Saturday, August 20, 2016

Meredith's Guest Post

Meredith of On Stories and Words has responded to the call for guest posts and this is her post all about the soundtrack of the Lord of the Rings.

Thanks so much to Meredith for sending in such a wonderful article!

If you're interested in sending in a guest post, all you have to do is write something LOTR related and send it to me at contact.loveroflembas.blog@gmail.com.  I look forward to reading what you have to say!

Without further ado, Meredith's guest post:

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Hello to LoverofLembas's readers!

Thank you for taking the time to read a post that isn't hers!

I wanted to talk about the soundtrack from The Lord of the Rings movies. I have loved the soundtrack virtually as long as I have loved the movies, and if you name a prominent character or location, I could probably hum the theme for you.

Thankfully you're not here to test that theory. xD

Basically the way this is going to work is that I'll analyze the soundtracks song-by-song, choosing a few songs from each movie.

Oh and by the way, here's the source of music I used for this-- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_SBQvd6vY9s

And many thanks to Howard Shore, though he likely won't read this, because without his music the movies wouldn't be the same.

The Fellowship of the Ring


The Prophecy-

Okay, so according to the aforementioned Youtube video, the music starts out with the vocals and...I dunno?...mysterious(?) feel which befits that scene. This seems an odd way to start off since the book starts on a far lighter note, but I see what Peter Jackson was doing with providing some background before leaping into Hobbiton and the main storyline.

The darker feel foreshadows themes that occur later in the story, especially in Mordor scenes. And the vocals being there gives a nice introduction to the voices that are wont to randomly pop up during the music for the rest of the trilogy. xD 

Concerning Hobbits-

Yay! Something nice and light. So light and happy that it allows for a distinct contrast between Hobbiton and the stories given during the previous song. It also releases much of the tension from "The Prophecy" which is a great way of introducing the mindset and sheltered lifestyle of the hobbits.




Flight to the Ford-

This one starts off real quiet and slow. It also has a feel of leading up to something. But about a minute and a half into it, the music tenses up and grows louder. And cue the dramatic chanting voices that often show up during scenes in connection to Mordor. Then it ends pretty quickly, still giving that feel of something not finished. It's maybe parallel to how the hobbits temporarily escaped the Ringwraiths, but two of them will encounter them, (or their home, leastways) in Mordor, where you can expect a more fulfilling, drawn out music sequence. :) 

Many Meetings-

Rivendell! The music is pretty much perfect. That's all I have to say.

Lothlorien-

Fast-forward to Lothlórien. In some ways, being inhabited by elves and all, Lothlórien and Rivendell are somewhat similar, but the music draws out the differences well. 



While the Rivendell music is more welcoming and joyful, the Lothlórien music is more mysterious and dark.

And they're both just pretty. 

May it Be-

The end credits song! So much prettiness. <3 

The Two Towers


Foundations of Stone-

Love this so much!! The music doesn't take very long to heat up and get serious, just like the book didn't use much of an introduction, so bonus points for that. 

The Riders of Rohan-

Yup. I like the majestic and slightly hostile touch, since the Riders of Rohan were both. 

King of the Golden Hall-

And boom. You're in Rohan. Just seven seconds into the song there's that gorgeous strings part and then all the Rohan awesomeness.

Rohan is simpler than the more impressive Gondor, but it's also beautiful in its own way and I think the soundtrack portrays the simplicity but majesty of it. Plus Eowyn is there, which makes it automatically amazing. 

Evenstar-

So nostalgic and achingly beautiful and gahhh...words. Howard Shore, you are amazing.

Oh, and there is a sense of longing and discontentment which could reflect Arwen's struggle.



Helm's Deep-

I hearts it. The Helm's Deep scenes in the movie had a huge element of suspense and drama because obviously things weren't looking good initially, but we, the audience, also knew it wasn't going to end up too badly (because hey Return of the King is still coming and they won't have many characters left if they all die in Helm's Deep!), so the music had freedom to be epic and almost fun without distracting from the drama. 

Gollum's Song-

I honestly don't remember which part of the movie this was, but the song is really interesting. For one thing it has words...which is really odd considering that Gollum probably couldn't sing very well. xD But it works anyways. And it's so sad.

Gollum and his death are one of the most tragic things I've ever encountered in a book or movie. Within the frame of a couple minutes, Gollum's Song touches his despair, tinged with bitterness.





But then it gets all epic and dramatic again with what I think is Rohan's theme. So yay. The world isn't as dark as it looked. ;) 

Return of the King


Minas Tirith-

Ominious but also energetic. For a couple moments, there's a slight lapse of something indicative of exhaustion, but then it gets all pumped up again, which is maybe suggestive of the way the protagonists had to get over there despair and fatigue?

And more vocals. <3 

The Steward of Gondor-

It starts sort of slow, with a hint of waiting. This matches up nicely with characters like Pippin who didn't have a lot they could really do, except wait and hope.

Then Pippin starts singing, and my goodness!  Billy Boyd is a talented person. According to Pinterest, he wrote that song himself and the very first time he sang it for the cameras is what we have in the film.

Shelob's Lair-

*shudders* We have a lot of sad, somewhat violent, and maybe even disturbing scenes in the trilogy, but this is probably the grossest.

I like how music escalates, but I think the visuals were stunning(and disgusting!) enough that the music didn't need to be particularly powerful.


The End of All Things-

Okay, Sam and Frodo have made it past Ringwraiths, Orcs, the Eye of Sauron, and even Mount Doom. But then of course there's a major plot twist and all of a sudden Frodo decides to keep the ring, Gollum tries to steal it, etc. You know the rest.

But for someone new to the story, there's a lot of tension and the music pretty much captures all of that. And emotion too, which the music manages to incorporate as well.

The Return of the King-

*cue all the feels*

A lot of emotion, mostly happiness, and a bit of reverence and solemnity for those who didn't make it thus far in the story. :(

...and more feels....




...and even more.

It replays some old themes from the previous movies, especially those from the Shire, which is absolutely epic. Time to locate the tissue box, people. ;)

But seriously, this might be the best part of the whole soundtrack.

~~~


Let's end on a happy note! By which I mean, let's bypass discussing The Grey Havens because it's emotional too, but in a sadder way, and I think we've unpacked quite enough emotions for one blog post!

Bottom line: Howard Shore, Rohan, Billy Boyd, and the whole Lord of the Rings soundtrack are extremely awesome.

Thank you again so much for reading!!

2 comments:

  1. Yay! Thank you for publishing my scribblings. :)

    I'm sorry the pictures aren't showing up(at least they aren't on my computer)... It probably comes of trying to send them via email.

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    Replies
    1. Haha, it was my pleasure!

      Oh, they show up on my computer...I wonder what causes the pictures to show up in one place but not in another as this seems to be a recurring problem :/

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