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Future Giants of filmscoring


David Coscina
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In the next 10 years I predict the following composers to take over the mantle of awesomeness in the film scoring realm (and I'm NOT talking popularity here but more outright great musicianship, otherwise I'd have to include Hans Zimmer)

Howard Shore- despite the KONG fiasco, we still have great things coming up from Shore. SUN is the most recent example (video game score)

Gabriel Yared- not heard as much in North America but has a fluid, melodic style with a penchant for great harmonies and melodies.

Bruce Broughton- once he gets a better agent, this guy could possibly be up to Williams' calibre. Totally underrated. Give this fellow Harry Potter, Indiana jones, anything....see how good he can write!

Chris Young- With Spiderman 3, this project might actually wake up Hollywood execs who have missed the opportunity to capitalize on Young's solid music chops and compositional talents.

Elliot Goldenthal- sorely missing in action from the bigger hollwood efforts. After the Batman and Robin bomb, he may have soured on working on these big projects, hence films like Frida seem to be his speed lately.

*****************************************

Underlings in the Waiting-

(guys who will be great...but a little longer)

Ed Shearmur- good solid musicianship. Knows how to orchestrate AND provide suitable udnerscore. Needs better projects

Marco Beltrami- once again, solid training. Also needs bettre projects and to possibly develop stronger melodic skills. his background lies in modernist writing that emphasizes texture over traditional melody which might explain this.

Michael Giacchino- his LOST music is great. Let's just not factor in The Incredibles because of all the naysayers who dismiss this as a Barry clone. LOST is wholly Giacchino and displays his aesthetic towards scoring for acoustic musicians. Needs big projects out of the Disney realm to convince people he can kick butt.

Jon Powell- Displays some range, has a good sense of harmonic motion and mostly knows when to dial down the darned synths in favor of orchestral instruments. also has range- i.e. Paycheck, I Am Sam, Evolution, Shrek.

Any more that people would like to put forth????

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No, in all seriousness the only one out of the newbies that has impressed me is Giacchino.

Young, Broughton and Yared should be working more but for some reason aren't, although I'm sure we can figure out Yared's reason.

Elliot Goldenthal I find overrated to a point. Alot of his music sounds the same at times, no matter the film.

Howard Shore is an A list in my opinion and shouldn't have any trouble finding work.

As for the rest, wallpaper is the best term I can use to describe most of today's film music.

And yes I'm an old fashioned stick in the mud who believes great film music is a thing of the past and once Williams is done movie music is dead.

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Alan Silvestri - He already delivered a bunch of scores that became icons (BTTF, Forrest Gump, Predator to name a few) as well as overlooked master pieces (siegfried & roy, the polar express) and continues with even bigger things on Beowulf and (hopefully) When Worlds Collide. Certainly the most promising candidate in the category "future giants of film scoring".

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First of all, I'd say Shore is already a giant of film scoring. I can't wait to hear the SUN score, I hear it's really tremendous.

Otherwise, I'm afraid to say I do not know the rest of the composers well enough to judge, but of what I do know, Goldenthal, Yared, Broughton, Giacchino, and Powell seem like pretty sure bets to me. On the other hand, I loved Shearmur's orcehstration in Count of Monte Cristo , but have been extremely unimpressed with his melodies. The little I know of Beltrami sounds great, but, as you said, is often lacking enough melody.

One name I feel is a notable omission: Harry Gregson-Williams. I will trump his case until it can be trumped no longer. Narnia was rather underwhelming, not the magnum opus I was hoping it would be, but I feel that Kingdom of Heaven and Sinbad are two of the absolute finest score in recent years. He has the richest orchestral sound of any of the MV folk, bar none, and he has also shown with KoH that he can tackle a chorus with the best of them. He's got good melodies, and he knows how to use them.

Morlock- who really feels bad he doesn't own more of everyone mentioned above.

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Brian Tyler will be great, he's almost great now. His score for Timeline is better to me that JG's rejected one.

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Two unknowns I'm starting to really like are Ben Carson, you can listen to a sample of his work in the trailer for STATES OF GRACE, www.statesofgrace.com.

And Sam Cardon, who scored THE WORK AND THE GLORY series. The first one had some brilliant parts in it, but most felt out of place. The second film, AMERICAN ZION was awesome, I thought. He also had some brilliant pieces in BRIGHAM CITY.

Of course, these are all pretty small films, so I wouldn't be surprised if no one's seen them or heard the scores.

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As for the rest, wallpaper is the best term I can use to describe most of today's film music.

And yes I'm an old fashioned stick in the mud who believes great film music is a thing of the past and once Williams is done movie music is dead.

Amen brother, 100% along the same lines

Film scores lately have been a disappointment after disappointment,

Nothing inspires me anymore.

Wall paper is the best term

Sad but true.

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Any more that people would like to put forth????

Alexandre Desplat -- a composer with strong skills and solid musicianship. He has a natural penchant for subtle, psychological scoring, which is becoming a rare quality in film music. His scores to Hostage, Syriana and especially Birth are very impressive.

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Don't forget David Arnold. He might be considered one of the giants now, but aside from Bond, his big projects have been few and far between. I was hoping that since Goldsmith's passing, that more material might pass his way. But so far that has not been the case.

I'm dying of a release of The Stepford Wives.

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Right, I forgot about Desplat. Marrianelli seems to like it here, as well. Arnold has done some great work, but, as you said, doesn't do enough non-Bond stuff, and I'm not that thrilled with his John Singleton stuff. The Stepford Wives is a fantastic score. You're probably aware of this, but a bit of the waltz is available on Arnold website. Not nearly enough, but it did satisfy a bit of the need I felt for that infectous melody.

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John Debney. He's very eclectic (a positive quality that not many composers have). He's able to write good scores in comedies (Bruce Almighty), action movies (The Scorpion King) dramatic movies (The Passion of the Christ).

Other fine composers, already mentioned:

- Michael Giacchino

- Marco Beltrami

- John Powell

- John Ottman

- John Frizzell

- James Newton-Howard

- Bruce Broughton

- Christopher Young

- Craig Armstrong (don't know him that much, but The Bone Collector is an interesting work)

- Don Davis

- David and Thomas Newman (I prefer Thomas)

Honorable mention: Videogame composers.

- Clint Bajakian (how much time has to pass before they hire him for a movie? He's an amazing composer. Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb is as good as a movie score. He's extremely underrated for being only a videogame composer. He deserve more.)

- Michael Land (I would love to hear more music from him, the man who wrote the Monkey Island main theme)

- Peter McConnell (with Land and Bajakian scored the greatest LucasArts videogames)

- Mateo Pascual (known for all the Commandos videogames, he also scored Praetorians. Another really underrated composer. I also think he's not famous at all. Damn.)

- Jeremy Soule

The future of filmmusic is in good hands, don't worry.

Mirko - surprised that nobody mentioned Graeme Revell.

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Whoa... I never noticed (about Poledouris, that is). He's listed on IMDb as composer for a film this year, but it hardly looks like blockbuster material...

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0331314/fullcredits

A few months ago, the IMDb listed him for no less than five or six upcoming projects. So much for that...

Marian - ;)

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What the hell happened to Poledouris anyway?

I think he has decided to take himself out of the Hollywood rat race.

I believe he said it in an interview, not a 100% sure but he still wants to score films but not have to chase all the big pictures or something to that effect.

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John Debney. He's very eclectic (a positive quality that not many composers have). He's able to write good scores in comedies (Bruce Almighty), action movies (The Scorpion King) dramatic movies (The Passion of the Christ).

And he has absolutely no distinct style.

Mirko - surprised that nobody mentioned Graeme Revell.

One of the worst film composers out there. Was Dead Calm really worth 18 years of this?

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I pick the Newmans, Debney, and Gregson-Williams. They've already done some substantial stuff to this point, and will hopefully continue.

What will happen when Zimmer dies? Will he get a tribute television special? :?

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One name I feel is a notable omission: Harry Gregson-Williams. I will trump his case until it can be trumped no longer. Narnia was rather underwhelming, not the magnum opus I was hoping it would be, but I feel that Kingdom of Heaven and Sinbad are two of the absolute finest score in recent years. He has the richest orchestral sound of any of the MV folk, bar none, and he has also shown with KoH that he can tackle a chorus with the best of them. He's got good melodies, and he knows how to use them.

I completely agree, except that I personally feel that Narnia is really a terrific, well-written score. I'm just getting into Kingdom of Heaven, and really enjoying it.

Ray Barnsbury

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Whoa... I never noticed (about Poledouris, that is). He's listed on IMDb as composer for a film this year, but it hardly looks like blockbuster material...

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0331314/fullcredits

A few months ago, the IMDb listed him for no less than five or six upcoming projects. So much for that...

Marian - :mrgreen:

Some hopeful Poledouris fans submitting the information, I imagine. :cry:

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Whoa... I never noticed (about Poledouris, that is). He's listed on IMDb as composer for a film this year, but it hardly looks like blockbuster material...

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0331314/fullcredits

A few months ago, the IMDb listed him for no less than five or six upcoming projects. So much for that...

Marian - :|

Some hopeful Poledouris fans submitting the information, I imagine. :cry:

Basil Poledouris is indeed involved in this project: http://musicfromthemovies.com/article.asp?...1%2F2005&ID=577

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Young Brit composer Joby Talbot will continue to shine and shine. No one mentioned James Horner in all this hoolaballoo.

What the hell happened to Poledouris anyway?

And Maurice Jarre!

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I was surprised to see some of the composers that were listed, such as Gregson Williams, Brian Tyler and Alexander Desplat. Has film music become so bad that the bar is exponentially lower now than ever?

In my opinion, the young composers of today don't even come close to showing the same understanding of composition as the pioneers of film music and their direct descendants (Steiner, Korngold, Newman, Tiomkin, passed on to Goldsmith, Mancini, Williams and Horner, etc.)

Sure, there are scores that excite us today, but it seems that it really doesn't take much anymore to create this excitement, as when a score comes out that is fairly well written, people jump all over it because it is so rare to hear anything good.

I've recorded a few scores in New York for various composers, and it's obvious that the onslought of young composers out there in film really don't have a firm grasp of all things musical such as form, harmony, rhythm, and most of all, innovation and originality. I'm just an engineer, so I'm only chiming in.

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Has there really been a new composer in the last 10 years that has produced more or less consistently good scores (I'm not even saying great)?

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Has there really been a new composer in the last 10 years that has produced more or less consistently good scores (I'm not even saying great)?

Not for me. I'm waiting for the next composer to give us a sound that is familiar, but their own. Just as Williams does. And definitely what Goldsmith did, that guy was a damn genius.

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Has there really been a new composer in the last 10 years that has produced more or less consistently good scores (I'm not even saying great)?

Sure, Clint Bajakian, Michael Land and Peter McConnell. :)

I also like Marco Beltrami.

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I think Beltrami is decent at best. Anyone can learn the tricks of others and utilize them, and furthermore, make them sound almost original. But in reality, they never are. Giachinno is very good at capturing the familiar sounds of old and putting a somewhat different twist on them, but not much of a twist. I know some guys in New York that are fairly good composers, but they are more into the concert music scene, as most composers are out here, ehhh...

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Has there really been a new composer in the last 10 years that has produced more or less consistently good scores (I'm not even saying great)?

Sure, Clint Bajakian, Michael Land and Peter McConnell. :)

Oh I totally agree with that, Mirko ;)

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I know, I know... ;) ;)

Videogame composers are always underrated...I think they're not even famous outside the LucasArts music fans...

They just don't know the gems they're missing. :)

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