Fifteen years before the TITANIC score, a young James Horner produced one of the finest orchestral film scores ever recorded. Fitting seamlessly into director Nicholas Meyer's radical "Horatio Hornblower" re-invention of the ageing STAR TREK mythos, Horner's swashbuckling, romantic score announced his arrival as a major movie composer.
There are distinctly Russian influences in many of the melodies, not least the glorious main theme - but even better than the thematic arrangements are the tight and punchy action sequences, complimenting the choreographed special effects to produce some near-balletic cinematic sequences.
Much of Horner's later work (most noticeably ALIENS, COCOON, KRULL and ROCKETEER) is shamelessly lifted from this score, so there's plenty of familiarity here, even if you haven't seen THE WRATH OF KHAN. What you won't find are any of the more recent Horner signatures, like ethereal female vocals or celtic folk tunes. Oh, and Celine Dion is nowhere to be heard. Vintage Horner is so much better without them.