Notably good film scores, anyone?

My apologies, for I can't be too descriptive about this, but I'm bored of the scores for most of today's popular films and am wondering if anybody can enlighten me to a great bank of odd-metered or harmonically intricate soundtracks for films and shows you've watched.

All would save a young composer from his murderous creative rut. Thank you.

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  • Raymond,

    I always like to sing the praises of under-rated, or, rather, unappreciated composers. Writes some very beautiful music. Very individual voice, and not so forced as other German/Austrian Romantics. 

    P.S. Are you really writing, and running this site from an asylum - or has this been a consequence of this vocation?

  • Jon, not only was that a bloody hilarious film, but it was another 'kind of great' adaptation of Homer's Ulysses. What an antidote to both Homer, and Joyce. I love the banjo version of Ode to Joy in Raising Arizona, to me another hilarious comedy - and the main theme. Will listen to these tracks you suggest.

  • I think James Horner's best score is from "A Beautiful Mind". You should check it out if you haven't heard it already.

    Andrew Highland said:

    One of my favorite movie soundtracks is the cartoon Balto.  It's James Horner doing it so you're not going to get anything truly unorthodox, but I feel it's in his top 3 best scores.  The song "Treachery of Steele" is an awesome song that I think you'd like if you're looking for something you don't really hear all the time.

    I can't think of any odd-metered soundtrack songs right now but for harmonically intricate, the song "Towards the Climax" on the Death Note soundtrack is a very good example.  I would also suggest if you're looking for awesome orchestral music that you listen to the soundtracks of the games Morrowind and Oblivion.  This guy, Jeremy Soule who does those soundtracks is easily my favorite composer - songs like Sunrise of Flutes, Silt Sunrise, King and Country, Wings of Kynareth, Peace of Akatosh, Minstrel's Lament, etc contain what I consider some of the best use of harmony and orchestration in the modern day.  He doesn't do films, but many of these songs would go great in a film of an appropriate genre.

    Notably good film scores, anyone?
    My apologies, for I can't be too descriptive about this, but I'm bored of the scores for most of today's popular films and am wondering if anybody ca…
  • Sometimes there is a moment in life when we finally have to 'come out'. For me, this is that moment:

    I love The Sound of Music.

    Yes, as a young boy I cried like a snivelling baby when I saw the film, and Rogers and Hammerstein wrung tears out of the script. Actually, I just love Julie Andrews' voice, albeit with her admitted annunciation problems.

    I have a CD I burnt of Julie favourites - from My Fair Lady, Mary Poppins, The Sound of Music, even Thoroughly Modern Millie. She has a beautiful, beautiful voice. She may not be Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, or Rita Streich, or Kathleen Battle, but she is absolutely exquisite - a real one off. My only wish is that I could get a decent recording of her singing When You Wish Upon a Star, (I absolutely loved this song as a kid, and still do). Check this out:

    And yes, that final note is an F - right up in heaven.

    So, come on, is anyone else going to do it - and 'come out'.

  • Man she was real taste of honey. Thanks for posting that, I really like the music too. Found that there are some great versions out there - Natalie, Barbara, Sarah, Tony - even Kathleen.

    Raymond Kemp said:

    Ok here's mine,

    Herb Alpert's wife

  • It's pretty mainstream to say, but Danny Elfman has been the source of a lot of my inspiration for my percussion pieces.

  • I love Clint Mansell's work on The Fountain and Moon. 

  • I really like some of the lesser known scores for the A-list film composers, like Hans Zimmer's score for "The Weather Man" or especially Danny Elfman's for "Good Will Hunting" the intro to that film is great musically.

  • Lord of the Rings is fantastic for sure by Howard Shore. Also, Braveheart, by James Horner. Both have modulations that are absolutely brilliant! But I do agree with you... I have found myself buying full soundtracks going to buying only specific songs. James Newton Howard has some good songs out. Like, "Rue's Farewell" in Hunger Games. Sadly, the rest of the album just sounds like standard "music" rather than something to be remembered. Harry Gregson-Williams did a good job in the Kingdom of Heaven. Again, only certain songs. Also by him, "The Battle" off of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. Film industry music is changing rapidly.. Instead of rememberable themes, it's constant ambient tonal music. They sound great with the video but not alone. Just like most of Hans Zimmer's pieces. Brilliant man he is, but his music can't stand alone (most of the time). Gladiator, however, is an exceptional piece of art Hans did that is beautiful. Also Steve Jablonsky has written a couple good scores. He makes video game music mostly, but he also did the Transformers series and My Name Is Lincoln. (Those are the two I know of). The song, "My Name Is Lincoln" of off that soundtrack My Name Is Lincoln (lol) is very beautiful. It's not complicated but it is emotionally enticing. Well! Hope this helped (:

  • Thomas Newman's score to the Road to Perdition is particularly atmospheric, Ghosts, Cathedral, and Just the Fella are just sumptuous. Probably not to everyones taste, but there you are. The simplicity of his melody, his  harmony, his instrumental choices and lush orchestration, I think he's a very creative composer.

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