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Natalie Holt's OBI-WAN KENOBI (2022)


Jay
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IMHO this is the worst music for a Star Wars show... And I'm not a big fan of the score in The Mandalorian/Boba Fett or the Kevin Kiner music. Also, the Bill Ross tracks are way below expectations. Is he using an orchestra? Doesn't seem so... And his adaptation of the theme in the End Credits is too cheesy for my taste.

 

And yes, I agree that the more melodic tracks from Holt are "ok" not much, just "ok" and no interesting at all.

 

Anyway, I really like the Williams theme. I prefer it over the Galaxy Edge theme, for example.

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6 minutes ago, DrTenma said:

And his adaptation of the theme in the End Credits is too cheesy for my taste.

 

YouTube lists Williams as the sole composer of End Credits, unlike the 6 other William Ross tracks (where the credit is shared). 

 

I think we can infer Williams wrote the alternate intro and outro used for the end credits. 

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1 hour ago, GerateWohl said:

There is a combination of hammering taiko drums, very high staccato violins and low brass ostinatos and even electronic rhythm support that can be heard for example in Order 66 and Inquisitor's Hunt that first of all sounds like Pirates of the Caribean or Gladiator, that I really dislike because it is killing most of the power of that wonderful body of sound of the orchestra. You have a collection of between 60 and 80 instruments and if you use them in a smart way you can unfold the biggest scale of dynamics and musical power, which was the original idea of using an orchestra in motion picture scores. But such kind of sound bricks that I described in the beginning is unworthy for such kind of instrumentation in my oppinion. This is really something, that you can create on your computer in your home studio with sound samples, if you like that. At least I can say, that is music, that I am completely uninterested in.

There might be very very rare moments where a well prepared climax might sound like that. But this is obviously some kind multitrack trial and error studio composing type of music that is in my mind ok if you do techno or some other dancefloor stuff or maybe even an electronic score. But don't call that an orchestral score.

But that's just my subjective old fashioned stubborn oppinion.

 

 

 


I agree, but I'm fine with the drums in Solo, particularly on the deluxe version where they sound less processed. I'm okay with a bit of out-there orchestration if the foundation of the score has that lovely traditional orchestral Star Wars sound which Solo 100% has

31 minutes ago, crumbs said:

 

YouTube lists Williams as the sole composer of End Credits, unlike the 6 other William Ross tracks (where the credit is shared). 

 

I think we can infer Williams wrote the alternate intro and outro used for the end credits. 


Odd, that contradicts the credit on spotify where it says William Ross is the sole composer of "End Credits"

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First listen through the album now and I'm liking Holt's material in general. Oddly Ross' first track lost me a bit in the middle. It's nice to hear the main theme in his material, but it feels overall a bit less engaging to me.

 

Action music is definitely not her strong point - I usually like slightly trailerised action material and this is ok, but they definitely could've gotten better results for these sections.

 

To those baffled by the varying credits, can't you just enjoy (or not) the music without worrying who wrote it? I honestly think some around here can't fully enjoy a piece of music if they're not 100% certain that JW wrote it.

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11 hours ago, Manakin Skywalker said:

Probably because of AFM. Not that Disney couldn't afford those fees though...

 

AFM re-use fees ONLY apply to catalog expansions / premieres.  OST albums released concurrent with the film/show can be as long as they want, no re-use fees are needed - because it's a not a RE use, it's the first, intended use

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I’ve wondered how the AFM fees apply to multiple volumes of music from the same show (7 soundtracks to WandaVision, 2 soundtracks to BoBF, etc.).  I think it’s clear that the reuse fees aren’t an issue since Disney actually releases scores that way, but not sure what makes it different from, say, a “More Music From…” release for a movie or show.

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None of those would have re-use fees, because that is not a re-use, OST albums are included in the original, intended use

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It seems like a semantic argument to me.  What makes a second (or third or seventh in some of these cases) volume of music from any TV show or movie fine to release without paying reuse fees?  Theoretically could Disney have saved themselves a ton of money by putting only the unreleased music for Rogue One out and calling it a “More Music From” OST?

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I can't follow your logic.  Those multiple volumes of Wanda and Mando are all OST albums, they aren't catalog expansions

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Doesn't "re-use" literally imply that you are re-using music already released? A second volume hardly ever included material from an earlier volume (unless you include a main title track twice).

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If a show or movie receives one release, why is the second/third/etc. release from the same show exempt from fees?  What makes them OSTs when an original soundtrack has already been released? Proximity to release date of the media?

11 minutes ago, Laserschwert said:

Doesn't "re-use" literally imply that you are re-using music already released? A second volume hardly ever included material from an earlier volume (unless you include a main title track twice).


I guess that’s kind of what I’m getting at - could labels release second volumes of music from post-2008 scores without duplicating music from the first release, making them financially viable?  Volume 2 OST would be ideal unless you’re some kind of C&C maniac

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6 minutes ago, Laserschwert said:

Doesn't "re-use" literally imply that you are re-using music already released?

 

No.  All the AFM players who play on the recording of a film score get paid to record the music, and the filmmakers are then allowed to put anything recorded into the film/show as they please, and release any amount of it they want on OST album(s), no additional fees needed.

 

Years later, if someone wants to make a new album that includes more music than was on the OST album, the music label releasing this new album has to pay the AFM a "re use fee" to include that music on the album, since the AFM now considers this new album a whole new "use" of the music, not the use the music was originally intended for.  Of course everything is negotiable, so who knows what went on behind the scenes to allow those four AFM Giacchino scores (Star Treks and Rogue One) to get expansions so soon after original release

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, artguy360 said:

Empire Arrival grates at me the same way the Imperial music in Rogue One does. It sounds too over the top. I know that's a strange criticism given how camp the Imperial March is, but this music sounds too heavy handed.

 

Hold up! Stop the music! Are we really gonna let a member call The Imperial March "camp?" Shoot him! Or something.

 

I can see an argument for calling Giacchino's Imperial theme campy, but the Imperial March is NOT camp. It's operatic, even melodramatic but it's GOOD at being those things. It's only when certain other composers have attempted to imitate these qualities with their own Imperial themes that we've ended up with "camp."

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59 minutes ago, A. A. Ron said:

 

Hold up! Stop the music! Are we really gonna let a member call The Imperial March "camp?" Shoot him! Or something.

 

I can see an argument for calling Giacchino's Imperial theme campy, but the Imperial March is NOT camp. It's operatic, even melodramatic but it's GOOD at being those things. It's only when certain other composers have attempted to imitate these qualities with their own Imperial themes that we've ended up with "camp."

I'm pretty sure JW has described the Imperial March as camp in the past.

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24 minutes ago, artguy360 said:

I'm pretty sure JW has described the Imperial March as camp in the past.

No, he always implied Imperial March as his best work in his humble words. He said of the SW Main Titles that they were a bit too 'overdone'. 

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I liked the use of Young Leia in the show, and I like it on the release.  I know nothing of complexity of chord progressions, but this is pleasant and as others have described "lyrical".  It reminds me of Chewbacca's Theme in Flying With Chewie, from Solo.

 

It's not just Holt's action music.  The world building music is insufferably generic.  I feel like I'm listening to music engineered for a commercial, which I guess in a way I sort of am. 

 

Already planning my Williams/Ross only playlist.

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Can anybody post a list of what recurring themes Holt uses in her cues and in which tracks they appear in?

Also, do we think that any cues composed by Peter Nickalls, Jon Opstad, Max Arujno, etc appear on this album, or do we think those remain unreleased and only Holt-composed stuff is here?

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55 minutes ago, Jay said:

Can anybody post a list of what recurring themes Holt uses in her cues and in which tracks they appear in?

Also, do we think that any cues composed by Peter Nickalls, Jon Opstad, Max Arujno, etc appear on this album, or do we think those remain unreleased and only Holt-composed stuff is here?

I think 100% there's some stuff by them, but considering they all did work on all 6 its 100% that most of their stuff isn't heard there.

I wonder did Holt upload all the stuff she actually did lol (or well most of it) and a lot of the unreleased stuff was done by the others?

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I just realized, the detailed youtube descriptions would probably list the correct composer of each track?


I also just remembered that someone used one of those GEMA or SABAM or whatever sites to find out who composed each cue in every Mando and Boba episode, is that info up yet for Obi-Wan?

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Listening through it now...where is 'Ready to Go' from in the show? I only watched each episode once, but I don't remember this cue. Sounds kind of like one of Hans Zimmer's big emotional build-up type cues as it gets going toward the end of the crescendo. 

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5 hours ago, Jay said:

None of those would have re-use fees, because that is not a re-use, OST albums are included in the original, intended use

 

But then why did Townson choose to only release 30 minute albums for those 90s scores? He specifically stated that going over 30 minutes would be cost-prohibitive. Presumably the rules changed at some point to allow any duration of music to be released as an OST?

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Yea, from what we know the rules changed at some point after the 90s

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Forgive me if this has already been mentioned, but Apple Music interestingly lists John Williams as the sole composer of "The Journey Begins." Did JW write this cue himself, and Ross recorded it (like "End Credit")?

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This may have already been said, but will there be a CD?

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7 hours ago, Jay said:

OST albums released concurrent with the film/show can be as long as they want, no re-use fees are needed - because it's a not a RE use, it's the first, intended use

 

Wasn't someone's argument that the film itself is the first, intended use, and that the album is considered re-use? I think MV might've cleared this up before but I can't remember.

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Well I think that was how it worked in the 90s (see all those short Varese OSTs) but then it changed sometime after that.

 

There's a more modern quote from someone - maybe Mike? - around here somewhere that makes it very clear OST albums are now considered part of the original use, but I dunno how to find that quote at the moment

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I think I Will Do What I Must is my least favorite of William Ross's cues on this release. I do wonder why he didn't quote any Battle of the Heroes or Vader's theme during this cue. I can understand not using BotH (or DotF) in full form because perhaps it's better to let those have their moments in the films, but could have been a cool idea to present some broken-up BotH, or just a few quotes, since Ben and Vader are having a rematch.  

 

Some of Natalie's underscore, the moodier stuff relating to Vader and Reva, feel to me like they'd be more at home in a Terminator film than Star Wars. Especially the music for after we first see Vader sitting in his chair in Ep3, very Terminator-ish. 

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Been listening to some of it today - the last one I listened to was Some Things Can't Be Forgotten, so I'm about half-way I think. I am warming up to the Holt material. As some have already said, she does well with the more lyrical passages - I actually think they're pretty good. And overall, her music is Zimmer-like but not as terrible as perhaps I thought it was - while I don't like Zimmer usually, this wasn't as "one-note" as I originally thought. I think the lack of themes, production value and plot/story things really distracted me from this, however.

It's like the Holt cues quote but don't quote them and the harmonies (same with Ross, but a little clearer due to orchestration perhaps) - it's like writing cryptic words that are vague enough to be interpreted in so many different ways that it can't be considered "wrong." It's not direct in what it's wanting to say, and that is perhaps more a function of the directors/producers than the composers.

Tin foil hat time: there's a meandering theme I wanna say I keep hearing (maybe it's just the key) that makes me think this was the original Obi theme or the basis of it, and then perhaps Williams worked around that with the key or whatnot for what we now know as the Kenobi theme. Crazy theory but I dunno. I think it was in Daiyu that I picked up on this. Need to listen to it again though.

I really like the Mapuzo cue with it's groove sensibility, and the nose flute + strings trading off that melody. I'm a sucker for world music like that which sets the stage for the new place/planet, and is just grand/sweeping like that. Cool harmonies too.

The Ross material is certainly superior overall though. I actually really like the fact that it's a smaller ensemble and doesn't use a lot of the themes as it makes for a cool entry point to study Star Wars music/make some transcriptions for piano.

Just my quick thoughts so far! Hope y'all are enjoying the music.

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Talking about the bugdet, how many of you have hacked the show instead of subscribing to Disney+?

 

:nono:

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1 hour ago, MrJosh said:

I think I Will Do What I Must is my least favorite of William Ross's cues on this release. 


Me too.  I’m glad you mentioned this cue. 
 

In fact, I had to check because I thought the percussion and mixing of this sounded more like a Holt cue.   There is, iirc a Holt cue that uses the Williams Obi theme, and this one sounds very similar. 
 

Did Holt collaborate at all with Ross?  I Will Do What I Must sticks out differently than all the other Ross cues to me. 
 

Tinfoil hat firmly in place, I don’t fully know if I trust the credits on this wonky, crazy troubled production. 

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https://www.syfy.com/syfy-wire/obi-wan-kenobi-composer-natalie-holt-john-williams
Before Williams signed on, the composer had already been working on a theme of her own, though it didn't end up in the trash compactor. "I did use my Obi theme ... for when Obi and Leia hold hands in Episode 4," she reveals. With the approval of the master, Holt now had to find the musical middle (or should we say "high"?) ground between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. "Because we’re in the territory with Leia and Luke and Vader, we've got all these characters that are so precious to people. It’s just making sure that we were being respectful of the old, bringing in the new." All told, the scoring process took about three months, between December 2021 and late March/early April 2022.

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Ross’s music is wonderful and like having new music by John Williams. I hope we one day get access to all the rest of the music he wrote for the show.

Holt’s music is better on the OST than in the show, I would consider it fine with some good moments. But not Star Wars for the most part.

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21 hours ago, Gibster said:

"I did use my Obi theme ... for when Obi and Leia hold hands in Episode 4," she reveals.

 

And I thought she said there was a similarity to Williams' theme. :eh:

 

Replacing it was the right decision. It's not bad on it's own (or in the scene it accompanies), but it's nowhere strong enough to be the main theme of the entire show & main character.

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39 minutes ago, Gibster said:

https://www.syfy.com/syfy-wire/obi-wan-kenobi-composer-natalie-holt-john-williams
Before Williams signed on, the composer had already been working on a theme of her own, though it didn't end up in the trash compactor. "I did use my Obi theme ... for when Obi and Leia hold hands in Episode 4," she reveals. With the approval of the master, Holt now had to find the musical middle (or should we say "high"?) ground between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. "Because we’re in the territory with Leia and Luke and Vader, we've got all these characters that are so precious to people. It’s just making sure that we were being respectful of the old, bringing in the new." All told, the scoring process took about three months, between December 2021 and late March/early April 2022.

 

Assuming this is her Obi theme at 0:41?

 

 

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