Favourite Towers Street Music

Discussion in 'Talbot Street' started by Matt N, 1st Nov 2017.

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Favourite Towers Street Music?

  1. 1990s to 2007 (Graham Smart)

    55.9%
  2. 2008 to 2015 (Unknown composer)

    20.6%
  3. 2016 to present (IMAscore)

    23.5%
  1. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Hi everyone. The title of this topic is pretty self-explanatory, so I ask you: What is your favourite Towers Street music? My personal favourite is the 2008-2015 soundtrack because it reminds me of happy memories I've had over the years at Towers and is actually quite sentimental. The current IMAscore soundtrack is an excellent piece of music that is excellent at building excitement, don't get me wrong, but it doesn't give me quite the same fuzzy feeling inside as the 2008-2015 music. So, what's your favourite Towers Street Music? Also, tell me if I've missed any and I'll add them to the poll.
     
    Sauron97 likes this.
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  2. Sauron97

    Sauron97 TowersStreet Member

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    Great question Matt! The Graham Stuart piece for me. Why? Because to me that piece resonates what Alton's identity should be; magical, classical, quirky and enigmatic. It embraces the traditional feel of the towers and gardens, which have their roots as a fairground in the 1800s, and yet also carries a Disney-esque part here and there. The 'in the hall of the mountain king' in this soundtrack sounds very similar to the original piece too, which is always good and shows great attention to detail.
    I like the other two tracks as individual pieces, and would like them played around the park, but I think the entrance and towers street area should return to its roots and bring back that fantastic piece. (I also think that Towers Street should be renovated in a few years time to look like Talbot Street did, with sweet shops, doom and sons, and also a nice restaurant styled like an old english pub :p)
     
    James564 and Matt N like this.
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  3. waffa

    waffa TowersStreet Member

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    The music from 2007 was composed by Pit Stop productions :)

    Graham Smart's piece was truly magical - as @Sauron97 pointed out, it really captured the magical but quirky nature of the park. It had some really unusual sounds and very memorable melodies, I remember enthusiasts only having a version crudely recorded at the park on a small casette recorder back in the early 2000s

    PitStop's version definitely had some charm, but was a significant downgrade of sonic and melodic quality

    ImaScore's version just bores me, I can hear the reference track's they have just copied and pasted - Danny Elfman's Alice in Wonderland theme comes to mind
    Like a lot of their music, the orchestral synthesis is great, but their melodies and harmonies are very bland feel like they've been written by a robot that's just been fed key-words

    Sadly Merlin don't want to pay royalities or muster the budget for decent composers - so it'll be a while till we get another decent melody for once
     
    OilyWater and Matt N like this.
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  4. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Why thank you! The Graham Smart music is a very magical piece and I completely understand why you like it more than the Pit Stop piece, but it doesn't give me quite the same warm and fuzzy feeling inside as the Pit Stop piece when I listen to it. Might just be because that was the music that always played when I was visiting as a young child, but I personally think the Pit Stop piece is just as magical as the Graham Smart piece, and almost a little sentimental, if you get what I mean.

    Thank you for telling me the composer! I only put "composer unknown" because on the Theme Park Music Looped YouTube video of it, it says composer unknown. I'll have to drop TPML a comment next time I'm on YouTube! Now how do I add PitStop to my poll? Also, isn't PitStop the company who composed Thirteen/Dark Forest's soundtrack?
     
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  5. waffa

    waffa TowersStreet Member

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    Yep! PitStop did a full music rebrand around 2007 which was hit and miss - all of the rides utilised a common 'leitmotif' and it didn't quite work. Some of the rides original soundtracks were brought back such as Nemesis

    They then went to do Mutiny Bay and Thirteen, along with the Chessington theme, Halloween music, Wild Asia and Storm Surge at Thorpe
     
    Matt N likes this.
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  6. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    Out of curiosity, how do you know that PitStop composed that soundtrack? Because a Google search of Pit Stop Productions brings up a company who does game audio and mp3 clips of Thirteen's soundtrack. I'm not doubting you at all, I just wondered.
     
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  7. Ted

    Ted TowersStreet Member

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    It's gotta be Graham Smart's for me as it feels so natural and I love how it incorporates the theme for Toyland Tours and ITHOTMK into it. However I really like the other two as well, the IMAscore version more so than the other one.
     
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    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  8. waffa

    waffa TowersStreet Member

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    Yep they're the company, they do a lot of audio for the gaming and theatre industry. They don't do much theme park music anymore but you might hear some stuff on some ios / pc games

    I know someone who works there so I got a full insight in the scope of the work they did. There were lots of unused bits of music for the 2007 rebrand, including Bond style Duel music and a very dated campy Nemesis score ( i have them somewhere, will upload sometime)
     
    OilyWater likes this.
    Posted 1st Nov 2017
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  9. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    All of the stuff I've heard from IMA sounds like something made by IMA, the Thorpe Island themes have the same feel too.

    But the 2015 fireworks finale was perfect, but thats probably because the Hex theme and In the Hall of the Mountain King are great pieces to start with so its hard not to put them together well.
     
    OilyWater likes this.
    Posted 2nd Nov 2017
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  10. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    I am so in the minority for thinking IMAscore are nothing more than a swanky brand name and their work is actually average at best. Disappointed by the attitude adopted by parks like Thorpe today that revamping their entire audio with IMAscore will be automatic perfection. Incorporating old themes into new ones just seems like nostalgia for the sake of it to me, either rerecord the original theme with newer production or create a whole new one, not half and half?

    The IMAscore-isation of entire parks will only date the music faster, giving a big unmemorable wash of overblown trailer music that sounds like stuff we've all heard before. Exactly the same 'modern' revamp that we came close to in 2007 with PitStop. (The replacement Nemesis track, oh god!) These companies sure know how to sell clients their music packages, but doesnt necessarily mean it will make things better.

    IMAscore are nt bad, just usually so average. Yet they've been praised as 'theme park celebrities' to the enthusiast community and their brand image has caught on.

    I loved the Smiler theme for the most part, many of their non UK work has been much better, and they can certainly do production quality. But melody? Atmosphere? No, sorry!
     
    Last edited: 2nd Nov 2017
    Bubblegum and DiogoJ42 like this.
    Posted 2nd Nov 2017
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  11. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    Say what you will about them, but they sure know how to spread brand awareness amongst enthusiasts. ;)
     
    Posted 3rd Nov 2017
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  12. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    @electricBill I don't personally think IMAscore make bad or average soundtracks by any means, some particular favourites of mine include Smiler, Galactica and Mystic Timbers. But I don't think they quite beat the atmosphere of the PitStop soundtrack on Towers Street for me. The 2016 Towers Street soundtrack is a very, very good soundtrack, don't get me wrong, but as I said earlier in the thread, it doesn't give me the same warm and fuzzy feeling inside as the PitStop soundtrack.

    Also, are there any clips on YouTube of this PitStop Nemesis soundtrack you speak of? Or any of the other 2007 soundtracks, like the James Bond-style Duel soundtrack mentioned earlier in the thread? The only soundtrack I could find from 2007 was this 2007 Air soundtrack:

    Was this made by PitStop? If so, then I cannot believe that this is the same company that made the Towers Street score and the Dark Forest score. It just sounds so... cheap. If I were a GP member, I wouldn't have been able to tell whether Air was a peaceful themed ride or a sci-fi themed ride! In fairness to them, I did read somewhere that the reason the park had these made was because they briefly lost the license to play a load of their soundtracks. Not sure if that's true or not. Getting back on to the Air soundtrack, let's just compare to the Air soundtrack used up until 2015:

    What a difference. This Air soundtrack actually accurately portrays the ride's "vibe" so to speak. I'm not a music snob by any means, but even I think the 2007 Air soundtrack sounds cheap. Anyway, we should really get back on topic.

    P.S. Sorry about the 2007 Air soundtrack rant.
     
    Posted 3rd Nov 2017
    #12
  13. Error

    Error TowersStreet Member

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    1990 - 2007 without doubt.

    Still listen to this to this day on my pod.
     
    Posted 4th Nov 2017
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  14. Matt.GC

    Matt.GC TowersStreet Member

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    Controversial opinion coming right up - The 2016 piece is by far my favourite. Musical preferences are often strongly linked to nostalgia so an early prediction will be that the 90's Graham Smart will win on here. It will win because hearing it will remind people of childhood memories and some of their best times at the park. I listen to all sorts of music from my childhood for exactly the same reason.

    As someone who had some of their best times in the park in that era I could well say the same. But listening back, after I've got the serious dose of nostalgia out of the way and I'm looking at it more subjectively, I don't think it's that good in its own tight. Hell, it dedicates a large chunk of its length to different renditions of the Toyland Tours theme, over and over. As if hearing different versions of that same tune looped in and around the ride itself weren't enough!

    Yet when I think of the untrained ear of any old GP Joe walking down Towers Street who doesn't know or care how it was made, how long it had been there and who made it - I think the current score sounds the best. In fact, although I'm extremely critical of most aspects of the park in it's current state, I think musically the park has never been better (even if it is played on knackered speakers here and there).
     
    Posted 5th Nov 2017
    #14
  15. Skyscraper

    Skyscraper TowersStreet Member

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    My personal Favorite is the 2008-2015 one. Luckily it can still be heard outside Hex and other places. :)
     
    Last edited: 3rd Dec 2017
    Sauron97 likes this.
    Posted 2nd Dec 2017
    #15
  16. Imagination

    Imagination TowersStreet Member

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    That is not the pitstop version of Air which was played. That version is actually composed in-house by Tussaud's Studios and was the BA London Eye music played in the ticket area and plaza in the first fair few years of its operation. It briefly returned in 2006/7 at London Eye before being removed again.

    The pitstop version of Air's theme is 3 mins 40 secs called "Dark Ride Air" but then it was mixed into a 19/20 min area theme for Air which included some strange royalty free tracks too. The whole 19/20 min mix doesn't complement the ride well at all. It created it a strange vibe for Air that just didn't feel right at all. In fact, the very mix could briefly be heard this season on the paths by the food counters in FV right down the Skyride but I believe it got removed again not long after.

    In terms of @waffa 's comment, I hope we will hear the unused PitStop creations such as Duel and stuff. I have never even heard of Duel having a theme done for it at all - so that's exciting.

    I know they also did a couple of tracks for Rita too and a Skyride track which were utilised on resort back in '07 but those never made it online unlike the Katanga, Nemesis, Towers Street, Monorail, Splash Landings and unused TS theme mixes.


    Back to the Towers Street theme, I really really like IMA's track. I understand Graham Smart and the nostalgia but the resort is a shadow of the magic it once had, the mix of different ride themes worked and it felt magical but in this current image and day, that track would jar against the resort and would fail to represent the park as it is. Pitstop's version was ok but not anything special. It works in the fountain square area but I'd personally love them to put the pre-show/build-up theme of the 2015 fireworks track IMA did there...it would work perfectly.
     
  17. Matt N

    Matt N TowersStreet Member

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    I know I'm going to sound really stupid, but I kind of think that there's a part of the Graham Smart score that really reminds me of Super Mario for some reason.
     

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