PETE'S DRAGON - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (2016)

While the 1977 musical live action animated movie of the same name featured nostalgically heartwarming songs like “Candle on the Water”, “Brazzle Dazzle Day” and “There’s Room for Everyone”, the 2016 reimagined version of the Disney classic directed by David Lowery takes things one step further. There are still touching tunes (the most radio friendly being one of the three new songs written for the film: “Something Wild” performed by electronic violinist Lindsey Stirling featuring indie pop band Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness) - and on top of that – a soaring score composed by Daniel Hart (Tumbledown, Comet).

The 76 minute soundtrack album is a pleasant surprise, with more than one hour of song and score material. The other two new songs on the CD are “The Dragon Song” performed by singer songwriter Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and “Nobody Knows” lovingly crooned by folk rock band The Lumineers. Closing the album is a newly-recorded version of “Candle On the Water” performed by rock band OkkervilRiver(this will appeal to fans of the original movie). Elsewhere, listeners will also be treated by tracks performed by St Vincent, Leonard Cohen and Bosque Brown.

It is heartening to know that album producers are still keen to include a large portion of movie scores into soundtracks. Here, there are 20 score cues, each ranging from one to five minutes. When heard in entirety, it is an impressive experience that reminds you of some of the movie’s most memorable bits (we are assuming that you have caught the highly recommended film on the big screen).

Hart aptly infuses folk instruments into his work to set the tone of the story between a boy and his dragon. There are wondrous moments (“An Adventure”, “Are You Going To Eat Me?”), inspiring ones (“Reverie”, “Abyss”), sweet and tender indulges (“North Star”, “Bedtime Compass”) and exciting instants (“Follow That Dragon”, “Elliot at the Bridge”). Stirling’s violin performances can also be heard throughout the soundtrack.

Because it doesn’t feature any big names, there is little chance that this soundtrack will get noticed by award jury members. But if it does, we will be over the moon. 


Recommended Track: (26) 
The Bravest Boy I’ve Ever Met

Review by John Li


The Dragon Song - Bonnie "Prince" Billy 
Something Wild [feat. Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness] - Lindsey Stirling
Nobody Knows - The Lumineers
Something on Your Mind - St. Vincent
So Long, Marianne - Leonard Cohen
Gina Anne - Bosque Brown
An Adventure - Daniel Hart
Are You Gonna Eat Me? - Daniel Hart
Brown Bunny - Daniel Hart
Reverie - Daniel Hart
Tree Fort - Daniel Hart
North Star - Daniel Hart
Bedtime Compass - Daniel Hart
Timber - Daniel Hart
Breathe - Daniel Hart
Gavin Knows What He's Doing - Daniel Hart
17 You Are Not Alone - Daniel Hart
18 Eillot Gets Lost - Daniel Hart
19 Takedown - Daniel Hart
20 It'll Be Just Like It Used to Be - Daniel Hart
21 Follow That Dragon - Daniel Hart
22 Elliot at the Bridge - Daniel Hart
23 Abyss - Daniel Hart
24 Go North - Daniel Hart
25 Saying Goodbye - Daniel Hart
26 The Bravest Boy I've Ever Met - Daniel Hart
27 The Dragon Song Revisited - Bonnie "Prince" Billy
28 Candle on the Water - Okkervil River


Composer: Daniel Hart
Label: Walt Disney Records
Release Date: Ausgust 12, 2016