Thursday, September 8, 2011

Tim's Soundtrack Corner: Finding Nemo

I've decided to post about one of my favourite soundtracks of all time, the now-classic Pixar film Finding Nemo. I remember buying this soundtrack actually before I even saw the film. It was still wrapped up when I went to see the movie, and all I could think of while I watched it is how happy I was to have made such a blind decision.

My first impression is that this soundtrack does one thing particularly well, something the director Andrew Stanton hints at in his liner notes - Newman manages to create a musical world that can turn on a dime between two worlds. This can be between danger and safety, fun and seriousness, even dark and light. It's really quite remarkable how quickly the mood changes in the score, highlighting the differences between two of the main characters, the over-protective Marlin and the adventurous Dory.

As a flutist, I'm going to claim a huge bias and be very happy at the amount of flutes - nay - processed flutes being used! The overall orchestration features a great deal of soloists, each one adding to the oceanic atmosphere. The music involving any of the turtles especially is the exact type of stuff we would picture listening to on a beach in the pacific ocean (see track 21, The Turtle Lope). For pure lyricism though, we need not look much further than 'Nemo's Egg', the main title and heart of the soundtrack. It is a heartfelt, short theme that gets right to the heart of the father-son relationship in the movie, and regardless of what is happening on the screen, gives us a feeling of nostalgia upon every listen.

Newman's characteristic short cues are present here, with the soundtrack racking in 40 tracks, and although I wish for something more substantial in length, it still holds up well when listening to the entire album.

This colourful soundtrack aptly portrays the huge character cast and the movie, and results in a score that is unique in every track, swimmingly atmospheric, thrilling, and fun to listen to!


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