Jesus: The Epic Mini-Series
Angel (72435 56984 2 1)
Release Date: 2000
Conducted by Patrick Williams
|3.||Searching for Jesus||2:36|
|4.||Temple, The Early Days||2:38|
|5.||Healing The Sick||3:09|
|7.||Walking on Water||2:50|
|10.||The Last Supper||3:53|
|13.||Taken To Pilate||1:57|
|14.||"Pie Jesu" - Sarah Brightman||3:53|
|17.||Jesus Has Risen||2:26|
|18.||I Am With You||1:58|
|Total Album Time:||49:59|
|by Dan Goldwasser
on June 21st, 2004
One of the most familiar stories of all time, that of Jesus of Nazareth, has been told over and over again through film and television. Recently CBS aired a new miniseries exploring the life of Jesus. Costing over $26 million to make, this was truly a miniseries of "epic" proportions. It is only appropriate, therefore, that a score of "epic" size is paired with it. Emmy Award-winning composer Patrick Williams was tapped to do the job, and he does an excellent job mixing the orchestra with some synth elements while staying away from the often clichéd "heavenly choir" found in so many of the older biblical epics.
Beginning right off the bat with a rather prominent main theme found in "Main Title", we get a sense of the emotional honesty that this score will provide throughout the course of the miniseries. Williams swaps the choir (mentioned above) for an orchestra heavy on brass and strings - it results in the same emotional feeling that the choir would use, but has a more contemporary feeling. Most of the cues in the album contain strong variants on this main theme, used for varying dramatic purposes. Joseph dies, the sick are healed, and Jesus walks on water in "Walking On Water", a rather strong and powerful cue that, once again, takes generous advantage of the enjoyable main theme.
"Satan" employs some synthesized effects, but not too many - just enough to get the mood going. The inclusion of "Pie Jesu", written by Andrew Lloyd Weber for his musical "Requiem" seems a bit out of place from the rest of the score, but it is a welcome addition to the soundtrack album, and I think that it is a rather beautiful song deserving a listen. Immediately following this song, however, come two of the darker cues on the album: "The Passion" and "The Crucifixion". Both have an underlying sense of dread and fear, but the latter one has a bigger sense of finality to it. The way it builds to a climax with the bells tolling is quite moving.
The album ends on a more upbeat note - after all, Christ has now risen from the grave, and all is happy. Running about 50 minutes long, this album was surprisingly enjoyable. Its only problem might be that the main theme is used over and over again, but considering how solid a theme it is (as well as hummable), I think that it's not really a problem anyone should really be concerned with. There might be some confusion stemming from the fact that two soundtrack albums were released. A "pop" album is in the marketplace as well, but look for the blue cover - it's the original score, and I think you'll find it quite enjoyable.
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