Saturday, September 28, 2013
Onayum Aatukuttiyum Score - Ilaiyaraaja (2)
Onayum Aatukuttiyum Score - Ilaiyaraaja (1)
I don’t know how well the Onayum Aatukuttiyum score has been absorbed and appreciated by the general music listeners. If you are one of those who find the score boring, I can understand why. There is a sense of monotony with lots of sad music, Solo Violin cues, dense string section and a slightly more pronounced western classical flavour than usual in the score. All the pieces may sound similar. But, Ilaiyaraaja’s orchestral scores, in general, are anything but monotonous, and definitely not this one.
Film score is incidental, narrative music that has to flow slavishly to the visuals, so there will be moments of long pause, a long stretched single note, a sustain, a bang, sections of no major action except strings simmering underneath, and these are not the kind of music one listens to on iPod at work every day for Joy. The pleasures are of different kind here.
Furthermore, having not seen the movie yet, there is no way one can visualize the movie while listening to the piece of music and marvel at the sync of mood and emotions between the movie and the music. Ilaiyaraaja has already primed us enough with his album The Music Messiah, where you don’t have any direct visuals to help you decipher the emotions the music plays for, you paints your own image in your mind from the music, deriving from your past experience of watching movies and listening – consciously or unconsciously to a film score. The Music Messiah is the score of a film that never got made (I know themes from Malayalam film Guru is used, but I haven’t seen Guru. But I could hear cues from Pithamagan too). Listening to Onayum Aatukuttiyum score before watching the movie is like listening to The Music Messiah.
Ilaiyaraaja has written a score that is intricately spun around many main musical motifs. It seems to be a score (I haven’t seen the movie yet) tightly knit to the visual narrative in the movie, and that has the incredibly unique quality of narrating a story, some story - though we won’t be able to connect all the dots - even without the visuals.
I don’t know how to make others hear the beauty I hear in a piece of music, but I believe if one listens intently and spots these themes in an orchestral score and follows their journey through the score – at least that is how I have been doing it, it would be a lot easier to experience the beauty of the music score in its entirety. So, here I have compiled some of the main themes that run through the score and its variations. The themes appear at different points in the different pieces. I am sure the ten clips Mysskin shared in his website for free download is not the entire score, so there could be many more occurrences and variations of these themes in the movie.
Listen to the clips and see if it helps. Listen closely to the development, subtle variations in each occurrence of the theme in the score. Also, let me know if you find any piece that doesn’t sound like the variation of the theme
Using a sharp half note in the start brings a dramatic suddenness – could be for an emotion or an action, that precisely marks the moment when sudden shift occurs in the mood or emotion or action. I like how the sharpness is gradually blunted out as the theme progresses in the course of the score, implying a gradual subsidy in the intensity of that which it implies.
This theme could easily be identifies as the main theme of the film.
The Redemption Theme – The piece of music for which Mysskin wanted Ilaiyaraaja. There is a Piano part and Violin Part of the theme. I didn't want to split them.