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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chariots of Fire is stunning and brilliant.,
They don't call Vangelis the keyboard wizard for nothing. This album only emphasizes that he is. Baring in mind this 25th Special Edition of the 1981 Oscar winning soundtrack was digitally remastered by Vangelis himself.
There are some terrific tracks on this album. For example we kick off with "Titles" which is the theme everyone is familiar with. In between we have "Five Circles", "Eric's Theme" and the epic closing track "Chariots of Fire" which goes on for 20 minutes 41 seconds. In fact I found the whole album extremely enjoyable and an incredible edition to any CD collection.
I think that Vangelis is the master of the keyboards and the synthesizer. The sounds that he's able to produce on them is astonishing. For example, on this album he conjures up trumpets, piano, strings and the odd percussion. Also he creates sounds of wind noise and bell sounds on the closing track along with added percussion. What an album.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding with the film alongside,
This CD was excellent first-time round, but now digitally remastered, it is even better sounding. Vangelis is a genius - no argument. Chariots of Fire will always remain his most commercial output.
"Titles" is the main familiar theme. "Five Circles" is well known as well, having been added to compilation CDs. This CD is a soundtrack and nothing else but there are some ommissions from the film, for instance "Hymn" was used in the film but doesn't appear on the CD. "Hymn" can be found on a 1970s recording "Opera Sauvage" which is now available also on CD and is recommended. Watching the film recently, I chanced on hearing Vangelis calling on previous recordings and experiments. In "Abraham's Theme" I can hear "Reve" again from "Opera Sauvage". The main sequence track here is a 20mins "Chariots of Fire" and indeed there are influences from his previous recordings of "Heaven and Hell", "L'Apocalypse des Animaux", "Spiral" and "Beaubourg". Nonetheless, this 20min track is outstanding and often was not played when a vinyl - originally it was side two of the vinyl.
To really appreciate this CD, you really do need to see the film and understand the characters involved and each of their stories. The film is now available on a special 2-disk DVD. I believe the film is one of the greatest british films ever made and the soundtrack is a Vangelis masterpiece without question. It is timeless and certainly enhanced in this new CD 25th anniversary pressing.
Finally, I disagree that the main theme has become dated and over used. It can never be said as dated. There are other Vangelis recordings that perhaps sound far deeper and enlightening, but the main theme is exceptional and one can never grow tired of hearing it - I say PLAY IT LOUD and really hear Vangelis for all his worth. May I also suggest that you buy MYTHODEA on DVD and really see the great man in action - the MYTHODEA DVD has a live exclusive version of Vangelis playing the main theme from Chariots of Fire... simply brilliant!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five circles and five stars,
This review is from: Chariots Of Fire (Remastered) (MP3 Download)
Whilst there's no doubt that 'Chariots of Fire' is an excellently scripted, acted and directed piece of cinema, Vangelis' soundtrack is the absolute highlight of the film, which chronicles the story of Olympic winning athletes Eric Liddell and Harold Abrahams. Vangelis' score is a masterful melding of heraldic, classical music, much of it with pastoral overtones, with the chilly ambient synth music that characterised other Vangelis releases of the '80s, such as 'Antarctica' and 'China'. 'Titles', the piece which will be most familiar to listeners, is the opener - an evocative, shortened variation on the closing theme, replete with tripping synths and a gliding classical melody. The gentle, lilting 'Five Circles', which follows it, is the album's most traditional-sounding piece; a yearning piece, which sounds more the work of Elgar, than of most of Vangelis' other releases. The contrasting character traits of Abraham and Eric, are evoked nicely in their respective themes; the former a memorable, if overly bombastic piece, the latter a reserved one, awash with electronic sounds.
'100 Metres' is probably the only less than excellent track on 'Chariots of Fire', and whilst it is rather aimless and disappointing, it is not so bad as to take away anything really, from the quality of this soundtrack. The version of 'Jerusalem' on show here, is not the one used in the film itself; but is rather an equally captivating, but more modern variation, with the voices hidden behind vocoder. Which leads to the closer, the self-titled 'Chariots of Fire'. It's a long, at times slightly rambling, but fitting close, to a superb soundtrack. Its distinctive explorations of the melody from 'Titles', as well as its near-eerie, opening, makes it a piece of truly Vangelian scope. For those looking for an evocative album which channels both the sounds and spirit of British classical music, and also the synth-soaked electro/synth pop of the 1980s, or just for a thoroughly original and enjoyable classical record, I would highly recommend Vangelis' 'Chariots of Fire'. A record to be played over and over.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bring me my Chariots of Fire,
So you've heard the Chariot's of Fire theme, love it, can't get it out of you head and now want to know if the rest of the soundtrack is worth investigation. Well yes it is and so is the rest of the Vangelis back-catalogue as it happens.
By the early 80's when Charitos of Fire was being filmed Vangelis had already been involved in a very large array of soundtrack projects and had become very adept indeed at expressing the emotion of film through sound. As a prolific composer of many non-film works he was also in a rich vein of form and an artist willing to push the boundaries, more so in fact than he is given credit for.
The rest of the album, as we may call it as many readers may only be familiar with the main theme, is everything from highly emotional, extremely tuneful, profoundly triumphant and deeply atmospheric to give you just a few of the many potential expletives. This album works very well outside of it's duty as a film soundtrack, in fact, much of what I still refer to as side 2, one long 20 minute piece entitled Chariot's of Fire, didn't actually feature in the film at all.
I feel something must also be said of Vangelis's reputation as a meastro of the keyboard. Everything you have heard is true, Vangelis though was perhaps the ultimate keyboard genius because you never feel like you are listening to a bunch of soundbanks; his work has a much more human brush-stroke then you might be expecting. A very wide palette is used that includes many acoustic instruments also.
Another recommendation; if you enjoy Vangelis's ability to create expansive, ambient, tuneful, musical landscapes take a listen to Mohribold by Andrew Taylor (google it!). Not as synthy but still a very broad pallette of acoustic instruments, I downloaded from a site called bandcamp.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Chariots of Fire CD,
I just love this music. Had it on Vinyl but CD is great for the car.Play it all the time.
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational CD for Olympic year!,
I feel that there is no better way to celebrate our Olympic and Paralympic successes for GB team than taking a glimpse at this extraordinary tale of two men, both driven by a relentless desire to win. One who was performing for the glory of His creator God, and the other propelled by his need to prove himself as a Jew in a Christian culture .
Not only the captivating storyline, but also the wonderfully evocative music of Vangelis that captures those special moments so poignantly.
All in all a treat to be savoured...
A moral tale of striving for excellence - to be the best!
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspired by the Olympics....,
I bought the LP of this music when it was first released and was immediately impressed. I had bought"Heaven and Hell" previous to this and "Albedo .39" from Vangelis on LP and was familiar with his compositions. The remastered CD is very good and worth the purchase for convenience if nothing else.My LP player is much more "high-end" than my CD machine but the new CD makes a much cleaner job of this electronic music which seems to benefit from digital processing more than, say; acoustic music. I would buy a WAV download if it was available which would quite probably sound very good indeed!
5.0 out of 5 stars Vangelis nut,
I saw Chariots of Fire in the early eighties and bought the album on vinyl then. I loved it then and when I saw this CD I just had to have it. When I hear this it throws me right back to some very happy times, particularly track 3 which is the most haunting sound. I probably will wear this out and need another couple of copies before long. My son also said he remembered the same things as me and bought his copy to play whilst driving.
5.0 out of 5 stars Chariots of Fire Film Music,
Having heard the theme tune again on the radio and seen the film again during the Olympics have been playing this CD theme music over and over and love it. It is so atmospheric. Photo on the front is great as well. So pleased to have this in our collection.
5.0 out of 5 stars Magesterial,
Along with Bladerunner and 1492: Conquest Of Paradise, one of his three best film soundtrack releases.
Perfectly matches the tension, atmosphere and spectacle of the 1924 Olympics.
Very, very good, and very highly recommended.
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