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The Matrix Trilogy - Complete Scores

Trawling through an old folder recently, i discovered a set of the "Complete Scores" to the three Matrix films—i.e. the soundtrack that runs throughout the entire movie without the spoken dialogue & sound effects, as opposed to the much shorter, officially released soundtrack CDs • They make for a surprisingly thrilling experience, & reveal the scope of the music Don Davis conceived for these ground-breaking movies • i have no idea who created these soundtracks (nor, indeed, quite how they did it; i thought it was possible to select a 'music only' option only on the first Matrix DVD), but there was quite a vogue for them a few years back; i downloaded these back in 2003/4 • So i don't know whom to thank for these complete soundtracks; there are some nametags mentioned in the comments of some of the mp3s, but i haven't been able to trace any of them online • Apart from some tag-tidying, they're as i found them • In terms of their claim to be 'complete', they are convincing, although i found it impossible to listen while watching the corresponding movies •

In the case of The Matrix, the music is at a slightly lower pitch—& therefore slightly slower—than the soundtrack on my DVD (i have the 10-DVD "Ultimate Collection"); furthermore, the Complete Score runs 1:49:18 compared to the movie's 2:10:34, although i imagine there are points without music that have been omitted • It's also interesting that one of the tracks, where Neo is first interrogated by the Agents, the dialogue & effects are, for once, included, & the lossy encoding seems to drop in quality at that point (although it's supposedly VBR throughout) • As to the rest, i'm just happy to have the superb music accompanying Morpheus' & Neo's training fights (called "Show Me" here), which was strangely omitted from the soundtrack CD • The music-only audio track was not included on the 10-DVD edition, but has returned on the recently released Blu-Ray set, so if anyone fancies making a lossless rip of that track, i'd be much obliged! •

The Matrix: Complete Score [1:49:18 | mp3 | vbr | 139.2Mb]

The Matrix Reloaded fairs somewhat better, but still plays a little slower/lower-pitched than the DVD • Here, the shorter running time is clearly due to the passages without music being omitted, which makes sense; also Fluke's track "Zion" (which began life as "Another Kind of Blues", on his Puppy album), used in the impromptu Zion dance sequence & included on the soundtrack CD, is also left out • Having said that, this Complete Score does include two tracks not used in the film at all (& mentioned on the soundtrack CD's Wikipedia page here), "Burly Brawl (alt.)", which is around 90 seconds & doesn't seem terribly suitable for that scene, & "Chateau Swashbuckling [Unused]", so whether these are sourced from Don Davis or someone involved in the production is anyone's guess • i don't think it matters terribly much; Reloaded has a simply superb soundtrack, made more thrilling through the inclusion of Juno Reactor in some key scenes (i can take or leave Rob Dougan's bland material) • The music accompanying the astonishing Burly Brawl sequence is every bit as exciting as the visuals (check out the track "Masters of the Universe" on Juno Reactor's album Shango to hear the inspiration for it), & of course "Mona Lisa Overdrive" is perhaps the crowning achievement of this soundtrack; both, though, were on the official release, so they're not new as such • All the same, throughout the Complete Score, it's fascinating to hear how Davis weaves & develops his assorted themes for each scene •

The Matrix Reloaded: Complete Score [1:56:07 | mp3 | vbr/192 | 178Mb]
part 1 | part 2

Don Davis does a Beethoven (or possibly even a Wagner) for his final installment, & makes the choral aspect of The Matrix Revolutions soundtrack much more prominent • For once, the running time here is actually longer than the movie, for the most part due to the inclusion of two versions of the track "Why, Mr Anderson?" • The soundtrack Wiki page once again refers to omitted cues (here), all of which are obviously included here • Again, the music is lower & slower than the DVD, for reasons that are unclear • In many ways, this is the most serious of the three scores, with no involvement of Juno Reactor beyond the single track "Navras" • The music has a powerfully dark & brooding quality, & whoever made this Complete Score obviously wanted to hit home the perceived Wagnerian grandeur of the music, using rather clever & comical titles such as "Das Banegold", "Die Brunett Walkure" &—funniest of all—"Neodämmerung" • The only down side to the soundtrack is the way it reflects the film's rapid shifts between the multiple aspects of the story, resulting in rather short tracks (averaging 3 minutes each) • Nonetheless, it's a powerful conclusion to the trilogy & perhaps the most successful in terms of pure music, playing like a vast orchestra suite •

The Matrix Revolutions: Complete Score [2:05:39 | mp3 | vbr | 185Mb]
part 1 | part 2 | part 3

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