The Lord of the Rings Score Analysis Project
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Mordor Descending Third

Appears in:

1|1|1 Prologue: One Ring to Rule Them All
1|1|7 Keep it Secret, Keep it Safe
[08:01-08:06] Heard in short, truncated form as counterpoint to tense, dissonant tremolo strings.
1|1|8 A Conspiracy Unmasked
1|1|12 A Shortcut to Mushrooms
1|1|13 Strider
1|2|1 Weathertop
1|2|8 The Great Eye
1|3|5 Parth Galen
2|1|6 The Three Hunters
3|1|1 Roots and Beginnings
[04:24-04:40] From the Annotated Score: "Behind Sméagol and Déagol's conjoined Seduction and Evil themes another line forms, crawling and scratching along the orchestra's bottom. The Descending Third figure is but one of many ancillary lines associated with Mordor, yet to hear it here, so far from its home, associated with two simple characters who were, only moments ago, fishing upon a cool blue river, is cruelly upsetting."
3|1|10 The Palantír
[00:57-01:06] From the Annotated Score: "But there's no time for such considerations. Pippin's vision in the palantír overwhelms his senses, and exposes him to the Enemy. The orchestra lurches, igniting into a blaze of furious string and wind textures over hammering timpani attacks. Bisecting the musical madness, the Descending Third figure marches out of Sauron's mind."