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Classical Music Review

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Epic Classical
Vol. 2


Composers: Various
Arranger: Antonin Roux
Performed by: London Music Works, featuring Merethe Soltvedt
Label: Silva Screen Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 06 August 2021

This is the second album in Silva Screen Records' Re:Scored series and a follow up to Re:Scored Epic Classical. The Re:Scored series introduces fresh, thoughtful and contemporary film score reworkings of established genres. On Epic Classical Vol. 2, composer Antonin Roux re-arranges classical favourites in “epic” film score mode. Bach’s 'Cello Suite no. 1 in G major', Strauss’s 'The Blue Danube Waltz' and Elgar’s 'Pomp and Circumstance March in D Major' feature award-winning singer Merethe Soltvedt...

Re:Scored: Epic Classical: Vol. 2 features another 10 classical compositions which are ingrained in popular culture and have appeared in many movies, from drama and animation to Sci-Fi and comedy. Here, the big expansive sound is always a shortcut for an epic win or lose, strength or weakness, purgative or transformational moment in the story; the distinct phrases and harmonies have now become a shortcut for turmoil, end and new beginnings.

This album opens with the one reworking that is head and shoulders above the rest. The epic rescoring of Debussy's 'Clair de Lune' stood out for me, probably because of the fact that the original is not seen as a powerful, epic piece of music. It's a mellow, piece and rescoring it gives it a whole new lease of life. The majority of the other pieces on this collection are powerful works in their own right and rescoring them, on occasion, felt a little forced. But, with 'Clair de Lune' you can see an epic movie trailer unfolding in your mind.

While the rest of the pieces are enjoyable, they're slightly tainted by the fact that a lot of them have already been reworked in the past. Grieg's 'In the Hall of the Mountain King' was changed for an old TV ad campaign for Alton Towers theme park and Elgar's 'Pomp and Circumstance March' is a favourite at The Last Night of the Proms. So their "epic" reworkings fall a little flat.

And I think this is where the main problem lies for the series. Antonin Roux has the unenviable task of choosing pieces of music that we all know and then transform them into something a little different. But choosing pieces that are already known for being "epic" in their own right makes that job so much harder.

Yes, I did enjoy this album, but the only track I'd really want to listen to again is 'Clar de Lune'.

Track listing:

01. Clair de Lune (From "Suite Bergamasque") - Claude Debussy
02. The Four Seasons Concerto No. 4 in F Minor RV 297 "Winter" - Antonio Vivaldi
03. Cello Suite no. 1 in G major BWV 1007 - Johann Sebastian Bach
04. Die Walküre, Act III: Ride of the Valkyries - Richard Wagner
05. Boléro, M.81 - Maurice Ravel
06. Gnossienne No.1: Lent - Erik Satie
07. The Blue Danube Waltz Op. 314 - Johann Strauss II
08. Carmen Opera Suite No. 2: Habanera - Georges Bizet
09. Peer Gynt Op. 23: IV. In the Hall of the Mountain King - Edvard Grieg
10. Pomp and Circumstance March in D Major Op. 39 No. 1 - Edward Elgar


Darren Rea