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Monday, November 06, 2006

CD REVIEW - Flyboys

Music by Trevor Rabin
Varese Sarabande VSD-6763 (EU)
16 Tracks 48:19 mins

After the disappointment of Gridiron Gang, Trevor Rabin bounces back with his fine orchestral score for this story of the legendary First World War fighter pilots known as the Lafayette Escadrille.
The heart of the score is the heroic and noble main theme, which first makes its presence felt in the "Main Title," after an opening which manages to combine Celtic elements with an underlying martial feel. The following track, "Training Montage," introduces the other main motifs, starting out with an elegiac trumpet and horn duet, followed by a stirring fife and drum march in the finest American traditions. This emerges less in the following tracks than the main theme and the elegiac motif, though it does make its presence felt in "The Last Battle."
Other tracks of note are the suitably emotional "Cassidy Funeral," and "Rawlings and Luciane Fly," which trips along lightly then builds excitedly before soaring away with choir. The following track "Rawlings and Luciane" featuers a tender, flute-lead variation on the main theme; then "The Planes Arrive" features a horn-only version of the elegiac theme, before ending triumphantly. "Heroes" is an excellent track, which builds to a triumphant variation of the elgiac theme before turning to exciting action; with the following "Battle Hymn," something of a mix of darkness and the ethereal, and very reminiscent of Howard Shore's Lord of the Rings material (curse of the temp track, maybe?). After some desperate conflict and triumph to follow, "Black Falcon" resolves the score sunnily, then reflectively, though there is one more track, "Briefing Room," which unfortunately ends the album somewhat anti-climactically. An "End Title," even if it were made up of edited together material, as is sometimes the practice these days, would have ended things so much more stasfactorily. But this is a minor quible, and this score remains one of the better ones I have heard emanating from Hollywood recently.


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