Jump to content

Recommended Posts

I've kinda liked the threads about saber fights and space battles so I thought I;d continue it by creating another thread ranking a specific aspect of Star Wars. So why not go with what is probably the most consistently excellent aspect of the series, the music. So Im going to rank my top 10 favorite pieces of Star Wars music. For anyone else wishing to join in there are no rules. Use entire songs or themes. Use a little snippet you love from one movie. Use the same song played differently. Whatever you want. But here goes for me.

1-Princess Leia's Theme: I just love this music. It really goes beyond Star Wars. It evokes feelings of beauty and life. Spring emerging from winter. Still though has such an echo of sadness. It really is an amazing work.

2-The Force Theme: I've heard this called some other things so I'll be clear, this is the music playing while Luke stares out at the binary suns. It really is just so beautiful and obviously plays at many important moments in  the saga including the previously mentioned binary sunset scene and when the saber flies into Reys hands.

3-Yoda's Theme: Just an amazing song. Really evokes feelings of wonder, wisdom and even at parts a whimsy. And like Leia's theme an underside of sadness that makes it a bit bittersweet.

4-The Imperial March: What can you say? This is about as iconic as it gets in modern movie music. Just evokes that feeling of power and dominance associated with the Empire. Played at sporting events around the world when they introduce the visiting team.

5-Across the Stars: The love story in Attack of the Clones is justly much maligned but if when Anakin and Padme are being brought into the arena and this song swells just for a moment you forget how poorly their romance has been exectued and truly believe in it. Thats how good this song is.

6-Main Title Theme: For me there is nothing like the first time in a theater for the excitement of a new Star Wars. It gets all quiet with excitement when "A long time ago in a galaxy far far away..." comes on and then bam this song hits. I don't think there is anything quite like it in entertainment.

7-Reys Theme: I really love this song. Just fits the character so well. It makes us feel a bit of precociousness in it. A bit of curiousity. Starts kind of small and then builds into something larger and more epic. Kinda like Rey.

8-Duel of the Fates: The Phantom Menace is a movie that is slow at parts. Some stuff works better than others but when this music really hits, the whole movie does. Its so different from any of the OT music which is part of why its so great. But like I said when Maul shows up in the hanger and the first notes of this hit well at that point its on!

9-The Asteroid Field: This is just epic stuff here. Is kind of eccentric in parts which really works cause in fact what Han does here is crazy. But is also brave and epic and awesome and full of wonder and amazement. Just like this sequence.

10-The Spark: When Luke shows up in The Last Jedi something is clearly off. He looks younger, beard is nicer. Something ain't right. There is a sadness to his reuninion with Leia. This music sums it all up so perfectly. From the sadness of his talk with Leia, to their being something off about him, to the wonder and amazement of the rest of the Resistance that Luke Skywalker is there to the epicness of him walking out to face Kylo. Just awesome. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am partial to the OT soundtracks (especially TESB), mainly because when I was a kid, I listened to this record over, and over during Star Wars play time. It's some record my parents bought at Kmart or something.

tesb1.jpg.5545d95277b34b77cf4b5da40223cce6.jpg988524585_tesb2.jpg.041b497eb41a0735fa7638b60c367439.jpg

Outside of that, the PT had some great soundtracks, especially Dual of the Fates, and the Battle of Coruscant ROTS space battle cold opening.  I also like the battle of Scariff and the opening of the scene for jedha city.   Sadly, not much in the ST stands out to me, though I like the ending of TFA with Rey trying to hand off the saber to Luke (Rey theme?, not sure what theme that is).  I also like the theme when Finn picks up the saber to fight a fight he knows he won't win with Kylo.  In fact, now that I think about it, that scene should also go in the Lightsaber Fight scenes thread, as one of my favorites fights, too.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • The final season of The Clone Wars ('08-'20) really coloured outside the lines with the music in a way that I found really pleasing. That last arc especially but as well earlier in the season there's this bit where Ahsoka is at an outdoor café and there's an alien pop song with alien lyrics playing on the jukebox and it sounds like ... David Bowie?
  • There's a comedy bit in AotC where the John Williams score ceases abruptly. I love that little moment!
  • Generally speaking any time in the Star Wars where aliens are singing alien stuff and/or playing their little alien instruments, well, that's my jam. (I even love the new stuff in RotJ for the Special Edition.) That's a bull's-eye mark the new stuff always manages to hit for me. I love the little Lin-Manuel Miranda song in TFA, I love the little duet in Solo, just put some monsters singing in monstertalk on my screen and I'm entertained. I love the little song the Ewoks sing to themselves as they stoke the firewood underneath Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill in RotJ. Tunka tooka loola, loola toonka doonkin doo!
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm going EU here. deal with it:

Both Knights of the Old Republic games had amazing soundtracks. Epic, and every bit as Star Wars as John Williams' score, Jeremy Soule truly captures the mood of every world, environment, and situation within those two beloved games, from the chaotic battle aboard the Endar Spire to the sprawling city of Taris to the serene planes of Dantooine to the haunting hauls of the Sith academy on Korriban. As Grand Admiral Thrawn would say, "It was all so artistically done."

Dark Forces had its own original soundtrack. We only hear the midi version in the game (because it's from 1995), but Clint Bajakian did produce a high-quality synthesized version which sounds pretty close to an actual orchestra, even with vocals. Amazing stuff. I wish the remainder of the Jedi Knight games had continued this trend, but they did not; but listening to the original Trilogy soundtrack while playing those games was not a disappointment by any means. In fact, it marks the first time I truly appreciated the soundtrack to Star Wars.

The soundtracks to The Force Unleashed games are also worth mentioning. They were a collaborative effort between Jesse Harlin and Mark Griskey. Totally Star Wars but also epic on a grand scale that is unique to the spirit of the games. Each world and environment comes to life in a unique way as well.

Moving away from video games, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the soundtrack to Gennedy Tartakovsky's Clone Wars micro-series. I cannot seem to find any information on who the composer was, but he or she did a remarkable job. The chaos of battle is captured to the fullest degree. One track that particularly stands out out to me is General Grievous' theme. A freaky, nightmarish, slasher-like ensemble, this theme truly helps bring to life the creepy and imposing character of Grievous, whom I feel was done right in this series, better than George Lucas or Dave Filoni could ever hope. It is lamentable that John Williams chose not to incorporate elements of this piece into Grievous' theme in Revenge of the Sith, though he certainly did a fantastic job nonetheless.

Last but not least, I must make mention of the Shadows of the Empire soundtrack by Joe McNeely. Am I referring the the soundtrack from the game, you ask? No, like the Jedi Knight game, that game simply made use of the soundtracks from the original Trilogy. I am referring to the soundtrack for the book. Yes, the book. Why would a book have a soundtrack, you ask? This is nothing new. Ancient literature such as the Iliad and the Odyssey had music composed for them. McNeely brings to life the events described in Steve Perry's novel with creative genius. My only complaint is that his tracks were noticeably short when compared to most Star Wars soundtracks.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Force Theme (the one Choc mentions) always gets the goosebumps going. And the Leia/love theme is beautiful yes.

Also, I don't know what it's called..a guess it's the Emperor's/Sith theme really gives me chills in a good way. Particularly in ROTJ. Love that song, super otherworldly and mysterious. Love it.

Otherwise in TFA when they go to Maz's cantina there is a sick Alien reggae band playing and the baseline legitimately slaps. I like that tune a lot.

The theme to the Maul/Obi/Quigon fight is pretty special.

Of course I like the imperial march but it's overplayed. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Zerimar Nyliram said:

I'm going EU here. deal with it:

Both Knights of the Old Republic games had amazing soundtracks. Epic, and every bit as Star Wars as John Williams' score, Jeremy Soule truly captures the mood of every world, environment, and situation within those two beloved games, from the chaotic battle aboard the Endar Spire to the sprawling city of Taris to the serene planes of Dantooine to the haunting hauls of the Sith academy on Korriban. As Grand Admiral Thrawn would say, "It was all so artistically done."

Dark Forces had its own original soundtrack. We only hear the midi version in the game (because it's from 1995), but Clint Bajakian did produce a high-quality synthesized version which sounds pretty close to an actual orchestra, even with vocals. Amazing stuff. I wish the remainder of the Jedi Knight games had continued this trend, but they did not; but listening to the original Trilogy soundtrack while playing those games was not a disappointment by any means. In fact, it marks the first time I truly appreciated the soundtrack to Star Wars.

The soundtracks to The Force Unleashed games are also worth mentioning. They were a collaborative effort between Jesse Harlin and Mark Griskey. Totally Star Wars but also epic on a grand scale that is unique to the spirit of the games. Each world and environment comes to life in a unique way as well.

Moving away from video games, I would be remiss if I didn't mention the soundtrack to Gennedy Tartakovsky's Clone Wars micro-series. I cannot seem to find any information on who the composer was, but he or she did a remarkable job. The chaos of battle is captured to the fullest degree. One track that particularly stands out out to me is General Grievous' theme. A freaky, nightmarish, slasher-like ensemble, this theme truly helps bring to life the creepy and imposing character of Grievous, whom I feel was done right in this series, better than George Lucas or Dave Filoni could ever hope. It is lamentable that John Williams chose not to incorporate elements of this piece into Grievous' theme in Revenge of the Sith, though he certainly did a fantastic job nonetheless.

Last but not least, I must make mention of the Shadows of the Empire soundtrack by Joe McNeely. Am I referring the the soundtrack from the game, you ask? No, like the Jedi Knight game, that game simply made use of the soundtracks from the original Trilogy. I am referring to the soundtrack for the book. Yes, the book. Why would a book have a soundtrack, you ask? This is nothing new. Ancient literature such as the Iliad and the Odyssey had music composed for them. McNeely brings to life the events described in Steve Perry's novel with creative genius. My only complaint is that his tracks were noticeably short when compared to most Star Wars soundtracks.

Good mentions on the video games, especially KOTOR and KOTOR 2.  Fallen Order has a great ST too.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

Are video games really EU? I guess this is more theoretical than anything. How can a video game be a part of a story? Doesn't everyone play it differently? Like if I play a game and I can't beat the game but say Zathras does then isn't like our "canon" different? Im not a vide game guy, havent played anyone in quite a while and havent played a non sports video game much longer than that.  I guess Im just having trouble putting a "fixed" story like a movie in the same category as a story that isnt fixed like a video game.

Having said that I don't really care about canon so I don't know why Im really interested in asking this question. But for some reason I am. So I guess for anyone who is a video game person how do you reconcile a video game and a movie being part of the same story?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Working just from memory here :

 

 

- there was a Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game called Galaxies for a while and I think the nitty gritty of it was that someone somewhere in the story of Star Wars was assumed to have gone through what 'you' went through. Except the 'you' in the previous sentence, the antecedent of the pronoun, was literally hundreds of thousands of different people doing all sorts of different things while, like, wearing different hats. It was, in some sense, canonical. Someone really did see Darth Vader one time, sometime really did get their skills in Haberdashery increased w/a visit to a minor character out of one of the comics.

 

 

- I don't know how it really works because I've only played most of them for a little bit but I think KOTOR and one of the later Dark Forces and a lot of the other video games lets the player choose the gender of the character. But the gender of that character is canonically determinated, like, the Jedi Exile is a guy and Jaden Korr is a guy. Officially. In the official standings.

 

 

- There's a bit in the Obi-Wan game where Queen Amidala gets kidnapped on Tatooine and you, Obi-Wan Kenobi, must rescue her from the Tusken Raiders. Except it's not really Queen Amidala. It's one of the handmaidens who pretend to be her because while this is all happening Natalie Portman is meeting Jake Lloyd in Mos Espa. It's basically just what went on with Ewan McGregor while the rest of the cast is involved in the main plot of the movie. It's a little side adventure.

 

 

I'm not really a video game person and I no longer feel any great need to reconcile anything anywhere in any way but I hope the above was of some interest! It's what popped into mind when you asked your question!

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, The Choc said:

Are video games really EU? I guess this is more theoretical than anything. How can a video game be a part of a story? Doesn't everyone play it differently? Like if I play a game and I can't beat the game but say Zathras does then isn't like our "canon" different? Im not a vide game guy, havent played anyone in quite a while and havent played a non sports video game much longer than that.  I guess Im just having trouble putting a "fixed" story like a movie in the same category as a story that isnt fixed like a video game.

Having said that I don't really care about canon so I don't know why Im really interested in asking this question. But for some reason I am. So I guess for anyone who is a video game person how do you reconcile a video game and a movie being part of the same story?

Good question.  I think they are all EU, but most are legends EU, which is what I think ZM was getting at.  Certainly the ones before Disney's acquisition are Legends EU.  Canon is another question.    But, each game has an "official" ending, usually the light-side ending, if a jedi game, but unless you are into the games, they are apocryphal.  

The Kyle Katarn games certainly are Legends, and Rogue One pretty much over writes Dark Forces.  Dark Forces 2, Jedi Knight 2, Jedi Academy etc are stories that center around Luke's Legends EU jedi order. The Force Unleashed games have been totally ignored since the merger, so I tend to not think of them as Legends. The KOTOR 1 &2 games and the Old Republic MMORPGare based on Dark Horse comics which are now Legends, as far as Disney is concerned. 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Zathras said:

Good mentions on the video games, especially KOTOR and KOTOR 2.  Fallen Order has a great ST too.  

That it does! I forgot about that.

Yes, the video games prior to 2014 are part of the EU. The main progression of the story as well as things like cutscenes are canon, but the gameplay is not.

Link to post
Share on other sites

And just to be clear, not putting down video games. Most of my friends are pretty big gamers. I just don't have the patience and havent played a non sports game in a long time. Although Iguess if you count puzzle apps on my phone I do.

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, R.CAllen said:

- I don't know how it really works because I've only played most of them for a little bit but I think KOTOR and one of the later Dark Forces and a lot of the other video games lets the player choose the gender of the character. But the gender of that character is canonically determinated, like, the Jedi Exile is a guy and Jaden Korr is a guy. Officially. In the official standings.

The Exile was a woman, and she was given the name of Meetra Surik in a novel. Jaden Korr was a guy, though, which I've always hated because I though Jennifer Hale's performance as female Jaden was incomparably superior to that of her male counterpart.

Star Wars does canonize the genders of customizable video game characters, and in games where the player has a choice which path to take, the light side ending is always the canon ending, since Star Wars is all about redemption. (I'm speaking only about the EU, i.e. "Legends." I have no idea how the new canon does things.) I suppose it has to be this way given how big the universe is, and how meticulously it was all managed to fit mostly cohesively. Mass Effect, on the other hand, takes a completely different approach: Shepard's first name, gender, background, and moral choices are left completely vague and ambiguous so that anyone's play style can be considered canon. Honestly, I like both approaches for different reasons. One works well for one franchise, and the other approach works well for the other.

Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, The Choc said:

I think the only Star Wars video game I ever played was The Empire Strikes Back for my old Intellivision. 

I use to have the high score on ROTJ at my local arcade.   Loved that game.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

I listened to the Shadows of the Empire soundtrack so often when I was in middle school.  Parts of it were used in the video game, but the game definitely had portions of the movie scores in it, too.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Funnily enough they released a vinyl edition of the Shadows of the Empire soundtrack not long ago, was surprised to see it get some deserved love. 

Not ranking the music because favourites can depend on the mood at the time and most of it covered here anyway. Musically I think Revenge of the Sith was actually the strongest,  like Williams was at the most bombastic and experimental. The ST was good but would agree it didn’t have anything particularly memorable, though I did really like the Kylo theme at the end of Last Jedi when he was attempting to strike down Luke.

I’ve liked a lot of the stuff on Mandalorian too. I thought they gave Boba a pretty fitting, bad ass theme. I actually liked the music during the Luke attack in the last episode, mysterious and hopeful before the proper reveal. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Dark Wader said:

Musically I think Revenge of the Sith was actually the strongest,  like Williams was at the most bombastic and experimental.

Agreed. It’s like Williams thought it was his last SW score and went all out to finish the saga off with a bang. 

Two pieces of music I haven’t seen mentioned yet that always get me hyped up.

The music that plays during the escape from the Death Star in ANH. It starts when Luke and Han climb into the cannon pods on the Falcon, swells up as the Tie Fighters approach and goes nuts during the shootout.

The Battle of Hoth from the minute they first spot the AT-ATs to when Luke takes off in his X-wing.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Zerimar Nyliram said:

I agree about Revenge of the Sith. I used to pop that into my CD player on my power walks back in 2005. (Yes, I was still using a CD player when iPods were becoming a thing.)

I was very anti-iPod at that time. I didn’t get one until 2008, when I got my now wife’s old one after getting her a new one. 
 

There’s a big part of me that still misses CDs. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 weeks later...

That is pretty intense.  Almost more like a horror theme. 

IMHO, this is a very Star Warsy theme. My favorite among the Star Wars Video Games

I love this one too:

 

 

A good theme, but just not "Star Warsy" enough for me:

A little reminiscent of the Dual of the Fates, as well as Conan the Barbarian,  And maybe even a Klingon Opera.... I just love this theme:

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
×
×
  • Create New...