Conan the Barbarian (Poledouris, 1982, 1984/Bates, 2011)

This post covers all 3 Conan films and scores, as well as the expanded versions of the 1982/84 scores.


Conan the Barbarian (Basil Poledouris, 1982)
     Basil Poledouris' score to John Milius and Arnold Schwarzenegger's 1982 epic, "Conan the Barbarian" is nearly as famous as the film itself.  Written fairly early in his career, it is Poledouris' signature work and has been retracked in many film trailers for its exciting, anthemic themes.  Because it uses many choral elements (and is often accompanied with many dialogue-free scenes) the score could almost be considered an opera or a cantata.  It also has a more classical feel to it than most scores of the time, especially in the way it mixes minor and major key material in its brass fanfares ("Riders of Doom"), something which is never done in modern adventure scores.  Some cues such as "The Orgy" are developed in a very patient manner similar to Ravel's "Bolero".  The reason this was possible is because the film itself often takes its time to bask in the scene's fantastical atmosphere (a pacing style which nowadays could probably only be found in an "art film").


     The original soundtrack to "Conan" is a brilliantly-assembled edit of highlight themes from the score, and was one of my favorites LPs during the 80's.  In 2010, the complete score was rerecorded with a modern orchestra (conducted by Nic Raine) and released on Prometheus (Tadlow), and in 2012 the original complete film score was found and presented as a 3 CD Intrada release (which included a remastered version of the 1982 short release).  Below is a rundown of the classic 1982 CD, followed by a rundown of the complete score on the Intrada release (which could also be used for the Prometheus rerecording, for the most part).

Themes
  • Conan Theme: Noble and regal, yet romantic and tragic, first appears in "Anvil of Crom".
  • Love Theme: Poignant theme which slowly unwinds itself over several instruments ("Wifeing").
  • Theology Theme: Winding figure often supported by harp rhythm, somewhat formal ("Theology/Civilization", "Tree of Woe").
  • Subotai Theme: Triplet-based theme, friendly, curious and optimistic ("Theology/Civilization", "Tree of Woe").
  • Crom Theme: Primal drums and fateful low brass in a complex compound meter ("Anvil of Crom").
  • Riders of Doom Theme: Fateful choral anthem supported by drums/cymbals and powerful brass, includes a faster victory fanfare (this piece is often cited as being somewhat Orff-like and using elements from the classical "Dies Irae").
  • Snake Worship Theme: Regal march on brass and drums, used when the disguised Conan climbs the steps of the Tower of Set ("The Mountain of Power Procession").
  • Orgy Theme: Swaying theme on strings/hand percussion/winds/brass accents, with 3-note descending counter-melody (written by Poledouris' daughter Zoe at age 9).
  • Wheel of Pain Theme: Winding violins over laborious bass ostinato/metal percussion, modulating and becoming syncopated.
  • Akiro Theme: The Wizard's theme, from staccato falling wind/brass figures with thin percussion accents (Battle of the Mounds I, II).
Conan the Barbarian, Basil Poledouris, Original 1982 LP/CD
(below is based on the Intrada rerelease, though it should be the same assembly as the LP)
Trk Dur. Title Film Sequence
1 2:37 Anvil Of Crom Main title.  Molten steel is forged into a sword by an aged swordsmith as a woman and boy (Conan) look on.
0:00: Low brass Crom theme over tribal drums in a compound syncopated rhythm.
0:53: Conan theme in strings/brass.
1:36: Crom theme, triumphant Crom theme variation, ending drums.
2 5:40 Riddle Of Steel 0:00: In a snowy wasteland, Conan learns of his god, Crom, and the riddle of steel from his father.  He is told that he can only trust his sword (harp/strings/winds into mystical, reverent strings featuring oboe, then swirling violins with Conan theme on cor anglais, winds, strings).
Riders Of Doom 1:36: Dark riders approach Conan's village on horseback, intercut with scenes of the villagers becoming aware of and then preparing for battle (layered horn/trumpet "horn call" fanfares with drum accent, village music as oboes/violins over harp arpeggios, rhythmic strings/drums joined by choir chants/trumpet fanfares, intercut with horn call fanfares and reprise of village wind music).
3:34: The horseman attack the village and eventually set fires (fateful choir/brass/strings/bass drum rhythms, victory fanfares).
5:10: Conan's father is attacked and killed by dogs (syncopated choir/strings/brass into desperate strings with brass ostinato figure).
3 3:53 Gift Of Fury 0:00: The horsemen dismount and threaten Conan and his mother (dark brass fanfares/bass drum).  Conan's father's sword is given to the riders' leader, Thulsa Doom (somber choir/strings with hints of Conan theme, muted brass fanfares).  
1:38: Doom mesmerizes Conan's mother and eventually kills her (poignant string figures, ending with brass/timpani swells).
2:51: Doom departs, leaving Conan alive but an orphan (somber choir returns with clarinet/oboe, low strings/high winds).  
4 4:12 Wheel Of Pain 0:00: Conan is taken north as a slave and crosses the mountains in chains with other children (heartless strings and winds over taiko drum, winds led by cor anglais, fateful strings, brass cadence).
1:19: The slaves reach a massive wheel and are made to push its spokes in circles (winding violins over laborious bass ostinato/metal percussion, modulating).  
1:50: Time passes and Conan becomes an adult (bass ostinato (now syncopated) continues with winding figure developed on trumpets, horns, violins, with brass eventually joining syncopated bass ostinato, leading to a triumphant brass fanfare hinting at Conan theme).  
3:27: Finally, a horseman arrives and the wheel stops (normal, non-syncopated bass ostinato, staccato clarinet/oboe figures enter as bass ostinato becomes winds).  
5 3:54 Atlantean Sword 0:00: After being chased by wolves and falling into a cave, Conan discovers human skeletal remains.  He makes a fire (ethereal string/percussion textures joined by high held winds).
1:01: He sees a skeleton on a throne and approaches it (muted brass accent, reverent figures on basses and violins joined by brass accents and wind ornaments).
2:20: He takes the sword from the skeleton and then thanks Crom (brass flourish, reverent figures developed on strings and muted brass).  He emerges from the cave unafraid of the wolves (Conan theme developed in winds/strings/brass).
6 3:17 Theology 0:00: Conan meets Subotai and frees him.  Conan tells Subotai about Crom over dinner (Theology theme in a winding wind/harp figure intro, Subotai theme on bassoon/clarinet, flute, etc. over harp/metal percussion, Theology theme).
Civilization 1:17: The two run through the landscape and reach some fortifications (Theology theme becomes more animated, soaring Subotai theme in strings ending in strings/oboe/harp).
2:03: They visit the interior marketplace (Theology theme variation on   winds/strings/hand percussion).  They soon run off and find other towns (Subotai theme developed).  Conan asks about Thulsa Doom's snake symbol (Theology theme variation).
7 2:13 Wifeing
(Love Theme)
0:00: Conan and Valeria become intimate and enjoy a relationship (solo viola intro into soft strings, Love theme on oboe, strings, horns, Conan theme on flute/oboe).
8 3:12 The Search 0:00: Conan rides alone through the wastelands searching for clues to the location of Thulsa Doom's followers (romantic Conan theme variation on cor anglais developed on strings/winds/brass, ending on cor anglais).
2:16: Passing through tall rocks, he comes across the "Mounds", where a self-proclaimed Wizard dwells in a raised hut among some skeleton scarecrows (high percussion, brief 3-note wind ornaments over string tremoli, ending in oboe/strings).
9 4:18 The Orgy 0:00: Conan, Subotai and Valeria discover an orgy inside the Temple of Set.  Food is given to a woman (Orgy theme on strings/hand percussion/winds/brass accents with 3-note descending counter-melody on bassoon (0:41)).  Osric's princess daughter sits by Thulsa Doom (Orgy theme on winds).  
1:41: Doom slowly changes into a giant serpent (joined by syncopated string figure, developed with more brass/cymbals, 3-note counter-melody on horns/trumpets).  
10 4:32 Funeral Pyre 0:00: Valeria is hit by Thulsa Doom's snake-arrow and dies in Conan's arms (sad strings, passed to brass, low strings).
1:16: Her body is placed on a funeral pyre (Love theme in oboe, developed on horn/strings/oboe).  Conan lights the pyre and it flares in the wind (tam tam swell, strings).  Conan puts on Valeria's jewel, the Eye of Set (Love theme developed on poignant strings/timpani/brass, low strings).
4:01: The next day, Conan is warned by the Princess that Doom will come for him (thoughtful cor anglais/muted brass/strings).
11 4:56 Battle Of
The Mounds
0:00: Conan and Subotai prepare defenses and traps among the Mounds (rhythmic low brass/strings/drums/cymbals).
0:41: The Wizard appears with more armaments (Akiro theme in falling lyrical wind/string figures, sweeping strings).  
1:22: Doom's men soon approach on horses (drum and cymbal rhythmic pulse, becoming pounding rhythm with brass/choir chants).
2:31: Conan asks Crom to help him get his revenge (swirling strings/Conan variation on winds, fateful brass/timpani cadence).
"Valor pleases you, Crom, so grant me one request: grant me revenge.  And if you do not listen, then to hell with you."
3:30: Doom's men arrive and Conan and Subotai ambush them among the rocks (Riders of Doom theme with victory fanfares).
12 5:40 Orphans Of Doom 0:00: Doom's followers throw their torches into the water (harp/wind arpeggio ostinato with female choir).  
The Awakening 1:15: Conan sits on the stairs pondering, and then finally hurls a flaming pot at the temple (thoughtful oboe/harp/violins, flute/strings, falling bassoon figures, noble muted brass, high wind/string tremolo textures, flute). 
4:26: He beckons to the last female follower and they leave with the temple burning behind them (falling brass figures, timpani roll into exit fanfare, final swell).



Conan the Barbarian, Complete Release on 3 CDs, Intrada, 2012
(Also includes 9 bonus tracks of alternates/film sources as well as the above original 1982 CD edit)
Trk Dur. Title Film Sequence
1.1 3:41 Prologue 0:00: Opening credits, voice-over (sparse taiko drums/gong/hand percussion).
Anvil Of Crom Main title, molten steel is forged into a sword by an aged swordsmith as a woman and boy (Conan) look on.
1:04: Low brass Crom theme over tribal drums in a compound syncopated rhythm.
1:57: Noble Conan theme in strings/brass.
2:39: Crom theme, triumphant Crom theme variation, Coda.
1.2 5:40 Riddle Of Steel 0:00: In a snowy wasteland, Conan learns of Crom and the riddle of steel from his father.  He is told that he can only trust the sword (harp/strings/winds into mystical, reverent strings featuring oboe, then swirling violins with Conan theme on cor anglais, winds, strings).
Riders Of Doom 1:36: Dark riders approach Conan's village on horseback, intercut with the villagers becoming aware of and then preparing for battle (layered horn/trumpet "horn call" fanfares with drum accent, village music as oboes/violins over harp arpeggios, rhythmic strings/drums joined by choir chants/trumpet fanfares, intercut with horn call fanfares and reprise of village wind music). 
3:34: The horseman attack the village and eventually set fires.   (fateful choir/brass/strings/bass drum rhythm, victory fanfares).
5:10: Conan's father is attacked by dogs (syncopated choir/strings/brass into desperate strings with brass ostinato figure).
1.3 3:53 Gift Of Fury 0:00: The horsemen dismount and threaten Conan and his mother (dark brass fanfares/bass drum).  Conan's father's sword is given to Thulsa Doom (somber choir/strings with hints of Conan theme, muted brass fanfares).  
1:40: Doom mesmerizes the woman (poignant string figures, ending with brass/timpani swells).
2:50: Doom kills her and then departs, leaving Conan alive but an orphan (somber choir returns with clarinet/oboe, low strings/high winds).  
1.4 4:12 Column Of Sadness 0:00: Conan is taken north as a slave and crosses the mountains in chains with other children (heartless strings and winds over taiko drum, winds featuring cor anglais, fateful strings, brass cadence).
Wheel Of Pain 1:19: The slaves reach a massive wheel and are made to push its spokes in circles (winding violins over laborious bass ostinato/metal percussion, modulating).  
1:50: Time passes and Conan becomes an adult (bass ostinato (now syncopated) continues with winding figure developed on trumpets, horns, violins with brass joining syncopated bass ostinato, leading to a triumphant brass fanfare hinting at Conan theme).  
3:27: Finally, a horseman arrives and the wheel stops (normal, non-syncopated bass ostinato, staccato oboe figures enter as bass ostinato becomes winds).  
1.5 2:41 Pit Fights 0:00: Conan is thrown into a gladiatorial pit and forced to fight for his life (lurching rhythm with ponderous fanfares, modulating and gradually increasing in speed).
1:24: His kills grow in number and his fame grows (speed continues to increase with added brass/snare/wind ornaments ending in slightly dissonant brass accents).
1.6 1:32 The Discipline
Of Steel
0:00: Conan enjoys female slaves and sword-training (string tremoli with hint of Conan theme in cor anglais/brass). 
Freedom Council 0:43: Conan describes what is best in life at a council meeting (tribal drums).
"Conan, what is best in life?""To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women."
1.7 4:03 Atlantean Sword 0:00: After being chased by wolves and falling into a cave, Conan discovers human remains.  He makes a fire (ethereal string/percussion textures joined by high winds).
1:01: He sees a skeleton on a throne and approaches it (reverent figures on basses and violins joined by wind ornaments).
2:20: He takes the sword from the skeleton and then thanks Crom (reverent figures developed on strings and muted brass).  He emerges from the cave unafraid of the wolves (Conan theme developed in winds/strings/brass ending in string tremoli).
1.8 2:06 Warm Welcome 0:00: (partially used) Conan approaches a hut with an alluring woman in front.  She invites him inside and he enters (percussion solo). 
1.9 3:11 Wolf Witch (unused) Inside, the woman makes a prophecy and gives Conan a clue to his parents' killer.  They become intimate and she becomes monstrous (harp, low winds, percussion, leading to drum solo). 
1.10 3:16 Theology 0:00: Conan meets Subotai and frees him.  Conan tells Subotai about Crom over dinner (Theology theme in a winding wind figure intro, Subotai theme developed on bassoon, flute, clarinet over harp/metal percussion).
Civilization 1:17: The two run through the landscape and reach some fortifications (brief Theology theme more animated, soaring Subotai theme in strings ending in brass/oboe/harp).
2:03: They visit the interior marketplace (Theology theme variation on   winds/strings/percussion).  They soon run off and find other towns (Subotai theme developed).  Conan asks about Thulsa Doom's snake symbol (Theology theme variation).
1.11 0:30 Street Of Deviants 0:00: (Source music): Conan and Subotai run into a harlot (subdued metal percussion and alto flute).
1.12 2:23 Hopefuls at the
Tower of Set
0:00:  (Source music): At the base of the Tower of Set, Conan and Subotai meet Valeria, a thief.  They begin climbing with ropes (sibilant chanting with wind harmonies/gong/hand percussion).
1.13 5:39 The Tower Of Set 0:00: (Unused) The trio climb into the Tower (hand percussion joined by Snake Worship theme developed on various winds, harp/bells, etc…).
2:49: Inside, Valeria infiltrates the Set worshippers (Orgy theme developed on winds/bells/harp).
1.14 2:01 The Snake 0:00: (Unused) Conan and Subotai steal the Eye of Set and kill a giant snake (slow bass/drums march, joined by violins and more drums).
Infidels 0:50:  (Unused) A worshipper jumps into the pit to find the dead snake and the two thieves climbing out.  Valeria attacks the head priest.  The trio escape (rhythmic violin accents, uptempo heroic brass figures).
1.15 1:14 The Tavern 0:00 (Source music): The trio celebrate at a tavern.  Conan flirts with Valeria and gives her the Eye of Set (oboes/hand percussion).
1.16 2:11 Wifeing
(Love Theme)
0:00: Conan and Valeria become intimate and enjoy a relationship (solo viola intro into soft strings, Love theme on oboe, strings, horns, Conan theme on flute/oboe).
1.17 1:16 Indulgence 0:00: (Source music): The trio enjoy their wealth (winds/harp/percussion).
Mettle 0:56: Conan passes out from grog and then is arrested (solo alto flute).
1.18 1:24 The Hall of
King Osric
0:00 (Source music): The trio are brought before King Osric.  He salutes them for irritating Doom's henchman (cimbalom solo).
1.19 6:01 The Leaving 0:00: Valeria asks Conan to reconsider rescuing Osric's daughter from Thulsa Doom (concerned winds, strings, Love theme on clarinet and flute over strings, Conan theme in flute, rising strings/brass, harp).
2:09: Valeria wakes up to find Conan gone (Love theme in oboe).
The Search 2:46: Conan rides alone through the wastelands searching for clues to the location of Thulsa Doom's followers (romantic Conan theme variation on cor anglais developed on strings/winds/brass).
5:03: Passing through tall rocks, he comes across the "Mounds", where a self-proclaimed Wizard dwells in a raised hut among some skeleton scarecrows (high percussion, brief 3-note wind ornaments over string tremoli, ending in oboe/strings).
2.1 3:25 The Mountain Of
Power Procession
0:00: Conan infiltrates a procession of Set pilgrims climbing a trail towards the Temple of Set, dressed as a priest (martial version of Snake Worship theme on brass/drums).
1:33: Conan briefly looks into a well and is asked what he sees in it.  He answers "Infinity" and then continues up the stairs (soft strings/celeste/harp/piano, Snake Worship resumes).
2:21: A snake priestess emerges at the top of the stairs (Orgy theme).  Thulsa Doom greets his followers and appears (rising brass fanfare, low winds/strings/timpani).
2.2 0:55 Capture 0:00: Conan is identified as an infidel and captured (suspense strings, brass/drum accents).
0:28: The snake priestess comes forward and crosses her arms (mysterious small metal percussion/harp/winds/low strings).
2.3 5:47 Tree Of Woe 0:00: Conan is crucified on a large tree in the wasteland.  When a vulture tries to feed on him, he bites it and kills it (held dissonant string clusters/slow muted brass/tam tam scrapes, joined by solo winds, chimes/drums).
2:01: Subotai appears in the distance and approaches.  Conan laughs and passes out (Theology theme in harp/hand percussion/winds, held strings, Subotai theme in strings/percussion). 
2:47: Valeria asks the Wizard for help and says she is willing to pay the gods' price (oboe, worried strings).
Recovery 3:33: After Valeria saves Conan's spirit from ghosts, she tells him that she will always fight by his side.  Conan recovers and begins practicing his sword moves (Conan theme on cor anglais, strings, trumpet, strings, choir, oboe, trumpet).
2.4 1:01 Warpaint 0:00: Before entering the gorge behind Doom's Temple of Set, the trio put on war paint (low piano/tom toms/tam tam scrape).
2.5 6:30 The Kitchen 0:00: The trio sneak into a red-lit room filled with slaves preparing cannibal food in large vats (dance-like theme on strings/drums featuring male choir/wind and brass accents).
The Orgy 2:16: They discover an orgy.  Food is given to a woman (Orgy theme on strings/hand percussion/winds/brass accents with 3-note descending counter-melody on bassoon (2:57)).  Osric's princess daughter sits by Thulsa Doom (Orgy theme on winds).  
3:58: Doom slowly changes into a giant serpent (joined by syncopated string figure, developed with more brass/cymbals, 3-note counter-melody on horns/trumpets).  
2.6 5:18 The Defilers 0:00: The trio attack the guards.  Doom slithers away and Valeria grabs the princess (Riders of Doom theme: fateful brass/strings/bass drum rhythm).
1:21: Doom's top henchmen Thorgrim and Rexor arrive and Conan overturns the giant vat of human stew.  They fight and the palace begins collapsing around them (Anvil of Crom theme (retracked?) in low brass/tribal drums, Conan theme in strings/trumpets/winds, Crom theme, etc).
3:52: The trio move to escape with the princess (Riders of Doom theme continued with victory fanfares).
4:45: Valeria kills 2 final guards on her way out (Riders of Doom ending theme: syncopated strings/brass into desperate strings with brass ostinato figure).
2.7 4:33 Funeral Pyre 0:00: Valeria is hit by Thulsa Doom's snake-arrow and dies in Conan's arms (sad strings, passed to brass, low strings).
1:16: Her body is placed on a funeral pyre (Love theme in oboe, developed on horn/strings/oboe).  Conan lights the pyre and it flares in the wind (tam tam swell).  Conan puts on Valeria's jewel (the Eye of Set) (Love theme developed on poignant strings/timpani/brass, low strings).
4:01: The next day Conan is warned by the princess that Doom will come for him (thoughtful muted brass/winds/strings).
2.8 4:52 Battle Of
The Mounds
Part I
0:00: Conan and Subotai prepare defenses and traps among the Mounds (rhythmic low brass/strings/drums/cymbals).
0:41: The Wizard appears with more armaments (Akiro theme in falling lyrical wind/string figures, sweeping strings).  
1:22: Doom's men soon approach on horses (drum and cymbal rhythmic pulse, becoming pounding rhythm with brass/choir chants).
2:31: Conan asks Crom to help him get his revenge (swirling strings/Conan variation on winds, fateful brass/timpani cadence).
3:31: Doom's men arrive and Conan and Subotai ambush them among the rocks (Riders of Doom theme with victory fanfares).
2.9 2:17 Battle Of
The Mounds
Part II
0:00: Subotai shoots arrows at the horsemen (pizzicato strings/cheerful rising winds).  Conan fights Thorgrim and Rexor (brass fanfares, pizz strings resume with low brass, drums, low winds, muted trumpets).
1:23: The Wizard helps Subotai kill a few horsemen (Akiro theme in staccato wind/brass figures with thin percussion accents).  Thorgrim is impaled on a spike trap (foreboding strings/brass, held strings).
2.10 5:37 Battle Of
The Mounds
Part III
(Revised)
0:00: Conan fights Rexor and gets in trouble (gong, dark brass fanfare/strings).  He is saved by Valeria's Valkyrie spirit (tremolo strings/horn) and breaks Rexor's sword (stolen from Conan's father).  Conan kills Rexor (fateful strings/timpani, Conan fanfare on brass/drums).
1:28: Doom tries to kill the princess with a snake-arrow but Subotai and the Wizard save her (foreboding choir/low strings).  Doom flees (Riders of Doom fragments on strings).  Conan raises two swords in a victory gesture (Love theme fragments in triumphant brass).
Night of Doom 2:47: At night at the Temple of Set, Doom stands before his followers who are holding torches (reverent choir/winds).  Conan infiltrates the temple with the help of the princess (stalking low winds/strings).
4:10: Doom addresses his followers (choir/harp).  Conan appears behind Doom at the top of the stairs (stalking winds/brass intercut with ethereal choir/winds/strings).
2.11 0:59 Head Chop 0:00: Conan is momentarily mesmerized by Doom, but eventually chops his head off with his sword (held strings, plaintive winds/brass/strings, swelling brass cadence).
2.12 5:33 Orphans Of Doom 0:00: Doom's followers throw their torches into the water (harp/wind arpeggio ostinato with female choir).  
The Awakening 1:15: Conan sits on the stairs and then hurls a flaming pot at the temple (thoughtful oboe/harp/violins, flute/strings, falling bassoon figures, noble muted brass, high wind/string tremolo textures, flute). 
4:26: He beckons to the last female follower and they leave with the temple burning behind them (falling brass figures, timpani roll into exit fanfare, final swell).
2.13 5:13 Conan the King 0:00: Final voice-over (Prologue reprise of taiko drum rhythm).
End Title End credits:
1:04: Anvil of Crom/Conan/Crom, bridge.
3:43: Riders of Doom.


Conan the Destroyer (Basil Poledouris, 1984)

     The sequel to 1982's "Conan" is a somewhat more conventional affair, and so the score is also a bit more "traditional" in the classic Hollywood style.  Poledouris' score is still very exciting and offers many interesting themes, but because themes from "Conan the Barbarian" were so iconic, the sequel has some trouble finding equally arresting new ones.  However, the Love theme and the Orgy theme get new arrangements, which may be even better that the originals (these 2 versions were not released on the original 1984 release, but can be heard on the 2011 Nic Raine-conducted rerecording on Prometheus/Tadlow).  Also, the extended cue for Conan's encounter with Toth-Amon's "man-ape" is brilliantly constructed ("Crystal Palace"), and the cue for Toth-Amon's bird transformation is a refreshingly new texture to the franchise.  "Destroyer" is still an excellent fantasy score, just not an "iconic" one.

     To summarize, in addition to the returning Conan the Barbarian themes (Crom, Conan, Love theme, Snake Worship, Indulgence theme, Wheel of Pain, Orgy theme, Atlantean Sword and Akiro's theme), Poledouris created a new fanfare-ish Destroyer theme, a winding Elite Guard theme, a lumbering Battle theme and Toth-Amon's mystical 3-note motif.  Below is the breakdown for the original 1984 release, followed by the 2011 complete rerecording from Prometheus/Tadlow (there is no "official" complete original score release).

Conan the Destroyer, Basil Poledouris, Original 1984 LP/CD
Trk Dur Title Film Sequence and Themes
1 3:38 Main Title 0:00: (Edit) At the Crypt of Dagoth, Conan and his friends battle the Keepers of the Crypt warriors and are driven back to the altar room (Battle theme, Destroyer theme, Crom theme variation).
Riders Of Taramis 1:36: (Edit) Taramis' Elite Guard horsemen try to capture Conan and his friend Malak.  Conan fights back (Destroyer theme, Elite Guard theme, ending with Destroyer theme). 
2 3:08 Valeria Remembered 0:00: With Dagoth destroyed, Jehnna asks Conan to rule with her, but he refuses.  She kisses him and then he departs (Wifeing Love theme).
3 2:21 The Horn
Of Dagoth
0:00: Inside the Crypt of Dagoth, a flaming gated dragon mouth opens and Jehnna enters into the next room to obtain Dagoth's Horn.  She returns to the group but Akiro gives Conan a warning.
4 2:26 Elite Guard Attacks 0:00: (Edit) On the way to the Crypt of Dagoth, Taramis' horsemen try to capture Jehnna (Destroyer theme vs. Battle theme).  Conan duels with the leader and eventually kills him (Elite Guard theme). 
5 6:14 Crystal Palace 0:00: Conan is trapped in a mirrored room and is confronted by red-hooded mirror images (Toth-Amon motif in vibraphone/harpsichord). 
1:22: The images come together into an ape-monster which Conan fights (Battle theme variation). 
2:52: Conan weakens it by smashing the mirrors. 
3:46: He smashes more glass and dispatches the monster.
4:39: Conan spears Toth-Amon with his sword.  Toth-Amon disappears after touching the jewel (Toth-Amon motif).
6 1:05 The Katta 0:00: Jehnna enters Toth-Amon's mirror room and obtains the jewel.
7 1:31 Dream Quest 0:00: In Shadizar, Taramis tells Jehnna's guard Bombaata to kill Conan after he completes his quest (Snake Worship theme, subdued).  The group begin their quest on horses.  Jehnna asks Bombaata about Conan.  They ride through villages and forests (Elite Guard theme).
8 2:23 Night Bird 0:00: At night, Toth-Amon transforms into a bird, secretly kidnaps Jehnna, and returns to his castle (Toth-Amon motif in piccolo/harp).  Jehnna sleeps (Toth-Amon motif in flute/harp).
9 2:44 Approach To
Shadizaar
0:00: Conan, Malak and Queen Taramis' group ride horses to Shadizar and are happily greeted (Snake Worship theme).  Taramis brings them to a temple.  They drink to Dagoth (Snake Worship theme, subdued).
10 2:25 The Scrolls
Of Skelos
0:00: At the Crypt of Dagoth, Conan and his friends enter and find a large altar with jewels and hieroglyphics, which Akiro translates.  Jehnna places the jewel in a stand.
11 1:28 Dueling Wizards 0:00: Akiro fights the Keeper wizard with magic and closes the gate behind them (Akiro theme).  Conan's group moves deeper into the tunnels (Destroyer theme).  Bombaata delays Conan and his friends with a cave-in and escapes with Jehnna (Elite Guard theme on bassoon).
12 1:19 Illusion's Lake 0:00: After Jehnna is kidnapped, Conan's group take a boat to Toth-Amon's castle.  They enter a cavern.
13 2:30 Conan & Bambaata
Battle
0:00: (Edit) At the Crypt of Dagoth, Conan and his friends battle the Keepers of the Crypt warriors and are driven back to the altar room (Battle theme, Destroyer theme, Crom theme variation, essentially a repeat of "Main Title" from Track 1).
1:36: At Shadizar, Zula impales Taramis' head priest before he can sacrifice Jehnna.  Conan kills Bombaata.  


Conan the Destroyer, Complete 2011 Rerecording, conducted by Nic Raine
(also includes a 2nd CD of alternate film versions and the "Conan Sword and Sorcery Spectacular" score)
Trk Dur Title Film Sequence and Themes
1 3:10 Drum Prelude (Alternate) Voice-over (Prologue drums).
Main Title (Alternate) Main title, Taramis' horsemen cross a red-lit landscape.  Conan kneels before a stone monument (Destroyer theme, Crom theme in trumpets, Destroyer theme, Conan theme).
2 2:23 Net Fight The horsemen try to capture Conan and his friend Malak.  Conan fights back (Destroyer theme, Elite Guard theme, ending with Destroyer theme). 
3 1:34 Valeria Remembered Conan sees a vision of Valeria lying on a flaming pyre.  Queen Taramis offers to bring her back from the dead (Wifeing Love theme).
4 4:14 Shadizar 0:00: They ride horses to Shadizar and are happily greeted (Snake Worship theme).  Taramis brings them to a temple.  They drink to Dagoth (Snake Worship theme, subdued).
Dream Quest 2:39: Taramis tells Jehnna's guard Bombaata to kill Conan after he completes his quest (Snake Worship theme, subdued).
2:57: The group begin their quest on horses.  Jehnna asks Bombaata about Conan.  They ride through villages and forests (Elite Guard theme).
5 1:14 Akiro -
Cavemen Fight
0:00: (Alternate) Conan saves the Akiro the Wizard from cannibals (Akiro theme).
Elite Guard Riders 0:53: Taramis' Horsemen ride across the landscape (Elite Guard theme).
6 1:54 Town Source Music Conan's group arrives at a small village (theme from Indulgence).
7 2:27 Zula - Bombaata Fight 0:00: (Alternate) Zula and Bombaata fight.  Conan stops the fight and Zula pledges her life to Conan.
1:18: The group continue their quest and eventually reach the castle of Toth-Amon.  Toth-Amon watches them approach in a magic crystal (Toth-Amon motif in flute/harp).
8 3:45 Bird -
The Princess
0:00: At night, Toth-Amon transforms into a bird, secretly kidnaps Jehnna, and returns to his castle (Toth-Amon motif in piccolo/harp).  Jehnna sleeps (Toth-Amon motif in flute/harp).
Boating In 2:24: In the morning the group take a boat to Toth-Amon's castle.  They enter a cavern.
9 3:37 Ice Palace 0:00: Conan and his friends swim underwater and reach a stairway.  Jehnna sleeps.
1:19: (unused) The group continues to climb labyrinthine stairs.
2:03: They reach a stone gate and manage to open it.  Toth-Amon leaves his room (Toth-Amon motif in celeste/harp).
10 7:15 Chamber Of Mirrors 0:00: Conan is trapped in a mirrored room and is confronted by red-hooded mirror images (Toth-Amon motif in vibraphone/harpsichord). 
1:45: The images come together into an ape-monster which Conan fights (Battle theme variation). 
3:30: Conan weakens it by smashing the mirrors. 
4:37: He smashes more glass and dispatches the monster.
5:28: Conan spears Toth-Amon with his sword.  Toth-Amon disappears after touching the jewel (Toth-Amon motif).
11 1:28 Princess Takes
The Jewel
0:00: Jehnna enters the mirror room and obtains the jewel.
Forest Ride 1:04: The group rides through the forest.
12 5:21 Eating The Elite 0:00: On the way to the Crypt of Dagoth, Taramis' horsemen try to capture Jehnna (Destroyer theme vs. Battle theme).  Conan duels with the leader and eventually kills him (Elite Guard theme). 
Crypt Rocks 3:21: At the Crypt of Dagoth, the group come across a large stone door.  Conan opens it and they enter a large crypt (Atlantean Sword theme in strings).
13 7:11 Door Lift 0:00: After moving deeper into the tunnels, the group come to a large gate.  Conan and Bombaata lift it together with their combined strength (Wheel of Pain theme).
Dragon’s Head 2:20: They enter and find a large altar with jewels and heiroglyphics (The Scrolls Of Skelos).  Jehnna places the jewel in a stand.
Conan
The Destroyer
4:47: A flaming gated dragon mouth opens and Jehnna enters into the next room to obtain Dagoth's Horn.  She returns to the group but Akiro gives Conan a warning.
14 3:27 Cutlery Interruptus 0:00: Conan and his friends battle the Keepers of the Crypt warriors and are driven back to the altar room (Battle theme, Destroyer theme, Crom theme variation).
Akiro’s Magic 1:57: Akiro fights the Keeper wizard with magic and closes the gate behind them (Akiro theme).  Conan's group moves deeper into the tunnels (Destroyer theme).  Bombaata delays Conan and his friends with a cave-in and escapes with Jehnna (Elite Guard theme on bassoon).
15 4:41 Dagoth Ceremony
(Original Version With Choir)
(Alternate) As Conan and his friends sneak into Taramis' castle from the underground waterfall, Taramis holds a ceremony and Jehnna restores Dagoth's Horn (Orgy theme).  Once inside, Conan fights Bombaata.  Dagoth begins to move.
16 1:26 Impaling
The Guard
0:00: Zula impales the head priest before he can sacrifice Jehnna.  Conan kills Bombaata.
Dagoth’s Death 0:50: (alternate) After Conan tears off Dagoth's horn, he kills it (Conan theme on trumpet, strings).
17 0:18 Pit Band Conan and his friends stand before Jehnna, now on the throne.
18 3:13 Farewell Valeria Jehnna asks Conan to rule with her, but he refuses.  She kisses him and then he departs (Wifeing Love theme).
19 2:44 Drum Postlude 0:00: Voice-over, King Conan on his throne.
End Credits 0:15: End credits (Destroyer theme, Elite Guard theme, Net fight material)


Conan the Barbarian 3D (Tyler Bates, 2011)

     In 2011, Tyler Bates scored a "reboot" of the Conan franchise, and sadly, it was a critical and box-office failure (personally, I kind of liked it, and if it had not had such a famous predecessor, I think it would have been better received).  Bates did not use any of Poledouris' themes, but instead did a full "reboot" himself, which, all things considered, was probably the appropriate move.  In this score Tyler only really pushes one melodic theme ("His Name is Conan") which is nicely soaring and heroic.  For the most part however, the score treats each sequence in an "episodic" manner, in that that the material is constantly changing without revisiting previous themes.  The textures here use modern scoring techniques, blending orchestral, electronic and choral elements to sometimes dizzying heights.  I do kind of miss the more obvious character-theme approach, but it's rousing fun anyways.

Trk Dur Title Film Sequence
1 2:08 Prologue Story of the shattered mask of Acheron and it's dispersal.
2 3:35 His Name
Is Conan
Conan is born on a battlefield and named by his mother with her last breath.
3 2:52 Egg Race Conan joins an egg race with his peers.  They fight one another to break their eggs.  Invaders appear.  Conan is surrounded but kills his attackers.
4 3:15 Fire and Ice Conan returns with their heads.  His father forges a blade for Conan.  They train together but Conan disappoints his father.
5 3:19 Cimmerian Battle Invaders on horses arrive.  The village prepares defenses.  The armies engage.  
6 1:55 The Mill Conan's father is captured.  The leader, Khalar Zym, asks him about the mask.  Conan attacks but is also captured.
7 3:06 The Mask /
12 Years Later
Zym has Conan hold a chain to prevent his father from burning to death.  Zym holds the completed mask of Acheron in triumph.  Conan's father tells Conan to let him die and the village is destroyed.  Conan raises a sword to the sky and screams.
8 2:37 Freeing Slaves Conan and his friend Ukafa investigate the work of Zingaran slave traders.  He starts an avalanche on the traders' caravan.  He and his friends attack the slavers and free the slaves.
9 3:35 Prison Interrogation Conan lets himself get taken a prisoner so he can investigate a clue to Zym's location.  He dispatches the guards and interrogates the captain.  He leaves the captain to his prisoners' mercy.
10 1:44 Monastery Approach Zym's forces approach the Shaipur Monastery by land.  Conan approaches by sea.  He leaves Ukafa and rides a horse into the desert.  Zym's forces reach the monastery.
11 1:09 Off With
Their Heads
The monastery forces fight Zym's army.  Tamara is sent away but is pursued by Zym's caravan.
12 3:11 Horse Chase Conan sees Zym's pursuit of Tamara's caravan and gives chase.  He intercepts them. Tamara and Conan escape from Zym's men and take one as prisoner.
13 2:48 Death of
a Priest
Zym interrogates the monastery priest.  Flashback to the death of Zym's wife.  The priest warns Zym and is killed.
14 2:35 One Way Ride Conan's prisoner shows him where Zym's main caravan is located.  He catapults his prisoner into Zym's chamber with a note.
15 7:57 Outpost Conan waits for Zym at the Shaipur outpost with Tamara.  Zym arrives alone.  Zym's sorceress daughter Marique sends sand demons to attack Conan.  After dispatching the demons, Conan faces Zym alone.  During the duel Marique injures Conan with poison.  Conan sets off some explosives and he and Tamara escape to Ukafa's boat by leaping off a cliff.
16 4:47 Fever Conan tells Ukafa that he failed to kill Zym.  He plans to try again.  Ukafa tells Tamara about Conan. The boat is boarded at dawn and a battle ensues.  Tamara gains Conan's respect.
17 0:36 Victory The crew celebrate their victory.
18 2:41 A Kiss Conan heads ashore.  Tamara follows him and they kiss and become intimate.  Tamara leaves in the morning.
19 1:55 The Temple Tamara is captured by Marique and her men.  At the temple of Khor Kalba Tamara is presented to Zym.  Conan approaches Argalon, city of thieves.
20 2:41 Oceans of Blood Conan and Ela-shan approach Zym's base from underground.  Marique speaks with Tamara about her fate.  Zym arrives and talks of his dreams.  Conan and Ela-shan wade through water.  Marique talks about young Conan as Tamara is stretched out over an altar.  Ela-Shan is attacked by a water snake.  They swim to freedom and enter Zym's prison.  
21 2:36 The Dweller A tentacle monster attacks.  Conan defeats the main guard, frees Ela-Shan and they move deeper into the castle.
22 1:21 Skull Mountain Conan heads towards Skull Mountain alone and sees the ritual from afar.
23 2:07 Wheel of Torture During an earthquake, the wheel on which Tamara is strapped falls down a hole.  Conan and Zym fight while standing on the wheel.
24 2:30 Zym's Demise Conan and Zym fight in the underground ruins of Skull Mountain.  Zym eventually falls to his doom.
25 3:42 Conan Returns Home Conan visits his old village and returns his father's sword.  End credits.


Links
Conan the Barbarian (1982), 3CD Intrada Release (includes 1982 CD)
Conan the Barbarian (1982), 2CD Prometheus Rerecording (2010)
Conan the Destroyer (1984), Original Release (iTunes)
Conan the Destroyer (1984), 2CD Prometheus Rerecording (2011)
Conan the Barbarian 3D (2011)
Red Sonja (Morricone, 1985)

No comments:

Post a Comment