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  • [Review] Haunted Mansion CD Review

    I'm sure most already have it--and seen this--, but since Halloween is coming up, here's my review of the new HM CD. (I also don't want this getting lost in the HM thread I posted it in!)

    A Review of "The Haunted Mansion" audio CD.


    Price: $18.98
    Available at: Port Royal, New Orleans, Disneyland. Also available at World Of Disney store, Downtown Disney and DelivEARS.

    I had the chance to pick up and listen to the latest Haunted Mansion CD from the park, titled “ The Haunted Mansion”. While many here have already reviewed the CD, I thought I might as well add in my own 2 cents. This is a track-by-track review, letting a future buying know exactly what they’re getting. It has it’s pros and cons, and for the hardcore Disneyland fan, it isn’t totally spectacular, but I think it is worth getting as some of the stuff on here has never been released.




    On a side note, this set would go great with:

    A Musical History of Disneyland (2005)
    • Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary (1999)
    • Story & Song From the Haunted Mansion (2009)


    Track 1: “The Haunted Mansion”
    Time length: 13:58

    If you have A Musical History of Disneyland, you will find this track familiar. This is a “ride-through” mix that gives the listener as “sampler” of the sounds and music of what they might hear on the Haunted Mansion attraction. Unlike the lengthy track on the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary where every loop is played, the track on this CD only plays just enough to give you a taste of each scene. The best part is that the sound quality is much better than the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary track, as was the ride-through mix A Musical History of Disneyland. The only perk this track has over the two previously released “ride-through” tracks is the addition of the new bride audio. Also, the sound of the doors opening and closing for the stretch Galleries is a nice touch, like the boat going over the falls in the Pirates of the Caribbean CD ride mix(es). If you already have A Musical History of Disneyland and Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary, this track is still good to have for that extra bit of bride audio.

    Track 2: “Ghostly Music Box”
    Time length: 2:07

    This track is really great. This never before released piece of audio is the music box audio that is featured at DL Paris’s Phantom Manor attraction, Haunted Mansion Holiday, and the FastPass area for DL’s Haunted Mansion year-round. The Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary Phantom Manor track featured some of the music box audio, but not the whole thing which really seemed like a tease. This is the entire track from beginning to end including the “winding up” sound at the beginning. A good piece of music to have.

    Track 3: “Otherworldly Concerto”

    Time Length: 9:59
    Although most of the music featured on this track never made it to the final attraction, this is a really fun track to listen to. Gaylord Carter, renowned organist, is recording different versions of the famous organ music for the Haunted Mansion, including the dirge in the beginning and the Ballroom Waltz. It odd to listen to different arrangements of the tunes that we are so familiar with.

    Track 4: “A Swinging Wake”
    Track Length: 1:02

    For those of you who put together Haunted Mansion Halloween displays, or mix custom Haunted Mansion tracks, or just like have a bunch of Disneyland source audio, this is a really neat track. It’s just the background score for the graveyard rendition of “Grim Grinning Ghosts” without any sound effects or vocals. This has never been released before on CD, unless you got it (like myself) on the CD On Demand kiosks Disney had many years ago.

    Track 5: “The Graveyard Band”
    Track Length: 1:01

    Why this track was put on, I have know idea. It seems kind of random to have this track on this disk. Anyways, it’s the source audio for the Graveyard band, without the background score, sound effects or vocals.

    Track 6: “999 Happy Haunts”.
    Track Length: 7:39

    Unlike the first track of this CD that features just a “taste” of the audio in the graveyard, this track has every vocal loop found in the Graveyard. It is very similar to the graveyard mix found on the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary ride-through track. The big difference between that track and the one on this CD is that the sound is WAY better; the one on the [i] Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary [i] which suffered pretty badly from compression while this track is crystal clear. Another note about this track is that it includes the opera singers loop which has not been included on any of the other CD (sets). Again, I don’t know why this track is on here, but it may be put on to make up for the poor sound quality on the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary CD track.

    Track 7: “Phantom Manor Suite”
    Track Length: 12:59

    I had high hopes for this track. After hearing the Phantom Manor ride-through track on the [i] Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary CD [i] I really wanted a nice good track of just John Debney’s fantastic score. That’s what this track is, but with some major flaws. Firstly, the mix is pretty bad. Everything is clear sound quality wise (which gives it a slight edge over the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary CD for sound quality but not by much) but the way all the tracks are arranged is disappointing. They tried to get slick with transitions and beginnings and endings of segments of the score where clipped, which is a real tease since I KNOW that there’s more of the score after listening to the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary CD countless times. The bride vocal track was really distracting (and annoying) since all I want is the score and nothing else. If I want to have the bride track in the mix, I’ll listen to the mix on the Haunted Mansion 30th Anniversary CD . I also could have without the “Singing Busts” track in the catacombs part. The abrupt ending seemed really odd too. Too bad, a real missed opportunity.

    Overall, I thought the CD was OK. I was disappointed by the “Phantom Manor Suite” track, which was a real selling point for me. However, tracks 2, 3, 4, and 5 made up for that with never before relesased music in their entirety. The sound quality is top notch and sounds good with headphones. For the hardcore fan, this is kind of a “get the tracks I don’t have” sort of purchase, but for the casual fan who doesn’t have any of the other CD’s, this is a real treat. A nice product for Disney during Haunted Mansion’s 40th anniversary and just in time to pop in a CD player for background while handing out candy on Halloween. Grade: B-
    Last edited by Nautilus; 10-23-2009, 06:39 AM.

  • #2
    Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

    Nice review!

    Micenation

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

      I'll say what I said in The Thread - I agree with almost everything in your review, Sam, and I appreciate you taking the time to post it!

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

        Hehe, Thanks! Gotta keep the board informed, and informed well!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

          Indeed. Oh, and just an addendum: I ordered mine through DelivEARS, and while the price was ridiculous, the woman who helped me was very personable - she actually asked me what I'd heard about this CD, since she was thinking about getting it! And it was delivered very quickly.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

            I have the CD and think it's pretty cool overall. I was more intrigued by the Story one with Ron Howard in it, but this one will probably get more listens than the other in the future.

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            • #7
              Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

              I saw this at le Bat en Rouge and passed it up, thinking it was just another generic HM soundtrack. Guess I was wrong!


              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

                Originally posted by Datameister View Post
                Indeed. Oh, and just an addendum: I ordered mine through DelivEARS, and while the price was ridiculous, the woman who helped me was very personable - she actually asked me what I'd heard about this CD, since she was thinking about getting it! And it was delivered very quickly.
                DelivEARS has been added to the OP!

                Originally posted by RocknGuitar View Post
                I saw this at le Bat en Rouge and passed it up, thinking it was just another generic HM soundtrack. Guess I was wrong!
                le Bat en Rouge has it too?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Haunted Mansion CD Review

                  I got mine at the merch cart near the exit to HM, and I've also seen it at Off the Page in DCA.
                  Like this post? Read more like it at The Disneyland Dilettante!

                  Comment

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