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James Newton Howard - King Kong (2005) Retail CD
James Newton Howard reportedly got the King Kong gig as a last-minute replacement for Howard Shore (who of course had worked on King Kong director Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings series). The good news is that Howard still managed to write an honorable score; the bad news is that it's no more than honorable. For some, the biggest disappointment may be that Howard didn't find more inspiration in the film's 1930s setting. Once in a while he inserts a vaguely jazzy flourish (the brief clarinet passages in "Defeat Is Always Momentary" for instance) but the period detail is kept to a minimum. Havingmore… more may have helped give the score a shot of much-needed individuality. Action scenes, for instance, are set to the opulently orchestrated, frantic percussive rumble that is Hollywood short-hand for, well, action scenes. "Head Towards the Animals" and "Beauty Killed the Beast III" are just the most typical examples of that style: Howard gives these bravura numbers the requisite pounding intensity, but can we be blamed for feeling that we've heard them dozens of times before? Similarly, the composer sticks to the expected when he needs to get more contemplative, as on "A Fateful Meeting" (soothing strings, soothing clarinet) or "Beautiful" (flutes to suggest the exotic locale). In short, this album is everything you expect it to be. Which sometimes isn't quite enough. --Elisabeth Vincentelli
|2||A Fateful Meeting|
|3||Defeat Is Always Momentary|
|4||It's In The Subtext|
|6||The Venture Departs|
|7||Last Blank Space On The Map|
|9||Something Monstrous... Neither Beast Nor Man|
|10||Head Towards The Animals|
|12||Tooth And Claw|
|13||That's All There Is...|
|16||The Empire State Building|
|17||- 21. Beauty Killed The Beast|
- James Newton Howard - King Kong (2005) Retail CD
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- 14/12/09 by Del346
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