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The Matrix: Original Motion Picture Score Soundtrack

68 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Soundtrack, May 4, 1999
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Davis,Don ~ Matrix

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Musically avant-garde elements have been utilized in film scores for decades, usually as shock elements to denote horror or the otherworldly. In recent times, modern composer Philip Glass has enjoyed varying degrees of success adapting his minimalist techniques to film scoring. Given that background, Don Davis's powerful, innovative score to the Wachowski brothers' 1999 sci-fi hit The Matrix has all the makings of a landmark. Utilizing his extensive interest and training in the avant-garde, Davis has composed what's been touted as the first "New York school postmodern" film score, a jarring departure from his hugely successful work as an orchestrator of such populist fare as Titanic, Pleasantville, A Bug's Life, and Toy Story. The Matrix weds Davis's mastery of musical detail and coloration to a largely atonal postmodern concerto that's complex, dark, and unrelenting. Many film scores have driven tonal writing and heroic motifs into the ground; Davis's deft, sparing use of them here places them in stark, effective relief. The Matrix offers up a rewarding orchestral challenge that may just be a decade--or two--ahead of its time. --Jerry McCulley

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 4, 1999)
  • Original Release Date: May 4, 1999
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Soundtrack
  • Label: Varese Sarabande
  • Run Time: 136 minutes
  • ASIN: B00000IPSD
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #59,905 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 17, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Don Davis's score to "The Matrix" is fantastic -- a modern, challenging, exciting work that's reminiscent of the work of Elliot Goldenthal ("Demolition Man" and "Interview With A Vampire" come to mind), and John Adams ("Harmonielehre," especially the horn clusters.) If you're not afraid of some modern orchestral dissonance, then it's a dynamite listen.
(FYI... Yes, the CD is short, but bear in mind that the 30-minute length is caused largely by the high score re-use rates charged by the American Federation of Musicians. For film scores recorded in the U.S. by union orchestras, you have to buy music in 15-minute blocks, and pay each member of the orchestra a specific rate, per block of music. For big, U.S.-recorded scores, it adds up quickly, and unless the score is "Titanic" or "Star Wars," it's difficult for record companies to recoup their costs, since there aren't that many hard-core film music collectors in the world. Just be thankful that the CD is a nice representation of the score as heard in the film. If you couple it with Tracks 2, 4, 6 and 13 from "The Matrix" song album, and the Enigma track used in the trailer, you have a solid representation of the music from the film.)
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Christopher M Davis on January 14, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Love it or hate it, Don Davis' rousing score for the 1999 megahit "The Matrix" definitely makes a statement, as well as raises the standard by which other scores in this genre will henceforth be judged. Utilizing the so-called "minimalist" technique, Davis has created a nearly perfect musical landscape for the film, managing to run the full gamut from all-out action music to soft, almost haunting, passages, his seeming fondness for the occasional use of blaring, dischordant instruments providing a fitting musical expression of the strange and nightmarish realities of the Matrix. The only real complaint I have about the score album is its length (30 minutes of music from a 2-hour movie?), plus the fact that several of the better cues are conspicuously absent. Indeed, the overall presentation of this CD suggests that it was a largely obligatory release, which is unfortunate considering what a remarkable score this is. Hopefully Warner Bros. will consider a more comprehensive release in the future. Bottom line: if you can get this CD at a price befitting its 30-minute length, it'll make a solid - if somewhat incomplete - addition to your collection.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Christian Graves on February 4, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This is a great CD Score.. Ignore all the other idiots that purchased the wrong cd, and wrote a bad rating because of their mistake. This is a very intense CD containing GREAT tracks. The composer did a splended job at creating the music masterpiece that was part of the thrill of The Matrix! I would recommend to anyone!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By DivaKitty on December 15, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Great movie, great soundtrack, and great score - too bad this album is only 30 minutes long! A little overpriced for the amount of music.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Michele L. Worley on April 30, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I'll try to describe what each track consists of relative to the film, so that readers can judge for themselves how interested they are in this CD. The original score is very instrumental, and when human voices are included, they aren't singing in words; if the song you're interested in has lyrics, check the 'Music from the Matrix' CD rather than this one.
The tracks are provided in the order in which they occur in the film.
"Main Title/Trinity Infinity" - The opening title sequence and pursuit, beginning where the WB logo fades in. The initial telephone dialing FX are omitted (pity, that).
The song Neo's listening to during the fade-in on his first scene, Dissolved Girl, isn't part of the original score, so it's buried somewhere on the other CD.
"Unable to Speak" - Covers the first "Mr. Anderson" interrogation sequence.
"The Power Plant" - This begins exactly at the point where Neo wakes up in the Power Plant, and ends with the Nebuchadnezzar pickup. The music from the preceding scene - the flute-dominated, 'steeple-chasing' sequence as the team races against the effect of the red pill, with the cool mirror effect - is not included here.
"Welcome to the Real World" - Begins where "The Power Plant" left off. This quiet track features strings and a vocal solo, and ends at the point where Neo's treatment is complete and he first touches the spinal jack.
"The Hotel Ambush" - In the film, this begins with a brief drum solo at the point where Mouse is checking out the Woman in Red poster, waiting for the rest of the team to return. It continues through the walls, and into the ensuing battle.
"Exit Mr. Hat" - Picks up where "The Hotel Ambush" left off, covering the ensuing close encounter with Agent Smith.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By N. Lencioni on September 8, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I find it hard to believe that many of the tracks on the CD are shorter, or different from the ones in the movie. And that there are only about 35 minutes of music on the CD. And the fact that not all of the best music from the score is included, such as the ethnic percussion intro to the karate training scene. However, what little music is included on this CD is good, but if you really liked the music, the best thing to do would be to get the DVD and record from the music only track available in the bonus features.
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