November 2000 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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The Adventures of Conan.
Sword and Sorcery Spectacular
 Music for Universal Studios Live Action Stage Show at their Theme Park
 SUPER TRACKS STCD 100 [24:38]
purchae rom

First an explanation of the very short playing time of this CD. This was music specially composed by Poledouris for the 20 minute presentation at the Universal Theme Park based on the highly popular Conan films. There are only two tracks. The first has the music subordinated to a smoky, muscular narration of a Conan adventure complete with sound effects that include roaring monsters. Thankfully it is the shorter of the two cues for with repetition it quickly palls (although I am sure the kids will want to play it to death).

The second track is devoted to Poledouris's specially composed music, performed by the London Studio Symphony Orchestra and Voices (presumably a contract ensemble). It begins with a reference to the Universal Fanfare and is full of heroic sweep, excitement and exotic imagery. There is a nice lilting waltz for the romantic interest and one can detect homage to both Rozsa and Herrmann although this is undoubtedly Poledouris, written in the spirit of his original Conan scores. His somewhat Wagnerian style manifests itself most strongly in his heavier, darker material for the villains; those dark riders with their heavy armour and grotesque headgear. This music is wild and primitive indeed. As usual he employs a supporting chorus in parts of the score and there is a highly dramatic climactic effect employing vast swirls and rich glissandi.

All Poledouris fans will appreciate this album that is if they can wrestle it from the kids!

Ian Lace


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