Week of January 3, 2005

By Chris Fullman
Posted at January 10, 2005 - 4:43 AM GMT

Well, after an incredibly abnormal streak of being busy/rushed/stressed/sick/away (went to New England for Christmas and saw snow for the first time ever, w00t), I'm back, and with what timing. I've still not managed to catch up to 2 episodes that ran this past December, and quite sadly, I think I shall leave them to reruns, as fitting an extra 2 hours of TV into my busy schedule is definitely not going to happen. But I'm glad to be back, and it appears that CSI had a great week in music! Let's review, shall we?

CSI: Miami -- "Shootout"

I've noticed an increasing trend with Miami lately, and that is that the musical score is mainly limited to 5-15 second bumpers/transitions, or seemingly-licensed tracks. I'm not sure if this is because the producers don't have the level of confidence with their composers as CSI and CSI: New York does, or another issue entirely, but it's becoming very noticeable. It's not normal for a primetime-run show to lack in the amount of music heard during an episode, and the difference is great compared to the other two running shows.

Hopefully the show will break out of this phase, as I believe the composers are starting to get a feel for the show a bit more.

CSI: New York -- "Tri-Borough"

If you hadn't read our exclusive interview with Bill Brown (click here to catch up), this is the first episode (hopefully first of many) that features the duduk, an amazing wooden instrument which requires great care and experience to get the perfect sound. It's such a rich and emotional live instrument that is almost impossible to sample correctly.

Sadly, I was somewhat preoccupied with a situation at my job and my mind was clouded, and I wasn't in the mood to take notes for the episode, otherwise there would be an additional 3-4 paragraphs here. Perhaps I will update this article when the rerun comes around.

But one thing is certain, Bill is definitely getting himself comfortable in the role of the show's sole composer, and this episode shows it, especially with the integration of live instruments and bigger ambitions for the score. Great work, Bill!

If you liked this score, you may like: Jack Wall's "Myst III: Exile", Brian Tyler's "Children of Dune" (both of which feature the duduk at length)

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation -- "Who Shot Sherlock "

In homage to the old mystery serials and Sherlock Holmes itself, this episode features violins and crescendos that fit in perfectly with the campy feel they were going for with the episode. From the staccato crescendos just before the commercial break to the initial investigation, everything is maliciously recreated for this episode to make you feel as if you were watching an actual Sherlock Holmes episode.

Then came time for our dear Greg's final proficiency test, in which John M. Keane decided to break off from the episode's running theme and introduce a new element. Greg knows he only has one more shot at this, or that's it, he's stuck in CSI purgatory; between lab worker (of which he's apparently found a replacement, kicking him out of that job) and not becoming a full Level One CSI yet.

Greg's theme is that of delicacy. When he is examining Dennis Kingsley/Sherlock's body, there is a very gentle piece of a solo piano, accompanied with effects. My love for the piano got me feeling the scene much more than you or your friend/spouse might have, but it was definitely a welcomed segment to the show. It shows that Greg has a conscious thought of making sure he gets the job done right, as referenced by how gentle he is with Mr. Kingsley's arms.

Towards the end, the piano is brought back as Grissom watches on with his and Catherine's team enjoying the moment and congratulating Greg. It's a family, regardless of it being broken by Ecklie. Perhaps Grissom regrets not handling things differently to keep the team together? While the scene itself didn't lend that emotion, the music did. See how music affects the scene?

Discuss this reviews at Talk CSI!

Find more episode info in the Episode Guide.


Chris Fullman is a regular contributor.