The Second Disc

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Archive for August 23rd, 2011

UPDATED 8/23: Ben Folds Unfolds Box Set Track List For “Retrospective”

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Ben Folds’ first proper album, 1995’s Ben Folds Five, was named for his band. And although Alanis Morissette had her breakthrough hit that same year with “Ironic,” I’ll put money down that nobody was more ironic that year than Ben Folds. After all, there were only three members of this Ben Folds Five! The pianist/singer/songwriter wore his sensibilities on his sleeve, and that slightly skewed – and yes, ironic – worldview has served him well over the years. “Underground,” off that first album, smirked at the hipsters of the alternative scene, but that was the very scene in which the musician was gaining notice.

The Ben Folds “sound” was in place on that first release, making a stew out of Billy Joel, Todd Rundgren and Joe Jackson; in other words, power-pop with a Tin Pan Alley emphasis on melody and clear storytelling. Based on his humor, I’d even venture to say that a little Frank Zappa was in there!  Sure, Folds’ lyrics were often profane, and resonated greatly with his youthful audience, especially during his live shows which boasted all of the raw power of punk. The Five was a breath of fresh air surrounded by the often-angst-ridden music of the era.  Folds’ dedication to classic, richly melodic songcraft has served him well, and the one-time “underground” college-circuit favorite is now so mainstream that he’s being celebrated by Legacy Recordings with the October 11 release of The Best Imitation Of Myself: A Retrospective (1995-2011).

Best Imitation of Myself will be offered as a single-disc compilation or a three-disc set containing demos, studio outtakes, alternate mixes and live tracks. Best of all, three new tracks have reunited Folds with Robert Sledge and Darren Jessee, the other two-thirds of the Five, for their first studio work together in over a decade. One of their new songs, “House,” will be available on the single CD, while all three can be found on the deluxe edition. In other words, the considerable vault of Mr. Folds – from his rough-around-the-edges early songs to the mature, often yearning compositions that pepper his latter-day efforts – has been opened! 

Just what will you find?  Hit the jump, friends!  We’ve updated in BOLD with new information as to where you can hear a stream of the new Ben Folds Five reunion track “House,” and we’ve got more details on the upcoming Ben Folds ’55’ Vault! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 23, 2011 at 15:52

Intrada, Disney Reach a “Hole” New World!

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You know how it goes: When you wish upon a star…your dreams come true!  Well, if that’s not always quite so cut-and-dried in the real world, it certainly happened over the past couple of days in the film score and catalogue music world!   I’m recently returned from Anaheim, California and the second-ever D23 Expo, where thousands of fans and collectors descended on the Anaheim Convention Center to spend a weekend immersed in all things Disney.   On Friday, I shared some of our personal wishes for future releases in the Walt Disney Records/Intrada series of CD releases.  Well, it would take a major title to follow the first issue in the series, Michael Giacchino’s Oscar-winning score to Up.  And that major title has arrived!  Enter…The Black Hole!

John Barry’s score to the 1979 sci-fi flick The Black Hole topped my wish list.  The composer renowned for both the cutting-edge spy suspense of the James Bond series and the lush romanticism of films like Somewhere in Time and Out of Africa created a supremely atmospheric, eerie and altogether captivating musical tapestry for the film, of which only a half-hour or so was preserved on a heavily-truncated Disneyland Records LP.  The Disney/Intrada team revealed a Special Edition of The Black Hole last night, and it boasts every note of Barry’s magnificent music in all its grandeur.  Barry’s score expertly matched the expansive canvas of director Gary Nelson and a star-filled cast boasting talents like Anthony Perkins, Maximilian Schell and Ernest Borgnine; Nelson’s film pushed the boundaries of both special effects and adult themes at the then-Walt Disney Productions.

Remastered in stereo from the original 32-track masters, the new The Black Hole includes all selections from that original LP plus over 20 minutes of never-before-released material, presented in film order.  As Intrada notes in its description, Barry’s score offers “[an] exciting overture; swirling main title motifs are memorable but equally fun are numerous devices literally spotlighting favorite signatures of composer: melodic ideas played in one register by French horns, then another register by trumpets; massive block minor chords for suspense; repeating rhythmic ideas generating action; [and] many other musical trademarks.”

This 24-track edition has been brought to fruition by producer Randy Thornton, and the booklet contains liner notes by film score historian (and Barry expert) Jeff Bond plus Disney’s original campaign artwork, production stills, and full color shots of the legendary composer at recording sessions.  The striking Disneyland Records LP jacket artwork has been preserved on the new CD, as well, as you can see above.  Yes, friends, this is one Special Edition that is living up to the word “special,” for sure!

The Black Hole is shipping now, and is an unlimited edition from Disney and Intrada.  You’ll find an order link plus the complete track listing with discographical annotation.  Please keep letting us know which titles you’d like to see get the Intrada/Disney treatment next.  We’re all ears! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 23, 2011 at 14:47

FSM Releases Vintage Bernstein, Williams from the Vaults

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As if Intrada’s new releases weren’t exciting enough (more on that in our next post!), Film Score Monthly yesterday announced two major archival releases from two of filmdom’s most beloved composers. Elmer Bernstein’s score to The Great Santini (1979) and John Williams’ soundtrack to Not with My Wife, You Don’t! (1966) both make their CD debuts from the label.

At the time of The Great Santini‘s release, Bernstein had done some great, if slightly thankless, work on comedies like Animal House and Airplane! With Santini, an adaptation of a Pat Conroy novel about a Marine pilot and his family, the composer was able to return to the thematic, dramatic scores that scholarly score fans love him for.

The Williams title – a screwy score to a George C. Scott/Tony Curtis comedy whose score was credited to “Johnny Williams,” the famed composer’s early moniker – may cause longtime FSM fans to see double. While the label released music from the film before in 2006, it was the original soundtrack LP; this release presents the original film score in its entirety, down to instrumental versions of some of the great tunes Williams composed for the film with no less than lyricist Johnny Mercer!

Not with My Wife, You Don’t! is limited to 3,000 copies, while Santini tops out at half of that. Both can be ordered (and the track lists for both can be viewed) after the jump.

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Written by Mike Duquette

August 23, 2011 at 12:33

Posted in News, Reissues, Soundtracks

Spin the Black Circle: “PJ20” Soundtrack to Feature Live Cuts, Unreleased Demos

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Last week, Joe reported that the double-disc soundtrack to Pearl Jam’s upcoming documentary would be released on September 20. Thanks to our friends at Ultimate Classic Rock, we now have a track list to go with the set.

The double-disc set, tied to the band’s new Cameron Crowe-directed film chronicling the band’s two decades together, is primarily comprised of live cuts from the band’s history, from early performances in Seattle before the release of the group’s landmark debut Ten to current arena-fillers around the world. Additionally, nine unreleased demos and outtakes will also be included, including one from the band’s famous early iteration/alter ego Temple of the Dog, with Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell on lead vocals.

Check out the track list after the
jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

August 23, 2011 at 11:02