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Chariots of Fire (Soundtrack from the Motion Picture)

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Album Review

Vangelis' electronic score for a film set in 1930s Britain seemed an odd match at first, but the title theme, with its echoing, manipulated rhythm box and melodic hook, became one of the most popular theme songs of the early '80s. Just hearing the opening 30 seconds conjures up — for those who have seen the film — shots of men running on the beach in slow motion, and has been borrowed, adapted, and ripped-off ever since. Suffice it to say that the other six tracks here can't quite match the punch (if that's the word for something so fey) of the title theme. Much of the rest is very sappy, if often melodic, proto-smooth jazz with a burnish of electronic screeches, washes, and fuzzy fake strings. If it works for the insular "Five Circles," it doesn't for "100 Metres," which so desperately wants to be Elgar's "Pomp and Circumstance" but can't quite get there with its watery synths — suddenly you realize what a full orchestral arrangement could have added. Side two is a side-long "suite" of the themes on side one, created, one feels, to fill up space. Vangelis went on to snag more soundtrack work, notably Blade Runner.

Customer Reviews

Vangelis!

What ever happned to you guys? I love the CD-- I remember it from when I was younger-- great music!

Yay!

I can download it off iTunes rather than copying my skipping record.

Missing song

I didn't get Chariots of Fire song with my downloaded album! Why????

Biography

Born: March 29, 1943 in Volos, Greece

Genre: Soundtrack

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Best known for his lush, Oscar-winning score to the 1981 film Chariots of Fire, Vangelis was among the most successful and admired electronic composers of his era. Born Evangelos Odyssey Papathanassiou in Volos, Greece, on March 29, 1943, his nascent musical talent was recognized at an early age, but he refused to take piano lessons, instead teaching himself. After high school he formed the early-'60s pop group Formynx, soon the most popular act in Greece. After achieving superstardom at home, Vangelis...
Full Bio

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