John Kurlander, who signed on last year to record the score for NewLine Cinema’s The Lord of the Rings motion-picture trilogy,recently completed sessions in England for the highly anticipatedsecond part of the Middle Earth saga, The Two Towers. In orderto maintain the consistency of the music score throughout the series,Kurlander reported that very little was changed from the scoringsessions for the initial installment, The Fellowship of theRing, including the choice of venues for the orchestral recordingsand the choice of audio equipment, which once again included a set ofportable ATC Loudspeaker SCM20A active near-field monitors.
The principal recording venue this time around was once again CTS inLondon. The new CTS Studio, a semi-permanent setup in Watford Town Hallin the Northwest suburbs of London, utilized much of the company’sequipment from its now defunct Wembley location. Although the studioowns a 5.1 ATC monitor system–which includes three SCM150s for LCR,two SCM20s for surrounds and SCM 0.1/15 subwoofers–Kurlander chose touse his own personal system at CTS and for additional scoring sessionsat AIR Lyndhurst and Abbey Road.
“My three monitors traveled with us wherever we went,” saidKurlander. “I just used the sub and surrounds of whatever room we werein. Because so many people needed to be in the control room, that toconserve space we didn’t install the CTS LCR system at all. My threemonitors sat on the top of the desk: We had some special tables madefor the AMS Neve Capricorn and my 20A’s matched in really well withCTS’ ATC surrounds and subs.”
Kurlander was also concerned that directors and producers of bigaction movies like The Lord of the Rings would demand to hearthe score “very big and loud on a heavy-duty system. But that hasn’tturned out to be the case. Filmmakers realized it isn’t just thetheatrical experience but also DVD. If it sounds that good on anear-field 5.1 system and they know it is translating well onto the dubstage, then they can relate to the music and its vital relationshipwith dialog and effects.”
ATC Loudspeakers are distributed by Transamerica Audio Group, whichcan be found online at www.transaudiogroup.com. Check out the January 2003issue of Mix for a more in-depth look at sound for the secondinstallment of The Lord of the Rings.