Forums > Queen - General Discussion > Flash Gordon - Why the dialogue?

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MadTheSwine73 user not visiting Queenzone.com
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MadTheSwine73
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Posted: 06 Jul 11, 16:49 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Does anyone have any idea as to why the dialogue was added to the Flash Gordon album? I would love to hear the entire album with only Queen and no other voices.


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catqueen user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 06 Jul 11, 17:08 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

There are people here who probably have an actual answer -- but (without actually knowing) i would guess that it was because at that time soundtrack records were not overly common.   Rock tracks were only just starting to be used, so it was almost a new genre -- ok, genre stretches it a bit, but it was something fairly new and different, they were maybe still ironing lumps out of it, figuring out what people want. 
That's just a guess though.

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 05:30 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

The album can be considered an 'audio version' of the film. The dialogue becomes part of the the songs hooks. A great mix, but would've liked more of the orchestral score included.

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 05:31 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

PS - try the DVD with different language audio during the songs. Much fun.

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 08:37 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I like the dialogue. Had the album for many years before I saw the film, and after I watched it it's easy to "follow" Flash Gordon by just listening to the album.

I think the demo for Football Fight that is on the new remastered edition was cool, but kinda missed the dialogue...
- "Are your men on the right pills?" - "Maybe we should exicute their trainer...?"

Also... the intro on Gimme the Prize makes the song more interesting. Before I watched Highlander I had some pictures made in my mind, and thought it was great to finnaly see how it really was.


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A Word In Your Ear user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 08:41 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

dysan wrote: A great mix, but would've liked more of the orchestral score included.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Somebody on ebay is selling the official Orchestral score by Howard Blake : 

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Howard-Blake-FLASH-GORDON-Score-AMITYVILLE-3D-OST-CD-/190487155738?pt=Music_CDs&hash=item2c59eb541a   

And Also Here at BuySoundtracks.com:

http://buysoundtrax.stores.yahoo.net/flasgororsco.html   

Myself,  I bought this when it first got released & It's a nice disc to go along side with the Queen Release,  a "companion of sorts".

Here is a fan mix that I did a while back using both the Queen & Howard Blake scores,  a nice bit of the Music that pre-ludes " Football Fight"  in there.

http://www.mediafire.com/?8tv5z5oo5bce5zb


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paulosham user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 12:40 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

dysan wrote: PS - try the DVD with different language audio during the songs. Much fun.

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I never thought about the language options, I wonder if there is a way of extracting the music from the DVD without the dialogue?


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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 13:11 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I believe it was Brian specifically who wanted to have the dialogue in and did much of the original mixing of the album, so that the story of the movie was present via those clips. If I remember correctly, he said it otherwise would've sounded like a bunch of musical clips with no context.

Personally, I'd love to hear the entire thing without dialogue as well.

And I have a copy of the Howard Blake score (which is, naturally, dialogue-free) and it's quite good.

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 16:43 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I know that film inside out, every word, every gesture - and it was listening to Flash on GH1 back in 82 - 83 that got me into Queen. I even collected the stickers with Weet-A-Bix.

FREEZE YOU BLOODY BASTARDS!!!!

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Posted: 07 Jul 11, 16:52 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

As far as I know, the best answer to the question "why is there dialogue from the movie on the Flash Gordon soundtrack" is "because the band wanted it that way". And I love it as-is.

Having said that, I would dearly love a "clean" version of the soundtrack album i.e. just the music without the dialogue and sound effects. That would have made a perfect bonus disc for the Flash re-issue, although the Flash demos were nice too.

But as with so many things in life, you have to appreciate what is and not pine for what you wish things were.


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tero! 48531 user not visiting Queenzone.com

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Posted: 08 Jul 11, 08:28 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I don't think the songs are strong enough to be played by themselves, and Brian was very much aware of that.
Background music for a movie is meant to be in the background only, and it needs to be very different when it's listened to all by itself.

A good example of this is Flash's Theme which sounds like a dull and monotonous demo on the album, and only becomes interesting in the single remix where it has entire "verses" made out of the film dialogue.

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Posted: 08 Jul 11, 10:13 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I thnk snippets of dialogue from the film works very well on soundtrack albums. It puts the music directly in to context with the film. Flash Gordon was very good early example of this. The same can be said for many of the tracks from A Kind Of Magic album  too. For me quite a few of the songs on magic would be worse without the dialogue from Highlander included.

The inclusion of dialogue seems to work forTarantino too, and he probably has some of the best selling soundtrack albums out there. Although in his case the dialogue tends to be slotted between the music tracks rather than in the songs themselves, because the music was not specifically composed for the film.

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Posted: 09 Jul 11, 18:22 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

MadTheSwine73 wrote: Does anyone have any idea as to why the dialogue was added to the Flash Gordon album? I would love to hear the entire album with only Queen and no other voices.

yes - this is what makes Flash Gordon a pile of crap

DOWN WITH THE DIALOGUE!


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Posted: 12 Jul 11, 11:56 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I think "because the band wanted it that way" is the wrong answer.

Wouldn't anyone appearing on the soundtrack have to be compensated in some way?  I doubt Brian May wanted part of his pay to go to Max Von Sydow to tell Cletus he's bored.

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Posted: 12 Jul 11, 13:27 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I never really imagined fans of Queen thinking that the film Flash Gordon is bad. The album is an aquired taste, sure, but surely you'd all love the film?

I guess it's like I can't understand kids who got into Bowie via his role in Labyrinth.

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Posted: 12 Jul 11, 13:33 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

While looking for the score I found this:

Composer's note: 'I was brought in in a crisis
situation when it was found that the composer nominated by 'Queen' had
for some reason been unable to complete 'more than one minute' of a
score for the film. I was summoned to a meeting at CTS Wembley by sound
recordist John Richards and Brendan Cahill head of music for Universal
Studios Hollywood. The RPO had been booked for two weeks and started
recording the day before but had nothing else to play. I said it would
take at least 4 weeks to write the amount of music required, possibly 90
minutes. After ferocious negotiations with my agent Liz Keys at London
Management I began work, but the time gradually whittled down to 10 days
and the last 4 days of that I didn't sleep. An added complication was
to include various guitar phrases and the song 'Flash' within my
large-scale score for 80-piece orchestra. Somehow I finished it and
conducted the 3 days of recording sessions, but afterwards I went back
to my house in Mortlake and collapsed exhausted. My wife had left the
house with the 2 children at the end of my first writing day, bothered
by endless phone calls and courier bikes. She returned on the Saturday
expecting me to have left for France on the Thursday. In fact I had been
asleep for 3 days. She called a doctor who injected me with something
to wake me up. He said it was possible I would never have woken up at
all, since I was suffering from chronic bronchitis due to total
exhaustion! Anyway I recovered and I and everybody else were pleased
with the score. Dubbing sessions began and I later discovered that much
of my score had been replaced with synthesized music, myself having
demonstrated how to handle it. A disappointment. However, my
relations with the members of Queen were always cordial. Brian May came
over one day and hummed an idea for an 'overture'. As he did so I jotted
it down on some manuscript paper and then played it back on the piano,
which really startled him. They all came along to the orchestral
recordings and seemed fascinated. I remember Freddie Mercury singing the
idea of 'Ride to Arboria' in his high falsetto and I showed him how I
could expand it into the orchestral section now on the film, with which
he seemed very pleased. Whilst scoring I had cassettes of guitar ideas
from Brian, in particular the slow 'falling-chord' sequence. I wrote
this out into my score at one point and surrounded it with big
orchestral colour. When I came to the recording I had Brian's solo
guitar on headphones and conducted the orchestra in synch. around it.
Many months later Brian came over and we listened to the finished
album.'

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Posted: 13 Jul 11, 15:29 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Also - I found the score. It's brilliant. They should've found room for Howard Blake's unused version of The Hero on the bonus EP. It's amazing.

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Posted: 13 Jul 11, 16:46 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

there are two kinds of OST albums that accompany films..

1. a collection of songs (either by one or several artists)
2. a collection of pieces of music

for Flash Gordon queen chose option 2. (there are two songs on the album - but the rest is really incidental/atomospheric music pieces)

it'd be difficult to sell this kind of album - OSTs don't tend to sell very well unless there are actual songs on them.

so to try and generate interest in both the film and album the dialogue was added


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Posted: 16 Jul 11, 03:05 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

It's worth mentioning too that it was only a couple of years after Jeff Wayne's War Of The World - perhaps Queen envisaged something along those lines. Of course, if the film had done better it might have ended up being one of their biggest albums. They learned to not put all their eggs in one basket next time a film OST presented itself to them.