Rediscovering Lost Scores, Volume 2 – music by Wendy Carlos

Film composer and synth innovator Wendy Carlos’ second disc of restored original score recordings focuses on her attempts to meld synthesizers and orchestral music in the 1970s and early 80s.

The second in a series of releases of “recovered” movie scores from Wendy/Walter Carlos’ library, this disc focuses on collaborations (and sometimes, collisions) between synthesizer and orchestra. Carlos provides her own liner notes both on the music itself and on the painstaking process of recovering it from the damaged master tapes upon which it had originally been recorded, which involved literally baking each reel of tape (quite literally in an oven) at a precise temperature for a precise amount of time; it wasn’t a process where you could put something back in the oven, either – there was one shot at getitng it right and preserving the original material. That same procedure allowed the composer to recover her original master tapes in time for the 20th anniversary release of the Tron score, and so it’s somehow appropriate that more music from Tron – both previously released and previously unreleased – can be heard here, along with music from equally iconic films.

Feel free to call me predictable, but of course what drew me to this volume (not having bought the first CD) was, naturally, the promise of new music from Tron. Fair warning: if that’s the only reason you’re thinking about getting this disc, maybe you should think twice. There isn’t a huge amount of new material presented here for the Tron fanatic, and a goodly chunk of it has been heard before: “Lightcycle Battle” was made available on the 20th anniversary edition DVD, and “Trinitron” – a.k.a. that part of the end credits that was covered up by Journey’s “Only Solutions” – has always been available as part of the end credit suite on the soundtrack releases, going all the way back to the 1982 LP release. (In the liner notes, Carlos makes it sound like this is the first time anyone’s ever heard it. Nope. It’s been my favorite piece of Tron music for 28 years running now!) The various other short tracks, which didn’t even make it into the movie, are interesting to hear…but they’re so short. It’s nice to have track-by-track liner notes for them though.

The material from The Shining, I barely remember, having seen that movie very few times (as opposed to having seen Tron about a zillion times); what I can tell you is that it sounds as sharp as the remastered Tron material, apparently baked to perfection. There’s also a healthy sampling of material from Carlos’ soundtrack to a movie I’ve never heard of, called Woundings.

Included as a couple of bonus tracks are two test tracks Carlos assembled for Dolby Laboratories, and they’re vintage Carlos material – 3 out of 4making use of very Bach-like counterpoint in the synth realm, and throwing in just one or two small musical in-jokes (i.e. “That’s all folks!”).

The second volume of Rediscovering Lost Scores is a nice cross-section of Carlos’ movie material, but it’s really not an entry-level album – this one is definitely for listeners who are either already fans of Carlos’ work, or of the movies whose music is included.

Order this CD

    The Shining

  1. Shining Title Music (3:54)
  2. Paraphrase For ‘Cello (3:26)
  3. Where’s Jack? (5:24)
  4. The Overlook (3:57)
  5. Psychic Scream (1:29)
  6. Day Of Wrath (1:07)
  7. Paraphrase For Brass (1:37)
  8. Title Music ‘Dies’ (3:46)
  9. Clockworks ‘Dies’ (2:23)
  10. Tron

  11. Creation Of Tron Vol. I (0:36)
  12. Creation Of Tron Vol. II (0:36)
  13. Lightcycle Games (2:06)
  14. Anthem (Studio Version) (1:24)
  15. Little Interludes (0:56)
  16. Trinitron (2:19)
  17. Split Second

  18. Visit To A Morgue (1:24)
  19. Return To The Morgue (2:50)
  20. Woundings

  21. Woundings Title Music (3:12)
  22. Angela’s Walk (1:05)
  23. Jimmy (1:38)
  24. Louise (0:56)
  25. Doug Does Angela (1:37)
  26. Scattering Ashes (1:33)
  27. Angela’s Aftermath (3:47)
  28. Jimmy Kills Louise (2:33)
  29. In A Cemetery (0:57)
  30. Fly Away And End (1:40)
  31. Two Dolby Demos

  32. Jiffy Test: Bee Dee Bei Mir (1:25)
  33. Listen: Tannhauser (2:18)

Released by: East Side Digital
Release date: 2005
Total running time: 61:55