Alexander, King of Macedon, Captain General of the Greeks, Shahanshah of Persia, Lord of Asia, son of Zeus-Ammon, Iskander Gojastak (Alexander the Cursed), Dhu L'Kairnan (the two horned), Alexander the Great. A figure as well known as Alexander has been known by at least the proverbial ninety and nine names. Some modern historians consider him to be the worst butcher in history, others regard him as the most significant figure of the Hellenic world. All of this and more will surely reemerge with the release of Oliver Stone's film "Alexander." It seems inane to worry about what musical sound should be associated with this historical colossus. But that is exactly the task given to the famous Greek composer Vangelis. To be fair no one has any accurate idea of what music in Alexander's tent may have sounded like. Most likely it would not work well in a twenty first century film, or a club in downtown Athens. But Vangelis has been equal to the task on numerous occcasions including incredible scores for "Chariots of Fire," "Blade Runner," and "1492." But in all three of these scores there was a common strength and weakness. All three possessed outstanding main themes, but suffered with rather mundane music in other parts of the score. Thus his "greatest hits" wears much better than the entire soundtracks from these films. With "Alexander," however, we have more of a comprhensive film score. There are still references to what might be considered period music and the various exotica that ply the edges of new age cliche, and some over the top choral arrangements, but as a sountrack album this works better than earlier recordings. The main strength is still a marvelous main theme, first heard in "Titans" that transforms into percussion driven battle music with "The Drums of Gaugamela," and reappears both triumphantly and mystically in "Dream of Babylon." These are the grand higlights of this very good score. The weakness of many composers is that they hit on a good theme and then beat it to death. Here Vangelis leaves us wanting more of that main theme, or more variations on it. It is unclear how this score will work with the film itself, but as a soundtrack album this is a worthy achievement that will, no doubt, strike a solid chord with many parts of the modern audience. Nicely produced and packaged by Sony.