MusicWeb International critic Dan Morgan reviews the Dallas Winds and Jerry Junkin’s July 6 release, John Williams At The Movies!
“Scrolling through John Williams’s extensive worklist triggers an avalanche of movie memories… What better way to get start than with the fanfare and theme Williams wrote for the opening ceremony at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984. There’s a broad, arresting sense of spectacle, so familiar from his epic movie scores, plus a dash of Copland. As with all composers of quality, Williams knows and draws on the music of his antecedents, yet still manages to find his own, unmistakable ‘voice’. The band respond with startling clarity and noble mien, and the wide, deep soundstage adds to the sense of occasion. The recording, like the performance, is focused on the music, and that’s precisely what I’ve come to expect from this source. … Now this is rep where performers and engineers might be tempted to overplay their hand; thankfully, good taste and good judgment are the watchwords here, so the music retains all its vaunting splendour without sounding overblown or overlong. Once more, natural balances and a preponderance of ear-pricking detail – so much a part of Wine Dark Sea – serve the music admirably. There’s plenty of thrust and weight when it’s needed, as in the strut and swagger of the Imperial March from The Empire Strikes Back. With the volume turned up, the percussion emerges with all the frisson one could wish for. It helps that Junkin is so proportionate in everything he does here. … Quietly sensational; a must for movie fans and audiophiles alike.”