Which version of 'Vertigo' soundtrack CD to buy?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Patrick McCart, Dec 11, 2002.

  1. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Lead Actor

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    I apologize if this belongs in Music, but I was wondering which is the better CD to buy...

    The Vertigo soundtrack CD which uses the original recordings or the version with the re-recordings by Joel McNeely.

    While I have my eyes set on the original recording, are there any advantages over it for the re-recording?
     
  2. Richard Carnahan

    Richard Carnahan Stunt Coordinator

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    They're both very good, but I'd go for the original (Varese Sarabande VSD-5759).
     
  3. Bill Huelbig

    Bill Huelbig Second Unit

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    I agree with Richard Carnahan. It's one of the most beautiful scores ever written so I'm glad to have both, but the original has three cues that aren't available on the re-recording: "Mission Organ", "The Past" and "The Girl" (the lovely music accompanying the scene where Scotty first sees Judy and follows her to the Empire Hotel).

    --Bill
     
  4. Randy A Salas

    Randy A Salas Screenwriter

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    I'm going to have to disagree with Richard and highly recommend the McNeely re-recording if choosing between the two.
    First of all, the Muir Mathieson recording is not the original recording as heard in the film, but an album recorded separately around the same time. (He did also conduct the original score in the film.) Mathieson's recording was not done to Herrmann's wishes and it is missing a few cues.
    The McNeely re-recording was done to Herrmann's specifications, contains the complete score and was recorded in sumptuous sound. It is the recording recommended by the Bernard Herrmann Society.
    You can read that esteemed group's detailed review (and comparison) here:
    http://www.uib.no/People/midi/soundt...ws/vertigo001/
     
  5. Bill Huelbig

    Bill Huelbig Second Unit

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    I found one more cue that's only on the original: "The Streets". But the re-recording has two cues that aren't available anywhere else: "Graveyard" and "Tombstone". I guess the only way to have the whole score is to get 'em both.

    --Bill
     
  6. Craig Beam

    Craig Beam Screenwriter

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    Randy and I go way back as far as Herrmann enthusiasm goes, but I'm going to disagree with him here... in all possible cases, I'd heartily recommend the original recording. But hey, why not get both versions? I have both, and I wouldn't trade either.
    Randy, are you sure the Matheson-conducted version is NOT the same as in the film? I've never heard this... are you saying that Matheson conducted two different sessions (film and album)? Please elaborate. [​IMG]
     
  7. Randy A Salas

    Randy A Salas Screenwriter

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    I'm sorry. My comments were made about the original Mercury recording, and that's the recording being compared in the BHS review I noted.

    The remastered Varese release of the original soundtrack is a different story. It has the extra cues, as Bill noted--although McNeely's has one, Graveyard and Tombstone, not on it. McNeely's has better sound, too.

    I'd still opt for McNeely if choosing one, because it was painstakingly recorded to match Herrmann's notations in the score, which Mathieson didn't do in either recording.
     
  8. Josh Simpson

    Josh Simpson Supporting Actor

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    I have the McKneely Psycho score, and although he was attempting to be faithful to the original tempi, I didn't care for it much. It has some different cues than waht was originally used in the movie. It is the complete score though, and I guess since I only have a modified cd of the Danny Elfman score, I guess I will have to make due. Sorry I got on the whole Psycho kick. I was just thinking of the McKneely cd that I own.
     
  9. Randy A Salas

    Randy A Salas Screenwriter

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  10. Joe Caps

    Joe Caps Cinematographer

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    Having done some work at Paramount ( and having access to some original contracts done for the music department) but I saw the agreements between Paramount and the Mercury record company, including dates when the original Vertigo tracks were sent to Mercury records. it IS the actual film track.
    As far as its not being to Herrmanns specifications - this is clearly a case of sour grapes. Herrmann was not allowed to conduct because fo the American Musicians Union strike at the time.
    Almost as good as the soundtrack is a french recording of Vertigo conducted by James Conlon- it is, I believe, note complete and was conducted withthe film running. It was marketed in a strange way. There was a french book about the film and the CD was free in the book!
     
  11. Randy A Salas

    Randy A Salas Screenwriter

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  12. Kenneth English

    Kenneth English Second Unit

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    I have both and, if pressed, would say that the McNeely re-recording comes out on top with me. If nothing else, the sound quality is MUCH better.
    A wonderful score either way. It's a win/win situation regardless of which one you choose. [​IMG]
     

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