Incidental Music

Incidental Music: def. (noun)- music used in a film as a background to create or enhance a particular atmosphere, otherwise known as a score

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter! Here's some score reviews :)

Hey everyone! Happy Easter! I hope you're all having a wonderful day filled with family fun and candy and love and praising Jesus :) I have a couple score reviews for you today so let's get going!

Olympus Has Fallen, by Trevor Morris-4/10
Did it fit the movie? Yep-action movie, driving beats, lots of percussion, horns, electronic sounds, etc. The main titles/theme of the movie also sounded very "presidential," something I'd expect from a movie about Washington D.C.
Did it make me feel something? Not really. Two tracks did, and those two are the only two songs I kinda liked on the entire soundtrack. Land of the Free gave me that feeling of awe and respect-how I imagine it feels to be there when the president walks in and Hail to the Chief plays. Rocky Road Ice Cream was very slow and heartfelt-I wish there had been more tracks like that!
Was it original? Um, no, and here's my number one reason why: Listen to the opening phrase of this song and then the opening lines of this song. Same melody, different key.
Did I like it? No, not at all. To be honest, most of it just wasn't my style, and I didn't really find it to be original at all.

Stoker, by Clint Mansell-8.75/10
Did it fit the movie? Yes, I believe so. Mansell uses his typical style of piano accompanied by orchestra and synth to create an ethereal, other worldly, creepy mood that completely fits the psychological thriller/horror movie that Stoker is.
Did it make me feel something? Yes, definitely. Since some tracks were very long, I felt a broad range of emotions over the entire track, which I love! For example, I give you a play by play of my reactions to one track-Becoming: It begins fast paced-I feel rushed, out of breath. It makes me think of someone running away. Then, the melody twists and becomes dissonant-I feel scared, caught. That running person is now caught and trapped in a corner. The music fades and then swells briefly, then disappears and changes completely. A solo piano begins playing a very slow, beautiful melody, strings play lightly in the background. This brings me down, I feel sad. Then the strings get louder and an orchestra begins playing. I feel overcome with emotion. The orchestra disappears, then reappears, this time with a chorus. The emotion is hard to define here. I think it's sadness and anguish, while at the same time, exultation. It feels sad yet triumphant. Such a strange track. I think I would have to see the scene it accompanies in the movie to make sense of it all!
Was it original? Yes, it was. I haven't heard a score quite like this one in a while. It felt like a blend of Dario Marianelli's score for Atonement and Thomas Newman's score for American Beauty or Side Effects. 
Did I like it? Yes, it just worked for me! I loved what Mansell did with piano here. He showcased it, and brought in other instruments/electronic sounds to enhance the feeling. He aso took advantage of the dissonance that can be achieved on the piano-I heard lots of intriguing chords that I really liked a lot :) Purchasing suggestion? I would go ahead and buy the whole thing/listen to it on Spotify over and over again!  It flows really well together as a score. My favorite tracks are The Hunter and the Game, Becoming (see above), and Happy Birthday. There are some tracks that aren't part of the score that are awesome, like Becomes the Color and Summer Wine.

That's all for today! Check back next week for some more reviews and a preview of April scores :)

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