Sony Classical (SK 89465)
Release Date: 2001
Conducted by Suzie Katayama
|3.||All The Pretty Horses|
|4.||Purty Dad-Gum Good|
|5.||After The Rain|
|6.||Mild Cello Blues|
|7.||Malarki Opus in D Major|
|8.||John Grady's Angel|
|9.||Edge of the World|
|10.||Get My Boots|
|11.||Strawberry Tango, Parts 1 & 2|
|12.||The King of Horses|
|13.||Far Away (Alejandra's Phone Call)|
|15.||Waltz For Hope|
|16.||Ain't That A Drag|
|17.||My Last Days on Earth / What's It Like To Be Dead?|
|18.||Long Journey Home|
|19.||Candles and Lies|
|22.||Far Away (Reprise)|
|23.||Cowboy's Dream / All The Pretty Horses (Medley)|
|Track lengths not available for this album. If you have track length/time information for this album, please e-mail it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add it to the database.|
|by Messrob Torikian
on August 25th, 2003
One of last year's criminally underrated films was Billy Bob Thornton's All The Pretty Horses, based on the Cormac Macarthy novel. Although the trailers would have you believe that the movie is about a romance between Matt Damon and Penelope Cruz, that is actually a subplot of the film. This beautifully crafted Western is about two idealistic young men (Damon and Henry Thomas) who head out to Mexico in search of adventure. When their romantic idealism of the West collides with the harsh realities of the modern world, the results of their actions and the choices they make are life changing. In short, it's a movie Sam Pekinpah would have made if he were still around.
During the opening credits, my heart sank when I saw "Music by Marty Stuart". I thought to myself, 'What does a Country musician know about writing Western scores? This is going to suck." Oh, how wrong I was. Mr. Stuart, along with noted Nashville session players Kristin Wilkinson and Larry Paxton, obviously know a great deal. In a sound somewhere between Ennio Morricone and Ry Cooder, they've created an amazing Western score, which is also one of the year's best soundtracks.
Although the beginning pieces are short, Stuart and company quickly establish the movie's themes and take off from there. The music here ranges from simple classical guitar licks for the dialogue and romantic scenes to a full 75-piece orchestra for the scenes of sweeping vistas. The big pieces as well as the intimate ones all serve to perfectly complement the feel of the movie.
Since most of the movie takes place in Mexico, many of the songs have a Tex-Mex texture to them - not quite country, not quite Mexican, but happily inhabiting a world in between the two. Stuart pulls this balance off effortlessly without seeming to forcibly infuse his compositions with traditional Mexican standards. It all sounds very fresh and honest. Notably, there's the Mexican horns and a laid back mandolin in "Purty Dad Gum Good", the classical guitar and tuba in "Strawberry Tango", and classical guitar with horns in "Edge of the World". Each of these pieces achieves a nice blend of the Tex-Mex flavor.
At the heart of the movie (and the score) is a feeling of a boy's wide-eyed enthusiasm for exploring a new world. Though our heroes fall into desperately perilous straits in their journey to manhood, that feeling is never lost. Marty Stuart and his talented collaborators have done an excellent job in helping to capture and preserve that feeling throughout the movie. They've put together a soundtrack that stands just as well on its own. Although ignored by the Academy, Stuart's score was up for a Golden Globe, and justly so. Once you put it in your CD player, it willl be hard to take out. A must-have for Western afficionados.
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