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May - July 2015
7/18/15 Pas de Deux   (James Horner)
All New Review
Buy it... if you seek what essentially amounts to a 28-minute bonus James Horner score to appreciate after his death, the composer's predictable stylistic mannerisms beautifully expressed by the solo and ensemble performers.
Avoid it... if you expect to hear traditional thematic development equal to a film score or more than pensive, meandering material akin to a light 1990's drama for Horner until the rousing five-minute conclusion.
6/23/15 James Horner dies at 61 in plane crash
While no official press release was issued regarding the crash of one of composer James Horner's personal aircraft within the first 24 hours of the accident, all sources indicated that Horner himself died in the wreck near Santa Barbara, California. For those who have long visited Filmtracks, memory will recall that this website started as a simple one-page tribute to the composer in early 1996 before becoming a generalized soundtrack site. For me, personally, it was the release of Glory in 1989 that greatly contributed to my discovery of film music at the age of 13. This loss is unimaginable, especially at a time when Horner had just returned from a relative lull in his career to write five new scores and a concert piece before commencing work on the Avatar sequels. For an overview of his career, visit Filmtracks' James Horner Tribute and share your best memories of his music at the Scoreboard.

-- Christian Clemmensen, Filmtracks owner and editor
6/15/15 The Little Mermaid   (Alan Menken)
Updated Review, With Additional Album
Buy it... if you are one of the few remaining fans of musicals who hasn't already formed a polarized opinion about this film, because its main ballad and two calypso songs alone are cinematic classics.
Avoid it... if you've never been impressed with Alan Menken's superior and equally awarded works for the subsequent Beauty and the Beast and Aladdin, the seeds of which clearly evident in especially the score here.
6/8/15 Wolf Totem   (James Horner)
All New Review
Buy it... if you have always wondered what Dances With Wolves would have sounded like with a James Horner score, this epic and melodic work very much an equivalent to the classic John Barry work in Horner's own musical voice.
Avoid it... if you expect Horner to provide any single ingredient that you have not heard before in his career, a reality that makes this score yet another "name the reference" quiz for this enthusiasts and detractors.
5/28/15 Falling Down   (James Newton Howard)
Updated Review, With Additional Album
Buy it... on the 1997 pseudo-bootleg CD only if you're prepared for substandard sound quality and are familiar with the five beautiful minutes of Flatliners that highlight the product.
Avoid it... on either available album presentation of the competent but largely unsustainable score for Falling Down, the less engaging of the pair of scores on the 1997 product.
5/18/15 King Solomon's Mines   (Jerry Goldsmith)
Updated Review, With Additional Album
Buy it... if you own and love Jerry Goldsmith's very similarly rendered score for Supergirl, though while King Solomon's Mines shares the same lofty, enthusiastic spirit of adventure, it bubbles along without the obnoxious electronics of the previous score.
Avoid it... if you have little tolerance for scores that cannot decide whether to treat the subject matter seriously or like a parody, for King Solomon's Mines could be too cheeky in its overly positive tone for some listeners to appreciate its otherwise decent constructs.
5/12/15 Fedora   (Miklós Rózsa)
Updated Review, With Additional Album
Buy it... without hesitation on either rare CD pressing if you are a Miklós Rózsa collector and wish to hear his trademark, nostalgic 1940's style in superior sound quality during the final years of his career.
Avoid it... if the style of Rózsa's Golden Age romanticism for a badly misplaced late-1970's film doesn't compute with your digital era ears, or if your interest in the album is too casual to justify the price of either collectible album.
5/3/15 Gorky Park   (James Horner)
Updated Review, With Additional Album
Buy it... if you groove to James Horner's style of drum pads and synthetic rhythms in Commando and could tolerate an earlier, more dissonant and brutally raw variation on that distinctive sound.
Avoid it... if extended performances of the alluring orchestral love theme in this work are your primary target, for they occupy only a quarter of the score's otherwise tedious running time.
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rewritten or redistributed without the prior written authority of Christian Clemmensen at Filmtracks Publications. Page created 5/2/15 and last updated 5/30/15.
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