Latest reviews of new albums:

Thank you to everybody who left kind comments here, on messageboards and social media. They meant a lot and made me determine that my break will be temporary. I’ll come back – hopefully refreshed and with the unpleasantness a distant memory – later in the year.


  1. Debbie (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 15:40

    Thanks , hope that your break is beneficial. Where would my musical education be without your site?

  2. Marco Ludema (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 16:16

    Take all the time you need. Until we meet again.

  3. ghostof82 (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 16:28

    Great news James, enjoy your break and I look forward to your return. Maybe give some of those Horner discs a spin again?

  4. Paul Muaddib (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 16:46


    But why suddenly my mail is filled with ‘new’ hans
    zimmer posts although they are like 10 yrs old or something.

    But great to hear you’ll be back

    • James Southall (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 17:16

      Sorry about that… all the ones I took down so I could make sure I wasn’t saying offensive seem to send notifications to people when I put them back up…

      • Paul Muaddib (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 18:11

        Oooh. No problem nvm. I got excited momentarily that its a new review but realized they are just the old ones 😐

  5. Stefan (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 17:32

    Great to hear!

    Hope to read you soon!

  6. Igger6 (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 17:36

    Woohoo! Fantastic news. The king has returned.

  7. Markus Wippel (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 19:36

    B R A V O!!!!!!!!!!

  8. Kevin (Reply) on Saturday 13 March, 2021 at 21:20

    This is excellent news. Your reviews are great, especially the ones on James Horner’s scores, which I enjoy reading the most. I look forward to your return.

  9. Benjamin Stock (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 00:14


  10. Ian Clark (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 00:17

    Haste Ye Back James. As the world, hopefully, starts opening up again, we wouldn’t want to miss out on new reviews of new scores.

    Glad you’ve decided to come back.

  11. Chris Hopkins (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 03:24

    Great news! Enjoy your break! In the meantime, I will be enjoying “Raya and the Last Dragon”, courtesy of your recommendation

  12. Avi Galinsky (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 05:02

    Great to hear!

  13. StephanH (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 14:26

    Dear James,

    that’s nice to hear and makes me happy and, I’m sure, many others.

    Because … to quote from Erich Fromm:
    “You love what you strive for and you strive for what you love.”

    Enjoy the break with your family and stay healthy.

  14. Anton Smit (Reply) on Sunday 14 March, 2021 at 15:53

    Fantastic news. Looking forward reading your reviews again.


  15. Elfenthalsmith (Reply) on Monday 15 March, 2021 at 10:12


  16. John Leggett (Reply) on Monday 15 March, 2021 at 14:36

    James, really great to hear that we will enjoy your informative, fair and insightful reviews again in the future.

    However, you most certainly deserve a break and we will look forward to your return when it is the right time for you.

    Take care.

  17. dominique (Reply) on Monday 15 March, 2021 at 17:22

    i´m happy, good news!!!

    take care, james and so long!!!

  18. Sergio (Reply) on Monday 15 March, 2021 at 18:33

    Excellent news!!!!!!

    We want more great reviews!!!!

  19. Joseph 199 (Reply) on Tuesday 16 March, 2021 at 03:47

    I’m glad you’ll return!!!

    In the meantime I’ll recommend for you to hear Yoko Kanno’s magnificent orchestral score for the TV series Naotora. I’ll love to hear your opinion of it

  20. Thomas “Whitey” (Reply) on Wednesday 17 March, 2021 at 22:10

    Narcissist much? Zimmer DESTROYED you. Haha. Schweiger was right: Never come back. Your career is finished.

    • Bernhard Eder (Reply) on Sunday 21 March, 2021 at 14:23

      Wow, you really are a little feckless cunt, aren’t you!
      Just because one famous person disagrees with another established person you think that gives you the right to troll around and insult James?
      You pathetic little prick!

      • Bernhard Eder (Reply) on Sunday 21 March, 2021 at 14:40

        And before you go, “Oh, you’re just a fanboy of X and Y”: This is not about that.

        I respect my colleagues and well established artists, even though I might disagree with some of them on several occassions (or even entirely), but the way people like you and also certain established colleagues sometimes behave, such as recently, even if it’s “just” online, is unacceptable.
        So don’t bother trying to insult me or anybody else on this forum, as I will not waste my time arguing with a fanatic.

        By the way, I signed here with my real name, as I am not afraid to hide behind a pseudonym in order to troll or insult others.
        So good luck and f*** off, Thomas “Whitey”.

  21. Brett (Reply) on Wednesday 17 March, 2021 at 22:16

    Go and suck Danny Elfman’s cock you prick. Nobody wants this site. Justice League is here now – the real Justice League. You are out of your depth pretending you know what Tom Holkenborg should do, we know he has written the most epic soundtrack and every single song is better than your tiny brain can take.

    • Dinko (Reply) on Friday 19 March, 2021 at 15:47

      Always wondered why Remote Control & Media Ventures fanboys have such an obsession with suction of male reproductive organs.

    • Trey (Reply) on Tuesday 11 May, 2021 at 01:30

      He… he liked Holkenborg’s Justice League soundtrack, though. He’s not dead-set against any particular composer, he just judges each album as they come.

  22. Kevin (Reply) on Thursday 18 March, 2021 at 00:40

    Sort of just catching up on the hub-ub. I admire and greatly respect the amount of work you have put into this site and you truly have enhanced my love of film scores beyond my wildest dreams. That being said, you cannot spend years criticizing someone’s work (rightfully so I might add) and then get upset when they turn around and do it to you.

    One thing that makes a great critic is their steadfast viewpoint and opinions regardless of whose wrath they may happen to draw out.

    Stay strong James and continue churning out great content. Keep being honest and don’t hold back. Your reviews are critical, but fair. Getting the attention of Hans Zimmer means your opinion matters – even if on some micro level for him.

    Stay the course. Hans Zimmer certainly doesn’t stop because you told him he’s no good. I wouldn’t expect you to do the same when he does it to you.

  23. Dinko (Reply) on Friday 19 March, 2021 at 15:39

    Woohoo! Great news James!
    Looking forward to reading more of you after your “vacation”.

  24. Rodney (Reply) on Friday 19 March, 2021 at 20:35

    Hooray! Great to hear you’ll return at some stage. Enjoy your well-deserved rest!

  25. Peter (Reply) on Sunday 21 March, 2021 at 16:12

    I came here after a while, it’s my go-to site for soundtrack reviews and I’ve been listening to soundtracks for decades now. There are other solid sites, but this one just is from the heart, it’s well-written, you feel the passion for the music.

    Everyone has a different life path and sometimes, some things need to come to an end and one has to move on. But I would love if this isn’t the case.

    And perhaps as you know James, Tom Holkenborg released an 8 hour (!!!!) soundtrack to Justice League just now, so we need to read your opinion on it. 😉

    Hope all is well and you come back.

  26. Richard May (Reply) on Monday 29 March, 2021 at 19:35

    Delighted to hear that you’ll be back. As I’ve said before, James’ reviews are always a great guide for me whether I’ll enjoy a CD. I’ve been introduced to several new scores without hearing based on your reviews and more times than not I’m pleased I did.

    While I’m here, one CD I would definitely recommend to James, especially as a Barry and Morricone fan, it’s “The Film Scores and Original Orchestral Music of George Martin” available from Amazon for the princely sum of £8. It includes a decent suite from Live and Let Die plus a superb Americana suite and the highlight is the rejected score to the Mission – who knew? Very obviously the director wanted a choral work since Martin’s music is superb plus the expected oboe solos. The film would have been well served by this score.

    The music is well performed by the Berlin ensemble. Unlike many modern recording, its not got 100 players on it, so the recording has room to breath but can occasionally sound a bit thin (possibly the Bond suite) but Mission with choir sounds simply divine.

  27. Maarten (Reply) on Friday 2 April, 2021 at 22:04

    Hi James, I love your reviews and admire the work you put in this all. Your advice, honest opinions and humour are much appreciated! I don’t exactly know what happened here but apparently it’s about people reacting on social media in ways that are needlessly offending, like so oft the case today. Modesty, respect and gentleness, some of the most precious things in the world. Don’t be sad about it. You deserve a big warm hug for your great work. All the best from the Netherlands!

  28. Joel (Reply) on Saturday 10 April, 2021 at 00:06

    Excellent news, James! Take all the time you need, but know you’ll return will be great cause for celebration.

  29. meh (Reply) on Wednesday 21 April, 2021 at 11:53

    Anyone who says you did not respect Hans Zimmer should be shown your The Da Vinci Code review!