MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around 2024
60,000 reviews
... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all Bridge reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing




CD: AmazonUK AmazonUS

Bernard HERRMANN (1911-1975)
The Battle of Neretva - complete score (1969)
The Naked and the Dead – highlights (1958)
Moscow Symphony Orchestra/William T. Stromberg
rec. October 2010, Mosfilm Studio, Moscow, Russia, DDD
Full track-list at end of review
Music reconstruction and preparation by John Morgan, Anna Bonn, William Stromberg

Experience Classicsonline

Herrmann admirers everywhere have been waiting impatiently for this World War II- themed disc. I mentioned it last year in my review of the Chandos Moby Dick project. It now joins TFC’s previous gloriously executed Herrmann discs (review).
This is the first recording of the full version of the score for The Battle of Neretva. It runs to 30 tracks some of which span barely 60 seconds. The original soundtrack was recorded in a much abbreviated form by the composer with the LPO (Southern Cross, Label X, Prelude). It ran to about half an hour of music rather than the current version which comes to little short of twice that duration. The Neretva music is stirring, obstreperous, resolute and grim. This is searingly so in Rout (tr. 6). Herrmann was a magician when it came to evoking - and the vice-like possession of - moods. The orchestra has been swollen by Herrmann with augmented brass and percussion sections. The themes used often have that Russian accent which you can hear for example in The Poem (tr. 5). A more accustomed piece of Herrmann’s irresistible and refrigerated ethereal romance can be heard in Pastorale (tr. 11), Separation (tr. 25) and Riva’s Death (tr. 28). There is lyricism too. It is given that Neapolitan spin in From Italy (tr. 7) and Italian (tr. 26). A sentimental overlay arises in tr. 22 (Danica’s Death) with an unashamedly yearning close-up accordion. The dragging music for The Road (tr. 10) recalls a certain famous Shark theme from Jaws. One of the most atmospherically sinister tracks is that for The Trestle (tr. 14). There the music racks and rattles. Baxians might be forgiven for thinking of Tintagel when they hear Suspense (tr. 15). On the other hand, tried and tested Herrmann fanatics will know Death Hunt (tr. 17) from the same exuberant hue and cry cue from On Dangerous Ground (1951) also revived by Charles Gerhardt for the Classic Film score series and reissued on Sony RCA Red Seal (88697 81264 2). There’s plenty of catastrophic and oppressive material – you can sample The Bridge (tr 28) and the Finale (tr. 29). You are also not spared some brutalised Soviet bombast in End Title (tr. 30). Just remember the jingle, strut and blast of those pastiche Nazi marches in Benjamin Frankel’s Battle of the Bulge music on CPO. It’s but a small goose-step away. The Battle of Neretva was shown recently on Freeview in a rather watery print. This international war spectacular starred Yul Brynner, Curt Jurgens and Orson Welles among many others.
Also included on this great value disc are highlights of Herrmann’s score for the film The Naked and the Dead which starred Cliff Robertson and Raymond Massey. There’s an appositely brash Prelude, an atmospherically shadowy Jungle, a darkly discordant Snake – rather like the spider cue in White Witch Doctor and the Octopus track in Beneath the 12 mile Reef, - a metallic double harp in The Mountain Ledge and a brilliant track called The Fall in which Herrmann imaginatively establishes the mise-en-scène with cascading and tumbling brass writing.
The 32-page exemplary booklet is filled with extensive notes and illustrations by Jim Doherty and Kevin Scott.
Classic Herrmann. Rejoice collectors everywhere! This is a recording project done to an enviable standard.

Rob Barnett

Full Tracklist
Battle of Neretva
Prelude [2:26]
Nazi Attack [2:47]
Retreat [3:23]
Dawn [1:39]
The Poem [0:51]
Rout [1:05]
From Italy [2:46]
The Flag [0:58]
Tanks [1:38]
The Road [5:12]
Pastorale [1:57]
March [1:51]
Grief [1:15]
The Trestle [0:50]
Suspense [1:19]
The Lookout [1:40]
Death Hunt [2:12]
The Bridge [1:30]
The Message [0:57]
Waiting [1:08]
Hunt Scherzo [1:48]
Danica's Death [1:41]
The Front [2:19]
Battle and Fanfares [4:59]
Separation [3:36]
Italian [0:58]
Slow March [2:09]
Riva's Death [1:17]
Finale [2:45]
End Title [1:39]
The Naked and the Dead
Prelude [1:57]
The Jungle [0:56]
The Snake [1:53]
The Buzzards [1:41]
The Grenades [0:24]
The Pass [1:51]
Wilson's Death [0:58]
The Mountain Ledge [1:33]
The Fall [0:48]
The Fog [0:40]
Croft's Death [1:26]
Prayer and Rescue [1:38]
Finale [1:14]






























































Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Past and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.