Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]

5.0 8
by John Williams [composer]
     
 

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Fear not; he's done it again. Composer John Williams, the master behind the music of the original Star Wars trilogy, can still transform George Lucas's visions into glorious sounds. For music that works perfectly with the action on the screen, Wiliams's writing also takes on a full-fledged life of its own when heard on disc. His score for Star Wars: The PhantomSee more details below

Overview

Fear not; he's done it again. Composer John Williams, the master behind the music of the original Star Wars trilogy, can still transform George Lucas's visions into glorious sounds. For music that works perfectly with the action on the screen, Wiliams's writing also takes on a full-fledged life of its own when heard on disc. His score for Star Wars: The Phantom Menace is as picturesque and rousing as any fan could have hoped for -- Williams's knack for blending lyrical themes with slam-bang action music remains unsurpassed. As conductor, Williams harnesses the full power of the London Symphony Orchestra to achieve all the goose-pimple effects he intends ("The Sith Spacecraft" and "The Droid Battle"; "Anakin Defeats Sebilba"). He can also coax lush and haunting passages from the orchestra -- and, at crucial points, a well-employed chorus -- that conjure up all the phantasmagoric images of this intergalactic epic. ("Passage Through the Planet Core," "The High Council Meeting," and "Qui-Gon's Funeral"). Williams's score, like the film itself, was worth the wait -- long may the Force be with him.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steven McDonald
The familiar fanfare is there, in all of its swaggering-brass glory, though it seems a little less expansive in the actual depth of its instrumentation. This may be an artifact of the digital age, however -- that fabled, oft-mentioned "transparency." Regardless, Star Wars fans will thrill at the sound of it. What's open to question is whether or not long-term fans will be as overjoyed with the remainder of the score. Composer John Williams continues to use his Boston Pops experience to good advantage, turning in a score that echoes the music and themes for the original trilogy of films (particularly the brooding theme for Darth Vader) while charting a direction for the new film. The multi-themed "Duel of the Fates," in particular, uses the complete dynamic range of the digital studio for an effective punch. Of course, "new" is a relative term when it comes to film music; Williams' use of dramatic dissonance and discordance is somewhat innovative for the Star Wars series, as are the bravura choral passages, the score deliberately references the great film composers of the '30s and '40s. Just as George Lucas intended his movie to reflect an earlier time in the life of his universe, Williams' music follows suit, with choral passages that bring to mind both Prokofiev and Carl Orff (insofar as the choral material brings to mind Orff's interpretation of the "Carmina Burana"). The Episode I score bears more consideration than the trio of earlier scores, and it is a small regret that more material was not included (thus making this a two-CD set that would fit nicely with the special edition releases of the originally trilogy scores.) The overall development of Williams' musical palette bodes well for the greater emotional requirements of Episode II.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/04/1999
Label:
Sony
UPC:
0074646181621
catalogNumber:
61816
Rank:
18694

Tracks

  1. Star Wars Main Title & The Arrival at Naboo  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  2. Duel of the Fates  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  3. Anakin's Theme  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  4. Jar Jar's Introduction & The Swim to Otoh Gunga  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  5. The Sith Spacecraft & The Droid Battle  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  6. The Trip to the Naboo Temple & The Audience with Boss Nass  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  7. The Arrival at Tatooine & The Flag Parade  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  8. He Is the Chosen One  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  9. Anakin Defeats Sebulba  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  10. Passage Through the Planet Core  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  11. Watto's Deal & Kids at Play  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  12. Panaka and the Queen's Protectors  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  13. Queen Amidala & The Naboo Palace  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  14. The Droid Invasion & The Appearance of Darth Maul  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  15. Qui-Gon's Noble End  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  16. The High Council Meeting & Qui-Gon's Funeral  -  London Symphony Orchestra
  17. Augie's Great Municipal Band & End Credits  -  London Symphony Orchestra

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

John Williams [composer]   Primary Artist,Conductor
London Symphony Orchestra   Performing Ensemble,Track Performer
New London Children's Choir   Choir, Chorus,Track Performer
John Williams   Conductor
London Voices   Choir, Chorus
Ronald Corp   Choir Director
Terry Edwards   Choir Director

Technical Credits

London Symphony Orchestra   Contributor
John Williams [composer]   Composer,Producer,Liner Notes
Shawn Murphy   Engineer,Engineering
New London Children's Choir   Contributor
John Williams   Producer,Liner Notes
London Voices   Contributor
George Lucas   Producer,Liner Notes
Roxanne Slimak   Art Direction
Ronald Corp   Director
Terry Edwards   Director,Orchestra Director

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