The Vikings II

Composed By: Trevor Morris

Distributed by: Sony Classical

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                Inspired by the tales of the Norseman of early medieval Scandinavia, The Vikings is a television series that follows the exploits of Viking Chieftain Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel), his crew and his family.  In the second season of the celebrated History Channel series, Ragnar finds himself at war with his own brother Rollo (Clive Standen).  Once Rollo is defeated, Ragnar believes all will be well within the kingdom, but trouble is brewing.  A new threat has arisen, one that may bring about the destruction of all that he has built, including that of his own family.

                The musical score of the second season of The Vikings was created by Canadian composer Trevor Morris.  Beginning his musical career at a very young age, Morris was commissioned to compose a piece for his school's graduating class to perform in front of Pope John Paul.  He was only thirteen at the time.  Graduating top of his class from Fanshaw's Music Industry Arts program, Canada's most prestigious school for recording and production, Morris worked in the music production industry through most of his 20s.  Returning his attention to musical scoring, he moved to Los Angeles where he began working with such notable composers as James Newton Howard and Hans Zimmer.  Best known for his musical compositions for The Borgias, The Tudors and The Pillars of the Earth, Trevor Morris also created musical scores for films like The Hills Have Eyes 2, Beautiful Boy, Immortals and more.

                 The Vikings II Soundtrack features electric and electronic sound - electric guitars, electric violins and synth sounds - mixed with exotic woodwinds and horns, chanting and singing.  The entire score is heavy on percussion instruments like taiko drums for a tribal sound, bongos for feeling of danger, clapping of wooden sticks signifying moments requiring some stealth and more.  I loved the sawing of violin strings, a feeling that sends chills down the spine and possibly signifies something brutal about to take place.  The chanting/singing combined with the percussion sound adds a dramatic flavor to each track and, no doubt, punctuates the drama of each scene the score was created for.

                I had a great time listening to The Vikings II.  It's fast-paced and dramatic score was exciting and impressive.  Friends have been urging me to watch the series, but I have always been pressed for time.  After listening to this soundtrack, I have decided to make the time.  With music this good, I'm bound to enjoy the series.


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