiously enough, in an interview Williams talks about it as a theme, but I think he means more in the compositional/symphonic sense than in the sense of a recurring theme, which it clearly isn't.

 

The same is true of the Landspeeder material, the Throne Room, the Funeral, some material for Padme in Episode I and even some of the material of the Battle of Hoth.

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