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Film Music 1980 - 2001

Michael Nyman Audio CD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)

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Biography

As one of Britain's most innovative and celebrated composers, Michael Nyman's work encompasses operas and string quartets, film soundtracks and orchestral concertos. Far more than merely a composer, he's also a performer, conductor, bandleader, pianist, author, musicologist and now a photographer and film-maker. Although he's far too modest to allow the description ... Read more in Amazon's Michael Nyman Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (15 Oct 2001)
  • ASIN: B00009P9GT
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,423,501 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Michael Nyman is best know for his soundtrack to Jane Campion's film The Piano, and for his unique working relationship with British filmmaker Peter Greenaway, from 1980 up until 1993. His work on The Piano remains his most iconic, still being used to this day in bank commercials and on those "new-classical" compilations; whilst his work with Greenaway stands up as some of the most beautiful and intricate pieces of neo-classical "minimalism" ever composed. His work since his last venture with Greenaway, 1992's Prospero's Books has become slightly more melodic, creating memorable and often quite haunting scores for filmmakers as varied as Michael Haneke, Neil Jordan, Andrew Niccol, Patrice Leconte and Michael Winterbottom, and even working with Britpop's favourite son Damon Albarn for the cult cannibal-themed western Ravenous.

Disk one of this excellent two-disk set collects the most memorable pieces from those early Greenway films, with the compilation opening with a live version of Bird List from Greenaway's great mock-documentary The Falls. From here we progress onto the sublime genius of Chasing Sheep Is Best Left to Shepherds and An Eye for Optical Theory taken from Greenaway's post-modern masterpiece The Draughtsman's Contract, both highly influenced by Purcell's The Fairy Queen. The collection then has pieces from other great Greenaway works A Zed and Two Noughts and Drowning by Numbers, before reaching something of a peak with the epic Memorial from The Cook The Thief His Wife and Her Lover.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great way to discover Michael Nyman 25 Sep 2008
By stripeyunited VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This isn't the first example of Michael Nyman's cinema work I've bought - I fell in love with the score for The Piano, and I bought the soundtrack for Gattaca without every sitting through the whole film. This double CD is a brilliant opportunity to experience a whole raft of soundtracks he's been involved with over the 20-odd years this covers. Some of the individual film soundtracks sadly do not appear to be available, but even a single track as featured here for some films is better than nothing.

The first CD heavily features work from his many collaborations with Peter Greenaway, whilst the second features tracks accompanying a wider range of directors' work, and it's really fascinating to see the evolution of his style over the years.

The stand-out track for me on here is one of the few original songs Nyman's composed - "If" on CD#2 - a single offering from a Japanese animation of the Anne Frank story.

Nyman's style is not going to appeal to everyone, it's true, but this CD could allow you to discover either a universal appeal, or a preference for the more lyrical and romantic recent soundtracks over the more rhythmic and high-energy earlier work. There is a variety and complexity which will satisfy more than just those who like modern classical music in the minimalist mould.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Grows on you like a fungus 4 Jan 2004
Format:Audio CD
This is an excellent collection of Nyman's work. I purchased it after hearing the amazing soundtrack to "The Piano" and wasn't disappointed. To the untuned ear it is simple, hypnotic, original and emotional. Without losing any of these qualities it is still satisfying to the educated ear. Nyman's branch of minimalist music shares the rhythmic power of Jazz and popular music whilst enjoying fluency of classical orchestration and colour. This is avant-garde music, but still exploits the use of simple, charming melodies and has a much broader appeal than so much new "classical" music. Most of CD1 is written uniquely for his band. Highlights include "Chasing Sheep Is Best Left To Shepherds" (featured in several TV advertisements), and the final three tracks (from "The Piano"). These tracks aside however, CD2 is where you'll find Nyman at his best (for example in "The Burning" and "The Other Side"). A great introduction to Nyman, or a useful compillation of his work to leave in your car.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Cimemagic 17 Jan 2008
By R.O. P
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I 've been fascinated by Michael Nyman's soundtracks and films especially in the stylish futuristic Gataca, Carrington, and of course The Piano ,which will remain a classic into future centuries. For this collection it's the heartbreaking string symphonies merged with horns and brassy vintage jazz. I love the album especially disc 2 and can't get enough of the bittersweet neo classical themes. For those of you like me who want an insight in to Nyman's music without buying selected soundtrack's .This album, makes an excellent listen for Nyman , who I've heard described as one of Britains greatest composers, a collection like this is proof.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed 30 April 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
The music on disc one was disappointing. Too many of the same type - respective and monotonous tunes - one after the other. They would have been better more spread out. DIsc2 however, was much better.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique vision 5 May 2011
Format:Audio CD
Nyman is unlike any other modern classical composer and this concentrates on his film work; how most of us are familiar with his work.
For me the earlier work is special as it links me with a certain time in my life and also seems to take me out of myself, and access parts of my imagination normally music doesn't reach.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Review of Very Best of Michael Lyman
Although the first album is a bit repetitive, this is more a function of the chronological order in when each piece was written. Read more
Published 7 months ago by andrew scott
5.0 out of 5 stars Genius
Michael Nyman is a wonderful composer. As a teacher, I have found that everyone enjoys listening to these simple yet intricately layered pieces and so many themes feel familiar... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Frances
3.0 out of 5 stars Film music
Loved this music while watching the films so I got this. As a non stop album of music I found it a bit harsh and repetitious. It is interesting rather than hugely enjoyable. Read more
Published 16 months ago by baz123
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellence, but sadly missing latest work.
Michael Nyman is a haunting composer, his theme from Wonderland simply mesmerising. I wish his latest piece which was written for the recent John Simm programme was included, and... Read more
Published 18 months ago by robert
2.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly annoying
I watched and greatly enjoyed the movie "Man on Wire" and noticed that the sound track was by Nyman. Read more
Published on 13 Jan 2010 by E. P. Schlaikjer
4.0 out of 5 stars Michael Nyman
Exactly what I wanted - music for my drama group to use. Good variety on cds and reasonable price
Published on 20 Nov 2009 by S. Evans
3.0 out of 5 stars Requires an appreciation of alternative classical
It is "exactly what it says on the packaging" - film music. I agree with another reviewer that the second CD is better than the first. Read more
Published on 20 May 2004 by funkyanorak
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