My favorite scores of 2010 (Top 5)

2010 wasn’t a huge year for new score releases, but there were definitely a few that I absolutely adore! Now that I’ve had time to think about it, I’ve put together my favorites.

So without further explanation, and in alphabetical order, here are my favorite scores from 2011:

Ghost Writer – Alexandre Desplat

Desplat has some great orchestration chops, and for me, Ghost writer was his best score this year. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Harry Potter, and The King’s Speech… but this score bears multiple listens. Music On Film compared this score to something Bernard Herrmann would have done for Hitchcock, which only makes me like it more!

Favorite cue: “Chase on the Ferry”

How to Train Your Dragon – John Powell

The most Williams-like of my top scores from 2011, this score continues the expansion of John Powell’s dominance over my heart. A good movie, this score kicks major ass. A fully orchestral, bombastic accompaniment for a Viking boy who befriends a dragon. Is it just me, or does Powell have, perhaps, the most distinct voice for being an alumnus of Zimmer’s school of composition, Remote Control Studios?

Favorite cue: “Dragon’s Den”

Inception – Hans Zimmer

This score really surprised me at how cool it was. A beautiful blend of synth and orchestra (minus woodwinds), and built on a beautiful progression, the score makes for great repeat listening. Written to represent dreams and dreamscapes, Zimmer provides a very haunting score, with some very clever musical transformations including getting the big brass stabbing motif from a slowed down version of a song performed by Edith Piaf.

Favorite cue: “Dream is Collapsing”

Predators – John Debney

I know the controversy surrounding Debney’s homage score. Using the same theme’s and orchestration style as Alan Silvestri on his efforts for Predator, and Predator 2, he took a lot of heat, and some people were not happy that Silvestri didn’t receive a credit. Despite all that, I love this score. It sounds very pristine, and I was happy that it was such a huge homage!

Favorite cue: “Free Fall”

Tron: Legacy – Daft Punk (Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo, Thomas Bangalter)

I’ve written about my feelings on this score already, and I still like it a lot. Even with the comparisons to Zimmer and Howard’s Dark Knight, I still love this score, and it is still inspiring me for the “next big project (in my head)”.

Favorite cue: “Rinzler”

Honorable mention:

The re-recording of Basil Poledouris’ Conan the Barbarian.

The only reason this isn’t in the top five may be pretty obvious… it is not from a movie released in 2010. It is a re-recording of a movie from 1982. But I have to say that this score really rocks my face off!

Favorite cue: The Tree of Woe / Recovery

Fringe – Michael Giacchino, Chris Tilton, Chad Seiter

One of my favorite shows on television, the score is also super awesome. These composers are super at creating interesting sounds and timbres to fit the Fringe universe… er, universes!

Favorite cue: “Gurney For Your Thoughts” (Tilton)

Human Target – Bear McCreary

Bear has been doing a lot of work lately, whether it was finishing up BSG, Terminator: Chronicles of Sarah Connor, Caprica, The Walking Dead, and now The Cape. Human Target is epic for one reason… in this day and age when it’s much easier, cheaper, and time saving to use synth and sample scores, this dude was composing for a full orchestra for this show every week. Very admirable, and something I can only hope to do in the future.

Favorite cue: Honestly, it’s too hard to choose from the nearly 3 1/2 hours of music that was released on the CD!

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