THE TWILIGHT ZONE contains complete scores for the episodes "Where Is Everybody", "Eye Of The Beholder", "The Lonely", " Walking Distance", "Little Girl Lost", "Living Doll", and "Ninety Years Without Slumbering".
Original scores composed by Bernard Herrmann. Conducted by Joel McNeely.
Recorded at Abbey Road Studios, London, England on September 17-20, 1999.
One is grateful for the very notion of making a new recording of seven of Bernard Herrmann's scores for the Twilight Zone series from the early 1960s -- as recently as ten or even five years ago, anyone suggesting such an idea to most record labels would have been shown the door in a less-than-polite manner, but Herrmann's music seems to sell, and the continuing interest in The Twilight Zone doesn't hurt. Of the all the music here, Herrmann's score for the episode "Walking Distance" holds up the best, a sweetly elegiac ode to passing youth and passing time that stands on its own. Much of the rest, although often very interesting, is simply not that good as music -- Herrmann did as bidden and created very effective, surprising, even other-worldly scores for "Little Girl Lost" and "Living Doll," using instruments such as harps, guitars, and bassoon with great facility, but these still aren't remotely of the quality of his film scores of the same era. It is possible, listening to this material, to discern his further use of such works as Gustav Holst's "The Planets," whose influence could be felt in his music for Alfred Hitchcock's The Trouble With Harry, and it's easy to admire the man's inventiveness and creativity. The recording is excellent, and the performance a perhaps a bit too serious, which is ironic since, as a substantial body of music, this double CD set doesn't hold up. It is one disc too long for its own good, except from the standpoint of the Herrmann completists, who will love it. ~ Bruce Eder