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The Avengers Music and more Laurie Johnson,
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This review is from: The Music of Laurie Johnson Vol. 1 :The Avengers (Audio CD)
The music of the avengers
This is a fabulously rich release of music by British composer Laurie Johnson. There are actually three different releases by this record company Demon-Edsel. But this is the best of the three. The other two uses the tag of the TV series The Professionals and The New Avengers.
This is volume one and here on this three CD set we get a variety of music by Laurie Johnson.
Disc one is dedicated to the music he composed for the TV series The Avengers. It covers some of the music from the Diana Rigg, Emma Peel era of the popular TV show.
This is a most enjoyable disc. I feel there is room for more music from the Avengers but this is a good disc in its own right. Each episode required its own music landscape and atmosphere. Johnson did a great job of capturing the spirit of the bizarre world of the Avengers where there is a unique mixture of fantasy and reality where there is comedy and drama.
The musicians that helped to produce these recordings also did a great job and the compositions are rich, melodic, dramatic and exciting. The music to the Avengers is brilliant. And the arrangements are wonderful.
The booklet gives details of each piece and the episode it was featured in. This truly is a terrific release.
Music for TV and Film is often ignored as serious music. Possibly because of the nature of the music being a backdrop to the visual element. But the music is an important part of these films and TV shows because they are often the crucial things that create the atmosphere of the piece.
In the case of The Avengers the music was especially commissioned for this series. Composers like Edwin Astley, Barry Grey and Laurie Johnson created some very original music and deserve to be respected as serious composers. Laurie Johnson has his own unique style.
Disc two has some interesting selected main themes also by Johnson for TV shows like This is your life, The new Avengers, Animal Magic, The Professionals, Wicker's world and World in Action. These are all fabulously rich themes and have all been very popular. There is another section of themes from films and some singles but the disc ends with concert music in the form of the brilliant "Symphony (Synthesis)" This five movement composition shows what an great composer Laurie Johnson is in terms of his ability in musical development and range.
The final disc celebrates his music compositions with a military theme. There is the Falklands salute. A piece including a fanfare for HRH Prince of Wales arrival on horse guards parade. This incorporates the Royal Marines, the Band of Welsh and Scots Guards and the Bands from the Royal Air Force. Each has its own march that comes together at the climax.
There is also a three movement Royal Tour Suite, a piece called "Echoes" with the Massed Bands and Fanfare Trumpeters of the Royal Air Force, another piece called The "Few" composed for the 50th anniversary of the Battle of Britain and it is a piece in three movements.
Military music is not my most favourite style of music and this disc is the least favoured of the three in this set. But the music on this disc is rich in sound and originality. It also displays the wide ability of this very talented composer.