Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
An American Tail: Fievel Goes West - Music From The Motion Picture Soundtrack
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks
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The Music Behind The Magic....
C. Pol | Ontario, Canada | 08/11/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"An American Tail is perhaps Speilberg's greatest legacy in the animation industry. The first part was a huge success, and the second part is no exception. The movie itself is full of action, humour, adventure and so much more. In addition, it has a steller soundtrack to accompany the movie. The disc starts off with Linda Ronstadt singing "Dreams To Dream." This is truly a beautiful peace of music that is quite soulful. Fans of the movie will recall Tanya singing part of the song. In the movie though, Cathy Cavadini dons the honours of Tanya's singing voice. Some say Cathy does a better job on the song, but to me it's a bit of a tough call. Both excell at what they intend to do.....entertain. "Way Out West" is another catchy pop song that is very singable. The only other vocal track features Cathy singing "The Girl You Left Behind." This song is great toe-tapping, sing-along fun. The remainder of the disc features instrumental work by the great James Horner. Tracks 2, 12, and 13 are excellent Horner-fare, and are simply wonderful. Track 8 is a very lively peace, where as I find Track 9 to resemble the music of Peter And The Wolf. Track 3 has a westerny feel to it, Track 6 is your basic intrumental piece, and Track 10 is a wonderfully soft piece. Lastly, Track 4 is very soothing and melodic, whereas Track 14 is simply phenomenal. It's beautifully melodic, lively, toe-tapping, Happy Trailsy, and so much more. It essentially has bits of everything thrown into it. Perhaps that's what makes it the most unique track on the album. Overall, this disc is simply awesome. James Horner is perhaps one of the two best film-score composers in the industry today (the other one is John Williams). I highly recommend this disc, as it can be enjoyed by almost anybody. The music here is so varied, everybody should find some piece of Fievel-lore they can enjoy. If not, give it a second try, because with Fievel and Horner's music, you have the one-two punch that very few can withstand."
Oscar Worthy. So, so Oscar worthy
A. McLellan | Australia | 11/29/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"How this album, or the original OST, never won an Oscar is just beyond me. Especially with the phenominal success of the original song 'Somewhere Out There'. Well, James Horner didn't win anything until 1998 with his awesome music for 'Titanic', but still here you have his greatest work. I like to consider both the An American Tail soundtracks as one, and that's how they look in my 'An American Tail' playlist... But since this is technically only the soundtrack for the 2nd movie, I shall focus on that.
1. 'Dreams to Dream': Well this is my favourite song of all time, so my judgment may be a little bit flawed. It's not just the song, it's the tune. Something very soulful is going on there. It's the kind of music you listen to intensely sometimes because you feel like there's something there that you just can't quite pick up on. Linda Ronsdadt does a great job singing this, but sometimes I yearn to hear the Celine Dion version that was recorded before the film's release.
2. 'An American Tail Overture': To me, this is sort of like a: "Hello, remember us? We're the music from the original, only improved! And here's a few more melodies you might want to remember for the rest of the movie". For anyone who gets chills from the main theme of these movies, well there's a much nicer violin version at the very beginning, but this track becomes much happier and upbeat than the very moving but subsequently heartbreaking music of the first album. You've got Russian-esque themes mixing well with sudden festive Western melodies. It's one of the best tracks on the album.
3. 'Cat Rumble': I never really liked this until recently, but when you come down to it there's a lot to admire about this long piece. It starts out crazy, and then becomes a sort of jazz-style epic. My favourite part of this would have to be from 1:51 to 2:19. It's just fantastic, worth repeating over and over. There's so much there, so many hidden tunes that gel together perfectly. It's upbeat and still very moving. What Horner does best.
4. 'Heading Out West': This track begins suddenly as it's continuing on from 'Cat Rumble'. Far more subdued, going back to the Russian music. Even when the Western feel comes back into it, it's not as intense as in track 2, it's quieter but very beautiful. When the harmonicas and strings bring in the musical-brother of the main theme, it's amazing. Again, music like this makes me really quite sad that Horner doesn't create magic anymore. The only problem with this track is that it ends very suddenly, as if rushed.
5. 'Way out West': I don't really like this track, it's a little bit too silly. It's the equivalent of 'There Are No Cats In America', sort of, but nowhere near as good. I do get a laugh from the voice-over singing: "No Garbage and No Wailwoads Clogging Up The Air", but that's pretty much all that's desirable here. The orchestration is great though.
6. 'Green River/Trek Through The Deseser': The beginning is a nice, slow, drawn out version of the main theme, that then shifts into Western mode. This is a mystical sounding track, with the Tarantula theme coming into effect, as well as a beautiful piano piece at 2:58 that accompanies the tune of 'Way Out West' again. The end is hilarious if you've seen the movie, knowing perfectly well what is going on in those moments.
7. 'Dreams to Dream (Tanya's Version)': I am one of those people who thinks this version is better than the professional version. Something about Cathy Cavadini's voice just does it for me. This is the most beautiful song I've ever heard. I have no idea why it wasn't nominated for an Oscar. I think it's better than 'Somewhere Out There', although not in the adorable factor. This is just far more powerful a message. Plus I don't like in the original how the bridge is in a different key. It thwarts the attempts for the chorus to soar like it does here. Just a perfect song. Hauntingly beautiful.
8. 'Building A New Town': James Horner makes whistling beautiful here. He also brings a much-needed boost in energy with the themes returning in trumpet and strings mode. It's slightly fast forwarded, but in a good way. It even brings back the 'Somewhere Out There' theme. Great.
9. 'Sacred Mountain': Since I got this album years before the original, I always thought this was an odd little track as it has nothing to do with any of the other themes. But now I realise it is the same theme as 'The Storm', in which Fievel finds himself in danger. Here he finds himself being hunted by night creatures, and you can certainly feel the trouble in this stirring and creepy piece that would easily accompany a horror movie like 'Sleepy Hollow' perfectly. The end
10. 'Reminiscing': I can't listen to this without crying, since I stupidly attached this song to a person who died. It is perhaps the best version of 'Dreams to Dream' and showcases the simple beauty of the melody. It's heartbreaking in itself and captures some hidden sadness that doesn't show in the film. But it does reveal the yearning Tanya has to be who she wants to be, if you so choose to look at it like that. It's so beautiful. There are no words to describe it. I wish it were longer.
11. 'The Girl Left Behind' : It's silly, really, but it's catchy. Very catchy. I love the chorus with the men singing. Cathy Cavadini does wonders with a song that's not really that terrific. It's very fun though, and as usual the orchestration is what to really admire. It's basically the main theme for this sequel, with lyrics. The ending is powerful.
12. 'In Training': I admit by this part of the album I usually skip a few tracks, but upon listening to this more it's another great track and showcases (finally) the happy side to this series aimed at children. There is a beautiful version of the main sequel theme with trumpets that reminds me very much of the main theme from 'Homeward Bound' (but this was made first). Ends on a high note.
13. 'The Shoot Out': The end is coming, and you can feel the tension in this nice little track. It has everything from the Tarantula theme to parts from Cat Rumble. It finally lets lose and is soaring until the very end, bringing with it all the themes you need to hear before the end. I particularly love the cat's theme displayed in sort of train steamer instrument, which is perfect since that is where the character ends up. On a train.
14. 'A New Lan - The Future': Okay, so if it wasn't for Dreams to Dream in all three of its versions, this would be my favourite track. It brings us to an end of not just the movie, but to the whole series (let's ignore the other cheap versions). We get a chance to say goodbye to all the themes, and the characters, while keeping true to the Western settings. It's exactly what the title says. Every single theme is played in this 8 minute extravaganza. It's simply the most amazing piece on the whole album. In fact, better than any largely orchestrated piece of both soundtracks. I particularly like the Dreams to Dream medley, as it's strong and actually finishes unlike in 'Reminiscing'. The final moments are just like the end of the first album, only going that one step further, and being gentler and sort of sad, as if you are saying goodbye to a friend, but it's okay because everything has worked out well.
So there! One of the most beautiful soundtracks in the world. And I really don't kid about this kind of music. If only Horner kept making this kind of music. I'd be content forever, as I'm sure a lot of people would. They just don't make this kind of music anymore."
Another excellent Horner "cover".
A. McLellan | 05/28/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Highly influenced by the style of music contained in Aaron Coplands RODEO (Hoedown in particular), Mr Horner shows again how an average film can be made into an interesting film by use of atmospheric incidental composition. For me this soundtrack would appear in my top 5. (No.1 still being the soundtrack to KRULL. Which was composed incidently...."