The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

2001: Reprise 48110-2

  1. The Prophecy
  2. Concerning Hobbits
  3. The Shadow of the Past
  4. The Treason of Isengard
  5. The Black Rider
  6. At the Sign of the Prancing Pony
  7. A Knife in the Dark
  8. Flight to the Ford
  9. Many Meetings
  10. The Council of Elrond
  11. The Ring Goes South
  12. A Journey in the Dark
  13. The Bridge of Khazad Dum
  14. Lothlorien
  15. The Great River
  16. Amon Hen
  17. The Breaking of the Fellowship
  18. May It Be

It’s hard to isolate this soundtrack from its two companion pieces and to consider it as it sounded on its own before the others followed (and topped) it, and to an extent it’s also challenging to remember what I thought of the soundtrack when there was only it and its film to react to.

Some things remain distinct memories, for example my gasp of astonishment upon hearing Enya’s voice singing the Aníron snippet for that scene with Aragorn and Arwen—I’d not been following rumours of the film’s secretive production and had no reason to anticipate this, but even so it was such a rapturous surprise to find that Peter Jackson and crew had tapped such a perfectly Elvish voice *and* wielded it for such a brilliantly magical moment.

The emotional and dramatic range of this part of the soundtrack was, like the film itself, thrilling but nowhere near as deep or majestic as what was to come. Howard Shore’s score here presents pastoral Hobbit themes and spooky Nazgûl ones in juxtaposition as accelerated and telescoped as Jackson’s storytelling of Tolkien’s tale was—“compactly exaggerated” might be the best way to describe that compression.

When I look back at FotR with TTT and RotK in mind, Fellowship suffers mostly by being entirely too fairy-tale in its charming ways.