Beethoven

Randy Edelman

 
" Roll Over Randy Edelman "

Written by Thomas Glorieux - Review of the regular release

Say what you will about Beethoven, but I adore this film for all the right reasons. Sure, the makers knew exactly which unoriginal buttons to push, but what does it matter if it works? The movie was a huge hit, and Beethoven himself got 7 puppy's (sorry sequels) after it. Director Brian Levant also knew how important it was to deliver good music, music that felt cute, lovely, romantic, slightly devious, somewhat dark and even downright dangerous. Luckily all the elements composer Randy Edelman put in his music the moment he was making a big name for himself during the late 80's and early 90's. And in 1992 Edelman just downright made it irresistible to not fall in love with a St. Bernard. The kind of irresistibility that is already winning us over after a minute in "Opening". Furthermore, themes or motifs just keep on coming in after that. In "Ciao, Baby" a racing comical melody unleashes the energy of George dancing of joy, returning in "Table Spin" and the utterly entertaining "The Dogs Let Loose", which delivers a powerful main theme statement that's by far the best performance of the entire disc (and film). An element that doesn't always work with Edelman is his suspenseful material. But here I like it. And naturally where's there suspense there has to be a villain. And though already heard in the first track, nothing says evil better than "Puppy Snatchers", especially when Dr. Varnick's evil tune makes its first dark statement. Call Beethoven what you will. Cheap, average or perhaps downright entertaining, but you can't deny the detail that's on board. Edelman is not a refined composer, but Beethoven could be delivered without the level of themes, motifs, bouncy melodies or touching moments. Beethoven has under its dated synthesizers a heart that perfectly captures the strength of the movie. And it's because I like this movie so much that I'm also so fond of Edelman's tunes. Again, hardly the award winning material here. But there' a level of loveliness here that always brings a smile to my face.

Beethoven has multiple themes, unbelievable. One after the other all important and enjoyable.
The themes make the album, and hearing one after the other shows the strength of Edelman's music.
"The Dogs Let Loose", a cue that never fails to impress me.
Sometimes the synths are a bit too much, they work better in context.

Track Listing

1. Opening (4.19)
2. Discovering the Neighborhood (2.22) Excellent track
3. Ciao, Baby (0.40)
4. Ted and the Bullies (2.34)
5. Beethoven to the Rescue (2.10)
6. A Stroll Through Town (1.40)
7. Puppy Snatchers (3.00)
8. The Dog Has To Go (2.02)
9. Table Spin (0.49)
10. Sparkie's Chase (1.50)
11. George Gets Turned On (1.27)
12. Family in Pursuit (1.39)
13. The Break-In (1.51)
14. Our Heroes (2.18)
15. The Dogs Let Loose (1.24) Excellent track
16. A Sad Return (2.18)
17. Ryce's Theme (1.29)
18. Roll Over Beethoven: Paul Shaffer (4.43) Excellent track

Total Length: 38.35
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(total of 2 votes - average 4/5)

Released by

MCA Records MCAD 10593 (regular release 1992)

Conducted by

Randy Edelman

Orchestrations by

Greig McRitchie