L.A. Confidential [Soundtrack]

L.A. Confidential [Soundtrack]

5.0 1
by Jerry Goldsmith
     
 
Noir detective fiction doesn't get much noirer than the novels of James Ellroy, who takes all the conventions of the genre -- a troubled, brooding protagonist who drinks too much but tries to do what's right while being pursued by rich, beautiful, but deeply flawed women and working at the margins of a society that wears a happy face to hide its brutal and corrupt

Overview

Noir detective fiction doesn't get much noirer than the novels of James Ellroy, who takes all the conventions of the genre -- a troubled, brooding protagonist who drinks too much but tries to do what's right while being pursued by rich, beautiful, but deeply flawed women and working at the margins of a society that wears a happy face to hide its brutal and corrupt heart -- and distills those elements down until they resemble the crud at the bottom of a coffee pot left too long on the burner. When you turn an Ellroy novel into a movie, the right music is absolutely essential: They take place in the 1950s, of course, so there must be jazz from the period but also an assortment of pop songs. Some of the pop songs should demonstrate the frantic cheerfulness that listeners, in hindsight, consider to be typical of the 1950s, while others should hint more directly at the violence that lurks beneath the facade. The soundtrack to L.A. Confidential includes all the necessary elements, from Johnny Mercer's snappy "Ac-cent-tchu-ate the Positive" and Dean Martin's heavily orchestrated "Powder Your Face With Sunshine" to a dour instrumental rendition of "Makin' Whoopee" by Gerry Mulligan and Chet Baker and a rather surreal orchestral arrangement of "But Not for Me" conducted by Jackie Gleason. A pair of Jerry Goldsmith miniatures bracket the program, but are not terribly effective -- an opening miniature entitled "Badge of Honor" sounds like a caricature of film noir music, and the closing "L.A. Confidential" is anonymous pablum obviously designed to accompany the rolling of credits. Recommended overall.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/26/1997
Label:
Restless Records
UPC:
0018777294621
catalogNumber:
72946

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Jerry Goldsmith   Primary Artist,Track Performer
Dean Martin   Track Performer
Kay Starr   Track Performer
Chet Baker   Track Performer
Jackie Gleason   Track Performer
Lee Wiley   Track Performer
Joni James   Track Performer
Johnny Mercer   Track Performer
Betty Hutton   Track Performer
Gerry Mulligan Quartet   Track Performer

Technical Credits

George Gershwin   Composer
Jerome Kern   Composer
Buddy DeSylva   Composer
Ira Gershwin   Composer
George David Weiss   Composer
Carmen Lombardo   Composer
Jeff Zimmitti   Art Direction
Stanley Rochinski   Composer
Curtis Hanson   Executive Producer

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L.A. Confidential [Soundtrack] 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you could buy only one CD this year, I have NO IDEA what it should be. Maybe you should get a second job, you deadbeat. But if you buy two CDs (without having to work in a salt mine, or sell Uncle Bob, piece by piece, for experiments), it should be two soundtracks: L.A. Confidential and Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Dark, ethereal, and moody, these albums have presence, and hold together on their own as great albums, able to stand apart and peer out from beneath the long, great shadows cast by their respective impressive film counterparts. ** As with all soundtracks, make sure you see the songs listed on the back and not simply "original score." Don't go home with orchestral, background music when you want classic songs and vocals. L.A. Confidential has the period songs by the period's artists, including Johnny Mercer's FANTASTIC "Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive." Jerry Goldsmith gets two pieces of his powerful score on the CD, the title track and the even better "Badge of Honor." The period songs are great, the sweet voice of Kay Starr and Lee Wiley are terrific, and even the instrumentals are good here. Johnny Mercer, as mentioned before, is great here, but the stand-out on this album is Dean Martin's "Christmas Blues." In all his swagger-voiced, king-of-cool splendor, Dino brings us one of the greatest (and least heard) Christmas songs of all time. Worth the price of admission itself. My suggestion: get both CDs, dim the lights, pour yourself a beverage or four, and listen to these two albums back to back. Repeat as necessary.