North by Northwest [Original Score]

North by Northwest [Original Score]

3.0 1
by Bernard Herrmann
     
 
This recording of Bernard Herrmann's score to Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest, by Laurie Johnson and the London Studio Symphony Orchestra, was something of a landmark when it first appeared on vinyl at the end of the 1970s. It was among the very first commercially

Overview

This recording of Bernard Herrmann's score to Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest, by Laurie Johnson and the London Studio Symphony Orchestra, was something of a landmark when it first appeared on vinyl at the end of the 1970s. It was among the very first commercially released re-recordings of a classic Hollywood film score in full -- previously, the few such recordings ever done had been released by subscription only, through groups such as the Elmer Bernstein Film Music Society; along with Charles Gerhardt's re-recording of Erich Wolfgang Korngold's score for Kings Row, this record heralded a new era of serious commercial interest in such music, which would come to fruition in the late '90s when record companies and producers would allocate resources to the retrieval and restoration of original film score recordings from the 1930s onward. As to the recording itself, which jumped to CD in the late '80s, it holds up well, despite some unsteadiness in the tempos in the opening section of the score and an occasional clunky or ragged moment in the ensemble playing -- Johnson, who was no slouch in the composing or conducting departments where film and television scores were concerned (and is best remembered for the title theme to The Avengers), seizes the opportunity to lead this recording and runs with it. The volume pumps up nicely and despite being an early digital recording, there's a fair amount of presence and detail in the playback. It should be pointed out that in the 25 years since this recording was released, Rhino Records has released Herrmann's own recordings of the actual film tracks from the movie itself -- those have their defects and problems, but in the main must be considered the definitive account of the score, which almost doubled the amount of music represented. On the other hand, this CD will probably please the more casual listener who merely wants an acquaintance of the music, rather than to know it intimately, or to remember his favorite parts of the movie. All of the essential scenes and sections are represented, and the orchestra plays with the correct timbre and, usually, pacing, capturing the movie's contrasting moods of humor and suspense. And as it turns out, the underscoring of the Mt. Rushmore finale turns out to be every bit as bracing as music as it was as a movie sequence.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/20/1995
Label:
Rhino
UPC:
0081227210120
catalogNumber:
72101

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North by Northwest [Original Score] 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Although this is a good CD, it is not the soundtrack to the movie. Barnes & Noble shows the cover of the soundtrack (wrong cover) but this is actually a re-recording from 1980.