The New World

Composer: James Horner
Silva Screen
RRP: £14.99
SILCD 1200
Available 30 January 2006

A sweeping epic adventure inspired by the Pocachontas myth,
The New World details the first encounter between European and Native American cultures in 1607...

James Horner has long been one of my favourite film composers. While a lot of his scores sound very similar, there is something moving about his music that I can't help but be hooked by. As a rule Horner's music is quite depressing. Not that that's an insult. I find his music to be amongst some of the more inspirational of all the composers. I'll often sit and listen to one of his scores while writing.

The music for The New World contains elements that have been "borrowed" from some of Horner's earlier work - including Star Trek: II - The Wrath of Kahn, Bicentennial Man, Casper, and, to a lesser degree, Jumanji. But that's not to say that there isn't a whole heap of new material here.

The main theme to this movie is beautifully scored. While it's not particularly memorable - like some of his other title tracks (I'm thinking of Coccoon, Apollo 13 and The Land Before Time) - it still has a charm all of it's own.

The only really annoying element to this soundtrack is the additional sounds that overlap the orchestral score. Sadly, as atmospheric as it may be, the dawn chorus is a little annoying. If this was originally scored by Horner, then fine, but I doubt it. People buy soundtracks to listen to an uninterrupted classical scores - unfortunately on a few tracks this is not possible because of the warbling of birds.

While The New World is not one of Horner's best soundtracks, it's still a fantastic album, and well worth adding to your collection.

Ray Thompson

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