The Undiscovered Country - Expanded Soundtrack 2012

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"Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!"

Well, this is a little different.

When a plan to rework Holst's "The Planets" fell through due to costs, unknown composer Cliff Eidelman got the gig to craft the score for the original casts film swansong. A gamble that paid off. Right from the off, it's clear that this is a Trek score that wont play by the established rules. In fact, listening to the opening track "Overture" you wouldn't know this is from a Star Trek film. The Courage fanfare is absent, the music starts low, quietly, a menacing choral element (the first use of such in a Trek score) mixed with brass and strings building to a crescendo then pulling back again to build to another climax that ends abruptly, making the explosion of Praxis all the more effective as a film opener, arguably one of the best for a Trek film to date. Wonderful stuff!

This could be described as one of the darkest scores to a Trek film, yet the menacing aspects dont overwhelm. "Spock's Wisdom" is an evocative piece, underscoreing the talk between Spock and Valaris, the past handing over to a possible future. It brings to mind echoes of James Horner's Spock theme from TWOK and TSFS, but just echoes, this is an original piece from a score that far from being an cheap option to a film franchise that was seen as almost exhusted, bursts with invention. It's a great shame that this didn't lead to bigger things for Eidelman the way that TWOK did for Horner. But what we do have is a great score to bring the cinematic voyages of the original crew to a close with.

The two disc 2012 release features the restored complete score with some alternative cues and the specially composed music for the films trailers. The second disc has the original 1991 soundtrack album which features some different arrangements of a couple of the main cues.

Highly recommended - Five bars of Latinum
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