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4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 22 June 2004
First, and above all else, I'd like to point out that Howard Shore possibly wrote the most complex, the most enjoyable, the most suitable and the most atmospheric movie score you can find out there.
The amount of thematic material that Shore juggles around with without losing his concept is nothing less but breathtaking.
But before I dig deeper into this Eldorado of film music, I want to make clear one thing: The Lord Of The Rings is one movie, split into three parts, and so is the score.
They don't RIVAL each other, they COMPLEMENT each other and they are meant to be heard as ONE score. So, if somebody tells you that Fellowship of the Ring is everything you need is simply wrong.
Now, The Two Towers takes a special place in the trilogy, for it being the middle part of it. As the linking piece between Fellowship and Return Of The King, it has to fulfill unique tasks. First of all, it has to continue the first part, but it has to introduce us to the culture of Rohan, too.
Howard Shore does this masterfully. Here and there, he incorporates thematic ideas from Fellowship and takes them to the next level by using slightly different orchestrations.
Rohan is represented by three main ideas: the Hardanger (a celtic fiddle), the Rohan motif and choral pieces written in Old English.
The new location of Fangorn forest is represented by the track "Treebeard", which hasn't really got an own theme, but creates a fairy-tale like atmosphere by using a light choir (almost Danny Elfman style), woodwinds, and lots of wooden percussion.
Gollum gets two themes; one appears in "The Taming Of Smeagol", played by a hammer dulcimer to represent the instabile, scyzophrenic side of Gollum. The second aspect of Gollum can be found in "The Forbidden Pool". It's the oboe-piece that also appears in "The Prophecy" (from Fellowship) and is alot more pitiful.
Also worth mentioning is "The Hornburg", which brings back a thematic thread of "Lothlorien". The main Lorien-theme is played in a very militaristic, brassy way to represent the army of elves that support the Rohirrim at Helm's Deep.
Another beautiful aspect of The Two Towers are the haunting solo voices. Ben Del Maestro brings tears to your eyes in the epic "Forth Eorlingas" and "Isengart Unleashed".
"Evenstar" is a theme for Arwen and her evenstar, which reappears in The Return Of The King, and so beautiful that it takes your breath away. "Breath Of Life" is alot more mourneful and Elizabeth Frasier sings Haldir's Lament in "Isengart Unleashed" in order to draw a parallel between Haldir's lament and Gandalf's lament from Fellowship.
The two hobbits, Frodo and Sam, get the well-known, soft sound of woodwinds.
Of course no Lord Of The Rings score would be complete without a reference to The Breaking of The Fellowship and Frodo's theme, and so these two are combined in Samwise The Brave.
Howard Shore introduces many new themes here and alters his already established motifs in a way that it prepares us for Return of The King, in which these changes are alot more prominent and also stronger.
However, the score makes clear that the musical journey isn't over yet and leaves you begging for more.
The range of emotions this score creates, is enormous; it makes your adrenaline rush, your hair raise and your eyes wet.
And most important: it enhances, complements and accompanies the movie as brilliantly as you can only imagine.
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on 16 December 2002
To begin with there is a repeat of some themes heard from the Fellowship of the Ring but the music in TTT is more dramatic. Unfortunately it doesn't include the music from the trailer (it is a remix of Requiem For A Dream) the rest of the tracks are very good/excellent. Some tracks start slow and seem to drag on a bit but the majority are excellent such as "Helm's Deep", "The Hornburg" and the haunting voice of Emiliana Torrini in "Gollum's Song". The tracks may need to be listened to a few times to get a feel of it's place in the film, although classical music lovers will enjoy this immensely. With 19 tracks and enhanced CD-Rom it is well worth every penny
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on 6 January 2003
To any Lord of the Rings fans out there that haven't already got this soundtrack (or the first one for that matter) - what are you waiting for, buy it!
When I listened to the soundtrack for the first time after watching the film, the scenes fitted into place incredibly well. Each group of people (or other middle-earthly creatures) seem to have their own recurring themes - be it the Uruk-hai, Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli, Gollum, the Elves or the Rohan. Because of this, some of the themes are similar to those of the Fellowship's soundtrack, but I feel that being a trilogy with the same characters throughout, this is to be expected.
Having said that, each theme has come with variations - such as the battle themes at Helm's Deep and 'Forth Eorlingas' (which amazingly seemed to incorporate the themes from the elves, Uruk-hai, Rohan, and Aragorn etc all into one!)
I loved Gollum's Song sung by Emiliana Torrini at the end of the soundtrack and having listened to it at the end of the film (credits) I feel that it ended both the film and the soundtrack on an eerie note of anticipation.
I can't wait for the The Return of the King to come out, and would like to say that Howard Shore has done an excellent job in writing the score for the Two Towers - well done!!!
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I loved the soundtrack for Fellowship of the Rings, and when the second movie came out, I was so impressed with Shore's continued work. The first film was whimsical and light in places, reflecting the Shire and it's Neverneverland perfection. It had to run to gauntlet of emotions from light and pure to powerful and pressing as they fellowship fought for their lives, to the sorrowful, the ethereal realm of the Elves to the final battle and redemption of Boromir.
Under Shore's hand, The Two Towers is darker, more intense. It does not have the range of Fellowship simply because we are past the Shire and it's tranquil beauty. But the score for the Two Towers is so moving. Think back on the brilliantly filmed scenes, and imagine them without the moving score of this film and you begin to understand just how brilliant conceived this score is. Howard Shore has firmly controlled the scores to make the sounds tracks as important as the film in creating the magic of the Rings.
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on 12 February 2003
I absolutely adored Howard Shore's Oscar-winning score for The Fellowship of the Ring and I couldn't wait to get my hands on The Two Towers soundtrack CD - and it is even better than the first one! The Two Towers film itself is a masterpiece and the accompanying score is a masterpiece too.
From the deep choral vibes of 'The Foundations of Stone' to the masterful Rohan leitmotif in 'The Riders of Rohan', from the immense battle music in 'Helm's Deep' to the haunting eeriness of 'The Forbidden Pool', and of course the rousing adrenaline-pumping finale of 'Forth Eorlingas' right through to 'Samwise the Brave', the whole score is just fantastic!
I really cannot compliment Howard Shore enough on the grest work he has composed for the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the wait for the score of The Return of the King starts here!
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on 29 December 2002
I've never ever really had any kind of interest in classical music, I'm more of a rock fan (Muse, Jimmy Eat World, Doves, etc.), but after seeing the greatest movie I have ever seen, 'The Two Towers', with its enthraluing story, special effects and action sequences, that were all enhanced by the wonderful music, I bought this CD.
Its not really the type I'll put on normally, but its nice to "chill-out" to, and reminds me of those great parts in the movie, especially such tracks as 'Foundations of Stone' and 'Helm's Deep'.
But apart from reminding me of the film, this CD does have many thoughful and gripping music that is really done superbly.
So as I haven't really bought anything classical before I can't make a judgement from that view on it, but as a rock fan, this soundtrack does truly rock.
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on 31 May 2016
Majestical score, especially the White Rider and the Rohan theme. Beautiful collection of instruments used. The music feels like it takes you back into a world of horses and quests and traditional music.
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on 13 October 2015
A hauntingly beautiful soundtrack album. To anyone who is a Lord of the rings fan or not, I would highly recommend listening to this.
I personally loved tracks 2,8,13,18 and 19. But of course they are all fab. Stunning! A*****
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on 1 October 2004
The strange thing about the Lord Of The Rings soundtracks is that each one has something individually special about it. With The Fellowship, I became entranced in booming beats, roaring choirs and soulful violins. In the Return Of The King, The music is presented in a last-effort way, a closing, last and wonderous chapter of a beautiful trilogy - whose music is simply divine.
With the Two Towers, the highlight for me comes in the form of the intoxicating female solos, in which fair singing maidens haunt each song. It's so georgeous, so positively full of life, it blossoms into an amazing Score.
Buy them all!
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on 2 November 2003
This CD is very enjoyable. At first I didn't think it was as good as the FOTR CD, but after seeing the Two Towers movie it is clear to see how the music perfectly illustrates the emotions and themes of the film. The 'Evenstar' track is as beautiful and powerful as the Aniron track on the Fellowship CD, and it brings a tear to my eye when I listen to it as it manages to capture the very essence of the sadness felt by Arwen as she envisions Aragorn's funeral and has to leave Rivendell. The 'Leave Taking' track is delightful as it is a short compilation of some of the nicest LOTR songs including 'Many Meetings', 'Lothlorien' and 'Foundations of Stone'. This soundtrack is sensuous and harmonious and is great for relaxing or for setting the scene while reading the LOTR books.
-Elle Driver
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