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Blockbuster soundtracks don't get much bigger (or smaller) than this - Howard Shore returns to Middle Earth for The Hobbit.
Howard Shore had an immensely hard act to follow, and he only had himself to blame. His score for Peter Jackson's film versions of Tolkien's The Lord Of The Rings was so successful and universally adored that he was the natural choice when Jackson came to tackle the trilogy's prequel, The Hobbit.
And in the same way as before, with pastoral, innocent melody pushed to the front, Shore's music from The Hobbit brings the characters to life in music. The innocence of Bilbo Baggins and his ever-expanding journey, the ferociousness of the dragon, Smaug - countless times throughout Shore's score we are reminded of just how this modern master is able to use the tools of his trade to make an emotional connection with an audience of millions.