Support Filmtracks! Click here first:
Amazon.com
Amazon.co.uk
iTunes (U.S.)
Amazon.ca
Amazon.fr
eBay (U.S.)
Amazon.de
Amazon.es
Half.com
 
This Week's Most Popular Reviews:
   1. Romeo & Juliet
   2. Hobbit: Unexpected Journey
   3. The Phantom of the Opera
   4. Lady in the Water
   5. Harry Potter: Sorcerer's Stone
   6. Moulin Rouge
   7. Gladiator
   8. Titanic
   9. LOTR: Fellowship of the Ring
   10. Thor: The Dark World
Newest Major Reviews: Best-Selling Albums:
   1. Guardians of the Galaxy
   2. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
   3. How to Train Your Dragon 2
   4. Maleficent
   5. X-Men: Days of Future Past
   1. Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug
   2. City of Ember
   3. Jack the Giant Slayer
   4. Indiana Jones Collection
   5. King Kong Lives
 
Section Header
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
(1980)
1985 Polydor

1992 Varèse
Gerhardt

1993 Fox
Anthology

1997 RCA
Special Edition

1997 RCA
Re-Pressing

2004 Sony
Classical Set

2004 Sony
Classical Individual

2007 Sony
Corellian Edition

2007 Sony
30th Ann. Set

Composed, Conducted, and Co-Produced by:
John Williams

Co-Produced by:
George Lucas

Orchestrated by:
Herbert W. Spencer

Performed by:
The London Symphony Orchestra

1993, 1997, and 2004 Albums Produced by:
Nick Redman

1997 and 2004 Albums Produced by:
Michael Matessino

RCA Re-Recording Produced and Conducted by:
Charles Gerhardt

RCA Re-Recording Performed by:
The National Philharmonic Orchestra

Labels and Dates:
Polydor/Polygram
(1985)

Varèse Sarabande
(Gerhardt)
(1992)

20th Century Fox
(Anthology)
(November 9th, 1993)

RCA Victor
(Special Edition)
(January 14th, 1997)

RCA Victor
(S.E. Re-Pressing)
(August 26th, 1997)

Sony Classical
(Individual and Set)
(September 21st, 2004)

Sony Classical
(Corellian Edition)
(October 2nd, 2007)

Sony Classical
(30th Ann. Edition)
(November 6th, 2007)

Also See:
A New Hope
Return of the Jedi
The Phantom Menace
Attack of the Clones
Revenge of the Sith
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Nixon

Audio Clips:
1992 Varèse Gerhardt:

4. Han Solo and the Princess (0:31):
WMA (202K)  MP3 (250K)
Real Audio (155K)

8. The Imperial March (0:35):
WMA (227K)  MP3 (281K)
Real Audio (174K)

11. The Rebels Escape Again (0:31):
WMA (202K)  MP3 (250K)
Real Audio (155K)

13. Finale (0:38):
WMA (245K)  MP3 (306K)
Real Audio (190K)


1993 Fox Anthology:

CD2, 6. The Battle in the Snow (0:37):
WMA (240K)  MP3 (298K)
Real Audio (185K)

CD2, 9. The Asteroid Field (0:30):
WMA (195K)  MP3 (242K)
Real Audio (150K)

CD2, 15. The City in the Clouds (0:32):
WMA (204K)  MP3 (257K)
Real Audio (160K)

CD4, 6. Leia's Instructions (0:30):
WMA (195K)  MP3 (241K)
Real Audio (149K)


1997 RCA Special Edition:

CD1, 4. Aboard the Executor (0:37):
WMA (238K)  MP3 (298K)
Real Audio (74K)

CD2, 9. Carbon Freeze/Darth Vader's Trap (0:30):
WMA (193K)  MP3 (238K)
Real Audio (147K)

CD2, 11. Rescue from Cloud City (0:35):
WMA (229K)  MP3 (283K)
Real Audio (176K)

CD2, 12. The Rebel Fleet (0:30):
WMA (193K)  MP3 (238K)
Real Audio (147K)


2004 Sony Classical:

CD1, 7. Arrival on Dagobah (0:31):
WMA (200K)  MP3 (250K)
Real Audio (155K)

CD2, 3. Attacking a Star Destroyer (0:30):
WMA (195K)  MP3 (242K)
Real Audio (150K)

CD2, 9. Departure of Boba Fett (0:30):
WMA (197K)  MP3 (244K)
Real Audio (152K)

CD2, 11. Hyperspace (0:30):
WMA (195K)  MP3 (242K)
Real Audio (150K)

Availability:
All of the CD albums were regular commercial releases at their outset. Both the original 1985 album and 1992 Varèse Sarabande Gerhardt album historically have been available used for about $5 to $7.

The 1993 Fox Anthology was believed at the time to be the most collectible soundtrack CD set in existence, and has retained its original street value because of its relative scarcity and packaging.

The 1997 RCA Special Edition albums came in two forms, the black booklet format available early that year and the slimline format in August, 1997 to coincide with the VHS release of the revised films. The latter albums (with poster art on the covers) have fallen completely out of print, and while new copies of the 'black book' formatted RCA albums of early 1997 are also difficult to find, they have remained readily available for sub-retail price on the used market.

The 2004 Sony Classical products are bargain priced, though you receive no additional packaging benefits from buying the trilogy as a set outside of the silver and black holding box.
The 2007 Sony Classical albums contain no additional new contents or remastering. The "Corellian Edition" compilation, which was leaked as a promotional teaser in some 2005 pressings of Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, is sold alone as a regular commercial release (with two different cover art variants) and is included as CD7 in the concurrently offered "30th Anniverary Collector's Edition." That set, featuring original LP packaging, was electronically numbered up to 10,000 copies and initially retailed for $80. Its value soon plunged, in part due to production problems that caused the wrong combination of CDs to be included in the set. Amazon.com temporarily pulled the product due to complaints.

Awards:
  Winner of a Grammy Award and a BAFTA Award. Nominated for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe.









Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

•  Printer Friendly Version
 
  @Amazon.com:
List Price: $29.98
Our Price: $25.39
You Save: $4.59 (15%)
Used Price: $24.64

Sales Rank: 1369


Buy from Amazon.com

or read more reviews and hear more audio clips at Amazon.com.


  Compare Prices:
 1985 Polydor:

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 1992 Varèse Gerhardt:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 1993 Fox Anthology:

eBay Stores
(new and used)


 1997 RCA Special Edition:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 2004 Sony Classical Set:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 2004 Sony Classical:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 2007 Sony Corellian:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


 2007 Sony 30th Ann.:

eBay Stores
(new and used)

Amazon.com
(new and used)


  Find it Used:
Check for used copies of this album in the:

Soundtrack Section at eBay

(including eBay Stores and Half.com listings)








Buy it... on the 1997 "Special Edition" albums over all others because they feature the best combination of outstanding packaging and a complete presentation of John Williams' incredibly memorable sequel score.

Avoid it... on the 1985 to 1993 albums because of poorer, archival sound quality and incomplete presentations, as well as the 2004 and 2007 re-pressings that are identical to the 1997 albums in contents but without the superior packaging.



Williams
Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back: (John Williams) One would have imagined that George Lucas would have no financial difficulties producing a sequel to his classic Star Wars three years later, but dwindling funds were just one of many challenges the concept's creator faced when assembling The Empire Strikes Back. Although Lucas decided not to direct the picture, reportedly choosing to concentrate on his greater role in producing the movie amidst clashes with banks and Twentieth Century Fox, the remainder of his cast and crew carried over for the 1980 follow-up. Freakish weather events, the desire to keep the truth about Darth Vader's identity a secret, and a budget that bloated well beyond its original boundaries all conspired against The Empire Strikes Back, and critics were initially not overwhelmingly receptive to the film. Time proved very kind to it, however, and in retrospect, The Empire Strikes Back is widely considered to be among the best sequel films of all time, and, for some, superior in many regards to its predecessor. Nobody could contend that the special effects of Industrial Light & Magic hadn't improved in the prior three years, but some in the audience did not care for the fact that the movie was part of a larger plotline, its narrative conveying no distinct beginning or satisfactory end. Indeed, this aspect of filmmaking was a tough pill to swallow at the time, as was the truth about Vader, though a definitive conclusion to the arc in Return of the Jedi largely resolved such issues. The entirety of The Empire Strikes Back essentially involves a protracted interstellar chase, the alliance of rebels from the first film now on the run from the Galacic Empire and Vader leading the charge to find Luke Skywalker at all costs. The protagonist, meanwhile finds himself training with Jedi master Yoda to become a knight and makes the choice to abandon that regimen to save his friends when Vader uses them as bait. The overwhelmingly downbeat note on which the film ends has added to its mystique through the years, making it a sharp contrast from those that came before and after in the franchise. Playing this melodramatic despair to the maximum is composer John Williams, who was in the middle of the most productive time of his career at the start of the 1980's and had firmly established himself popularly as "the maestro."

Within a period of six years, Williams wrote Star Wars, Superman, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, and Return of the Jedi, and yet, even in that incredible bracket of time, some collectors of the composer's music maintain that The Empire Strikes Back is the finest score of the lot. Other debates exist about The Empire Strikes Back as the best of the classic Star Wars trilogy of scores, to which you'd probably get less resistance if you argue on its behalf. Following Star Wars: A New Hope was no easy task; the film had set all world box office records and the LP record album of the soundtrack had sold over 4 million copies, easily becoming the top-selling score of all time. This concerned Williams, for he wished to maintain the Wagnerian approach to 19th Century Romanticism in his music and balance the previous film's primary themes with several new ones. Offering a retread was the last thing he wanted to do. After the saga stretched into to two trilogies, you might get the feeling from The Empire Strikes Back that Williams was creating a monster, setting a standard of incorporating new and old themes into each picture that would eventually make the idea of that very incorporation quite daunting by the final venture (given the wealth of previous themes he had established). With a budget of $250,000 in hand for the recording of the score for The Empire Strikes Back, Williams returned to the London Symphony Orchestra, the majority of its performers veterans of the first score's original performance. Consisting of 18 recording sessions over two weeks, the task of assembling the score for the sequel was made more difficult by the fact that it was roughly 40 minutes longer than A New Hope. With the same supporting crew, however, Williams succeeded in his recording and debuted the score's two primary themes to great applause in his first conducting appearance at a concert with the Boston Pops several weeks before the release of the film. The double-LP album for The Empire Strikes Back sold over a million copies in just four months, but never unseated its predecessor in record sales, like the box office returns finishing firmly in the #2 position. The legacy of the sequel score was cemented not long after its release, however, its main identity for Darth Vader and the Empire becoming so famous as a motif of evil symphonic determination that it has made The Empire Strikes Back as popularly recognizable as both A New Hope and, more interestingly, Jaws.

In terms of its grandiose space opera personality, The Empire Strikes Back is every bit as impressive as its predecessor, exhibiting the same leitmotif techniques and transparent orchestral bravado that A New Hope had popularized. Its scope remains on par with the rest of the franchise and its thematic applications are boosted in dramatic appeal to match the shocking shifts of love and hate in the story. Williams likely did not intend for "The Imperial March" to dominate the franchise in public perception so many years later, but given its effectiveness as a representation of the villains in the tale, it's hard not to become fixated on it. The idea's incredibly simplistic, minor-key structure is devilishly successful in conveying determination and evil while, at the same, expressing itself in enjoyably bombastic, self-important fashion. Because the structure of its primary phrases is so basic, Williams could interpolate it into any of his other themes, and, as heard in the prequel scores, insert it with great stealth as a foreshadowing device. The key to its memorability is the fact that each of its three phrases, including the longer interlude sequence, conclude on the same three note figure, making those notes so easy to integrate that they alone could finish any of the other themes as a reminder of who's doing the chasing in the story. Williams adapted elements of the progressions from the "Imperial March" into everything from Nixon to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, whether they involved the opening three notes on key or that ominous three in conclusion. Its place in cinematic history was initially underplayed by critics who perhaps devalued the theme because of its existence in a sequel score (and maybe that's why it lost its bid for an Oscar), but it is still played endlessly in sports arenas and other public venues in post-2000 America. Its application as a tool of parody didn't take long to become engrained in the public's imagination, too, used commonly in the 2000's by the media to represent the much despised New York Yankees baseball team. So far-reaching is its influence that an official Al-Queda propaganda video near the time of the 9/11 attacks of 2001 used Williams' "Imperial March" beneath its Arabic dialogue to represent the "Imperial United States" and its worldwide Christian crusade against Islam (one has to wonder what Williams thinks about such things). The prequel scores in the Star Wars franchise extended the theme's life as well, starting as a hint in "Anakin's Theme" in The Phantom Menace and experiencing its magnificent announcement at the end of Attack of the Clones as the Empire is born.

In its different incarnations resulting from The Empire Strikes Back, the "Imperial March" is best known for its concert version, the aggressively chopped string rhythms launching the idea with extreme deference to the root key. In the film, this arrangement is heard during the introduction of the Star Destroyer fleet near the beginning of the film, though the use of the concert version in this placement was actually as a substitute for an arguably superior recording of the "Aboard the Executor" cue. The rejected version, with harsh and pulsating brass performing the bass rhythm instead of the straight strings, long remained the hidden gem of the score, tantalizing fans with its reinsertion into the appropriate place in the corresponding radio drama for The Empire Strikes Back and only finally available on album by the time of the 1997 Special Editions. Different versions of the "End Credits" suite also exist, once again leaving the better, album rendition of the "Imperial March" out of the original cut of the film. Fans' frustration with the incomplete album presentations prior to 1997 often revolved around the lack of the "Imperial March" statements that you hear throughout the film whenever the scene shifts to Vader or a Star Destroyer. Williams is extremely predictable in his usage of the theme, referencing it in resolute, partial ensemble phrases when Vader is seen stomping around the ice planet or cloud city and elongating its meter to represent the character's use of the Force or, at the end of the chase in "Hyperspace," when he quietly leaves the bridge of his ship after losing his prey. Occasionally, Williams adds a pronounced pause after the first three notes on key (as in the quick cloud city departure reference), infusing a touch of hanging suspense in the melody. The reminders of the theme during special effects shots of massive Imperial spacecraft yield the score's guilty pleasure moments, much the same as the equivalent shots of ships arriving at the Death Star in Return of the Jedi. Conforming to Williams' usual method of operation for the films in this franchise, this major theme is joined by two other primary new identities in an "End Credits" arrangement bookended by the famous title theme from the previous movie. Although the main Star Wars theme is heard in all of the sequel and prequel films, its application diminishes with each successive entry, and you can hear immediately in its frightfully diminished role in The Empire Strikes Back that the composer was trying to avoid redundancy. A lack of truly heroic and swashbuckling moments in this darker movie also contributed to an arguable inability of Williams to state the heroic fanfare in any particular sequence.

The other two major new themes in The Empire Strikes Back are so strong that, when bracketing the "Imperial March" in the "End Credits" suite, together produce the most satisfying such arrangement in the franchise. The theme for the Jedi master, Yoda, is a benign and touching reflection of wisdom and restraint, heard extensively during the scenes on his jungle planet of Dagobah. Its optimistic progressions are an important counterweight to the rest of the score, and its generally affable nature carried over into a cameo performance of much fame in the Halloween scene of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. For the troubled romance between Han Solo and Princess Leia is a stunningly gorgeous love theme, its concert arrangement accompanying their first kiss in "Han Solo and the Princess." Just as the theme for the Force had accomplished in the prior film, the love theme in The Empire Strikes Back carries a very heavy, mournful sensibility with it, punctuating the carbon freezing scene and finale of the movie with unquestionable weight. The melody keenly shares its first two notes with Princess Leia's theme from A New Hope and uses that existing theme as counterpoint during the aforementioned concert arrangement. The duo of "Han Solo and the Princess" and "Across the Stars" from Attack of the Clones represents the most powerful melodramatic string writing in the franchise, both themes saturated with gloom despite their romantic allure. Aside from these major players, two important sub-themes call this score home, not appearing to any great degree in the other scores for the franchise; a sour motif for Boba Fett and an upbeat march for Lando's cloud city both exist in the latter half of the film. The existing theme for the Force, a dominant element in A New Hope, does make some important contributions to The Empire Strikes Back, including a few in the understandable scenes on Yoda's jungle world. Its most poignant application, however, comes when Luke uses the Force to call out to Leia at the cloud city; as the Millenium Falcon turns around to rescue Luke, Williams expresses one of the boldest incarnations of the theme heard in the entire series. As with the prior film as well, Williams includes a few vignettes in The Empire Strikes Back that demand mentioning of their singular success. Foremost is the haphazardly frantic rhythmic movement of "The Asteroid Field," though equally respected are the churning brass motifs of "The Battle of Hoth" to emulate the motions of the enemy walkers. The ethereal high vocals for "City in the Clouds" create a false sense of beauty and hope that is yet cold and distant.

Systematic rhythmic churning is important to defining the personality of the score for The Empire Strikes Back, with Lando's processional and Fett's departure yielding to a hyperspace motif (a very underrated portion of the score) that agonizingly flows with suspense as the heroes attempt to cut their losses and escape at the end. The "Imperial March" itself is the ultimate extension of this rhythmic approach, and it symbolizes the inevitable path towards the "dark side" with great effectiveness. The precision of application for each motif in A New Hope is really what propelled the structural success of that score (outside of the raw emotion of the Force theme during the binary sunset and burning homestead cues). In The Empire Strikes Back, Williams takes that precision one step further and applies a far deeper emotional palette. A more heart-wrenching score, The Empire Strikes Back is significantly heavier on the drama and lighter on the science-fiction action. No point exemplifies this reality clearer than the full "Carbon Freeze" cue, extending from a desperate performance of the love theme prior to Solo's freezing through Boba Fett's frustrating departure. When you saw The Empire Strikes Back for the first time, you got the feeling that damn near everything was going wrong, as it should be, and part of that feeling was the ambience of a relentlessly uphill struggle created by Williams' score. Despite everything that went right with this music, there are some less engaging moments that maintain effectiveness but are less interesting on album. The mass of material outside of Yoda's thematic expressions during the training sequences on Dagobah are not particularly noteworthy, often representing the most striking dissonance of the score (as in "The Magic Tree"). Likewise, the score takes quite some time to build momentum, the early pre-battle scenes on the ice planet treated tepidly. That said, there are few other detriments to what is otherwise an extremely impressive score. Regarding the albums for The Empire Strikes Back, much of the same information applies to this score as it did for A New Hope, but with one major twist. The original LP record release was a double-album, with two LPs featuring a significant amount of score from the film. When the album was translated from that medium onto CD, the content was cut down to one CD, making the LP (and its stunning booklet presentation) something of a collector's item. The history of the album on CD, however, shares the fact that every time you think you've purchased the definitive and final version of any of the classic trilogy scores, you can wait a few years and be treated to yet another re-release.

While the existence of all of the music from the classic Star Wars film scores is taken for granted today, the first fifteen years were quite lean for fans of the composer and trilogy. In fact, it would take a full twenty years before the entire finished products (with every available cue released) finally reached fans in time for the Special Editions in theatres. Much of the information that follows in regards to each of the various releases of the music is relevant to not only this score, but the others in the classic trilogy as well, so you'll read very similar accounts in the Filmtracks reviews of those scores. After their initial, separate releases on LP records and their early CDs, the editions of the scores on subsequent discs have always been released as a trilogy, despite your ability to usually buy them separately upon each update of all three. The first album release of The Empire Strikes Back, as mentioned before, reduced the 1980 2-LP release of 75 minutes down to 42 minutes and rearranged some of the cues. It was, surprisingly, released by Polydor as a bargain item in 1985 even before A New Hope made it onto CD from its original LP form in 1986. Considering the mass of music unreleased from this score, listeners searched for comfort in, once again, the only alternative source of music from the series before 1993: Charles Gerhardt and the National Philharmonic Orchestra. For years, Gerhardt and the NPO had recorded famous film scores from mostly the Golden Age of Hollywood, but as a few of their final collaborations, Gerhardt recorded the three classic Star Wars scores near the times of their release. For The Empire Strikes Back, the 1980 re-recording of 45 minutes for an LP record remained absent from CD shelves for a longer period than the other two classic trilogy scores. His versions of Star Wars and Return of the Jedi had been released in 1989 by RCA, but Gerhardt's The Empire Strikes Back recording took until 1992 before Varèse Sarabande finally pressed the album on CD. For over a year, this Gerhardt CD was the only digital source for music that had appeared on the original LP for The Empire Strikes Back but had been dropped from the official CD. A newly arranged performance of the "Imperial March" (adding some "Carbon Freeze" material to the start) is a highlight despite weak brass. Even more than for A New Hope, the ultimate Star Wars trilogy Anthology released by 20th Century Fox in 1993 was considered a godsend by fans. The Anthology finally offered the contents of the LP and several extra cues as well, featuring a much more significant boost than the other two scores in the set. Produced by some of the biggest names in film score production, the additional music was certainly welcomed with great anticipation.

Learn about
supporting
Filmtracks

There were, however, problems with the presentation of the music on the 1993 Anthology. It placed as much music as possible from each film on an individual CD for each of the three scores but then pressed additional unreleased cues on a fourth CD that spans all three. Thus, the massive and vital "Carbon Freeze/Luke Pursues the Captives/Departure of Boba Fett" and "Drawing the Battle Lines/Leia's Instructions" were orphaned from the rest of the presentation. Add on a large, custom-sized package (roughly DVD set size by today's standards) and hard-to-read individual CD covers within, and you had some ill-received protests from fans. Although the Anthology is still remembered fondly for its filling of a major void, it was rendered largely outdated by the massive, highly advertised RCA "Special Edition" releases of 1997. By January of that year, The Phantom Menace was announced along with newly enhanced versions of the original trilogy for a 20th anniversary theatrical release. On album, fans were treated to double-CD releases of each Star Wars score in film order with alternative cues and extensive attention to detail in the mixing and arrangement. Including the alternate version of the "End Credits" that actually made it into The Empire Strikes Back (attached to the end of a Return of the Jedi cue for some reason), a total of 124 minutes of music on this Special Edition made it the definitive release. Extensive notes and pictorials grace both the 1993 and 1997 products, with the glittery CDs of the latter series a nice touch. Later in 1997, these albums were re-packaged by RCA and offered in slimline packages that feature the Special Edition poster art, but these fell out of print about five years later. In 2004, the Sony Classical label, which had been releasing the prequel scores, acquired the rights to the classic trilogy and decided to re-press the 1997 releases with new artwork. These 2004 albums offer Sony's Direct Stream Digital remastering, and while this technique does provide some minimal extra clarity on high-end stereo systems, casual listeners will notice no significant difference from the 1997 albums. Thus, if you own the Special Edition albums and don't require slightly improved sound, there is no reason to seek the 2004 re-pressing. The same could be said of Sony's shameless 2007 releases (the "Corellian Edition" compilation and "30th Anniverary Collector's Edition"), both of which redundant, unnecessary, and irritatingly packaged. Overall, owning The Empire Strikes Back is an absolute must for any film score collector, even more so than the other entries in the classic trilogy. With its outstanding packaging and complete presentation, the 1997 Special Edition album (the original full version bound in black booklets) continues to be the best product available for this undeniably classic score.   Amazon.com Price Hunt: CD or Download

    Music as Written for the Film: *****
    Music as Heard on the 1985 Polydor Album: *
    Music as Heard on the 1992 Varèse Gerhardt Album: ****
    Music as Heard on the 1993 Fox Anthology: ****
    Music as Heard on the 1997 RCA Special Edition: *****
    Music as Heard on the 2004 Sony Classical Album: ****
    Music as Heard on the 2007 Sony Classical Albums: **
    Overall: *****

Bias Check:For John Williams reviews at Filmtracks, the average editorial rating is 3.74 (in 69 reviews)
and the average viewer rating is 3.59 (in 336,805 votes). The maximum rating is 5 stars.





 Viewer Ratings and Comments:  


Regular Average: 4.31 Stars
Smart Average: 4.01 Stars*
***** 5668 
**** 1866 
*** 1049 
** 391 
* 294 
  (View results for all titles)
    * Smart Average only includes
         40% of 5-star and 1-star votes
              to counterbalance fringe voting.
   Re: 1 star?!
  TDK -- 4/7/10 (5:34 p.m.)
   John Williams OWNS Star Wars!!!!!
  TDK -- 4/7/10 (5:33 p.m.)
   Brass Section (London Symphony Orchestra)
  N.R.Q. -- 7/11/07 (6:53 a.m.)
   Re: Your favourite Main and End title seque...
  Ivan orozco -- 4/10/07 (10:29 a.m.)
   Re: Better than Episode IV
  roybatty -- 4/3/07 (5:35 a.m.)
Read All | Add New Post | Search | Help  




 Track Listings (1985 Polydor Album): Total Time: 41:40


• 1. The Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) (3:03)
• 2. Yoda's Theme (3:29)
• 3. The Asteriod Field (4:12)
• 4. Han Solo and the Princess (Love Theme) (3:28)
• 5. Finale (6:28)
• 6. Star Wars (Main Theme) (5:49)
• 7. The Training of a Jedi Knight (3:08)
• 8. Yoda and the Force (4:05)
• 9. The Duel (4:06)
• 10. The Battle in the Snow (3:48)




 Track Listings (1992 Varèse Gerhardt Album): Total Time: 45:12


• 1. 20th Century Fox Fanfare (0:21)
• 2. Main Title/The Imperial Probe (5:25)
• 3. Luke's First Crash (2:29)
• 4. The Asteroid Field (4:26)
• 5. Han Solo and the Princess (4:12)
• 6. The Training of a Jedi Knight & "May the Force Be With You" (1:56)
• 7. The Battle in the Snow (3:05)
• 8. The Imperial March (3:21)
• 9. The Magic Tree (3:38)
• 10. Yoda's Theme (3:34)
• 11. The Rebels Escape Again (3:01)
• 12. Lando's Palace/The Duel (Through the Window) (5:01)
• 13. Finale (4:38)

(printed track listings on album are incorrect by one digit)




 Track Listings (1993 Fox Anthology Album): Total Time: 108:46


CD2: (75:17)

• 1. Twentieth Century Fox Fanfare with CinemaScope Extension*** (0:22)
• 2. Main Title/The Imperial Probe (Extended Version)* (7:58)
• 3. Luke's Escape* (3:34)
• 4. Luke's Rescue (1:45)
• 5. The Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) (2:59)
• 6. The Battle in the Snow (3:45)
• 7. Luke's First Crash* (4:12)
• 8. The Rebels Escape Again (2:59)
• 9. The Asteroid Field (4:14)
• 10. Yoda's Theme (3:26)
• 11. Han Solo and the Princess (3:26)
• 12. The Training of a Jedi Knight (3:13)
• 13. The Magic Tree (3:32)
• 14. Yoda and the Force (4:02)
• 15. City in the Clouds* (6:50)
• 16. Lando's Palace (3:52)
• 17. The Duel (4:14)
• 18. Hyperspace (4:03)
• 19. Finale/End Credits (6:18)


CD4: (74:59, 33:29 from The Empire Strikes Back)

• 1. Twentieth Century Fox Fanfare with CinemaScope Extension*** (0:22)
• 2. Star Wars: Main Title (Alternate)** (2:16)
• 3. Return of the Jedi: Heroic Ewok/The Fleet Goes into Hyperspace** (3:05)
• 4. Star Wars: A Hive of Villainy** (2:12)
• 5. Star Wars: Destruction of Alderaan** (1:31)
• 6. The Empire Strikes Back: Drawing the Battle Lines/Leia's Instructions** (4:02)
• 7. Return of the Jedi: The Ewok Battle** (2:48)
• 8. The Empire Strikes Back: Attack Position** (3:04)
• 9. The Empire Strikes Back: Crash Landing** (3:35)
• 10. Star Wars: Cantina Band (2:46)
• 11. Return of the Jedi: Lapti Nek (2:48)
• 12. Star Wars: Cantina Band #2** (3:44)
• 13. Return of the Jedi: Faking the Code** (4:10)
• 14. Return of the Jedi: Brother and Sister** (3:08)
• 15. Star Wars: Standing By** (1:14)
• 16. Return of the Jedi: Leia is Wounded/Luke and Vader Duel** (2:57)
• 17. The Empire Strikes Back: Carbon Freeze/Luke Pursues the Captives/Departure of Boba Fett* (11:08)
• 18. The Empire Strikes Back: Losing a Hand** (5:20)
• 19. Return of the Jedi: The Return of the Jedi (Alternate)** (5:03)
• 20. Return of the Jedi: Leia Breaks the news (Alternate)/Funeral Pyre for a Jedi (Film Version)* (2:27)
• 21. Return of the Jedi: Ewok Celebration (Film Version)/The Empire Strikes Back: End Credits (Film Version)* (6:22)

* Contains previously unreleased material
** Previously unreleased music
*** Composed by Alfred Newman (1954)




 Track Listings (1997 RCA Special Edition): Total Time: 124:21


CD1: (62:41)

• 1. 20th Century Fox Fanfare (Alfred Newman, 1954) (0:21)
• 2. Main Title/Ice Planet Hoth** (8:08)
• 3. The Wampa's Lair/Vision of Obi-Wan*/Snowspeeders Take Flight (8:48)
• 4. The Imperial Probe*/Aboard the Executor* (4:24)
• 5. The Battle of Hoth (Ion Cannon/Imperial Walkers/Beneath the AT-AT/Escape in the Millenium Falcon) (14:48)
• 6. The Asteroid Field (4:15)
• 7. Arrival on Dagobah** (4:52)
• 8. Luke's Nocturnal Visitor (2:35)
• 9. Han Solo and the Princess (3:26)
• 10. Jedi Master Revealed/Mynock Cave** (5:44)
• 11. The Training of a Jedi Knight**/The Magic Tree (5:15)


CD2: (61:42)

• 1. Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) (3:02)
• 2. Yoda's Theme (3:29)
• 3. Attacking a Star Destroyer (3:04)
• 4. Yoda and the Force (4:02)
• 5. Imperial Starfleet Deployed*/City in the Clouds (6:03)
• 6. Lando's Palace (3:53)
• 7. Betrayal at Bespin* (3:46)
• 8. Deal with the Dark Lord* (2:36)
• 9. Carbon Freeze**/Darth Vader's Trap/Departure of Boba Fett (11:50)
• 10. The Clash of Lightsabers (4:17)
• 11. Rescue from Cloud City/Hyperspace (9:08)
• 12. The Rebel Fleet/End Title (6:26)

* Previously unreleased
** Contains previously unreleased material




 Track Listings (2004 Sony Classical Album): Total Time: 124:21


CD1: (62:41)

• 1. 20th Century Fox Fanfare (Alfred Newman, 1954) (0:21)
• 2. Main Title/Ice Planet Hoth (8:08)
• 3. The Wampa's Lair/Vision of Obi-Wan/Snowspeeders Take Flight (8:48)
• 4. The Imperial Probe/Aboard the Executor (4:24)
• 5. The Battle of Hoth (Ion Cannon/Imperial Walkers/Beneath the AT-AT/Escape in the Millenium Falcon) (14:48)
• 6. The Asteroid Field (4:15)
• 7. Arrival on Dagobah (4:52)
• 8. Luke's Nocturnal Visitor (2:35)
• 9. Han Solo and the Princess (3:26)
• 10. Jedi Master Revealed/Mynock Cave (5:44)
• 11. The Training of a Jedi Knight/The Magic Tree (5:15)


CD2: (61:42)

• 1. Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) (3:02)
• 2. Yoda's Theme (3:29)
• 3. Attacking a Star Destroyer (3:04)
• 4. Yoda and the Force (4:02)
• 5. Imperial Starfleet Deployed/City in the Clouds (6:03)
• 6. Lando's Palace (3:53)
• 7. Betrayal at Bespin (3:46)
• 8. Deal with the Dark Lord (2:36)
• 9. Carbon Freeze/Darth Vader's Trap/Departure of Boba Fett (11:50)
• 10. The Clash of Lightsabers (4:17)
• 11. Rescue from Cloud City/Hyperspace (9:08)
• 12. The Rebel Fleet/End Title (6:26)




 Track Listings (2007 Sony Corellian Edition): Total Time: 54:57


• 1. The Phantom Menace: Star Wars Main Title and The Arrival at Naboo (2:56)
• 2. The Phantom Menace: The Flag Parade (2:12)
• 3. The Phantom Menace: Qui-Gon's Noble End (3:48)
• 4. Attack of the Clones: Jango's Escape (3:49)
• 5. Attack of the Clones: Yoda and the Younglings (3:57)
• 6. Revenge of the Sith: General Grievous (4:07)
• 7. Revenge of the Sith: Anakin's Dark Deeds (4:05)
• 8. A New Hope: Imperial Attack (6:45)
• 9. A New Hope: Ben Kenobi's Death/TIE Fighter Attack (3:55)
• 10. The Empire Strikes Back: Yoda and the Force (4:06)
• 11. The Empire Strikes Back: The Clash of Lightsabers (4:10)
• 12. Return of the Jedi: Sail Barge Assault (5:05)
• 13. Return of the Jedi: End Title (6:04)




 Track Listings (2007 Sony 30th Ann. Edition): Total Time: 124:23


CD3: (62:41)

• 1. 20th Century Fox Fanfare (Alfred Newman, 1954) (0:21)
• 2. Main Title/Ice Planet Hoth (8:08)
• 3. The Wampa's Lair/Vision of Obi-Wan/Snowspeeders Take Flight (8:48)
• 4. The Imperial Probe/Aboard the Executor (4:24)
• 5. The Battle of Hoth (Ion Cannon/Imperial Walkers/Beneath the AT-AT/Escape in the Millenium Falcon) (14:48)
• 6. The Asteroid Field (4:15)
• 7. Arrival on Dagobah (4:52)
• 8. Luke's Nocturnal Visitor (2:35)
• 9. Han Solo and the Princess (3:26)
• 10. Jedi Master Revealed/Mynock Cave (5:44)
• 11. The Training of a Jedi Knight/The Magic Tree (5:15)


CD4: (61:42)

• 1. Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) (3:02)
• 2. Yoda's Theme (3:29)
• 3. Attacking a Star Destroyer (3:04)
• 4. Yoda and the Force (4:02)
• 5. Imperial Starfleet Deployed/City in the Clouds (6:03)
• 6. Lando's Palace (3:53)
• 7. Betrayal at Bespin (3:46)
• 8. Deal with the Dark Lord (2:36)
• 9. Carbon Freeze/Darth Vader's Trap/Departure of Boba Fett (11:50)
• 10. The Clash of Lightsabers (4:17)
• 11. Rescue from Cloud City/Hyperspace (9:08)
• 12. The Rebel Fleet/End Title (6:26)


CD7: (54:57, 8:16 from The Empire Strikes Back)

• 1. The Phantom Menace: Star Wars Main Title and The Arrival at Naboo (2:56)
• 2. The Phantom Menace: The Flag Parade (2:12)
• 3. The Phantom Menace: Qui-Gon's Noble End (3:48)
• 4. Attack of the Clones: Jango's Escape (3:49)
• 5. Attack of the Clones: Yoda and the Younglings (3:57)
• 6. Revenge of the Sith: General Grievous (4:07)
• 7. Revenge of the Sith: Anakin's Dark Deeds (4:05)
• 8. A New Hope: Imperial Attack (6:45)
• 9. A New Hope: Ben Kenobi's Death/TIE Fighter Attack (3:55)
• 10. The Empire Strikes Back: Yoda and the Force (4:06)
• 11. The Empire Strikes Back: The Clash of Lightsabers (4:10)
• 12. Return of the Jedi: Sail Barge Assault (5:05)
• 13. Return of the Jedi: End Title (6:04)

(total time only reflects unique material from The Empire Strikes Back)





 Notes and Quotes:  


The 1985 Polydor album contains no information about the film, score, or recording. The 1992 Varèse Sarabande Gerhardt product contains notes from both Robert Townson and John Williams, as well as multiple color pictures of the composer at work on the score. The 1993 Fox Anthology has extensive notes and pictorials in an oversized booklet with information written by John Williams, Nicholas Meyer, and Lukas Kendall. The 1997 RCA Special Edition albums with the black book format include extensive notation from album arranger Michael Matessino regarding the film, score as a whole, and each cue. A recording log for Star Wars in this 1997 album also includes information about each take. The 1997 RCA Special Edition slimline format lacks the same level of detail. The 2004 Sony Classical products (available both as a set and individually) include a fold-out poster, but sadly no extra information about the film or score. The packaging of Sony Classical's 2007 "Corellian Edition" is minimal, though the label's "30th Anniversary Collector's Edition" includes the original LP packaging for each score and a bonus CD-ROM with additional material. The detailed Matessino notes about the scores are once again missing from the 2007 products.





   
  All artwork and sound clips from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back are Copyright © 1985, 1992, 1993, 1997, 2004, 2007, Polydor/Polygram, Varèse Sarabande (Gerhardt), 20th Century Fox (Anthology), RCA Victor (Special Edition), RCA Victor (S.E. Re-Pressing), Sony Classical (Individual and Set), Sony Classical (Corellian Edition), Sony Classical (30th Ann. Edition). The reviews and other textual content contained on the filmtracks.com site may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of Filmtracks Publications. Audio clips can be heard using RealPlayer but cannot be redistributed without the label's expressed written consent. Page created 1/27/97 and last updated 9/1/11. Review Version 5.1 (PHP). Copyright © 1997-2013, Christian Clemmensen (Filmtracks Publications). All rights reserved.