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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    franz_conrad wrote
    Southall wrote
    Demetris wrote
    The rest is sound design. Effective or not, it's not the matter; But this further marks an era when sound design is nowadays considered music.


    You might want to listen to this one again. Music it most certainly is.


    Indeed.

    I'm not sure comparing it to SOLARIS is a great idea either. That's basically comparing a supernatural/romantic drama to an action film, despite the fact that both have sci-fi trappings. CAPTAIN PHILLIPS is a better comparison, really, for this film's primary genre. While the opposition in that film is all tribal polyrhythms and exotic electric cello motifs, in this one it's a pile of musical debris, scattered to all channels, lacking the musical equivalent of a horizon line. In those moments where characters gain clarity of goal, the music focuses in very clearly to a particular train of thought.

    Like a lot of great sci-fi scores... Artemiev's SOLARIS, Vangelis' BLADE RUNNER, Goldsmith's ALIEN, Goldsmith's LOGAN'S RUN, the infamous FANTASTIC VOYAGE score, even the use of Ligeti in 2001 ... it's almost borderline sound design at times. That's a consistent strategy that runs through sci-fi scoring as a way to represent the 'otherness' or the 'infinite' of what else might be out there. (Even Herrmann's theremin, before it was a trope, was an experimental idea that had never been tried before.) So I'm not sure the 'sound design' thing is much of a criticism. So much of music is designed sound anyway.

    I think like Southall half my appreciation goes to the fact that it's a score that actually contributes to narrative shape. There don't seem to be so many of those these days.


    Even if you compare it with Captain Phillips ( i don't agree that solaris is a romantic drama...) , Phillips' score is more musical in every aspect.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
  1. Now I don't know what 'more musical' means, but I do know the music in PHILLIPS certainly dramatises less.

    (For example, Captain Phillips himself has no theme. His opponents have a theme, the Navy have a theme, and Delta Force do -- if not a theme, certainly a sound. Meanwhile Sandra most definitely has a theme in Gravity, and it's shaped pretty well to the journey. Her opposition -- that ring of debris -- certainly does too.)
    A butterfly thinks therefore I am
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Jackman, although heavily temped with Powell's (where is he btw?) UNITED 93, created small motis everywhere, even with percussion. It's not constant sound design, rather much closer to the afore mentioned score in core.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
  2. I never said it was, so I'm not sure what you're disagreeing with. I just said the GRAVITY score plays up the core drama of that film more. The CAPTAIN PHILLIPS score is more about the threat than the protagonist. This is not a criticism. That's true of many a thriller, where the protagonist often doesn't have an arc.
    A butterfly thinks therefore I am
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Imagine what would Federico Jusid or Fernando Velasques do with a film like Gravity. Or Arnau Bataller...this is the stuff i want to listen to, not the same standard Hollywood approach over and over again; yes, no matter how we try to justify it or how some small musical traits there might be in it after repeated listens and over-analyzing, still it's in the sphere of modern drone-y hollywood scores, in the similar trend of the 'horn of doom' clusters instead of themes, etc. A trend which constantly passes heavily-depended-on-sound-design scores. Time we move on though 'cause it's been 3 (onto the 4th now) years since this trend began with Tron, and it's getting tiring.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
  3. Where is the Horn of Doom in GRAVITY? Funnily enough, CAPTAIN PHILLIPS is absolutely riddled with it.

    There is a very clear melody for Sandra Bullock's character that runs through GRAVITY. I'm a little surprised you can't hear it.
    A butterfly thinks therefore I am
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    franz_conrad wrote
    There is a very clear melody for Sandra Bullock's character that runs through GRAVITY. I'm a little surprised you can't hear it.


    Yup!

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
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      CommentAuthorScribe
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    Demetris wrote
    Imagine what would Federico Jusid or Fernando Velasques do with a film like Gravity. Or Arnau Bataller...this is the stuff i want to listen to, not the same standard Hollywood approach over and over again; yes, no matter how we try to justify it or how some small musical traits there might be in it after repeated listens and over-analyzing, still it's in the sphere of modern drone-y hollywood scores, in the similar trend of the 'horn of doom' clusters instead of themes, etc. A trend which constantly passes heavily-depended-on-sound-design scores. Time we move on though 'cause it's been 3 (onto the 4th now) years since this trend began with Tron, and it's getting tiring.


    I would like to move on as well. I wonder how Hans feels when every time he comes up with a new musical sound design device for a specific concept, it's then copied ad nauseum over the next few years, and lesser composers misuse it just because they or the director thinks it sounds cool; which in retrospect can, depending on your perspective, cheapen its original use. I wonder if he feels pressure knowing he's shaping the future of film music, if he gets annoyed that everyone copies him and steals his ideas, or if he just thinks its all hilarious? biggrin
    I love you all. Never change. Well, unless you want to!
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      CommentAuthorBregt
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    I must admit that I don't hear TRON and the likes in Gravity.
    Kazoo
  4. Bregt wrote
    I must admit that I don't hear TRON and the likes in Gravity.

    Me neither.

    And let's not single out Zimmer as a composer who may feel a bit aggrieved at being copied. Although it may sound like it sometimes, most composers are not sitting around waiting for him to come up with their next idea.

    Probably it's the execs who are buying up Zimmer's CDs and sending them to composers.
    The views expressed in this post are entirely my own and do not reflect the opinions of maintitles.net, or for that matter, anyone else. http://www.racksandtags.com/falkirkbairn
  5. It's temp-track not CD sending, but works the same.

    And I don't hear any Batman/Inception stuff (except a fleeting similarity of the danger/debris motif to Why So Serious in terms of how the melody ascends) either. If anything, there is more of Brian Eno.
    http://www.filmmusic.pl - Polish Film Music Review Website
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Maybe i wasn't clear enough; i didn't mean there are Tron parallels in Gravity; i rather meant that the trend that started with Tron, now allows (and demands) electronic, sampled and synthy sound design to be considered whole scores. Anyone who dares writes a theme will be hunt down soon.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
  6. And yet Tron is most resolutely not a sound design score.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    It's not, of course. But it introduced this trend, along with Inception and the Batman scores, of heavily-relying on sound design. And whilst Tron and Batman and of course Inception, where all - to me, brilliantly executed and full of motifs, other producers / studio execs and directors see only the surface of those scores' success story. Together with their composers, either because the composers want it for quick money, or because they have this style forced down their throat, choose isolate the sound design elements and specific 'trendy' sound elements, take it out of the big picture (i..e. a previously full score, functioning and complete with themes), and build new scores wholly based on sound design, with nothing else in it.

    I don't remember a recent era where a score like Gravity would get celebrated so much; i don't mind the score per se, but the success of the movie brought too much attention to it. It's definitely overrated. It's a shame that in a brilliant year for film / game / tv / docu music, where you don't really know what to choose first to make a top ten list, 'cause there's SO MUCH GOOD MUSIC around, a droney score gets all the attention.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
  7. Demetris wrote
    It's a shame that in a brilliant year for film / game / tv / docu music, where you don't really know what to choose first to make a top ten list, 'cause there's SO MUCH GOOD MUSIC around, a droney score gets all the attention.

    Interesting that you say that. For me, this is the worst year in film music since I started collecting (admittedly, that was 2007, and probably the first year where I was really paying full attention was 2009, so I'm still a film music baby with not much to go on tongue ). Generally my taste is towards the grand, big, thematic, action-adventure stuff, and there simply hasn't been a really good example of that type of score this year yet (haven't heard Desolation of Smaug, though, and I'm counting on Shore to help me out). Like last year we had Journey 2, John Carter and An Unexpected Journey, the year before Priest, Kung Fu Panda 2, Mars Needs Moms, Tintin, the year before that How to Train Your Dragon, The Last Airbender, Space Battleship Yamato, Castlevania: Lord of Shadows etc...that kind of thing.

    That said, even in what I feel is a weak year, Gravity will most certainly not make my top 10 (or 50!). It's just an interesting occasion for me because it's a rare instance where I feel like I "get it" with a largely ambient score; usually they completely pass me by and I find myself wondering if I'm listening to the same stuff as those who praise the Reznors and Martinez's and Mansells (and sometimes Zimmers) of this world.
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      CommentAuthorThor
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    I've always seen the 'basic' evolution as this:

    Zimmer's power anthems --> THE BOURNE IDENTITY (more specifically, the "Bourne riff") --> BATMAN films --> INCEPTION --> TRON --> loads of other ostinato-driven scores (PRIEST, GRAVITY, OBLIVION, ENDER'S GAME, MAN OF STEEL etc.)

    Of course, there are variations within the sound, but this is roughly the timeline I tend to give in my lectures on the evolution of Hollywood action scores in the last 20 years.
    I am extremely serious.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Demetris wrote
    It's a shame that in a brilliant year for film / game / tv / docu music, where you don't really know what to choose first to make a top ten list, 'cause there's SO MUCH GOOD MUSIC around, a droney score gets all the attention.

    Interesting that you say that. For me, this is the worst year in film music since I started collecting (admittedly, that was 2007, and probably the first year where I was really paying full attention was 2009, so I'm still a film music baby with not much to go on tongue ). Generally my taste is towards the grand, big, thematic, action-adventure stuff, and there simply hasn't been a really good example of that type of score this year yet (haven't heard Desolation of Smaug, though, and I'm counting on Shore to help me out). Like last year we had Journey 2, John Carter and An Unexpected Journey, the year before Priest, Kung Fu Panda 2, Mars Needs Moms, Tintin, the year before that How to Train Your Dragon, The Last Airbender, Space Battleship Yamato, Castlevania: Lord of Shadows etc...that kind of thing.

    That said, even in what I feel is a weak year, Gravity will most certainly not make my top 10 (or 50!). It's just an interesting occasion for me because it's a rare instance where I feel like I "get it" with a largely ambient score; usually they completely pass me by and I find myself wondering if I'm listening to the same stuff as those who praise the Reznors and Martinez's and Mansells (and sometimes Zimmers) of this world.


    Desolation of Smaug is theme-less, has some good and powerful action cues but all the memorable themes from the previous score are gone; i was disappointed. But you have to look beyond the standard Hollywood film music; there's gold this year. I will comment on my top list sure, when i decide what will be in it.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
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      CommentAuthorScribe
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Demetris wrote
    all the memorable themes from the previous score are gone


    The only theme I noticed being missing was the Misty Mountains theme which, while awesome, wasn't even written by Shore anyway. It was more like a theme from the first film as a self-contained story.

    Calling the entire score "themeless" is a bit of an exaggeration and risks scaring people away, don't you think?
    I love you all. Never change. Well, unless you want to!
  8. Demetris wrote
    Desolation of Smaug is theme-less

    I haven't even heard the score and I can immediately say with 100% certainty that this statement is utterly ridiculous.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    Misty Mountains held the score together. And that score was heavily depended on leitmotifs.

    As i said in shittybook: It's like someone shouted Shore in and scold him for all the memorable thematic material in the first Hobbit. "Don't you dare use leitmotifs and cheesy Misty Mountain variations again, this is 2013 Godamnit!" So, gone are the themes, in comes standard Middle Earth underscore.

    I don't care about sugar-coating my words to 'not scare people away' Matt. This is the reason i was tired with maintitles the previous time and sorry, i won't do it again; if someone doesn't like what i say they're free to ignore me.

    Thing is that there's so much brilliant stuff around to not showcase the weaknesses of some scores, always imo - not a fact. And since it's all subjective and not facts, everyone has ears to go and listen and judge for themselves. I don't think my words have near such a power to steer people away from the music they like.

    To me, Hobbit 2 is disappointing in my books. It's made up of lots of suspense and Middle Earth underscore, and action stuff that doesn't stick to your mind.

    There's so much good stuff around from smaller names, people need to get over the same and same and look to expand their horizons to younger, fresher and more energetic composers who are struggling out there and write brilliant music. Shore, Silvestri and JNH (lately), seem to be very tired with the whole game. Even Williams' latest output isn't up to his standards. But there's so much good new stuff around to choose from, i am thrilled.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Demetris wrote
    Desolation of Smaug is theme-less

    I haven't even heard the score and I can immediately say with 100% certainty that this statement is utterly ridiculous.


    Well since you seem to know everything, even from the stage of not actually listening to something, who am i to dispute that?
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
    • CommentAuthorTimmer
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    I should be getting The Hobbit score in the post tomorrow, I'm trying to avoid peoples opinions and comments about it.
    On Friday I ate a lot of dust and appeared orange near the end of the day ~ Bregt
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      CommentAuthorScribe
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Demetris wrote
    I don't care about sugar-coating my words to 'not scare people away' Matt. This is the reason i was tired with maintitles the previous time and sorry, i won't do it again; if someone doesn't like what i say they're free to ignore me.


    I meant scare people away from listening to the score. If it wasn't something that everyone was going to listen to anyway, people might be influenced not to listen to it by your statements.
    I love you all. Never change. Well, unless you want to!
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      CommentAuthorScribe
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Demetris wrote
    But there's so much good new stuff around to choose from, i am thrilled.


    Definitely! smile
    I love you all. Never change. Well, unless you want to!
  9. Demetris wrote
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Demetris wrote
    Desolation of Smaug is theme-less

    I haven't even heard the score and I can immediately say with 100% certainty that this statement is utterly ridiculous.


    Well since you seem to know everything, even from the stage of not actually listening to something, who am i to dispute that?

    I'm not claiming to know everything; but saying that a Howard Shore Middle-earth score is "themeless" is simply incorrect. I've heard four of them and I have absolutely zero doubts that that will carry forward into the fifth (and sixth).

    Whether you like the themes/find them memorable is another matter.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Scribe wrote
    Demetris wrote
    I don't care about sugar-coating my words to 'not scare people away' Matt. This is the reason i was tired with maintitles the previous time and sorry, i won't do it again; if someone doesn't like what i say they're free to ignore me.


    I meant scare people away from listening to the score. If it wasn't something that everyone was going to listen to anyway, people might be influenced not to listen to it by your statements.


    I don't have such powers my friend smile
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013 edited
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Demetris wrote
    Edmund Meinerts wrote
    Demetris wrote
    Desolation of Smaug is theme-less

    I haven't even heard the score and I can immediately say with 100% certainty that this statement is utterly ridiculous.


    Well since you seem to know everything, even from the stage of not actually listening to something, who am i to dispute that?

    I'm not claiming to know everything; but saying that a Howard Shore Middle-earth score is "themeless" is simply incorrect. I've heard four of them and I have absolutely zero doubts that that will carry forward into the fifth (and sixth).

    Whether you like the themes/find them memorable is another matter.


    It's not memorable as his previous ones, for sure; it's kinda disappointing that after those many tracks you don't remember much whereas the first Hobbit was an instant catch and falling in love with repeated listens from that point onward. I partly blame it on the album editing too; too much stuff should have been left out once again. Too much Middle Earth underscore and the action cues don't have that thematic, tight character they had on the previous Hobbit score and of course no relation (in terms of quality) to the LOTR scores.
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.
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      CommentAuthorSteven
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    I've already listened to it, but I can say I would be unswayed by Demetris' remarks.

    I certainly don't agree that it's themeless, but I can understand that what themes it does have are not quite so upfront -at least on an initial listen- as the Rings Trilogy scores. I think with repeated listens the themes will become blindingly obvious, given that I already managed to pick a few out on my first listen. I still stand by my comments that I find this far more interesting than the first Hobbit score, obvious themes or not.

    And D, facebook isn't shitty if you use it properly. wink My newsfeed is filled largely with interesting things from interesting people and interesting organisations, of which are either film music, science or philosophy related. It's amazing how much better facebook becomes when you take 'regular' people off your news feed. I have very little interest if John Smith just ate a large dinner.
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      CommentAuthorSouthall
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    Timmer wrote
    I should be getting The Hobbit score in the post tomorrow, I'm trying to avoid peoples opinions and comments about it.


    You should be safe enough here in the Steven Price thread.
    • CommentAuthorTimmer
    • CommentTimeDec 9th 2013
    You'd have thought so?
    On Friday I ate a lot of dust and appeared orange near the end of the day ~ Bregt