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The Italian Job (soundtrack)

1 rating: 3.0
An album by Original Soundtrack/John Powell (Film Composer)

Original score composed by John Powell.   Song List: Disc 1   1. Opening Titles   2. Italian Job   3. Venice Gold Heist   4. Boat Chase   5. Mourning John   6. Planning the Heist   … see full wiki

1 review about The Italian Job (soundtrack)

I meant to review this a long time ago...

  • Jan 1, 2005
Pros: I'm lovin' the sounds used!

Cons: Not very many!

The Bottom Line: Saw the movie? Liked the music? Good, then that's all you need to know. =P

What can I say? I am a complete and utter soundtrack freak. If you ever want a soundtrack reviewed, let me know and I’ll probably end up doing it. That having been said…

*rummages through CDs* Ah! I’ve been meaning to review this little one for quite some time because it’s definitely worth it. I don’t even remember why I didn’t get around to it – no one’s reviewed this yet so now I know I must!

Welcome one and all to the music from The Italian Job. Come on. You know you like it – it fit the movie perfectly didn’t it? You can’t have a bunch of slick thieves running around stealing tons of gold and not have some slick, sweet music tinkering behind them now can you?

This is one soundtrack whose composer I’ve actually never heard of before; John Powell. But that’s okay! It’s always good to try something new!! I guess he likes dramatic, sneaky movies because he also did the soundtrack to The Bourne Identity. Anyway, I’ve broken this down into tracks (as per usual for moi) and I’ve decided to add the times as well, seeing as how some are pretty short and then there’s the random long track. Then you get to hear more of what I have to say. So sit back and enjoy. ^_~

1.) Opening Titles - (2:05) Well, um, yeah. This is played during the opening titles. =P It’s like a little muted jazz at times, but not entirely. It’s here you get your first taste of the rest of the soundtrack. Snapping fingers at just the right times added with other little clicks, tinkling sounds, well-placed percussion, and that little string instrument that’s like a sweetened, exotic version of a harp. I’d love to tell you the name of it, but I lost the cover a while back. So I’ll call it the “Italian string.” Heh, sorry.

2.) The Italian Job - (1:48) Much like a continuation of the first track, except more strings are heard here, fleshing out even more the recurring theme of The Italian Job. Hence the track title. Short – but very sweet.

3.) Venice Gold Heist - (4:40) Played during the name of the track title (the gold heist in the movie? Get with it people =P). Many more smooth percussion tappings and mild maraca shakings, and more sneaky little strings. It’s very fun with the occasional chimes and tinks with a little electronics thrown in to give it that modern “thief” feel (if I may say so). But don’t forget about that Italian string – it winks at you a couple of times.

4.) Boat Chase - (4:47) Yeah, go Handsome Rob! Hehe. He and The Napster (haha) have hopped into the boat and are making their escape – while the gold is actually being stolen. ^_~ A lot of dramatic escape style music here, which is always a good time, what with electric sounds and tense strings playing smoothly and yet fast paced. Throughout this song, things die down as the movie flashes back to the others, muted sounds to remind us that they’re underwater where everything is quieter and concentration is important. Things taper off with drums beating into the triumph of a job well done. Yeah&#133.they got what they came for. This stuff just makes you wanna tap your foot.

5.) Mourning John - (1:04) Very short, very sad. Quiet piano playing slowly fades into the sounds of future revenge. Ready to try again to gain what was stolen from them (after stealing it of course).

6.) Planning the Heist - (2:50) Ah, finally the bass shuffles onto the stage, going all out in an Ocean’s 11 laid back style, backed up by light sweeps upon the cymbals, and rapping of all sorts upon various percussion instruments.

7.) Pawning the Gold - (1:57) A little ominous here with low, deep rumbles that grow into something uglier…bad things here. But it finishes up by switching out to the bass again, which is busy doing it’s own casual thing.

8.) Cable Check - (2:37) A lil bit of electric guitar here, plucking away with percussion at its back, joined soon after sliding strings as we sneak around – and then things get fun and faster paced and eventually slip off into silence.

9.) Getting the Axe - (2:16) More ominous sounds here, slow, quiet, eventually picking up, but still staying low to the ground and soon fading entirely.

10.) The Devil Inside - (1:52) A slow start, but then things get interesting with a near heart-beat, well, beat, with some dark drums, level electric tones, and the same jingles heard throughout the soundtrack.

11.) Bitter Suite - (1:59) Another quiet one, much like Mourning John, but then, we are reminiscing about John, so it only makes sense. More of a chorus-like tone here than anything, with slow beats that take a life of their own for a moment before dropping away to the strings and those soon fading as well.

12.) The New Plan - (5:08) We start off with a ghostly, dark feel, but that doesn’t last for long! Soon with a couple of bell-like tones and the Italian string, that slow even pace gains more friends as it goes, taking one deep breath before the strings leap in and begin their buildup to my favorite part of the entire CD. This is the heist of Steve’s gold. If this isn’t an eventual crescendo, then I really don’t know what is. Finally after a few moments of suspense, there it is! The coup de grace of this CD and the movie! Ah, it’s beautiful, a full culmination of all the sounds and instruments on this CD. And you don’t get it once, but twice, and I think the second is even better than the first. ”You’ll never catch the real Naspter!”

13.) Tunnel Run - (2:13) What would you do if you had millions in gold stolen? Why, you’d send your men on motorcycles with guns to get them back wouldn’t you? Of course you would. The Italian string starts us off, but soon we get electric with strings helping out this fast, rocking track. This is an escape track, so it is just screaming down the runway in the only way Powell could do it – and do it he did.

14.) The Chopper Chase/Face Off - (2:58) 3 minis, 1 helicopter, and a lot of gold at stake? What kind of music do you think you’re going to get? Almost exactly like Boat Chase, but it takes on it’s own personality in no time flat. Electric guitar and pounding drums take over, but keeping the same themes in mind as they do. It ends almost as abruptly as it begins.

15.) Golden - (4:05) A chilled start, keeping the drums and electric guitar, only this time they’re more relaxed, though still slightly tensed. Things keep the pace for a while before fading off into what has become Steve’s dark little sounds. But the strings and drums of the full movie theme creep in and take it over in no time flat. We’ve gone back into the gathering of all the instruments into a climax that rises and falls most beautifully. Bye-bye Steve.

I must say, this is some of the most unique use of instruments into a soundtrack I’ve ever heard. Which is great. And I’ve never heard anything (that I can recall) by John Powell either, and as I’ve said before, that’s just fine. The music fit perfectly to the movie – not too dramatic, not too excitable – juuuust right!

So why did I give this CD four stars instead of five the way I keep saying how good it is and how much I enjoyed it? The CD as a whole and replay value. How much are you going to listen to it after you buy it? First off, I’m not a fan of short pieces. I know, they have their place in the movie, but sometimes they’re just kind of boring and feel like they’re not really needed on the soundtrack even though that’s what they are – a piece of the soundtrack. Pawning the Gold and Getting the Axe were good for what they were, but as for listening value, I sort of just skip over them. They’re quiet, short, and don’t have much personality I guess you could say. And most of the time I just skip to The New Plan. Why? Because it’s the climax of the movie and the best track, even though Boat Chase comes in at a close second. And if I’m in an excitable mood, I’m not going to want to listen to the quiet, slow tracks now am I?

What is on this CD and where and when you’re going to listen to it does matter a little as well. I mean, if you’re running on a treadmill, I don’t recommend this. However, if you’re having a laid-back day, sipping on some espresso, then go ahead and pop it in. Even the fast paced songs won’t bother you – there aren’t enough of them to get you truly revved up and they make for a nice change from the other tracks.

So the choice really is up to you and what you’re into. If you like soundtracks and feel like something you probably haven’t heard before, then by all means, give this one a shot. Heck, go rent the movie first and make a decision from there. Every song is there (except for when Stella is driving her little mini in and out of traffic and I think Macy Gray is singing – which was kind of disappointing actually, even though I don’t like Macy Gray, but that’s another topic entirely). You can go from there and decide. But hey, I’m always urging people to try something different. You make the decision. ^_~



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The Italian Job (2003) (Original Motion Picture
Label: Var se Sarabande (USA)
Release Date: June 24, 2003

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