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Battlestar Galactica: Season 2 Import

5 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Conductor: Bear McCreary
  • Audio CD (June 20 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: La-La Land
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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1. Colonial Anthem ('Theme From Battlestar Galactica')
2. Baltar's Dream
3. Escape from the Farm (3:09)
4. A Promise To Return
5. Allegro
6. Martial Law
7. Standing In The Mud
8. Pegasus
9. Lords Of Kobol
10. Something Dark Is Coming
11. Scar
12. Epiphanies
13. Roslin And Adama
14. Gina Escapes
15. Dark Unions
16. The Cylon Prisioner
17. Prelude To War
18. Reuniting The Fleet
19. Roslin Confesses
20. One Year Later
See all 23 tracks on this disc

Product Description

Product Description

Sci-fi fans have said that composer Bear McCreary did for Battlestar what John Williams did for Star Wars -and we aren't about to argue! This is like no other TV-series soundtrack you've ever heard: Colonial Anthem; Scar; The Cylon Prisoner; Black Market , and more.


In its own way, this soundtrack to the cult SciFi Channel series embodies all the trends of film and, to a certain extent, TV-scoring circa 2006. Alien universes and mysterious plots are suggested by exotic instruments like gamelans and taikos; an otherwordly woman comes in at regular intervals to vocalize esoterically ("Lords of Kobol"); and thundering percussions suggest action ("Scar"). It's as if cult band Dead Can Dance were on the required listening list for American screen composers ("Gina Escapes"). Composer Bear McCreary pulls off the mix better than some of his contemporaries because, this being TV, he probably doesn't have the budget of a big Hollywood composer and so he can't rely on a ginormous orchestra to do the work for him (i.e., he can't just pile on dozens of violins to suggest mood). Look for ex-Oingo Boingo member Steve Bartek (who's orchestrated many of Danny Hellman's finest scores) on guest guitar on the final track, "Black Market." --Elisabeth Vincentelli

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Amazing music! No cheap electronic sound box thing, real instruments.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa7d86f54) out of 5 stars 90 reviews
36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa80cd708) out of 5 stars Exploring the Human Experience through a Fusion of Styles July 31 2006
By M. Mierzwa - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
About the Composer:

Bear McCreary took over as the composer for the hot new science fiction series Battlestar Gallactica when the series went it normal production in 2004. McCreary expanded upon some of the original mini-series (2003) composer Richard Gibbs's themes, but quickly developed a style of his own characterized by a mix of tribal beats, ethereal vocals, and electronics. His season 1 Battlestar Galactica soundtrack was very well received, and has been considered an instrumental part of the success of the series. McCreary is comfortable writing and making use of traditional orchestra ensembles, string quartets, electronic compositions, rock flavored guitar, and more traditional folk arrangements. I'd describe his style as actually being similar to European "fusion" music, which mixes electronics with a variety of music styles from around the globe.

About the Soundtrack:

This disk is packed with over an hour of some of my favorite musical tracks from BSG season 2. Though the series itself reused some of the music originally scored for season 1, with only a few exceptions this soundtrack actually focuses on highlighting the new music introduced in season 2. In season 1, McCreary established a few theme songs that we incorporate with specific characters and those themes are worked into new pieces for season 2. Starbuck's theme is masterfully mixed into "Escape from the Farm" and Baltar's theme is integral to "Baltar's Dream" (the track ties into "The Shape of Things to Come" from the season 1 disk). Aside from those two tracks and Richard Gibbs main title sequence (sort of a must for a television soundtrack disk), the rest of the material is not available on the previous disk.

Recommended Tracks:

* Pegasus

* Lords of Kobol

* Martial Law

* Black Market

* Prelude to War

* Something Dark is Coming

Though amazon allows you to sample the music, their choice of what part of the tracks to sample does not always highlight what I like about many of these tracks. For example, the sampled version of "Lords of Kobol" (sung by jazz singer Raya Yarbrough) doesn't feature her vocals ... which are amazing! Raya's lyrics, sung in Sengalese, are really one of the most moving pieces on this disk and it is a shame you will not be able to sample them before making your purchase! On the other hand, the amazon sample of "Martial Law" is very true to the track. Basically the disk is better than the samples.

What I liked most about this soundtrack was its diversity. "Black Market" is a dark fusion of industrial guitar riffs and a middle-eastern flute / drum rhythm (it sounds like a seedy restaurant). Yarbrough's heavenly vocals on "Lords of Kobol" add an emotional and uplifting human touch. "Martial Law" is a chilling styled cold war / eastern bloc styled piece that is completely unlike "The Cylon Prisoner" which has a mix of blues and southwestern American folk. All of these different styles work together as an audio exploration of the state of the human condition - which ultimately is what the series itself is about!
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa81727f8) out of 5 stars Best of the two seasons June 22 2006
By Gorkon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Absolutely one of the best soundtrack CDs ever put together. I loved the season 1 CD and this one is even better! All the music is outstanding but my favorite two are "Something Dark is Coming" and "Prelude to War". These tracks alone are worth the price. As an FYI, if you are looking for the piano piece from "Valley of Darkness" you will find it on the Philip Glass Solo Piano album. The song is called Metamorphosis Five.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7f541bc) out of 5 stars near perfection June 20 2006
By Felix Schütz - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This is it. If you enjoyed McCrearys Score for Season 1, then this is definitely your next must-buy.

McCreary is doing the impossible: he goes much further, beyond what he has created in Season 1 OST. This is especially for those who know the first soundtrack cd and are begging for more. There you got it. It does not repeat those drum-action-cues, does not drift away into those arabian-exotic-strings. It's fresh and it's new. There are some tunes on this cd that you would never have expected. Probably McCreary's best decision: Track 10 "Something Dark Is Coming" in its own full greatfull length of nearly nine minutes. This is a huge statement. How long has it been since you heard a track on a soundtrack album which has exactly the length it is needed to have? There you go. It's all here.

If you love the show, this is clearly a must-buy. If you like unusual, almost exotical music for movies and television, this is must-buy. If you have a good sense for music that does not sound like anything you have ever heard in this constelletion before, it is a freakin' must-buy.

Dear Bear McCreary, I am proud of you. You did everything I could hope for. This CD is almost near perfection. It is exactly what a Season 2 Score for a show like Battlestar Calactica is supposed to be. You did great. Thank you for this.

To all those of you who have been reading this: Don't hesitate. Buy it! Give the show and Mr McCreary a good chance of continuing their work.



By the way: Please forgive the language. I am German, so this is all improvised.

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa85a20c0) out of 5 stars Battlestar Galactica Season 2 June 14 2006
By G. Grimes - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Battlestar Galactica Season 2 Original Soundtrack

Being a fan of the show I had no reservations about purchasing this soundtrack the moment I could. I am so pleased I have it today. My review below contains connections to episodes, but hopefully no serious spoilers. I will say nothing about the Season Finale cliff-hanger. (Except that it was absolutely perfect for the show) Track 1, "Colonial Anthem", as arranged by Bear McCreary is powerful and holds true to the stylings of Stu Phillips but in a modern Galactica setting.

Track 4, "A Promise to Return", is an emotional piece with the violin being played exceptionally by Ludvig Girdland. Girdland was hit by a drunk driver shortly after this piece was recorded, and is still in a coma. "Allegro" is best described as "Passacaglia" from season 1 with a more serious and desperate tone than its predecessor. It is a wonderfully orchestrated piece that can calm any ones nerves and brings emotional music to a new level.

One of my personal favorites is the short track "Martial Law". Watching the episode "Fragged" and hearing this brought goose bumps to my skin. It fits so perfectly within the episode, and the story arch presented at the beginning of the second season that I wish Mr. McCreary had expanded it from the 1:51 that it is into something about 4 minutes long. "Pegasus" and "Lords of Kobol" are the opening songs for Season Two's mid-season cliffhanger. Both make you feel as happy and elated as the characters feel when they are happened upon by a strong allied ship. "Pegasus" has a whimsical feel to it, giving the listener the dream like state that is referred to within the episode. `It's like a dream.' "Lords of Kobol" features vocals by Raya Yarbrough and could easily be turned into a dance track at a night club. The work here is again, exceptional.

"Something Dark is Coming" is probably the most powerful track on the disc. (I actually cannot decide for sure between several of these.) It is, without doubt, extremely powerful and emotional. It brings in a sense of desperation, tension, and hope during the season's finale. The piece involves the guitar but in a much more dark and tragic fashion. The synthesizers used also create a nearly whimsical state bring images from "Pegasus" to mind. Throw in the Middle Eastern woodwinds, and drums, and McCreary creates a powerful masterpiece that is entirely new to the series, but wholly Galactica in every note. Add in a subtle snare drum and the military comes into the scene, perfectly. The violins add a sense urgency and tension to the election process. The song is never rushed, and plays perfectly to the situation and characters on the screen. As I said before, an exceptional work. Absolutely beautiful.

"Scar" is the short battle track of the CD. It features the traditional drums of a Battlestar Galactica fight season mixed with the Middle Eastern woodwinds representing the Cylons. Then, a fourth of the way through the song, we have the memory of Kara's love, a man named Andrews. This also reminds Kara that she has a reason to live, and a promise to fulfill. Swinging back to the action, the song brings in a strong feeling of deliberate strategy on Kara's part as she fights for her life. "Epiphanies" is a soft piece. The emotions here are sad, and painful. The use of the strings here make sure that those emotions are exactly what you feel here, as President Roslin lays, dying of her cancer. "Roslin and Adama" is a moving piece bringing the emotion of deep love into the mix. It begins with slow strings and a piano. And gradually builds to a powerful orchestra piece, including the military snare drum cues, and a happier violin that brings the audience hope in the future. "Gina Escapes" was the first time during the season that we heard the guitar used on Galactica. (At least in a lead) And at that, is a grungy, Sci-Fi sound that brings us the Cylon theme, and as usual, goes right with the definition of Galactica. "Dark Unions" is another powerful piece, complimenting "Something Dark is Coming". The same theme is heard here, but even darker, and scarier. Add in drums and we go right back to a sense of urgency that McCreary has a masterful power over. "The Cylon Prisoner" brings us a southern twang that will, for many people, bring to mind the old prison chain gangs of the south. This defiantly creates a bond to our Cylon Prisoner aboard the Battlestar Pegasus. It features vocals by Bt4.

My favorite track, along with "Something Dark is Coming" is "Prelude to War". This 8 minute 22 second piece is filled with action and emotion from the mid-season cliffhanger and its two-part conclusion. The final song from the episode "Pegasus" is what starts off this song. Its whirlwind violins and military snare bring us to know that things are spiraling out of control as Adama and Cain square off over the lives of two of Galactica's crew members. After the whirlwind stops we have those wonderful base drums reminding us that two Battlestar's going toe to toe will be a serious fight. Fortunately, there is no cliff-hanger with the song as it goes right into the Viper "fight" from part one of "Resurrection Ship" including Kara's recon mission. The violins give us another serious reminder that this a dark time. From there we move to the fight between the Battlestars and the Basestars. We even hear a small part of Lee's theme as he floats through space after ejecting from the Blackbird which leads to the final moments of the battle and of course, Kara's mission to the Resurrection Ship. The piece ends on those drums again, just like they left us at the cliff-hanger. An absolutely perfect piece.

"Reuniting the Fleet" starts with a ghostly cello and light snare. Adama's theme is dominant throughout this song and ends on a "back into action" note as Adama begins the quest to find Roslin, and bring the fleet back together again. The Celtic pipes are brought in for this one, and remind us of Season One's piece, "Wander my Friends". A short piece at 2:45, it turns despair into hope, and seriousness into relief. "Roslin Confesses" starts at the end of "Reuniting the Fleet" and brings back the dark tone from "Dark Unions" and "Something Dark is Coming". In it we find the Roslin and Adama theme, and I personally, find this piece to be that made for a tragedy.

This leads us to "One Year Later". This song features the piano and was written under a pressing deadline. Which you can hear within the song as the piano almost reminds us of a ticking clock, as if time is running out. And, for our fleet, time has run out. The final song of Season Two, "Worthy of Survival", features the violin theme we heard while Apollo was on his unscheduled EVA. It is darker though (remember, time is up) and our colonist look up to the sky on Judgment Day. This cliff-hanger is exceptionally dark for our characters, and this song follows that perfectly. The gravity of the final situation of the season is reflected with a soft, depressed whirlwind of violins, and the constant drum beat as the end approaches. Towards the later half of the song that high pitched screech of a violin that reminds us what horror is all about can just barely be heard. The violins fade out, the music stops, and we wait until October for Season Three.

There are several other tracks on the CD that I have not reviewed. Do not by any means let that stop you from enjoying them. "Black Market" is quite powerful and features Steve Bartek on guitar.

All in all, I love this CD. All of McCreary's pieces are exceptionally powerful and fit the story on the screen perfectly. Never in TV soundtracks has anyone managed to get a song or a sound to work as perfectly as Bear McCreary. Every emotion can be heard from despair to hope, and every song leaves you wanting more from this talented composer. Season Three will be upon us and so will McCreary's styling's again. I for one cannot wait. As they say, "So Say We All".
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7df0870) out of 5 stars An evolution beyond compare Oct. 7 2006
By Deckard Trinity - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This iteration of the Battlestar Galactica soundtrack series is, so far, the best. In fact, I'm convinced this is one of the best soundtracks I've ever heard, for film or TV. First - the variety of styles from episode to episode involves a lot more string and guitar arrangements than did season 1, yet they all still maintain a cohesive thread that binds them together. The taiko drums depicting the deep, dark, quiet solitude of space are still there, and very prominently on a couple of tracks. The refinement of the opening credits theme song, which appears 2nd to last on the disc, fits nicely... and provides a nice gap between the main part of the soundtrack, and the killer finale - a heavy guitar laden tour de force written for the Black Market episode.

I'm already eagerly aniticpating what Bear will create for Season 3, and after watching the first two episodes, I'm all ready to pre-order the Season 3 soundtrack!