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Comments about the soundtrack for The Dark Knight Rises (Hans Zimmer/Various)

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Re: always use one orchestrator per ostinato
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• Posted by: Flo
• Date: Wednesday, July 18, 2012, at 4:27 a.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: Re: always use one orchestrator per ostinato (cs^tbl)

> Elliot Goldenthal used 16 horns and 8 trombones on Final Fantasy.. But
> yeah, E.G., with all his incidental Avant-garde quirks, demands far more
> orchestration respect from me than uncle Hans does.

Yeah, Final Fantasy was a total brass overkill. But the music was awesome! Elliot Goldenthal has a very distinct style and I like it a lot, going way back to his Pet Sematary soundtrack (it's a little disjointed tho).

> Either way, with - say - 4 horns you can choose to create one
> "fat" tutti note *or* a chord with solo horns. Whether you think
> these solo horns sound fat or thin is an arbitrary discussion, but at
> least there is a tonal difference. Utilizing more horns means you can
> create chords with these "fat" tutti constructions. This may be
> the sole reason for uncle Hans to pick oodles o' brass players.

Yes, i understand, but still, he could double them in the recording process, since he's gonna tweak on the recording till the sound like synth anyhow. On the other hand it's nice of him to give money to a large number of musicians .

> So, where is the difference with other composers? First, as a listener you
> may perceive 4 horns creating a chord not as thin, so you won't hear any
> issue when 'only' 4 horns are used - even if there *is* a tonal
> difference. Even better; tutti horns playing pianissimo sound more
> anonymous than solo fortissimo horns, and well whatdayaknow, 'anonymous'
> was just the term I found for TDKR!

Anonymous is the term I was looking for. I have that feeling with a lot of RC scores lately. There are some nice ideas here and there, but they are never developed differently. Reading reviews over at amazon I have the feeling people are having trouble noticing a theme when it is orchestrated or played differently. So for instance the Transformers theme has always to be played in the same key with the exact same instrumentation as otherwise people would have trouble hearing it. As ridiculous as that may sound ...

> Secondly, a composer may choose to use tutti sections of horns, trumpets
> and trombones to form chords.

> Thirdly, other composers may choose to add specific woodwinds to beef up
> solo brass instruments, I'd think of bassoons and clarinets. I'm not quite
> convinced the RemoteControl-formula uses those (or any other) woodwinds
> often.

Again, thanks for elaborating on that. I know a bit of orchestrating myself and when to add this or that, but it's far from academic knowledge unfortunately. Some RC scores would definately benefit from having woodwinds. Also with their obsession of the lower registers, I wonder why they are not using contra bassoons and contra bass clarinets, since these are some of the lowest instruments in an orchestra, plus they can have a very eerie and haunting sound. Zimmer used a contra bassoon in Sherlock Holmes 2 and it worked pretty well... But then nowadays a lot of people think he reinvented the wheel by being so genius as to "bring back" woodwinds into modern scoring .... Case closed.

> Either way, what strikes me as odd is that this RC brass sound isn't even
> that complex, it's more like having an acoustic synthesizer, played as
> a synthesizer
. And then I think: 'ok, why bother hiring brass
> instruments in the first place?' Go with samples or decent synths..

Exactly my thought! Exactly!!!!

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