Label: Film Score Monthly FSMCD Vol.9 No.7
Date: 1956
Time: 41:28
Tracks: 28
World premiere of original soundtrack for third Herrmann/Hitchcock collaboration, starring Henry Fonda, Vera Miles. Bernard Herrmann offers unusually stark, transparent score to match moody true-life tale of night club musician arrested, convicted albeit innocent. Brief melodic ideas seldom get spotlight but architecture, orchestration of same begs attention. Composer provides three basic devices: first device underscores title character (Fonda) as bass player in night club band, plays briefly as quasi-Latin America rumba onscreen. Second device provides bulk of score: mostly descending figures for brass, woodwinds, harp - and appropriately - solitary string bass. Third device appears late in score, represents estranged wife (Miles). Somber idea plays as minor-key adagio for solo oboe in extreme upper register against somber harmonies in low clarinet choir. Interesting orchestration: Herrmann requires trumpets to remain muted throughout entire score, draws his color from variety of mutes available (straight, cup, harmon without plunger, so forth). Woodwind colors are extensive via multiple bass clarinets, contra-bass clarinets mixed with standard clarinets, high oboe pitted against bass clarinet, so forth. Herrmann also delivers masterstroke with tacet of entire string section throughout entire score - except for lone string bass. Neat idea! Finale of score also of interest: composer deviates from moody color just once with resplendant coda. Here, Herrmann allows trumpets to play without mutes, draws everything to dynamic close with ringing major chord. Sterling FSM production offers complete score in mono from original master elements, includes informative liner notes, dramatic packaging to compliment. Listeners looking for lively, vibrant music may not find what they seek but others will delight in stark motifs, simmering intensities, skilled orchestrations. Bernard Herrmann conducts, lands intentionally muted but well-delivered knockout!

Price: $19.99  (Out of Stock)

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  • 1. Hitchcock (0:40)
    2. Prelude (2:04)
    3. The Hallway (0:51)
    4. 5 am (0:39)
    5. The Car (1:35)
    6. The Store (1:28)
    7. The Second Store (1:04)
    8. Fingerprints (1:44)
    9. The Cell I (1:46)
    10. The Cell II (1:21)
    11. Police Van (0:40)
    12. Felony Court (1:10)
    13. The Tank / Handcuffs (4:09)
    14. The Door (0:33)
    15. Bob (1:09)
    16. The Telephone (2:24)
    17. Farmhouse (0:33)
    18. Bridge (0:38)
    19. 3rd Floor (1:09)
    20. Alibi (0:33)
    21. The Glove (0:50)
    22. The Mirror (1:12)
    23. The Parting (2:20)
    24. Prayer (1:06)
    25. Stork Club (0:28)
    26. Finale (4:01)
    27. The Door (alternate - 0:33)
    28. Trailer (Hitchcock / Prelude / Manny - 2:36)