Friday, March 26, 2010

Jay's Playlist: How to Train Your Dragon

Welcome to my playlist, where I discuss the music which is currently entertaining me. Below you will find a video, press play to begin the song and then read my feelings on the album.

Today's album is the soundtrack to How to Train Your Dragon:

I don't promote soundtracks soon after hearing them for the first time in a movie because too often a good movie clouds my long term judgment on a soundtrack. I may love the soundtrack due to the high of seeing the movie but after a few weeks stop listening to it entirely because, in the end, it really wasn't that memorable. This is not the case for How to Train Your Dragon (at least I hope not). I've been a fan of John Powell since hearing his Face/Off score in 1997 (and which is still used for background music in trailers) but his newest work surpasses everything he has written before. From his "flying (and falling) through the sky" music linked above to the friendship theme, below, which brought a tear to my eye, to his romantic flight theme, last one, John demonstrates his ability to accent the emotions in a scene without overtaking the visuals with bombastic hits (as in Face/Off). The friend theme below slowly builds until the pivotal moment where the two character finally connect and at that moment, when many composers would insert large hit to emphasize the scene, Powell completely drops the music to a whisper and lets the visuals tell the story on their own.

One odd design choice for the film was the use of Scottish actors for the role of the vikings. It never really makes since, but the soundtrack does keep to the Scottish theme throughout, even the the romantic theme below:

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