Mordor Outline

A Mordor Accompaniment


The Mordor Outline Figure, , a theme for Middle-earth in the subcategory of the Ring Quest, is basically an up-down martial ostinato played on tympani. The rhythm changes with iterations. Sometimes it's just up-down-up-down with even beats. Sometimes is more up-down-down-up with the Morse Code rhythm of dash-dot-dot-dash.


Places this theme is heard in FOTR:

  • A steady up-down beat is heard in the Wizard fight between Gandalf and Saruman starting at the moment when Saruman advances on Gandalf with both of their staves.

Places this motif is heard in ROTK:

  • As we return to invaded Osgiliath, now day, with the fighting still raging on. The Mordor Outline plays an up-down-down beat under the Gondor Theme.

  • A strong, massive up-down-down-up ... up-down-down-up-up beat plays as the Mūmakil show up on the fields of the Pelennor.

  • A steady up-down-up-down beat is heard briefly as the Witch King flies over Minas Tirith while a Troll bangs on one of the level doors. This is just before Gandalf's quiet moment with Pippin where they discuss "a far green country".

  • A very quick, short version with the up-down beats coming double time as the Black Gates open to show Army of Mordor on the other side (this would be after the Mouth of Sauron in the EE version).

  • The choir sings the Mount Doom theme over a steady up-down version of the Mordor Outline as Frodo snaps his newly claimed Ring off its chain and puts it on. Sam screams as do the Nazgūl as they wing their way back to the Mountain. Gollum knocks out Sam then goes after Frodo. The action at the Black Gate isn't going that well and then a troll shows up. Back at the Mountain, Gollum bites off the finger that holds the Ring. The now visible Frodo screams in pain. Aragorn is knocked to the ground by the troll. Legolas is frantic, trying to get to him. Gollum plucks the Ring off the severed finger and the choir winds down as he holds it up.

  • After a short, sweet respite of sound (as soloist Renee Fleming sings the sound of the Ring's triumph), the pounding choir resumes the Mount Doom theme, again over the steady up-down version of Mordor Outline, as Frodo, mad as hell, advances on Gollum and the two wrestle. The troll knocks down Aragorn again and steps on him. Gandalf looks exhausted and worn and then, at the Crack of Doom, Frodo and Gollum tumble over the edge.