Latest reviews of new albums:
Women in Love
  • Composed by Georges Delerue
  • Quartet Records / 2012 / 47:48

Ken Russell’s adaptation of D.H. Lawrence’s Women in Love is one of the defining films of the new wave of British cinema in the 1960s, reflecting the equivalent in France at the same time.  It was only natural that for the music he would turn to the composer at the heart of the French nouvelle vague, Georges Delerue, whose scores for François Truffaut and others were a defining feature of that movement.  This new album for Quartet Records is, surprisingly, the first time this score has been released on album (save for brief snippets on compilations).  Delerue’s music treads carefully between the sweet natured romance between Alan Bates and Jennie Linden and the more complex, violent romance between Oliver Reed and Glenda Jackson.

The album actually opens with the cue written (but not used) for the film’s most notorious moment, the “Wrestling Scene”, the composer’s bold, striking music bursting with the competing virility (and latent homoeroticism) on display.  This contrasts with the gorgeous “Transcendental Love Theme” (only Delerue could give such a name to a cue and not only mean it, but deliver on the promise) which is the Bates/Linden theme and occurs in various guises, “Birkin and Ursula Love Theme” and “Love Theme from Women in Love” chief amongst them.  It’s completely ravishing but also rather sweet, always welcome.  “Gerald and Gudrun Love Scene” is, by contrast, boldly dramatic, turbulent, tumultuous.  Bucolic, lovely music such as “Arrival in Switzerland” and “The Snow” are nice interludes but it’s the darker material that dominates.  Sadly, the tapes for the score (from the composer’s archive) were not in great shape and so the audio quality leaves something to be desired; it’s by no means awful, though, and doesn’t prevent enjoying the very strong music.  Robert Cueto’s superb liner notes are an important plus; and this is an essential release for Delerue fans.  **** |

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