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Bear McCreary's "Rings of Power" Themes


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Maybe Doug is saving up for something he planned with TORn or something, I dunno. At this point, I do think it’s premature to be too presumptive on the (admittedly notable) quiet on the Adams front.

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48 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

Maybe Doug is saving up for something he planned with TORn or something, I dunno. At this point, I do think it’s premature to be too presumptive on the (admittedly notable) quiet on the Adams front.

 

He retweets even people with Howard Shore shirts. And he promotes every new Shore release. There is something in the bush.

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2 hours ago, TolkienSS said:

 

It's really not.

It's weird that whether someone tweets or not about music influences your thinking about said music.

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1 hour ago, TolkienSS said:

 

He retweets even people with Howard Shore shirts. And he promotes every new Shore release.

Even the lower-profile films that Shore does? Those that no one except for people really into arthouse flicks watch?

 

I mean, the main titles for TROP is the most proeminent release to feature Shore's music since, what, BOTFA? And yet Adams hasn't said a thing about it?

 

This is weird indeed, unless he's saving it for a bigger post when the show premieres.

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8 hours ago, TolkienSS said:

He retweets even people with Howard Shore shirts. And he promotes every new Shore release. There is something in the bush.

 

I agree its strange, but I wouldn't read too much into it just yet.

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When I first heard the Valinor theme, the first three notes in particular immediately reminded me of a theme I'd heard before. It drove me nuts for a few days, but I finally placed the theme Saturday morning:

 

At 0:09, for example (there's a bigger rendition starting at 3:50):

 

Compared to the first three notes of the Valinor theme (0:30, for example, or 1:32 for a bigger rendition):

 

Maybe they aren't as similar as I thought they were... but at least for me, for the first few days of listening, whenever the Valinor theme played, my brain kept wanting it to continue with Jason's theme (which I hadn't heard in years) haha.

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22 minutes ago, Max said:

When I first heard the Valinor theme, the first three notes in particular immediately reminded me of a theme I'd heard before. It drove me nuts for a few days, but I finally placed the theme Saturday morning:

 

At 0:09, for example (there's a bigger rendition starting at 3:50):

 

Compared to the first three notes of the Valinor theme (0:30, for example, or 1:32 for a bigger rendition):

 

Maybe they aren't as similar as I thought they were... but at least for me, for the first few days of listening, whenever the Valinor theme played, my brain kept wanting it to continue with Jason's theme (which I hadn't heard in years) haha.

Ah. I remember watching that Jason and the Argonauts miniseries back in Junior high. Jason’s Theme always felt like a great tip-of-hat to John Barry :) 
 

I was always a fan of those made-for-TV specials by Halmark. We got some great scores from those. Merlin, Cleopatra, Moby Dick, 10th Kingdom. Good times. 

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On 28/08/2022 at 11:41 PM, TolkienSS said:

 

He retweets even people with Howard Shore shirts. And he promotes every new Shore release. There is something in the bush.

 

I'm seeing this more and more lately from various people - I think you're reading a lot into a situation with little supporting detail (i.e. one person not tweeting) because you want there to be something to find, i.e. you want it to be found that Shore wrote lots of music and 'outwrote' McCreary. Please correct me if this is an unfair assessment :) 

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1 hour ago, Richard Penna said:

 

I'm seeing this more and more lately from various people - I think you're reading a lot into a situation with little supporting detail (i.e. one person not tweeting) because you want there to be something to find, i.e. you want it to be found that Shore wrote lots of music and 'outwrote' McCreary. Please correct me if this is an unfair assessment :) 

 

I don't want it to be found that Shore outwrote McCreary, because I don't think Howard Shore wrote a lot for it. Why would he if he was in negotiations on what he would actually do? I think Shore had/has Middle-Earth ideas sketched for years anyway, privately, because he likes the material.

 

It's not only that Doug doesn't tweet about it, he also, around July 22nd, did a quasi-rant on how he came to realize he's not a cinephile, that his interest in it comes from music, and that although there are differences in taste, he sometimes finds himself walking out the door grouchy and wondering what's going on.

 

Then as McCreary's first tracks were released, he just tweeted "No thanks".

 

It's really telling, and not just silence.

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And what does this lady have on her head

 

image.png

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5 minutes ago, Doug Adams said:

Doug was invited to the recording sessions and the premiere.

 

Chen was invited for the premiere and I'm told he didn't go either.

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You all seem to live way more exciting lives than I do.

 

However, if I went to a recording session of this, I couldn't help myself yelling "can you lower than by a semitone please?"

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@Monoverantus

 

New theme identified!

 

One of the themes that Bear said wasn't identified is Adar's theme.

 

And it is indeed present in the Nampat track.

 

 

On 19/08/2022 at 7:06 PM, Monoverantus said:

22. Nampat

0:00-0:31 (Nampat sha ghash, Nampat burzum akh x4)

0:32-1:00 Nampat theme? Pan flute

1:03-1:36 (Nampat sha ghash, Nampat burzum akh x4)

1:36-1:58 Nampat theme? Brass

1:58-2:14 (Nampat sha ghash, Nampat burzum akh, Nampat sha ghash, Nampat Nampat Nampat)

 

Black Speech verbs have an -at ending (durbat, gimbat, thrakat, krimpat), so “Nampat” is probably a verb.

 

What you call Nampat theme is Adar's theme.

 

This is clear after watching Episode 3.

 

In the episode it wasn't played this way. So I think that leads us to the conclusion that Nampat is indeed the concert arrangement for Adar's theme.

 

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I mean chronologically we arent yet at the Nampat part of the original Album. But the suites havent always been placed where their themes first appeared in the show, so you are probably still right.

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3 hours ago, TheUlyssesian said:

@Monoverantus

 

New theme identified!

 

One of the themes that Bear said wasn't identified is Adar's theme.

 

And it is indeed present in the Nampat track.

 

Ssssssh, I haven't watched it yet! XD

(but yes, the tracklist needs to be updated, and perhaps expanded with the new releases...)

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Only one track from the album was actually on the episode soundtrack too. (Taken from 3 separate scenes and stitched together)

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So I counting and McCreary said there are 15 main themes he created.

 

Would I be right in saying that these 14 are now confirmed with one last remaining theme in The Mystics?

 

1. Galadriel's Theme

2. Khazad-Dum Theme

3. Nori's Theme

4. The Stranger's Theme

5. Numenor Theme

6. Sauron's Theme

7. Valinor Theme

8. Elrond's Theme

9. Durin's Theme

10. Harfoot Theme

11. Bronwyn and Arondir's Theme (I wonder if this is just Arondir's Theme - I think it has been played over Arondir-only scenes too which had nothing to with Bronwyn. We'll wait to see if it plays over Bronwyn-only scenes too for confirmation.)

12. Halbrand's Theme (also doubles as Southlands Theme)

13. Elendil & Isuldur's Theme

14. Adar's Theme

 

Now for the last one, Monoverantus has identified the Where The Shadows Lie theme but McCreary indicated that it might be in the The Mystics track. 

 

I guess we will learn more as the series progresses as Adar's theme only became apparent in Episode 3. Maybe subsequent episodes will give us clue about what the 15th main theme is.

 

Or plot twist: maybe there are more than 15 main themes?

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16 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:

Bronwyn and Arondir's Theme (I wonder if this is just Arondir's Theme - I think it has been played over Arondir-only scenes too which had nothing to with Bronwyn. We'll wait to see if it plays over Bronwyn-only scenes too for confirmation.)

 

Now for the last one, Monoverantus has identified the Where The Shadows Lie theme but McCreary indicated that it might be in the The Mystics track. 

 

I guess we will learn more as the series progresses as Adar's theme only became apparent in Episode 3. Maybe subsequent episodes will give us clue about what the 15th main theme is.

It is used in scene where it's just Bronwyn in episode 2. With her it's mostly strings and woodwinds. For Arondir is mostly brass and strings

 

I believe that is a theme for Cerebrimbor and his project. I believe it is first heard when he appears in episode 1.

 

It might be that there is a theme in the Mystics for something we haven't scene at all in the series. That would make sense

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11 minutes ago, JNHFan2000 said:

@Monoverantus

Were you planning on doing your original breakdown of themes for all the episodic albums?

I've started myself, was just wondering if you were planning on doing it.

Depends a bit. On one hand, it's not like I have the same obsessive drive to catalogue everything about this score like I do for the Shore score. I kinda just want to lay back and enjoy the show.

On the other hand, it is fun. Having started this thread, I might as well try to keep it updated.

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1 minute ago, Monoverantus said:

Depends a bit. On one hand, it's not like I have the same obsessive drive to catalogue everything about this score like I do for the Shore score. I kinda just want to lay back and enjoy the show.

On the other hand, it is fun. Having started this thread, I might as well try to keep it updated.

Great. I'll try and work my way through them as well and post some stuff. Like you said, it is fun to see what McCreary does. 

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18 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:

So I counting and McCreary said there are 15 main themes he created.

 

Would I be right in saying that these 14 are now confirmed with one last remaining theme in The Mystics?

 

1. Galadriel's Theme

2. Khazad-Dum Theme

3. Nori's Theme

4. The Stranger's Theme

5. Numenor Theme

6. Sauron's Theme

7. Valinor Theme

8. Elrond's Theme

9. Durin's Theme

10. Harfoot Theme

11. Bronwyn and Arondir's Theme (I wonder if this is just Arondir's Theme - I think it has been played over Arondir-only scenes too which had nothing to with Bronwyn. We'll wait to see if it plays over Bronwyn-only scenes too for confirmation.)

12. Halbrand's Theme (also doubles as Southlands Theme)

13. Elendil & Isuldur's Theme

14. Adar's Theme

 

Now for the last one, Monoverantus has identified the Where The Shadows Lie theme but McCreary indicated that it might be in the The Mystics track. 

 

I guess we will learn more as the series progresses as Adar's theme only became apparent in Episode 3. Maybe subsequent episodes will give us clue about what the 15th main theme is.

 

Or plot twist: maybe there are more than 15 main themes?

There's definitely more than 15 themes. The Where the Shadows Lie theme has already appeared in several scenes, and Bear did say that there are "at least" 2 more themes to be found.

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I think Bear set out with 15 themes but in the course of using the material, he found certain fragments useful and used them again and ergo an added theme. Shore never meant this theme to be a recurring leitmotif, but because it proved useful and was reused...

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9 minutes ago, JNHFan2000 said:

I believe that is a theme for Cerebrimbor and his project. I believe it is first heard when he appears in episode 1.

Indeed, Where The Shadows Lie has been heard 3 times in association with Celebrimbor, but also once when King Durin opens the shiny box.

I think the theme represents ruinous desire. Celebrimbor's motivation to create something grand that can rival his grandfather's work will lead to the creation of the Rings of Power, and Durin's lust for mithril will cause the dwarves to "dig too greedily and too deep".

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47 minutes ago, Monoverantus said:

Depends a bit. On one hand, it's not like I have the same obsessive drive to catalogue everything about this score like I do for the Shore score. I kinda just want to lay back and enjoy the show.

On the other hand, it is fun. Having started this thread, I might as well try to keep it updated.

 

I think it would be a valuable project. :) You've already done so much great work!

 

40 minutes ago, Monoverantus said:

Indeed, Where The Shadows Lie has been heard 3 times in association with Celebrimbor, but also once when King Durin opens the shiny box.

I think the theme represents ruinous desire. Celebrimbor's motivation to create something grand that can rival his grandfather's work will lead to the creation of the Rings of Power, and Durin's lust for mithril will cause the dwarves to "dig too greedily and too deep".

 

Ah. I am going to revisit those sections. I didn't realize the Shadows theme had already appeared.

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11 minutes ago, Monoverantus said:

Keep an ear out for this motif and you'll start noticing it too 

 

 

image.png

 

I went back and this is the one I heard - yes - as you noted once when Celebrimbor appears and second when Mithril appears.

 

The actual Shadows melody - has that been heard yet or just the above motif?

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I analyzed this in my last blog entry, and I realized that this motif was hinted from the very beginning, with several brief appearances in the Forodwaith cue (actually the three-note simplification reminds me of Sirius Black's motif from Prisoner of Azkaban).

 

And I found someinteresting connections between Galadriel's theme, Halbrand's theme and Númenor's theme, which are quite interesting.

 

Analysis of the Rings of Power - 1x03

 

So feel free to check it out and leave your thoughts on my analysis and breakdown of the themes!

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4 hours ago, TheUlyssesian said:

The actual Shadows melody - has that been heard yet or just the above motif?

Just in the end credits of Ep 1.

 

46 minutes ago, Knight of Ren said:

So feel free to check it out and leave your thoughts on my analysis and breakdown of the themes!

I've been meaning to!

16 minutes ago, TolkienSS said:

The theme for the orcs is the first thing that sounds like tribute to Howard Shore. 

To me, it always makes me think of Photoshop Flowey's theme from Undertale

 

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11 hours ago, Monoverantus said:

To me, it always makes me think of Photoshop Flowey's theme from Undertale

 

Oh my god, that's it! Until your post I hadn't realized why the Nampat track sounded familiar, and it's Evil Flowey's theme! That's crazy (btw, I love both the undertale game and its soundtrack so much)

 

1 hour ago, artguy360 said:

The music continues to be a real highlight of the show. The music works better with the show than standalone.

Yeah, I agree that the album per episodes contain perhaps a bit too much music, but how it works in context it's really great. I love how the music elevates many of the scenes and manages to stand out during many sequences, especially when we are introduced to a new area, such as Númenor in last episode!

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1 hour ago, Knight of Ren said:

Oh my god, that's it! Until your post I hadn't realized why the Nampat track sounded familiar, and it's Evil Flowey's theme! That's crazy (btw, I love both the undertale game and its soundtrack so much)

If so, then this is essential reading:

http://jasonyu.me/undertale-part-1/

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Listening to the third episode's album. It continues to be enjoyable, not exactly outstanding, but competent and fairly consistent. I ansolutely adore just about everything to do with The Stranger theme. And while I do like Nori's theme it sounds bit too close to James Horner’s Avatar

 

Karol

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6 hours ago, Monoverantus said:

If so, then this is essential reading:

http://jasonyu.me/undertale-part-1/

I already knew of this analysis, but yes, it's of essential reading to any fan of the soundtrack and the game. Such a detailed breakdown, and with a lot of thought put into it

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That's great - is anyone doing such a list for the other episode albums?

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15 hours ago, Jay said:

That's great - is anyone doing such a list for the other episode albums?

Working on it, hadn't had time to continue during the week.

I've got no plans this weekend so I'll try and post them today and/or tomorrow

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