As with so often many of the films John Barry scored, the scores for the movies far outclass the actual movies themselves! Raise the titanic was a massive flop on release back in 1980, with a budget of over $40 million and a box office gross of only $12 million the film was quickly forgotten by critics and the public alike. Fortunately John Barry's excellent score was more cherished and remembered but with fans clamouring for a CD release of the score John Barry discovered the original master tapes were lost or destroyed and a CD release of the album looked unlikely. Then due to massive demand from Barry's fans and Barry himself! Silva Screen records stepped in and decided to pay for a complete re-scoring of Barry's original sheet music with Nic Raine ( Barry's right hand man in later years) conducting the city of prague philharmonic orchestra. Now some purists will rebuke this score just because it isn't the original but to be honest you'd never know the difference as Nic Raine made sure everything was perfect in replicating Barry's score, personally i can't tell the difference between Barry's original and this, it's that good! Also the album has been recorded in Dolby Surround and the audio quality is exceptional throughout.
John Barry's scores usually came in 2 styles - Very lush romantic majestic sweeping scores (out of africa,dances with wolves,somewhere in time,Scarlett letter etc) or dark brooding and suspense scores ( the Bond films,the black hole,starcrash,Game of death etc) Raise the titanic has elements of both. "The prelude" theme is a lovely piece reminiscent of Barry's romantic themes like Out of africa etc with the "main title" theme more suspensful and dark.
Several pieces like "The dog attack" and "Blowing the tanks" could have come straight out of a Bond film with there bombastic approach and horn stabs.
As common with Barry's scores the main theme does get woven into the score very liberally, maybe a bit too much to be honest but with such a quality theme it's hard to argue against it's inclusion.
If your a fan of John Barry's music or just excellent film scores in general then i urge you to give this one a listen. It's definitely one of Barry's best scores and this period in his career is my personal favourite, the years between 1978-80 delivered classic Barry scores in Moonraker,Game of Death,The Black hole,Night games and Starcrash and of course this wonderful score.