Search - Danny Elfman :: Planet of the Apes

Planet of the Apes
Danny Elfman
Planet of the Apes
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
  •  Track Listings (15) - Disc #1

The original 1968 Planet of the Apes inspired a whole cycle of sequels, a television series, and this modern Tim Burton revamp. It also contained one of sci-fi's most original and haunting scores, composed by the great Jer...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Danny Elfman
Title: Planet of the Apes
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 3
Label: Sony
Original Release Date: 7/27/2001
Re-Release Date: 7/24/2001
Album Type: Soundtrack
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 696998966628, 5099708966621

The original 1968 Planet of the Apes inspired a whole cycle of sequels, a television series, and this modern Tim Burton revamp. It also contained one of sci-fi's most original and haunting scores, composed by the great Jerry Goldsmith. In scoring his dark take on the story, Burton again turned the reigns over to longtime collaborator Danny Elfman, who promptly pays tribute to Goldsmith in the "Main Titles" (echoing the original's ethereal, descending glissandos), then sets about conjuring a marauding orchestral action score that's as fierce as it is relentless. With echoes of the dramatic tension of his Batman scores for Burton, this flourish-filled simian symphony nonetheless seems distinctly melody-challenged; not a bad thing per se in the genre, but still a far cry from Goldsmith's masterful, spare balance of dynamics and color. "The Return" offers up some respite from the Sturm und Drang but then succumbs to the era's favorite classical rip-off, er, "tribute"--Holst's Mars, the Bringer of War--while the percussion-driven "Main Title Deconstruction" grandly succeeds on more Goldsmithian terms. DJ-king-cum-modern-film-scorer Paul Oakenfold (Swordfish) concludes the album with a fresh, compelling mix of music and dialogue that gives Elfman his due and then some; a more proactive collaboration offers promise. -Jerry McCulley

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CD Reviews

A few jewels found amoung lots of noise | Los Angeles, CA | 07/24/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)

"First, let me go on record to say that Danny Elfman is my idol (he says without shame) and is basically the reason I got into music in the first place. I consider him an unrecognized musical genious. And I'm serious about this. I own almost every album he's released.Unfortunately, I find again to be less than overly thrilled with this latest effort, and I've finely figured out why. It's too much. Way too much. Good taste is all but discarded in favor of loud musical broo-ha-ha. This album is exteremly loud, testosterone pumping dissonance, with little in the way of sensitivity or musical understanding.It used to be, for instance with Mission: Impossible (my controversial pick for Danny Elfman's best score ever) that by the time he got to this level of over-the-top musical excitement, as in on the train at the end of the movie, he had earned it. We were ready for it, and when the full orchestral and sampled percussive forces are unleased it's unstoppable. But here, we get this from the very start. By about the fourth track, there is no where else for the music to go, and the album suffers from boredom. Loud boredom it's true, but it's still boredom.In my opinion this worked a lot better in Sleepy Hollow (and granted this score may be just what the movie ordered- we will see) probably because it was almost all accoustic so the musicians we're able to enjoy it. Here, they were probably passing out from exhaustion. Furthermore, the loudness and over-sampling and just blatant action score adrenaline masks what real substance there may be. It's like hyping something way up, blowing it way out of proportion, obscuring whether there really was anything there to begin with. I think Sleepy Hollow has something, a seed of brilliance, and Mission: Impossible is incredible. Here it's very hard to say.That said, track 4- the Hunt- must be heard to be believed. It's astounding. I just wish there was greater contrast to it elsewhere in the album. Also worth note is the Main title, and more so the Main Title Deconstruction. I also firmly appreciate track 11, Preparing for Battle, in which- despite its extremely thick orchestration and purcussive sounds- you can still here what makes this Danny Elfman, and why he is an extremely skilled composer. The counterpoint is exquisite, if in danger of being lost to the over-the-top standard Hollywood mixing job. However, with these tracks you can hear what makes this Danny Elfman and not another over-the-top Hollywood action [...](cough-cough-zimmer-cough). Elfman also gets his usual mileage out of a simple three note motive- nobody can do it better.In conclusion, worth buying for the fan and for the adrenaline dose, not as good a score as Sleepy Hollow or Simple Plan (his most recent best), but still far and away better than his embarrassing Instinct and Proof of Life."
A Pleasant Mix of Opposing Sounds
Zachary S. Houp | Fleetwood, PA USA | 02/27/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)

"When the score for the re-imagined version of Planet of the Apes starts playing on your speakers, it can easily be a frightening experience. It is wild, it is harsh, it is loud, it is schizophrenic, it is seemingly disorganized. Then you listen some more. You go through a few tracks, some are like the opening, others are subtler--maybe not much, but at least the percussion takes a break. By the end of the album, however, there is an overall unity, exuberance, an underlying thematic quality that somehow turns this oppressive score into a success. Don't ask me how; just take my word for it. Since Danny Elfman came onto the film-scoring scene, he has been relatively diverse. He started silly, became thematically dramatic, then slipped into obscure minimalism. Planet of the Apes represents a new stage, or perhaps a whole new style completely.Even with the first track, despite my hesitations to immerse myself in the style, I was overjoyed with what Elfman had done with this score. For anyone familiar with Jerry Goldsmith's work on the original, there is no dispute that it was unique--to simply use the word unique is to deprive it of the vulgarity it cherishes. If I said that Elfman's score comes across as initially oppressive, then Goldsmith's is like a recording of nails on a chalkboard played to the tune of painful infant screams. For this reason, the original score has achieved a lot of respect for its originality and the harsh way it coupled with the plot of the story. For myself, I need something that at least resembles music, before I stick it in a CD player. Was Goldsmith's score appropriate? Yes! Was it listenable? No! Does Elfman make up for this? Indeed!Elfman's score can easily be sectioned into two opposing categories: Percussive pounding and simple strings. In the end, both are effective and a welcome listen. There is surprisingly little thematic material, a decision not wholly inconsistent with Elfman's minimalist period, but certainly uncharacteristic of his Burton scores. In the end, however it isn't needed, because the cohesion lies in the rhythms and beats. It has always been my opinion that Elfman has achieved his composing fame most persistently for his ability to use percussion to new advantage, perhaps a byproduct of his Oingo Boingo years. Therefore, whenever he engages in a rowdy excerpt of high-pounding percussion, it succeeds beyond one's expectations for such a limited aural experience.This score certainly, however, would have failed, were it only an hour of percussion. Elfman uses it to his advantage, but never overdoes it. If rhythmic percussion categorizes the militaristic apes and action sequences, then the intermittent, subtler passages are seemingly intentional references to a more space-oriented sci-fi genre. To this effect, it is a provocative contradiction to the setting of the story, the lush ape city and the dusty wastelands that out lie it. In the end, however, it creates a style and a mood that captures the listener's interest more wholly then if Elfman had slumped into the simple underscore that a lesser composer would have been content with. It is small additions like this that make for a unique and ultimately entertaining experience.In conclusion, Planet of the Apes, as a listenable score if not as a film, exceeds its predecessor and combines two contradictory styles--one brash and unrelenting, the other subtle and magical--to form an overall whole that would have failed without the opposing polarities of these two sounds. One will undoubtedly be put off at first by the maddening sounds that escape the speakers, but be patient: there is an interesting and unusual score here that will not fail to entertain. This is Elfman at his most revolutionary, combining elements that don't seem inappropriate for the film, but utilizing them in ways never before explored."
Planet Of The Apes - 2001 Rules!!!
Zachary S. Houp | 08/22/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Danny Elfman, in MY opinion, was the perfect choice to score the new version of The Planet of the Apes. Why? Because his style fits this kind of film.The main title is is superb.It starts out slow but becomes agrressive.When you hear it you think this is the most top notch/epic sounding main theme.Ape Suite #1 has alot of pounding drums and becomes very emotinal.Deep Space Launch is very action packed.You can just picture Leo Davidson going through the worm hole.The Hunt statrs out jungle sounding and all of of this drum pounding,synth music starts.It sounds like Elfman brought everything to this track except the sink!The Hunt plays a very big part in the film.Branding The Herd is a short but excellent track with great synth and violins playing.The Dirty Deed debuts General Thade`s theme.It is a emotinal but haunting theme.I don`t know how Elfman came up with it.Its one of the greatest I have ever heard. Escape from Ape City/The Legend is a bit emotinal for a moment but becomes action.At around the three minute mark you can just picture Charleton Heston telling Thade the truth,listen for the church bells.Ape Suite #2 start off with a bang.This is actully part of the end credits.It is so exstodenary,it starts out with stringS then horns and then gets into stronger strings and stronger horns and a rare sounding horn with metal beating in the backround.This track here is worth the price of the CD.By hearing Old Flames you can can see the conversation with Ari and Thade.Thade Goes Ape is,well this track goes ape.By hearing this you can just see the army of the apes marching!Its so cool.Preparing For Battle is a great action que.It just plows right along with horns and horns and more horns.It also has a whistle instrument that sound so neat.The Battle Begins is great,is flows with great action music.This is quite full of action and you hear Thade`s them again and you also hear agressive but low sounding horns in the backround in 4:01 of the 12th track.The end of the track is sad because you can picture Thade in the space craft all alone.I get tears listening to it.The Return is emotinal for the first part of the seven minute track but when the action starts you can just visualize Leo going back through the worm hole and well I don`t want to spoil it for you but Elfman captured this quite well with the choir in the backround.Main Title Deconstruction is a remix of the main title.It very similar but slightly longer than it brother track."Rule The Planet Remix" is by Paul Oakenfold.It has dialogue in it which makes it special.I just like how the track plays out and completes the album.Overall I just adore this this album.Its argueably Danny Elfman`s greatest score to date.The only complaint I have is that the entire 75 minutes of score is not on the album. I have played Batman and others by Elfman and will be listening to the Planet of the Apes for a very long time to come.So if you are a Planet Of The Apes fan,a score fan,a fan of Danny Elfman of just a fan music in general then this is your new listening experience to enjoy!"