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      CommentAuthorRalph Kruhm
    • CommentTimeDec 4th 2007 edited
    Yeah, absolutely. I cheered when I heard that first track on Episode 3´s score, and Battle of Heroes (and Duel of Fates) is a great track, too. If there weren´t tracks like those, I would certainly dismiss the prequel scores as a total failure in the action section for me personally (note: there are great and beautiful themes, though).
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      CommentAuthorNautilus
    • CommentTimeDec 4th 2007
    Ralph Kruhm wrote
    Yeah, absolutely. I cheered when I heard that first track on Episode 3´s score, and Battle of Heroes (and Duel of Fates) is a great track, too. If there weren´t tracks like those, I would certainly dismiss the prequel scores as a total failure in the action section for me personally (note: there are great and beautiful themes, though).


    Again agree.

    As a trilogy of scores is a great failure, as in a musical level only the first one is entertaining and inspired enough.
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      CommentAuthorRalph Kruhm
    • CommentTimeDec 4th 2007 edited
    Nautilus wrote
    As a trilogy of scores is a great failure, as in a musical level only the first one is entertaining and inspired enough.

    I wouldn´t sign this one. As I said, I don´t like the cacophonic action stuff too well, but the themes are very nice, and some tracks are just amazing (throughout the whole prequels). The new trilogy is okay, it just can not compete with the classics, which is only one of many reasons the Star Wars Saga score is less beloved by me (as a whole) than the LOTR Saga score (Episodes IV to VI alone would be a different matter, but we always talked about the saga as a whole).
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      CommentAuthorMarselus
    • CommentTimeDec 4th 2007
    Nautilus wrote

    As a trilogy of scores is a great failure, as in a musical level only the first one is entertaining and inspired enough.


    Don´t forget the amazing "Love Theme" of Star Wars Episode II - The Attack of the Clones and its renditions in "Love Pledge - The Arena" and "Confrontation with Count Dooku - Finale", with hints of The Force Theme. I found those tracks the best of the new trilogy.
    Anything with an orchestra or with a choir....at some point will reach you
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      CommentAuthorNautilus
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    I noticed 2 things from Star Wars, maybe it's just me:

    1-The rebel fanfarre stars with the same march of the Imperial March.

    2-A new hope sounds more Williams doing Korgngold, But Empire and Return has more Williams Style.

    spin
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      CommentAuthorMarselus
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Nautilus wrote
    I noticed 2 things from Star Wars, maybe it's just me:

    1-The rebel fanfarre stars with the same march of the Imperial March.


    Track and time code please?
    Anything with an orchestra or with a choir....at some point will reach you
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Nautilus wrote
    He returned to this stuff in the first track of Revenge of the sith, then he moved into this new style in the latter tracks, like General Greivous. sad


    But if you actual LISTEN to the Greivous action cue there is a 9 note motif running through out it. It's not a prominent as lets say some of his early 80's action material but there is a motif there.

    And just listen to his Harry Potter material. The most of the action music harks back to his style of the early 80's.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
  1. If you mean his chaotic action style of the early 80´s, then you are right, but nowhere in Potter do I hear tracks that could match up with his thematic action style of the early 80´s; maybe technically, but there is nothing I would immediately accept as worthy follow-ups to "The Asteroid Field", "Hyperspace", or "Into the Trap".
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      CommentAuthorDavid
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    "Quidditch, Third Year" comes very close to matching his thematic writing style of the 80s. The whole thing is pretty much the Double Trouble theme on crack, but I'm not a big fan of stuff like "The Quidditch Match". It is thematic, but it also seems much less focused, dropping the theme suddenly and having a quick fanfare and cymbal crashes along with a flute sliding up the octave. I like it in a technical sense, but it doesn't do as much for me aesthetically.
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Well, nothing will ever come close to those masterpieces. Why even start comparing.

    As for The Quidditch Match, David... it's called mickey mousing... and Williams did it a lot in his early 80's material and has been doing it through his career. Like you said it's thematic... which is what you were complaining about in the first place... but it also has starts and stops (sync points) where certain actions on the screen are mimicked by the music. I think this is a lost art in film scoring and I'm glad you hear Williams still doing it. Sure, it's not going to be a great action concert piece like any of the Star Wars scores but it still is impressive on the creative and technical side.

    I do here Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom in The Spiders and Dueling the Basilisk from Chamber of Secrets. Harry's theme and Fawkes theme is all over this piece!!!

    The Whomping Willow from Azkaban has a six note motif running throughout it.

    However, I will say that Williams style has changed and yes I do prefer his 80's style over the new style but I think his style has matured and he is trying new things. Stuff like War of the World knocked me on my ass. That was a totally different side from Williams... and while it wasn't a thematic score... I still really liked what I hear and actual happy that Williams took that route.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
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      CommentAuthorDavid
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007 edited
    Believe me Erik, I'm not so dense that I don't know what mickey mousing is, and I simply don't like it -- on or off screen. If it's used for a more comedic approach, it's easier for me to stomach (Indy`s Very First Adventure or The Ultimate War for example), but I rarely like it in dramatic scenes like The Quidditch Match, especially when he's got such a great theme that he doesn't need to keep dropping in favor of the mouse.

    Edit: Let me clarify my feelings on mickey mousing before I work myself into a bind. Some composers are really skilled at working it into the surrounding music. Williams used to be very skilled at that, but anymore a lot of these chaotic moments seem to come out of left field. <-- That's what I don't like. When the music comes out of nowhere. Mickey mousing doesn't always have to be done that way.

    It makes me feel dirty to talk about Williams this way, because he will always be one of my top five composers. I just don't enjoy his modern way of scoring action. I enjoy his recent dramatic scores -- Memoirs of a Geisha, A.I., Angela's Ashes, etc -- more than I do many other composers. His thematic writing is sill just as strong as it was years ago.
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      CommentAuthorRalph Kruhm
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007 edited
    Beside that, we´re already down to the new style vs old style debate again, which will do us no good. Erik, you will always tend to defend the more complex (I call it noise, you call it mature, but let´s stay with a less biased definition, if it´s possible, please) scores, people like me like it a bit more accessable and less to the point were each tiny pixel jumping from left to right on screen can be found mirrored somewhere in the cacophonic music. I will say that War of the Worlds works perfectly as a score (and can henceforth be defined as a good score based on my own definition wink - you might remember that one), but makes a lousy listen while trying to have my 5pm Tea. I will say that composing stuff like this is hard work and shows a certain mastership in composing, but that doesn´t make it one bit more accessable. Regarding to the Potter action, I don´t want to hear Harry´s Theme or Fawkes Theme necessarily (though it´s a nice bonus), I would like an action theme, too. The Whomping Willow has one, agreed, but please, this is nowhere near what we both define as a classic. But I can not agree to your point that nothing will ever come close to the old masterpieces. Williams just has to write something as good as this, and we have it. To put those tracks onto a pillar and worship it won´t do modern scoring any good. Beside that, I could name at least dozens of action tracks I like even more than William´s old stuff, and they are neither from the 80´s nor boring stuff. They might, however, not be as matured as you like them.
  2. David wrote
    I enjoy his recent dramatic scores -- Memoirs of a Geisha, A.I., Angela's Ashes, etc -- more than I do many other composers. His thematic writing is sill just as strong as it was years ago.


    I totally agree here.
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Again, it all comes down to taste. I love Williams music whether its from the 60, 70, 80, 90's or now. It has evolved and while I would love for Williams to return to his 80's style of score, I'm just as happy with his new style of action scoring. I will say though that there are some stinkers...

    "Bounty Hunter's Hot Pursuit" - IMHO one of the worst action cues ever composed by Williams. No sense of directions, random bursts from the brass, woodwinds, with swirling strings, etc. Why the hell was this scene even scored. The music added nothing!!! ARGH!

    "Anderton's Great Escape" - Steven is going to kill me for this because it's one his very favorite action cues but this one comes out of left field. It doesn't fit the tone of the score... Williams composed two other action cues for this film that fit much better... but this swashbuckling "Ludlow's Demise" rip off cue was totally out of place. By itself it's a fun cue but wrong for the tone of the picture and score. Just imagine something like this exploding on the screen during Munich.

    "The Moon Rising" another out of place cue. A.I. is a brilliant score but this one cue almost destroyed it for me. What a mess.

    "Tavington's Trap" I'm action not a fan of most of the action material from this score but this fast paced cue for a slow motion scene was just wrong and laughable. Williams really needed to tone it down for this one.

    -Erik-

    M-I-C K-E-Y M-O-U-S-E
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
    •  
      CommentAuthorSteven
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007 edited
    Erik Woods wrote

    "Anderton's Great Escape" - Steven is going to kill me for this because it's one his very favorite action cues but this one comes out of left field. It doesn't fit the tone of the score... Williams composed two other action cues for this film that fit much better... but this swashbuckling "Ludlow's Demise" rip off cue was totally out of place. By itself it's a fun cue but wrong for the tone of the picture and score. Just imagine something like this exploding on the screen during Munich.


    You're right, I am. I'll give you a 10 second head start though... which is more than Anderton ever had.
  3. Erik Woods wrote
    "Bounty Hunter's Hot Pursuit" - IMHO one of the worst action cues ever composed by Williams. No sense of directions, random bursts from the brass, woodwinds, with swirling strings, etc. Why the hell was this scene even scored. The music added nothing!!! ARGH!

    Wow, I would have bet a lot on you totally loving that track. I´m really starting to get confused by your taste. Maybe there is something I don´t see, but there are, to my senses, not many differences between that track and a lot of other stuff you say you like, like WotW. dizzy
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Ralph Kruhm wrote
    Erik Woods wrote
    "Bounty Hunter's Hot Pursuit" - IMHO one of the worst action cues ever composed by Williams. No sense of directions, random bursts from the brass, woodwinds, with swirling strings, etc. Why the hell was this scene even scored. The music added nothing!!! ARGH!

    Wow, I would have bet a lot on you totally loving that track. I´m really starting to get confused by your taste. Maybe there is something I don´t see, but there are, to my senses, not many differences between that track and a lot of other stuff you say you like, like WotW. dizzy


    I depends what movie the score is from. IMHO, that cue from Star Wars is horrible. It might have worked somewhere else but in Star Wars it sucked. As for War of the Worlds... those are very different types of action cues. Very rythmic based, lots of percussion and carefully composed an orchestrated. That Pursuit track seems lazy. I'm not even a fan of Jango's Escape. That one is all over the place, too. But once it hits the 1:30 mark then I can finally recall what was going on in the film...

    Ben and Jango falling over the side of the landing platform and the music matches that well... the tumbling strings and horns for the fall, the suspense string as Jango's trying to hold on, Jango's letting Ben Kenobi loose, Ben's swinging to safety, Jango getting back to the ship, Ben arriving back on the platform just before Jango Escapes... and there is the quite satisfying fanfare heard at the 2:33 just as Jango' lifts off... now that's the type of mickey mousing from Williams that I like. Sure, it could have been more thematic, but it was a fist fight scene... what more do you want. I mean, "Airplane Flight" in Raiders was stylistically similar.

    BTW, I love "Zam The Assassin And The Chase Through Coruscant" and "Love Pledge and the Arena" Love Pledge is cue that returns to Williams' 80's stlye but Lucas cut it out. As for "The Chase Through Coruscant" - instead of a theme per se Williams creates a continuing rythmic passage that carries the cue. It returns time and time again just like a melody or motif would. I think that's a work of genius!

    You know, I find that two of Williams' more thematic action cues have been dumped in the past 10 years or so. "The Hunt" from The Lost World and "The Arena" from ATOC. Isn't that strange. Williams tries to do the old school thing and even Lucas and Spielberg don't want anything to do with it.

    Bizarre.

    As for my taste... I love all kinds of action... and like I said, while I would love to see Williams go back to that more thematic approach to action scoring in the 80's... he still manages to add a melody or motif in his action cues while at the same time creating a new sound and style. It's not everyones tastes but I can appreciate what he is doing.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
  4. I must admit that I am kind of going on standby these days when action tracks get too noisy. Unless they are more or less gripping me with a specific rhythm or something I have difficulties following them, much less appreciating them. That´s - in part - my fault, of course, but I usually don´t have the time to invest myself in tracks that I don´t like on the stand just to get their much deeper building (don´t know if this actually makes any sense to you). But I promise I will listen again to some of those more "problematic" tracks or scores you mention in the next days and come back to you, okay?
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Ralph Kruhm wrote
    I must admit that I am kind of going on standby these days when action tracks get too noisy. Unless they are more or less gripping me with a specific rhythm or something I have difficulties following them, much less appreciating them. That´s - in part - my fault, of course, but I usually don´t have the time to invest myself in tracks that I don´t like on the stand just to get their much deeper building (don´t know if this actually makes any sense to you). But I promise I will listen again to some of those more "problematic" tracks or scores you mention in the next days and come back to you, okay?


    Oooh... I'm not trying to change your mind. But I guess I do tend to pay more attention to Williams' work more so than others. So, I guess I might hear more than the average film music fan or non Williams fanatic.

    But if you are willing to go back to some of those scores we mentioned and really absorb them where you hear something that you have never heard before then that only benefits you... not me.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
  5. Oh, it´s just that Williams has been a rather huge part in my life, too, so why not give the old man a chance to win my heart back? wink

    No, really, it´s not that I consider this to be brainwashing or something, I just try to keep an open mind if someone is not only passionate but actually goes to great lenghts trying to point out specific scenes and tracks. And it´s due time to revisit some of those scores again, so why not?
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      CommentAuthorDavid
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007 edited
    Erik Woods wrote
    "The Hunt" from The Lost World


    Oooooooo... I forgot about The Lost World. That's definitely one of Williams best action scores where he took a completely different approach to what most were expecting. I do also really enjoy War of the Worlds as well. It's an angry, powerful score. Like you said, it was fresh and interesting side to Williams. Both scores have a consistent sound to them and every note seems to belong unlike some of the other stuff I mentioned.

    Like you said, it all comes down to personal tastes.
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      CommentAuthorNautilus
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    So...Is williams the best action composer? is it Goldsmith?? crazy
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      CommentAuthorSteven
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Goldsmith. No, Williams. No wait, Goldsmith..... shit, I dunno.
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    Nautilus wrote
    So...Is williams the best action composer? is it Goldsmith?? crazy


    Does it matter?

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
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      CommentAuthorBregt
    • CommentTimeDec 5th 2007
    No need to be the best, because there's an other best you don't know yet or ever will.
    Kazoo
    • CommentAuthorMatt C
    • CommentTimeDec 6th 2007
    It's Williams, without a doubt. Many of the action scores Goldsmith has composed (particularly in the last few years leading up to his death) seem rather repetitive, while Williams has continually impressed me with many of his action scores. WOTW really deserved a main theme and less atonality -- the action setpieces were definitely impressive. Jurassic Park, for me, is the definitive Williams action score -- full of energy, creativity, deeply thematic and well-recorded.

    I'm still scratching my head over why Williams is recording the fourth Indy score with an L.A. orchestra -- didn't Williams record the first and third scores with the LSO? I know the film is in post-production in California, but the LSO would be better in terms of a longer runtime for the album (meaning no reuse fees). I guess since most of the film was shot in the U.S., the LSO is automatically out of the running...
    http://unsungfilmscores.blogspot.com/ -- My film/TV/game score review blog
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      CommentAuthorErik Woods
    • CommentTimeDec 6th 2007
    Matt.. I responded to this exact question in the Now Playing Thread 3 days ago

    -----

    Erik Woods wrote
    Matt C wrote
    NP: Harry Potter and the Philosopher's (Sorcerer's) Stone (Williams)

    Even though it's a typical mickeymousing score from Williams with shades of Home Alone and Hook in it, I still very much enjoy it. Terrific orchestrations and excellent recording with the LSO -- which makes me wonder why Williams is recording Indy 4 with an L.A. orchestra when he recorded the previous three films (or at the very least, first and third films) with the LSO?


    Only Chamber of Secrets was performed by the LSO. Philosopher's and Azkaban were performed with various players from and in around the UK. And the reason they recorded in London was because the production was based in the UK.

    As for Indy 4... most of the production took place in North America. The post is being done at LucasFilm, Skywalker Ranch, Dreamworks or where ever. Why fly all the way to London just to record with the LSO when the best musicians in the world play with the Hollywood Symphony Orchestra. BTW, ONLY Raiders of the Lost Ark was performed by the LSO. Temple and Crusade were recorded in LA.

    -Erik-
    host and producer of CINEMATIC SOUND RADIO | www.cinematicsound.net | www.facebook.com/cinematicsound | I HAVE TINNITUS!
    • CommentAuthorMatt C
    • CommentTimeDec 6th 2007
    Oh, I didn't know that. spin
    http://unsungfilmscores.blogspot.com/ -- My film/TV/game score review blog
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      CommentAuthorRalph Kruhm
    • CommentTimeDec 6th 2007 edited
    Okay, I just return from an ironing session (don´t ask) which I used to listen to some action stuff from Episodes 2 & 3. Let´s say that I, indeed, discovered some things I didn´t get before.

    First Episode 2. I started with Zam the assassin and the Chase through Coruscant, and man, that was hard.

    Erik Woods wrote
    As for "The Chase Through Coruscant" - instead of a theme per se Williams creates a continuing rythmic passage that carries the cue. It returns time and time again just like a melody or motif would. I think that's a work of genius!
    Sorry, but that continuing rythmic passage didn´t carry me, it unnerved me. I can see why you think this is a nice idea (or even genius, if you want), but the whole track is by far the worst experience of the whole album. It has ever been for me, and this will not change, especially after I tried to give it a very focused shot. I will agree that rhythm can carry an action track, but that is exactly what Hooper did in Potter V, but somehow, that didn´t end being called genius. Chase through Coruscant is just hectic, complex, atonal, and carries nothing but a feeling of uncomfort for me. I can see where you´re coming from, but I will always appreciate rhythm in a much simpler fashion like Hooper did.

    Erik Woods wrote
    "Bounty Hunter's Hot Pursuit" - IMHO one of the worst action cues ever composed by Williams. No sense of directions, random bursts from the brass, woodwinds, with swirling strings, etc. Why the hell was this scene even scored. The music added nothing!!! ARGH!
    I have no idea why you bash that very short track so very hard. It is just a short burst of action, not more, so there was hardly any time to develop a recurring anything, but I don´t like it either.

    I'm not even a fan of Jango's Escape. That one is all over the place, too. But once it hits the 1:30 mark then I can finally recall what was going on in the film... [...] and there is the quite satisfying fanfare heard at the 2:33 just as Jango' lifts off... now that's the type of mickey mousing from Williams that I like. Sure, it could have been more thematic, but it was a fist fight scene... what more do you want. I mean, "Airplane Flight" in Raiders was stylistically similar.
    I never said that I liked that one. wink

    But I must say that Jango´s Escape was indeed very reminiscent of the old 80s style, even if it was exactly that kind of action music which I hate.

    What I like, or even love, are parts of The Arena. That track harkens back to the good old ways of Star Wars action, in times even coming very close to it. The best action track in Episode 2.

    Then, I went on to Episode 3 to get your fascination for anything Grievous. I listened to all three tracks with Grievous´ name in it back to back, and that was were I finally got it and discovered his theme. I never would have noticed it otherwise, I think, it´s just too complex (for me). I did notice the motif before, of course, but I never would have thought that to be a theme. It was only on that back-to-back listening that I noticed its continuing return.

    What I like about it is the fact that it kind of derives from the Droid Army Theme, just being far more complex, which is fitting if you think about what kind of character it represents. Since I´m a continuity junkee, as you know, I will give you that. Williams did a very, very good thing here. I can even understand why it was made so unaccessable. Grievous is neither droid nor human, and he´s a very complex lifeform with a very complex body. The music fits him perfectly. That doesn´t, however, mean that I like to listen to that theme, but I see it now as a similarly successful approach as War of the Worlds. I don´t have to like it, if it works.

    So, thanks for pointing that out to me.

    I still appreciate a much more thematic approach to action scenes, but I can see a bit better where your understanding and appreciation for the more complex stuff comes from.

    Maybe I will give Williams´Potter scores and some of his more complex stuff like War of the Worlds a relisten in some time and tell you more about it, too.

    For now, that´s it.

    -----
    Ralph Kruhm, Secretary of Simplicity
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      CommentAuthorDemetris
    • CommentTimeDec 6th 2007
    Ironing session? shocked biggrin biggrin
    Love Maintitles. It's full of Wanders.