"Star Trek Into Darkness: The Deluxe Edition"
Soundtrack Album Review
Varese Sarabande Club VCL-1150
Disc One: 31 Tracks/Disc Time: 58:00
Disc Two: 20 Tracks/Disc Time: 51:00
Total Set Time: 51 Tracks/Disc Time: 119:00
Grade: A- (BEST OF 2014)
It's hard to believe that one summer ago, "Star Trek Into Darkness" was released and was a critical and commercial success that will eventually pay off with a third Star Trek film in the near future. The film features the return of the original cast from the 2009 reboot of the classic television series and this time they not only battle their future and hated nemesis, the Klingons, but also who appears to be one of their own in the Federation. Lt. James T. Kirk (Chris Pine, "Jack Ryan Shadow Recruit") and Lt. Spock (Zachary Quinto, "Margin Call") are at odds with one another, while he falls for the daughter (Alice Eve, "She's Out Of My League") of a highly respected Admiral Marcus (Peter Weller, "Robocop") who has plans of his own for the Starfleet. While a superhuman terrorist that was biogenically engineered by Starfleet named Khan going by the name of John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch, "Sherlock") has declared war against his creators in hopes of freeing his own people trapped. Filled with rage and fury, Khan soon finds a rival in both Kirk and Spock that he admires and are forced join forces when Marcus goes rogue and tries to start a war while trying to contain the superhuman Khan. The film was visually stunning and featured some terrific acting that made the film somewhat of a retelling of the greatest film in Star Trek lore, "The Wrath Of Khan", that is just as outstanding as that film was under Director J.J. Abrams fine direction.
The film also featured the return of composer and J.J. Abrams closest friend Michael Giacchino, who had recently wrapped a very busy year prior to this film with scores for "Cars 2", "Monte Carlo" and "Super 8", which was also directed by Abrams and was also a hit film. As with the reboot of "Star Trek", Giacchino really out does himself this time around with an operative and classically tinged score that is very operatic and grandiose in every sense. It is a very strong score, much more muscular in scope and like the film, every right to be. While the original album consisted of some exciting and memorable material including the tracks "London Calling" (Khan's Theme in a classical vein), "The Kronos Wartet", "Earthbound And Down", "Warp Core Values", "Buying The Space Farm", "San Fran Hustle" (one of the best tracks of the score) and "Kirk Enterprises", the added material to this special release is even more potent.
Adding to what was already a solid 45 min program meticulously chosen by Giacchino, this Deluxe Edition ups the ante big time and features the more fleshed out and tension filled material that fans sorely missed out on the original album. Included here is even more of Khan's material that is the perfect musical foil to that of Kirk and company which also represented. The original album really didn't get to show us the real musical power of what Giacchino accomplished writing for Khan highlighted by "London Falling", "Harrison Attack", "Harjugal Visit", "Harrison's Heart / Enter The Vengeance", "Head Games", "I’m Gonna Make This Simple", and "Human Popsicles", these tracks really do stand out due to their darkly hued, anguished and dramatic material that flows at the center of the material. These are great tracks and not to be out done by the themes that Giacchino also wrote for the Klingons ("Klingon Chase / Meeting"), which is pretty much a taste of what is to come musically in future installments hopefully and of course, the subplot involving Admiral Marcus ("Torpedo Diplomacy", "Mom’s Calling", "Chief Concern / The Moral Mission", "Astronomical Manhunt", "Chair Of Command", "Pull The Trigger" and "Ship To Ship" which is also plays off the Khan material quite perfectly with its militaristic base hard at its core. The complete and wonderful "End Credits" that like the first film incorporated the original TV series theme complete with the female wordless vocal that is still a cultural icon and unforgettable. Giacchino rounds out this very special album with two lengthy suites "Ode To Harrison" and "Ode To Vengeance" which he put together featuring his own favorite material of this character which is pretty much the blueprint for the entire score. They're well thought out and filled with a rather tragic underpanning that Giacchino clearly brought out musically and it stands out operatically as well.
Varese Sarabande's latest Deluxe Edition is a pure home-run for fans of the score and fans of the Star Trek scores because this a score that surprisingly works as a complete organic whole and it is very rare that a complete score works so well as this one does with the brilliant "Total Recall", "Cutthroat Island", "Lawrence Of Arabia", "Star Wars" and "The Ten Commandments" as good examples go. The original release was a very good highlight disc that featured part of the score's strongest musical assets but this is the complete and total creme de la creme that will make fans of this score truly satisfied all the way through. It's thrilling and exhilarating. Thumbs way way up.
Now available to order @: http://www.varesesarabande.com/servlet/the-1184/Star-Trek-Into-Darkness-cln-/Detail