on January 28, 2010
I understand that everyone is entitled to their own opinion... But I'm sorry, some people are just too stupid and close-minded that I get angry!
I personally am bedazzled by this amazing, emotional soundtrack... And I believe it easily makes it to the top of my list! And this comes from someone who has collected many unique soundtracks from many movies... by MANY different composers. There is no reason this is any lower on the scale of amazement, then John Williams unforgettable Star Wars soundtracks..
I believe that each piece of music deserves it's own appreciation... no matter how hard one must look to find it.
People who say it is boring evidently can't understand the beauty of classical music.... So it's not your cup of tea: that doesn't mean you need to say that this music is crap! Obviously some people will enjoy it much more as the background music on the movie, but to some, this kind of music is just as enjoyable using the imgination, or while cleaning the house(like me :))!
I find, for soundtracks, if they can create a well developed atmosphere for me, and change my mood to that of the music... Then it has acheived it's goal of making my favourites list...
To those who say it sounds like "carmen whatever"... WHO CARES!!! GET A LIFE! Seriously, I don't care if it sounds like Beethoven's Fifth Symphony... its's brilliant and it gets the job done! So shhuut up! Seriously, if you can't reuse ideas, then you would never get anywhere... NO OTHER MUSIC WOULD JUSTIFY THESE MOVIES OTHER THAN WHAT IS ALREADY BEING USED!
Just enjoy all music for it's own specific beauty and get on! If you have something bad to say, at least think of something reasonable... Not close-minded garble!
OH and some of my other recommondations include: Star wars (especially the 3rd and 6th...), Beetlejuice, Peter Pan (surprisingly amazing!), Titanic and many many more :P:P:P:P:P oh and Sleepy Hollow (Danny Elfman!)
on May 16, 2004
In my opinion, the original motion picture soundtrack to the Lord of the Rings is the perfect musical score. The music is composed, orchestrated and conducted by Howard Shore, who in my opinion can be listed among the greatest music composers such as John Williams. Enya also contributes to this soundtrack, having composed and performed the music score for the ending credits, and performing the theme for Aragorn And Arwen. Contains 18 tracks:
1. The Prophecy
2. Concerning Hobbits - the music theme for the sequences set in the Hobbit-inhabited land of the Shire.
3. The Shadow of the Past - the music score that blends in with the part where the nature of the Ring is discovered.
4. The Treason of Isengard - One of the best scores of the soundtrack. It is the theme for the sequence in which Saruman becomes a traitor and battles with Gandalf.
5. The Black Rider Another great musical score. This theme is for the journey of the four Hobbit companions through the Shire and for the encountering of the Black Rider.
6. At the Sign of the Prancing Pony - Frodo Baggins adventures in the town of Bree at the Inn of the Prancing Pony is what this score is for.
7. A Knife in the Dark - The theme for the continuing journey of the hobbits in which sequence they arrive at the ruins of a temple and find themselves battling Ringwraiths.
8. Flight to the Ford - The Theme for the flight of Arwen and Frodo to Rivendell to escape the Black Riders.
9. Many Meetings - The theme for Rivendell, where the Elves abide.
10. The Council of Elrond - This is among the best scores in the album. The theme for the Council in Rivendell concerning the fate of the Ring. Also features Enya performing Aniron, the theme for Aragorn and Arwen.
11. The Ring Goes South - The theme for the sequence in which the Fellowship of the Ring sets out on their journey to Mordor.
12. A Journey in the Dark - The theme for Moria
13. The Bridge of Khazad Dum - The theme for the treacherous journey to the Bridge of Khazad Dum in Moria and the crossing over and escape from Moria. Another of the ones that are among the best scores on this album.
14. Lothlorien - The theme for Lothlorien, the woodlands of the Elves, through which the Fellowship of the Ring passes through in the film.
15. The Great River - The theme for the departure from Lothlorien.
16. Amon Hen - The theme for the encountering of the stone of Amon Hen.
17. The Breaking of the Fellowship - The score for the dispersion of the Fellowship of the Ring, in which only Frodo and Sam are left to continue the quest to destroy the Ring.
18. May it Be - The song performed by Enya. It is the score for the end credits of the film.
If you loved the film, buy this soundtrack. It is well worth the purchase price. For more information there is a site called ... I eagerly anticipate the soundtrack for the next LOTR film.
on May 9, 2004
In this world, there exists a handful of human creations so epic, finding words for such things almost seems a way of devaluing the work. Unfortunately, as this soundtrack is one of them, we have but no choice other than cave in and write. If we do not, it would essentially be as if such grand feats were never accomplished in the first place.
To keep the review to a moderate and digestable length, there will be no specific documentary of each period instrument, harmonic change, melodic theme, and relation of how the audio translates to supportive information for the visual cinematic cues. Just know that 1) there has been a supremely creative effort to have very specific instruments enhance the mood and storyline, 2) a new and surprisingly fresh (though ironically reminiscent of a time long ago) chord change awaits the turn of every corner, 3) the carefully constructed (while non-academic) themes seem to come alive in a character every time while on screen, and 4) the music for each respective scene is so powerful in the film, it convinces the audience - if subconsciously - that there is indeed no other choice of sounds other than the precise ones that have been chosen and printed to film and cd forever. Don't get me wrong, there are also items # 5-infinity which we'll omit for interest of time.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Howard Shore is a living legend and genius to the fields of both musical composition and speaking to the soul. With all of the aforementioned elements, he has done what perhaps Professor Tolkien himself would bow down to: he has taken the ridiculously detailed blueprints for a whole different world, and created the same world all over again, in the form of auditory stimulation. The laborous contriving of entire ficticious languages are masterfully superimposed as thunderous choirs, on top of what sounds like a 10,000 piece orchestral behemoth soundscape.
From the characteristic playful music of the Hobbits to the hellishly heavy thunder of Mordor itself, this soundtrack will take you through an emotional journey of its own when you have nothing to watch along with the music. The way the themes cross moods and reappear reincarnated at later locations, in different forms, proves an intuitive influence at work in Shore's mind- much from Bach and Beethoven themselves, but not just in the traditional sense. Much successful experimenting with all musical elements make the resultant cd unpredictable and largely enjoyable all at once. Although anyone can appreciate this soundtrack, I do maintain that a firm knowledge of the literary masterpiece "The Lord of the Rings Trilogy" will augment the listening experience beyond belief. To love the story, as I do, blows it through the stratosphere.
A word should be put in for Enya as well. Whereas many soundtracks are comprised of an agitatingly asymmetric combination of composed music and [category: other], "Fellowship..." just can't seem to do any wrong. Indeed, when watching the movie, her passionately moving "May It Be" feels right at home with everything else. It was smart to include a derivation of one of the score's main themes as Enya's own melodic inspiration. Her music, too (represented by two pieces here), is masterfully executed and produced. Whoever included her made a wise call as talent/booking director.
Howard Shore, and all involved, deserve more than can be offered in any tangible reward. The three movies/soundtracks as a whole will have taken a few years out of everyone's lives who were dedicated to the project, and those years shall go down as a triumphant landmark on the achievenment of mankind, as opposed to a vague haziness of wasted time for each individual. Howard Shore and director Peter Jackson have done more in three years of their lives than what most hope to do in a lifetime.
on April 27, 2004
Before The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, I never paid much attention to Howard Shore, but after I heard his excellent score, I started to get more music composed by him, yet none of his other work compares to his Lord of the Rings Trilogy. The Fellowship was the first of the Trilogy and as such, Shore established his themes for the landbreaking film. The music revolves around five basic themes: The theme for Isengard, the theme for the Black Riders/Mordor, the theme for the Fellowship, the theme for the Ring and the theme for The Shire. The range of music is extremely wide. The Black Rider theme is a very dark, gothic theme, while the Hobbit theme is very light and playful reminiscent of an old countryside folktune. The theme for Isengard is very strident percussion and brass with emphasize the evil building under Orthanc. The Fellowship theme is a very bold theme, only heard in its full glory 2 times on the soundtrack on tracks 11 and 13. The hints of most of these themes play in almost all the tracks of the film, however all of these tracks stand alone. For example Amon Hen track 16 is one of my favorite tracks, because it provides a visual picture of what is happenning on the movie screen. Choir is used effectively to heighten the emotion of any particular track. The cd is over 70 minutes long, and I wish it could be longer simply because the music is so enjoyable. Shore's score to this epic film belongs on the top ten score's of all time and it truly deserved the Academy Award that it won. It is simply magnificent! Also used excellently is the solo voice of Enya. Her haunting melodies in the final track of the cd as well as track 10 create a moving visual picture of the film.
on March 20, 2004
Wow. This is good, this is very good. I've never heard a score so intense or so wide ranging. There is so much to love on this cd that 17 bucks seems way too low, but I'll take it. Shore has managed to take dissonance and dischord and turn it into powerful, groundbreaking music. The opening track really set the stage with some intriguing, dark and intense themes pounded out by the London Philharmonic (Not the the New Zealand Shymphony Orchestra as amazon says). The second track is a folk tune piece for the Shire featuring a solo fiddle and solo pan flute over strings and hammer dulcimer. This theme shows the beauty of the hobbits' home and the simple and comfortable life they lead. The music then moves on to darker matters, as we are introduced to the intense theme of the black riders and of Mordor. These themes feature pounding percussion, screaming brass and chorus. Int he fourth track we are first treated to the fellowship theme as Sam Frodo and Gandalf have already formed a fellowship. In track nine, many meetings where everyone meets up at Rivendell, we hear a fully developed hobbit theme with a countermelody below it, which is incredibly beautiful. While I'm not a fan of Enya, her contributions to the score are admirable and she does a fine job with the love songs for Aragorn and Arwen. It is in track 11, the Rings Goes South, that we first hear the fellowship theme in it's full glory, it is heard at the end of track 10 as well, but only for a short time. The Bridge of Khazad-Dum is pure action and features a Maori choir chanting out heavy lines as the Balrog closes in on them, near the end we hear a mourning for Gandalf. The score's most interesting track is featured next, Lothlorien, as there are several unique instruments used that lend a very eastern quality to the piece. Over this, Elizabeth Fraser sings in very ethereal voice, the main theme for Lothlorien, which we will hear in march form in the two towers battle. The most beatiful writing I've ever heard for a motion picture comes in track 17, the breaking of the fellowship which is beyond description, the same theme is used in the end of the two towers as well as all the forces of evil are beaten back. The score then ends with some beautiful music and some good singing by Enya in "May it Be." This score will definitely go down in the history books, there are very few scores by anyone that can even come close, Harry Potter and Jurassic Park are the only ones that come to mind. The work by Shore and Peter Jackson has been so incredible and so passionate you can definitely appreciate it beyond any other in film history. Middle Earth came alive in me again after hearing this soundtrack, even before I saw the film. Highest Recommendation.
on March 17, 2004
A quaint Hobbit hole in the Shire; A dark hall of Moria and its deteriorated grandeur; A mysterious Elven haven high atop the trees. As you listen to The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring soundtrack, you are transported to these places and countless other destinations within Middle-Earth. Howard Shore manages to give each realm and each race an individual theme that he weaves throughout the entire trilogy's score. Each theme is perfectly akin to that realm or race and it highlights the attributes of the particular area or creature. For example, "Concerning Hobbits" - Track # 2, has a sweet and humble sound, much like that of a hobbit's personality. It is not dark and overwhelming nor sad or dreary. "Concerning Hobbits" lets you know, for instance that you are observing a hobbit busily working in a field on a bright clear day. This piece is cheerful and always makes the listener feel happy. "The Ring Goes South" - Track # 11 features the beloved 'Fellowship Theme' and accompanies the scene in the film where each member of the Fellowship passes over the top of a mountain. The Fellowship theme is prominent and gives the listener the notion that now, these people/creatures have come together as one united group and there is no turning back. Another notable mention is Enya's work on the score in both "The Council of Elrond" [featuring the song "Aniron (Theme for Aragorn and Arwen)" composed & performed by Enya] and "May it Be" composed & performed by Enya] In "Aniron," Enya's sound adds the ethereal quality that is so characteristic of the Elves and in "May it Be" she conveys the qualities of the hero, Frodo Baggins with the melodic words about honesty, innocence, faithfulness, and giving your all to reach a goal. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring soundtrack is magnificent in its sound and dedication to the story being told through the film. A must have for any Lord of the Rings or film score fans.
on February 17, 2004
I've waited to review this album until all three soundtracks to "The Lord of the Rings" film trilogy have been released. Each soundtrack is better than the one before it, but all three are incredible, five-star albums. They are assembled on CD to create the best listening experience possible, conveying massive scores in seventy-minute packages that stand on their own as great achievements in orchestral/choral music. Lovers of film music, fantasy, and orchestral concert music will want to own all three CDs, and the best place to start is right here, at the beginning of the journey. Howard Shore perfectly captured Tolkien's Middle-Earth with his music in this opening chapter, and it gave him a great foundation on which to build two even better scores.
The "Fellowship" album is the most linear and straightforward of the three. The tracks follow the strict order of the story, and there is no combining of pieces from different parts of the film into single tracks as would happen on the next two albums. I first heard the soundtrack before the film was released (I ran out and purchased it the morning it hit stores), and was able to effortlessly follow the action of the film based on the music. It is the easiest of the score to "get into" quickly, since it gradually introduces you into the major themes, even if it doesn't reach the majestic heights of the next two albums.
"Fellowship" has the most variety of the scores, however, shifting between sprightly folk and dance tunes for the hobbits, dark and dreary music for the mines of Moria, two very different types of ethereal music for the Elves of Rivendell and Lotholorien, and evil choral music for the Ringwraiths. In this one album, you already have a great musical perspective on Tolkien's world, and are ready to experience the rest of the journey in "The Two Towers" and "The Return of the King."
The opening track, "The Prophecy," isn't actually in the film (the prologue of the movie was constantly changing right up to the release date, so this is probably an early version of the opening credits), but serves as a great entry into the album with its gradually rising power through the chorus, and hints of the "Shire Theme" at the end. The major theme of the score (and of the whole trilogy) is the "Fellowship Theme," which makes its heroic appearance at the end of "The Council of Elrond" and expands into its fullest expression in "The Ring Goes South," the musical mid-point of the album. It also serves as the sad, mournful ending to the action cue, "Amon Hen" (the sword battle on the hill and Boromir's last stand). The other major theme is the "Shire Theme" a gentle melody for Frodo and his hobbit companions heard at the end of the folksy second track, "Concerning Hobbits," which then blooms in the beautiful track "Many Meetings" and is the basis for the lengthy ending piece, "The Breaking of the Fellowship."
The action cues are furious and often frightening. The choral theme for the Ringwraiths dominates the first half of the album, climaxing in the tremendous "Flight to the Ford." Gandalf's defeat at the hands of Saruman in "The Treason of Isengard" also receives a full-assault choral interpretation. "Amon Hen" shows Shore's skill at creating tension by gradually building the music without resolving it; it is a technique that really wrings you out emotionally with action music, a very tough thing to achieve. The best track of all is "The Bridge of Khazad-dum," a remarkable piece of dark, desperate action as the fellowship tries to escape from the mines and faces the Balrog (the solo voice conclusion to this track is one of saddest moments in all of the scores).
The album also has the largest amount of purely "Elven" music of the albums. For Rivendell, Shore composes an uplifting, airy theme, and for Lothlorien, he takes a more eerie, other-wordly approach. It shows Shore's deep understanding of Tolkien's world.
Enya's two pieces, "Aniron" and "May it Be" fit in well with the gentle, Elvish musical tone of the score, but compared to later end title songs from "Towers" and "Return of the King," they seem a bit sleepy and slow. Still, Enya was a good choice for the film, and "Aniron" does feel as if Elves could have actually written it.
The only problem with this soundtrack album -- and all the albums have this same flaw -- is that there is so much music in the film that only about a third can fit here. As great a listening experience as this album is, it would be nice to have an expanded two-disc version some time in the near future. (Certainly, it would sell tons of copies, so Sony Music should really get on this project right away!)
on January 8, 2004
There are few composers of the twentieth, and now, twenty-first centuries, who will be recognized by future generations for the film scores they have composed. Some, like John Williams (Star Wars, E.T., Jaws, Schindler's List), have made the exception, with scores that stand alone, and are immediately recognizable to audiences.
I think that this score, composed by Howard Shore, might graduate into this class. His music, which is haunting and beautiful, paints many vivid images of the world created by J.R.R. Tolkein. While the music serves as underscoring for the incredible films under Peter Jackson's direction, the music is as beautiful on its own as it is capable of expanding the beauty of the film it enhances.
Shore, who was contracted to score all three of "The Lord of the Rings" films, has been part of the film experience since the beginning, being part of the filming process in New Zealand for the better part of the past five years. As a result, the soundtrack is expansive and intimate, providing themes that perfectly compliment the characters and environments they are intended for. Its haunting in its beauty, daunting in its depth, and captivating-as it must be, for the films, each of which are a staggering 3+ hours, have a pace to them which keeps audiences engaged for the duration. The music rises and falls as the action and drama unfolds.
Shore, who compares his score to a contemporary Opera, incorporates the voices of an all male, Pacific-Islands choir, a boys choir from England, the beautiful and stirring voice of Enya for the love ballad between Arwyn and Aragorn, musical instruments from the farthest corners of the Earth, including many instruments from African tribal groups, along with a symphonic score that is as bold and breathtaking as the films are.
It could be argued that the soundtrack, along with the film itself, must be as massive as it is to capture the depth of the world Tolkein created over a half century ago. And it does. The movies are incredible, as is the music. This soundtrack is an incredible forum which helps continue the journey into Peter Jackson's vision of Tolkien's novel, and for anyone, from avid fan of The Lord of the Rings, to the most casual listener, the music contained herein is gauranteed to transport you to another world, and another time, when a Hobbit named Frodo led a fellowship of men, elves, drarves and hobbits on a quest that would lead to the salvation of Middle Earth.
on January 1, 2004
There were few music genius composers in my list like James Horner (composer of Titanic, A Beautiful Mind, Bicentennial Man, The Mask Of Zoro, Braveheart etc.) & Hans Zimmer (composer of the soundtracks of The Last Samurai, Gladiator, Pirates of the Caribbean, etc.) When I saw the first scene of the movie (Lord of the Rings - The Fellowship of the Rings), I decided to add the music composer to my list! I'm a big fan of orchestral music and vocals. This music makes you feel the moments of the journey to Middle Earth that the fellowship of the rings had to go through, starting from the soft music in the Shire, to the emotional moments between Aragorn & Arwen, and to the dreadful sensation that evil was so close to achieving its goal.
ALL of the music are worth listening to, esp. the ones with the vocals e.g. The Prophecy, The Treason Of Isengard, A Knife In The Dark, Flight To The Ford, The Council Of Elrond, The Bridge Of Khazad Dum, Lothlorien, The Great River. I also loved the (Breaking of the Fellowship), which reflects the will to pursue & true friendship . I could listen to the soundtrack many times during the day, and still the amuzement does not fade away!
The addition of of the song (May it be) performed by Enya was a great touch! The song reflected the main theme of the first part of the Lord of the Rings. I started to listen to Enya after that song.
I noticed that some music were not incorporated in the Extended DVD version like the music of the (Great River), but it was part of the ordinary DVD movie.
Great Work Mr. Shore. ur work speaks for itself! This is a must-have-on-your-shelf soundtrack CD in addition to the original movie. 5/5.
on December 27, 2003
When I listen to sound track music I count on it to set a mood for me that will be similar to the one I experience while I watch the movie. The nice thing about listening to the sound track instead of watching the movie is that I can be in that mood but still get work done. When I watch the movie that is what I do. Watch the movie. Some movies do not set the mood I want to be in while I work. That is part of the problem with this sound track. The mood it sets for me is too intense for me to work. It demands full attention even when it is just the sound track. It doesn't just put me in the mood the movie does. It puts me into the movie in my mind. I find myself wanting to fight evil yet still be good. How can you fight evil when evil is fighting? How can you cheer for the small guy when the small guy is in a hopeless situation? And this only reminds me that we are all in the same hopeless situation. The evil is death. We cannot all go to the Gray Havens. We are not elves but men and men are mortal. All men are mortal. So in the end, I will be what I will be. Even my loyal friends will not be there for me. So I listen to these but not when I want to get my work done.