Released this week is the soundtrack from the film that tells the story of J.R.R. Tolkien, the film TOLKIEN which is a Fox Searchlight release has a musical score composed by much in demand American born music-smith Thomas Newman. The composer’s style is well known and much respected within the film music community, drawing accolades from, critics, peers and fans alike. Newman’s score for TOLKIEN for me personally is something of a disappointment as I found it lacking in any grand or powerful musical gestures, I was also surprised that the composer made extensive use of electronics within the score, taking into account the time period in which the film is set, There are of course numerous melodies present as with any score by Newman, but and there always seems to be a but these days, I was not convinced that the score is in-keeping with the subject matter, maybe I am wrong (probably). There are some nice moments, but nothing spectacular. Which I suppose is Newman’s trademark, understated, fleeting and melodically hinting to a more expanded thematic piece, but never really getting there. Saying this I was not tempted at any point to move the soundtrack forward or skip any tracks, so that’s a plus and I did return to it and listen through again fully before reaching any decisions. But listening to the music just as music I think one assume that it could be from any type of movie or to be fair it could be from an instrumental compilation of new age sounds. At one point I am sure I could hear CAROL OF THE BELL or at least remnants of that theme, weaving in and out. I know you will probably think I am being unfair or a little harsh, but don’t forget this is just my own personal preference or opinion, I leave it up to you as collectors to reach your own decisions, whether to buy or not to buy. As is normal in a situation like this when I do have reservations about a score it normally goes on to win an Oscar or a BAFTA so roll on awards season when everyone can tell me I was wrong… Its not an awful score, but as I have said it is nothing earth shattering or groundbreakingly original or innovative. Sorry……Available on Sony Music on Friday 3rd May film will be released May 10th.

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