We have had the Bridge on the River Kwai from Columbia Legacy, and my dodgy ears may not detect the improvements of this latest remastering over the previous issue, but the dry recording certainly complements Malcolm Arnold's spikey, unyielding music.
My principal interest in acquiring this CD was, however, the second offering here, ie some 32 minutes from the underrated 'The Key' a WW2 story of Royal Navy salvage tugs, and their near suicidal attempts to rescue merchant ships crippled by enemy action. This score has all the long dissonant brass motifs which make Arnold's music unmistakable, and highly descriptive of the onscreen action. The recording is taken from vinyl issued at the time of the film's release, and it has to be said the current engineers have done a wonderful job, any remaining flaws being entirely acceptable given the age and technology of the original. The only niggle is the fact most of the music is in the form of two 'suites' which don't follow the action of the film and are a little bit of a mishmash. Having said that, it is only a niggle and a small price to pay for the pleasure of listening to a score I've long hoped would see the light of day.
This first issue from Filmophone is hopefully a flavour of what is to come.