The Peacemaker

Dan Audio Projects, Graphic Design

One of my favorite Hans Zimmer scores from the 1990s (aside from The Rock) is, without a doubt, The Peacemaker.  The adrenaline-fueled action, dramatic Russian-styled (ala Crimson Tide) choir and emotional melodies just resonated with me for some reason. So it was truly wonderful to be able to tackle the project as a new expanded limited edition.  Once we got the DATs from Paramount Pictures transferred, it was straightforward to put the album together.  There was only one alternate track available (a different vocal performance), so to fill out the …

Days of Thunder

Dan Audio Projects, Graphic Design

Days of Thunder features a pretty kick-ass score by Hans Zimmer, which was strangely never released.  The 1990 car racing flick features a power-anthem score with rock elements and emotional beats, and a really catchy theme, which was adapted into the song “The Last Note of Freedom”, which Zimmer wrote with Billy Idol. The audio assets for Days of Thunder came from analog tapes in the Paramount archives, which were transferred by Johnny Dee Davis at Precision AudioSonics.  I then cut …

Black Rain

Dan Audio Projects, Graphic Design

This week, La-La Land Records released a limited expanded edition of the soundtrack to Black Rain.  The 1989 film was directed by Ridley Scott, and marked Hans’ first action score.  As such, it was a thrill to work on it – but the project didn’t just land in our laps.  There are a few projects that require composer approval to explore releasing, and Black Rain was one of them. Thankfully, my years working in the film music industry (as well as the …

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Dan Movie Reviews

At the end of the last Pirates of the Caribbean film in 2007, we last saw Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) missing his ship, the Black Pearl – but with a special map that would lead to the Fountain of Youth. In Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, the race is on to see who can find the Fountain first: the Spanish, the English, or dread pirate Blackbeard. On the English side, Sparrow is hired by King George II …

Crysis 2

Dan Audio Projects

The latest album I’ve been involved with was just released. It’s the 2-disc video game soundtrack for Crysis 2. Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer was asked to write some themes for the game, and I got an email from La-La Land asking me to send over a small handful of questions for the liner notes.  About two weeks later, I got a frantic call asking me to do the questions as an interview, in person.  I went over to Hans’ studio …

Inception

Dan Movie Reviews

In Inception, the idea of corporate espionage is taken to the next level. Dominic Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) is an "extractor" – someone who, through shared dreaming technology developed by the military, steals sensitive information from his targets.  Along with his point man Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Cobb was trying to extract information from Japanese businessman Saito (Ken Watanabe), but things went wrong when the subconscious representation of his dead wife Mal (Marion Cotillard) showed up and ruined the plan.  It turns …

Sherlock Holmes

Dan Movie Reviews

In Guy Ritchie’s re-imagining of the classic Arthur Conan Doyle sleuth, Sherlock Holmes, Robert Downey Jr. plays the titular character, and Jude Law plays Dr. Watson.  The film starts in 1891’s London, where Holmes and Watson manage to stop Lord Blackwood (Mark Strong) from successfully enacting a human sacrifice ritual as part of the dark arts.  During the three months between Blackwood’s capture and his execution date, Holmes has grown bored, Watson has become engaged, and soon the mysterious Irene …

Angels & Demons

Dan Movie Reviews

Author Dan Brown’s scholarly protagonist Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) returns in Angels & Demons.  Taking place some time after the events in The Da Vinci Code (although the novel took place prior), we find Langdon summoned by the Vatican when a conspiracy has been uncovered to destroy Vatican City.  Someone has stolen anti-matter from a particle accelerator facility in Switzerland, and with the Pope recently deceased, the four “preferiti” (preferred favorites) have been kidnapped.  Seems that the Illuminati – the underground …

Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa

Dan Movie Reviews

This is going to be one of the shortest reviews of the year.  I watched a screener of Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa.  It was exactly what you would expect it to be.  I can’t really recommend it, unless you have nothing to do.  It’s not a bad film; it’s just that you can find something else to watch.  Hans Zimmer’s score is fine, and the penguins rock.  ‘Nuff said.

Frost/Nixon

Dan Movie Reviews

Based on the Tony-nominated play by Peter Morgan, Frost/Nixon is a dramatic telling about the post-Watergate events that led to talk show host David Frost securing an exclusive interview with disgraced former President Richard Nixon – and the intellectual chess game that ensued during the course of the interviews. When Nixon (Frank Langella) resigns from office, David Frost (Michael Sheen) crunches the numbers, and thinks that getting an interview with the former president would be a major ratings coup.  Unfortunately, …