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Music Conducted By
Jerry Goldsmith

Orchestrations By
Arthur Morton

Recorded By
Eric Tomlinson

Performed By
The National Symphony Orchestra

CD Produced By
Douglas Fake

Album Produced By
Jerry Goldsmith

Intrada MAF 7115

Previous Release(s)
Varése Sarabande 302 066 500 2 (SACD)

Memoir CD

Year Of CD/Film Release

Running Time

Normal Release

Cues & Timings


CD1 Complete Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

01. The Gold * 0:11
02. Main Title 2:43
03. Is He Dead? * 0:51
04. Breakfast In Bed (Record Version) 1:49
05. Breakfast In Bed #1 * 1:44
06. Breakfast In Bed #2 * 1:46
07. No Respectable Gentleman 2:25
08. A Relentless Suitor * 1:16
09. Clues 3:54
10. Rotten Row 2:43
11. The First Key 0:08
12. Bordello Raid 0:46
13. Kiddie Caper 2:03
14. Casing The Station 1:33
15. Street Attack (Record Version) 1:41
16. Street Attack (Film Version) * 1:40
17. Over The Wall 1:59
18. Night Entry 2:29
19. Night Exit * 1:00
20. Double Wax Job 2:57
21. The Tombstone 1:13
22. We Go To Paris * 1:12
23. Dead Willy * 1:58
24. Open Casket * 0:23
25. The Padlock * 0:41
26. All Aboard * 0:35
27. Departure 0:42
28. The Gold Arrives 2:44
29. Torn Coat 1:52
30. End Title 2:58

The Extras (Conducted and/or Supervised by Jerry Goldsmith)

31. The Gold Arrives [Alternate] * 2:43
32. Sonata In D For Two Pianofortes K448 (Mozart) * 6:02
33. Source Medley * 5:06
34. Music For The Royal Fireworks (Handel) * 3:03

CD2 Original 1979 United Artists Soundtrack Album

01. Main Title 2:33
02. No Respectable Gentleman 2:23
03. Double Wax Job 2:46
04. Casing The Station 3:09
05. The Gold Arrives... 2:43
06. Kiddie Caper 2:02
07. Clues 3:52
08. Rotten Row 2:40
09. Torn Coat 2:23
10. End Title 2:58

* = Previously Unreleased

Soundtrack Ratings







The Great Train Robbery


Varese SACD Version Review

Jerry Goldsmith's remarkable 78/79 season saw the composer tackle a series of major movies with diverse subject matters and complement each of them with equally diverse and impressive scores. Amongst the thrillers, sci-fi, horror and drama came a hugely enjoyable period caper; The Great Train Robbery. A lighted hearted romp through Victorian England, directed by Michael Crichton, based on his book. Goldsmith had already collaborated with the writer/director on Pursuit (1972), the medical thriller Coma (1978) and would go on to work with him on Runaway (1985) and finally the troubled The 13th Warrior (1998). But it would be The Great Train Robbery that would become their collaborative opus.

The Main Title introduces Goldsmith centrepiece to the score; a lavish striding theme for steam train. Thrilling vistas of a train bounding through picturesque countryside set to a feast of brass and strings celebrates Goldsmith's joyous opener note by note capturing the romantic Victorian age. As the camera moves to a fight inside one of the wagons Goldsmith moves his piece on with some tense string writing. Note the coda to this cue in the film differs slightly to the album version.

Breakfast In Bed is an unused alternate to the flute and lute theme variation that accompanied the saucy scene in which Pierce is fed by the voluptuous Lawson. This new cue clearly achieves the same effect though is a far more elaborate piece for orchestra, which leads nicely on to the previously released No Respectable Gentleman. Here Goldsmith fashions a refined and elegant piece for Bank Manager Edgar Trent playing to his upper class sensibilities. Clues follows in a similar vain though is far more elaborate and remains a curio as it was never heard in the film. It's difficult to place too and may have been for a deleted scene?

For Rotten Row Goldsmith sets an idyllic scene with velvet coated strings and dancing winds, transforming the main theme into a beautifully rendered waltz as Pierce and Elizabeth ride through Hyde Park, and mingle with the other upper classes showing off their opulence. First Key introduces Goldsmith's short but sweet 'key box' theme and appears when each new key is copied and placed in the box. While Bordello Raid is a colourful and exuberant workout for orchestra, as Pierce secures the second key by fooling holder, Fowler, into believing Police are about to burst in. In Kiddie Caper the comedy continues as a small boy is used to divert the attentions of the London Bridge Station staff. Goldsmith swerving his music into unexpected corners with frantic strings and punctuations from winds and brasses throughout to heighten the comedic effect.

Street Attack is an album version of the cue in which Pierce visits Clean Willy's woman in a grim part of the East End, with Goldsmith providing pensive and eerie strings for the fog bound dirty streets. The film version, not included on this disc, exercises the elaborate brass exclamations for the scuffle between Pierce and some thieves with music more in keeping with the remainder of the cue. As before the cue is joined by the earlier sequence Casing The Station as Agar spies an opportunity to get by the guarding Crusher. Goldsmith again provides subtle support with another variant on his waltz with strings and harpsichord centre.

Over The Wall is the highlight of the previously unreleased music as Clean Willy escapes Newgate Prison. Goldsmith presents one of his most atmospheric cues with an echoing clarinet motif supported by ominous strings as Willy makes his nail biting climb to the top. As the situation becomes more desperate and Willy hangs on for dear life Goldsmith brings more intensity to the cue, finally as he amazingly lifts himself over the spikes Goldsmith provides relief with a sweep from strings and brass. Note a fragment of this cue is re-used for the locking of the Gold wagon later on in the film.

Another unreleased gem follows Willy's Night Entry into London Bridge Station. Almost inaudible in the movie, this is the first time we've been able savour this delicate but nonetheless effective cue dominated by wistful winds. This cue neatly leads onto the Double Wax Job as Agar makes his run to wax the final two keys in a mere 75 seconds. Goldsmith instigates a propulsive tempo with brass and harp ticking down the seconds while light strings increase the tension. The cue closes with the previously missing 'key box' coda as Goldsmith celebrates the complete set of copied keys.

The Tombstone is another new cue, accompanying Pierce's visit to a graveyard to payoff the train guard from the Gold wagon. Here Goldsmith creates an unusual effect with descending winds and xylophone for the eerie locale. As cymbals fizz in the background and strings add to the uneasiness, the cue is resolved with a lighter take of the main theme as the deal is done and Pierce disappears into the night.

The Departure from London Bridge is a welcome inclusion, though frustratingly short and the probable reason why it never made it to the composer's original album selection. But thankfully we can now savour Goldsmith's most inspired variant on his 'train' theme as he literally replaces every nuance of sound, from the lumbering steam engine's departure, into orchestral equivalents.

The Gold Arrives (curiously 7 seconds shorter here than the version on the Memoir CD) is the thrilling climax to the score as Pierce and Agar throw the bags of Gold to a waiting horse and carriage. Goldsmith's dynamic rhythm populated by cymbal crashes, snare drums and grand statements of his theme set the standard for this cue, before more pressing matters take over and Pierce has to make it back to his carriage as the train reaches its penultimate stop at Ashford. As with the Main Title, Goldsmith's glorious theme accompanies spectacular helicopter shots of the train scuttling across the countryside, with crackling brass dominating while strings heighten the rooftop antics.

The score's penultimate cue, Torn Coat, is a tense moment as Pierce makes a futile dash from Folkestone station to elude watching Police. With Goldsmith developing his suspenseful cue with frenzied strings and growling brass as Pierce is captured. The End Title overture completes the composer's masterpiece, opening with a grand 'Bernstein-like' statement as Pierce escapes his trial in a prison wagon before segueing into another high spirited rendition of the wonderful main theme.

Varése Sarabande have produced a welcome re-issue of this delightful Jerry Goldsmith score, presenting it as a multi channel SACD, though often lacking the dynamics and vibrancy of the Memoir CD, and elevated it to deluxe edition status by including extra music too, though sadly this is not the complete score. Apart from minor omissions, the key missing cue is of course Dead Willy, the music that accompanies Clean Willy as he is chased and then killed for betraying Pierce to the Police, oddly absent from the 24 track masters used here.