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La Herencia Valdemar II: La Sombra Prohibida by Arnau Bataller (Review)

posted Feb 8, 2011, 10:10 AM by Kaya Savas

I'm approaching this score without having ever heard of Arnau Bataller or the first film. So I did a little research before I listened to it. The film itself is sort of a gothic action/fantasy flick. It's a Spanish produced film and if you watch the trailer you will probably laugh. Luckily the music is lot more appealing. If anyone is looking for a grand orchestral experience then look no further than here. The music is very very strong here and Arnau Bataller will definitely stay on my radar from now on.

The score is very traditional. It uses familiar elements in the fantasy genre, which definitely garners an appeal. Fans of John Williams and Jerry Goldsmith will appreciate the orchestrations here as they are quite traditional. The colors and atmospheres that Bataller paints with the music are exquisite. The choir work gives it that operatic fantasy element that made Lord Of The Rings so great. The only reason I'm saying that it "sounds like this and that" is to give you a reference point since this is most likely the first time you are hearing about this score too. The score doesn't sound like John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith or Howard Shore by any means. Bataller definitely has a voice here and that gives it a fresh and unique feel.

The score's thematic material proved a tad bit weak for me. It never reeled me in from an emotional standpoint even though I was hooked all the way through. If the score has a weakness it's probably that. With a little tweaking of the structure and elements it could be a much stronger work. Nevertheless this is a great score and any fantasy/epic fans looking for that grand orchestral sound should check it out.

Now I'm sure you're wondering what's on that cover. Any South Park viewers will immediately recognize it. Yes, that is Cthulhu. Just try to not think of South Park too much when listening to it and you should be fine.