Joshua Gizelt (swashbuckler332) wrote,
Joshua Gizelt

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Waiting for the Rain

It's raining cats, dogs, rabbits, squirrels, guinea pigs, ocelots, tree sloths and African elephants outside. It's nice and cozy in here, though. The cable for the T-1 keeps popping out because the snap thingee broke off of it. I'm too lazy to either to put a new one in or to make a new termination for this chord. I'm pretty much done for the day.

I really like the Bookmarks Toolbar Folder on Mozilla. While I would imagine it being convenient even with a regular mouse, it feels like it was designed for the touch screen and stylus. It makes everything soooo much easier. I used to never keep bookmarks unless it was a site I wanted to check back on. Otherwise, I would just use hyperlinks or type in URLs. This was looked on with some amusement by my co-workers, actually. So was my rapid typing speed.

I've been listening to The Lord of the Rings albums again. It's been a while since I've really given them a good listen, and they really do reward repeated hearings, but as I mentioned yesterday I am chomping at the bit to get at the box set of the complete scores due out later this year. There are a whole bunch of moments that I'm looking forward to:
From The Fellowship of the Ring
01. The Prologue
This is really what defined what these movies would sound like in the theaters. It is also the most sinuous set of variations on the endlessly elusive Ring theme.
02. Gandalf at Minas Tirith
Part of this was on the album, but his actual search in the library is fantastic.
03. Weathertop
Again, part of this was on the album, but they cropped Aragorn battling the Nazgûl.
04. Escape from Orthanc
The first portion of this cue is dark and brutal, but a wonderful chorus and fanfare is heard as Gwahir rescues Gandalf.
05. The Council of Elrond
In addition to having one of the most evil-sounding rendition of Sauron's theme, the complete sequence includes the first appearance of the Gondor theme which would become a dominant theme in The Return of the King.
06. The Ring Goes South
The album includes the opening of this sequence and the bold rendition of the Fellowship theme, but it lacks Bilbo vamping out and the beautiful strains heard in the extended edition as Frodo leads the Fellowship out of Rivendell.
07. Caradhras
This epic cue introduces a new theme for the journey, and also the tense moment in which Boromir picks up the Ring and the seduction theme is heard. There is also a beautifully desolate action sequence during the confrontation between Saruman and Gandalf.
08. The Watcher in the Water
There was some really interesting aleatory horn work in this sequence, a harmonic language similar to that given full reign in the Shelob sequence in The Two Towers.
09. Dwarrodelf
This is an extended sequence, starting as the Fellowship enters Moria, but it includes the first appearance of the "hymn" subtheme (a variation on the Shire/Hobbit music) as Frodo expresses his wish that none of this had happened. The enobling music for Dwarodelf itself is heard briefly on the album, but the rest of the sequence, in which the Gimli discovers Balin's tomb, provides an important context.
10. The Bridge of Khazad-Dûm
The entire cue is about twice as long as the album version, and has a mouting horn section as the Fellowship crosses the bridge. The album edit introduces the "Grey Havens" theme, but tails off, while in the film the theme continues in a moving rendition as the sorrowful Fellowship travels to Lothlórien.
11. Amon Hen
In addition to the fact that the album track is only half the length of the cue in the film, the extended edition adds a brilliant sequence buttressing Boromir's defense of Merry and Pippin.

From The Two Towers
01. Funeral Pyre
Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas receive horses from Éomer but are horrified at the prospect of the death of the Hobbits, but Aragorn tracks Merry and Pippin into Fangorn; this sequence has a great amount of variation on it.
02. Gandalf the White and Shadowfax
While some of this music is scattered all over the album, some of it is missing and some of it didn't exist until the extended edition
03. The King of the Golden Hall
The complete, unedited sequence of Gandalf restoring Théoden would be a great treat. As it stands, this sequence appears all over the place on the record.
04. Théodred's Funeral
This, of course, only existed in the extended version, but it is a great cue, and Éowyn's song in Old English gives it a fantastic folk flavor.
05. The Lady Éowyn
Okay, this is more of a cop-out than a cue. All I mean is that it would be nice if we could hear more of Éowyn's theme in general. Not only is it a very nice one, it sets up some of the best material in Return of the King.
06. The Charge
Most of the music for battle with the Warg riders is on the album, but there is a short dramatic cue as Théoden leads the men into battle that is awesome.
07. The Battle of Helm's Deep
Two tracks on the album ("The Hornburg" and "The Deeping Wall" [part of "Isengard Unleashed"]) present highlights, but there is still plenty of material that deserves to be heard. Of course, we only got a taste of the martial arrangement for the Elven theme introduced in "Lothlórien" on the album, but I'd also like to hear Aragorn and Gimli's stand on the causeway.
08. The Sun Is Rising
The blooming "hope/nature" theme heard as Gimli blows the horn of Helm Hammerhand just before "Forth Eorlingas."

From The Return of the King
01. Very Close Now
The forbidding appearance of the "travelling" theme as Sméagol leads Sam and Frodo.
02. The Lady Éowyn II
Okay, once again, more of Éowyn's theme. Here more than ever, these are gorgeous, and they set up some of the best material later...
03. Denethor's Anger
The operatic strains heard as Denethor confronts Gandalf. Is this melodrama or what?
04. And Rohan Will Answer
The Rohan theme finally heard as a march when Théoden pledges to aid Gondor. The omission of this cue from the album was very frustrating, although I understood that the concentration of the CD was on the Gondor theme. I love this cue.
05. Shelob
The complete, unedited sequence.
06. Sam Raids Cirith Ungol
One of the most heroic moments in the score!
07. A Swift Sunrise
The "Grey Havens" theme is heard again during Gandalf's speech to Pippin.
08. Ride for Ruin and the World's Ending
Théoden's speech features the "hope/nature" theme is rising to it's climax and the charge of the Rohirrim marks the final and most heroic appearance of the Rohan theme.
09. The Battle of the Mumakil
There's some great music here as Théoden leads the Rohirrim against the Oliphaunts, including a Valkyrie-like arrangement for Éowyn theme that accompanies her and Merry's exploits. There's also great settings of both the Fellowship and Gondor themes during the arrival of Aragorn, Gimli, Legolas and a whole shitload of dead guys.
10. Éowyn Kills the Witch King
Girl power has rarely had music this good.
11. Mordor
The apocalyptic variation on the "travelling" theme as Sam and Frodo finally enter Mordor.
12. The Grey Havens and Finale
I felt some of the best parts were cut out of the album mix.

...not to mention innumerable other cues awaiting discovery in the box set.

But what is here on the albums has been consistently rewarding. There is such a wonderful unity to these scores; the music from each film builds upon that of the previous installment and yet has an identity all its own. Never before has a trilogy score been composed as one long creative process, and Howard Shore spent five years working on it. His commitment shows.

Now that it looks like I'll have some more free time at work, I think I may do what suitboyskin and bring in movies for me to watch (we've got a pair of nifty speakers here). I seem to be coming down off the Spaghetti Western kick and heading into another Lord of the Rings one, so maybe I'll start with Part 1 of Fellowship tomorrow...
Tags: film music
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