Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
The Mephisto Waltz: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - Also Featuring Music From The Other
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks
Superior Classics from a Great Composer
René van Os | Beek & Donk Netherlands | 06/17/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In Jerry Goldsmith's long and varied career, many films have come, gone and been forgotten. Both films on this acclaimed and highly anticipated soundtrack release by Varese Sarabande, are films now only known by fans of the genre or fans of the versatile music of the composer. The Mephisto Waltz, a film directed by Paul Wendkos in 1971, dealt with a number of occult themes, such as witchcraft, the transmigration of souls and satanism . Based on the novel by Fred Mustard Stewart, the film told about a journalist, Miles Clarkson, whose admiration for an old musician, Duncan Ely, borders on the excessive. Ely, played manically by Curt Jurgens, recognizes the hands of a great piano player on Clarkson. He befriends his interviewer with more than a casual interest, as Ely knows his life will soon come to an end. Jerry Goldsmith based his score on The Mephisto Waltz by Liszt, and took it from there to very unconventional musical sensations. He basically employed strings, piano and percussion, and added jagged violin solo's for the musical interpretation of Mephistopheles. A number of amplified instruments and bells and gongs add an eery atmosphere to the already very tense musical themes. While thematically Goldsmith's cues are unique in style, the highly tense violin music can be best compared to Bernard Herrmann's Psycho Murder theme, but where Herrmann only used strings, Goldsmith added a lot of uncanny elements and heavy dissonance to simulate the dark goings-on of witches dabbling in the supernatural. The sound quality on this release is superb and the liner notes and artwork are exemplary. A highly recommended score for Goldsmith fans, but perhaps not for all general film music listeners. The Other was a notable film of roughly the same time about twin boys, one good and one evil. The film was directed by Robert Mulligan and received a very touching and lovely main theme, which is offset by the darker side of the boys. Where Mephisto Waltz dabbles a lot with musical dissonance, The Other enjoys a more straightforward musical approach: the rural aspect is almost reminiscent of Goldsmith's music for THE FLIM FLAM MAN, THE WALTONS and the like, while the playfulness of youth is also adequately expressed by joyous and jaunty themes. For the mother of the twins, Goldsmith composed a slightly more melodramatic theme with a somewhat heavier strings section. However, the strings dominate the score once the darkness of the tale sets in. In places one can almost hear a precursor to Goldsmith's mid-seventies masterpiece THE OMEN. Unfortunately, when the film was edited, a lot of Goldsmith's music was omitted and the film died a silent death at the box office. The sound quality is a little less than that of The Mephisto Waltz as there is a little ambient noise on the recording but overall, the sound is quite good. With both of these titles from Goldsmith's past, Varese Sarabande have succeeded in bringing two wonderful scores back to the audiences. My compliments to everyone involved; this Varese release deserves accolades for such a daring undertaking. Amidst all the modern releases of scores and rerecordings, it is a treat to be able to listen to the original recordings for the first time in thirty years."
Bait and switch
Charles H. Levenson | new jersey | 09/23/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"The Mephisto waltz was a favorite Goldsmith score of mine...The film came out in the 1970s,and as far as I remember there was no L.P. soundtrack released for it...When this cd came out I rejoiced,thinking that at long last the pulse-pounding,frightening,brilliant music I heard in the theatre,and continue to enjoy on the VHS tape of the film(as of this writing there is no DVD)would finally be available as a stand-alone score...WRONG !
For starters,the opening credits main title music used in the film and the brief main title cue featured on this disc differ by well over one minute...throughout the film the original Franz List "Mephisto Waltz"is played and employed,both on piano and on violin..on this disc the piano versions are missing...Th"party music"used in the new year's eve scene is absent,as are several fright cues..the list of omissions is startling,given that this recording claims for itself the title of"original soundtrack"..Why bother to put out an alledged"soundtrack"album if,in fact,what you are selling is merely music "inspired by"the film...Sure,Jerry Goldsmith wrote the music,and SOME of it does turn up here,but to call this an original soundtrack is deliberate deception...
As for the music for"The other"it is boring...an extended suite,it has no anchoring themes,no cleverness,nothing notable,nothing that would hook the listener or stay with him/her after hearing the score played..."
"composer of many styles...Goldsmith is in top form"
J. Lovins | Missouri-USA | 06/30/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not many composers around today can do it all...but this man comes to mind ~ Jerry Goldsmith! But let's look at two very different films for our legendary icon to score.From a novel "The Mephisto Waltz" by Fred Mustard Stewart and director Paul Wendkos, this occult thriller has a talented cast ~ Alan Alda, Jacqueline Bisset, Barbara Perkins, Bradford Dillman and William Windom...Bisset's performance is outstanding, ran chills down my spine. Goldsmith's score is brilliant...reeks with demons, supernatural undercurrent, meeting the devil himself...Goldsmith takes possession with his dark and satanic themes.A story "The Other" from Tom Tryon and director Robert Mulligan...with an excellent cast ~ Chris and Martin Udvarnoky (one good and the other evil, you make the choice), Uta Hagen, Diana Muldaur, Victor French, John Ritter and Norman Connolly...spine-tingling as two ten year old twins spread love and terror, all in one film...to add to this good versus evil, Goldsmith is right on cue, giving it his best shot, and as usual...dead-center, a perfect bullseye...this is why Goldsmith is in such demand...a favorite with "film-score-buffs".Hats off to ~ Nick Redman (producer), Bruce Kimmel (executive producer) and Varese Sarabande...for releasing the 1971 and 1972 original soundtracks from an ongoing "Fox Classic Series"...this album features the legendary music man ~ Jerry Goldsmith!You might try other albums from Varese Sarabande, all worthy of a good listen ~ "Rudy" (VSD-5446)..."The Final Conflict" (VSD-5282)..."Lionheart" (VSD-5484)..."In Session:A Film Music Celebration" (302-066-225-2)..."Patton/Tora!Tora!Tora!" (VSD-5796).... Total Time: 55:57 on 13 Tracks ~ Varese Sarabande VSD-5851 ~ (1997)"