Bernard Herrmann

Bernard Herrmann: The Essential Film Music Collection

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AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger

Listening to any of legendary composer Bernard Herrmann's 48 film scores immediately presents the listener with the difficult task of deciphering the era from which it has been extracted. Herrmann managed to completely avoid the trappings of the pop culture compass throughout his four decades in the business, building a library of music that could be applied to films far into the future without the slightest hint of mustiness -- even Citizen Kane, his first foray into the world of film sounds as contemporary as anything by James Horner, Hans Zimmer, or Thomas Newman. Unfortunately, Silva America's two-disc, 28-track Essential Film Music collection, which allows listeners to sample some of the composer's finest work without investing in each and every "complete" score, is performed by the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, not taken from the original recordings. There is not a misplaced note anywhere to be found amidst the towering themes to the "Seventh Voyage of Sinbad," "Ghost and Mrs. Muir," "Vertigo," and "Taxi Driver," and not a composer yet busy in the world who has met the challenges that he set, but it sure would be nice to have a collection of this scope that featured Herrmann's original soundtrack versions.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Citizen Kane, film score
1 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:46
The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, film score
2 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:57
3 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:34 Amazon
On Dangerous Ground, film score (1951)
4 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 14:17 Amazon
The Day the Earth Stood Still, film score
5 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:37 Amazon
The Snows of Kilimanjaro, film score
6 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 08:17 Amazon
7 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:23
The Trouble with Harry, film score
8 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 08:49
The Man Who Knew Too Much, film score
9 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:17
The Naked And The Dead, film score
10 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:15
Vertigo, film score
11 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:59 Amazon
12 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:08
Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, film score
13 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 01:59

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
North by Northwest, film score
1 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 03:05
2 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:40
The Three Worlds of Gulliver, film score
3 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:00
4 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 02:49
Psycho, film score
5 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 07:19
Mysterious Land, film score
6 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:13
7 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 04:55
Cape Fear, film score
8 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:40
Jason and the Argonauts, film score
9 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 01:58
Marnie, film score
10 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:13 Amazon
Torn Curtain, film score
11 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 06:01 Amazon
Fahrenheit 451, film score
12 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 07:03 Amazon
Work(s)
13 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 05:34 Amazon
Obsession, film score
14 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 01:47
Night Piece, suite from "Taxi Driver," for saxophone & orchestra (arr. by Christopher Palmer)
15 Bernard Herrmann feat: Prague Philharmonic Orchestra 08:02
blue highlight denotes track pick