Nic Raine and the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, the
people who brought us The James Bond Album and The
Indiana Jones Trilogy, have now turned their attention
towards the music of Star Trek. But how do you encapsulate
nearly forty years' worth of Trek music on two CDs...?
the brutally frank answer is that you can't. As a result,
there are some glaring omissions from this compilation, which
spends more time covering the movies than it does the various
incarnations of the television series.
the original show we have a version of the main theme and
a suite from The Menagerie; one track ("Tasha's Farewell")
from The Next Generation; the theme plus two other
moving tracks from Deep Space Nine; the Voyager
theme... and that's it for the TV series. I knew this compendium
would have to be selective, but if you're only going to cover
one "Classic" Trek episode, then why not the fantastic
music from The Doomsday Machine? And if you're only
going to include one TNG episode, then why not the
riveting Best of Both Worlds? On the other hand, I
can understand the lack of incidental music from Voyager
and Enterprise, because on the whole their scores have
been relatively bland.
the lack of television music, it's curious that Silva Screen
has found room to include the opening theme to a computer
game, Starfleet Academy. However, this is composed
by the excellent Ron Jones, who scored The Best of Both
Worlds, so it kind of makes up for the absence of any
of his TNG music.
movie music is dominated by end title medleys. This allows
for many of the themes from each film to be brought together
in a single track. One disadvantage of this approach, though,
is that all the Jerry Goldsmith end titles include several
minutes of his Motion Picture/Next Generation theme
alongside the other signatures. This means that you have to
sit through five versions of his theme, most of which are
virtually identical to each other.
two CDs also include rather inaccurate "re-creations" of sound
effects, such as "Warp Drive", "Dogfight in Space" and "Crash
Landing". I could quite easily have lived without these.
I'm accentuating the negative and eliminating the positive.
For the most part, the music makes good listening. There are
a few sour notes (the worst being an off-key Voyager
theme) but for the most part, and in common with Nic Raine's
previous Bond and Indy albums, this collection offers stunningly
accurate renditions of some of our favourite tunes. I could
list all the tracks that are worth listening to, but it would
be a very long and tedious list, because most of the album
is, in fact, excellent. It's just a pity that it was restricted
to two CDs.
last whinge before I go. The front cover is a bit '70s, isn't
it? But if you're not too embarrassed to be seen buying it,
then it's well worth making it so and setting a course for
the nearest record store - warp factor 7.
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