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4.4 out of 5 stars39
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 9 June 2013
Star Trek Into Darkness (STID), the acronym of which sounds like something you would get diagnosed with at the GP, is Giacchino's latest album in the franchise. I loved the music to the first film, despite is having too short a running time (something this album also suffers from) and had extremely high hopes for this album. Thankfully, they were met. This album is in my opinion a career high for Giacchino, with stunning orchestral and choral writing that really packs a punch.

If you want a track by track analysis, I would suggest looking at one of the previous reviews. However, some personal favourites were the stunning Warp Core Values (Track 10), which has an amazing rendition of the main theme with choir and simply epic. The same can be said about the closing track Star Trek Main Theme (Track 14). The start of Buying The Farm (Track 11) is a welcome change of pace, with some great writing for strings and piano. The whole album is fantastic though, and it flows well. It is well mixed and doesn't sound as dry as some of his earlier albums. The different sections and choir all have exceptional clarity, and I thought the louder choir was a definite improvement from the soundtrack to the first film.

My only gripe - the running time. I'm not saying for one minute that I expect every single second to be released, but releasing 47 minutes is pretty shameful and not the greatest value for money. I understand that longer albums mean more expense in terms of license fees paid to the orchestra and choir (hence lower profits). However, for a film that has a budget of $190 million they probably could have afforded a longer running time and is poor given that many soundtrack albums are over an hour at least. They are probably saving more music for an inevitable 2CD release like they did with the soundtrack to the first film. Rant over.

Overall, if you were a fan of Giacchino's music from the first film, you will love this and there are some brilliant variations on the main ST theme here. The running time irked me, but the choral aspects were more prominent than on the first soundtrack album, which is a bonus. The quality of the music is sensational and easily deserves 5*s, but the running time means the product as a whole drops to 4*. Still highly recommended.
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on 26 September 2013
I loved the soundtrack to the previous film but was, like a lot of other reviews, shocked by how reduced this way - particularly considering it's odd high price. Where is the music from the closing credits, for instance? Brilliant music but I feel I've been ripped off by Colosseum.
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on 5 November 2014
One of the things that sets the Star Trek scores apart for other big movie scores is that composer Michael Giacchino isn't afraid to have fun with the music. And for as dark and serious as the new Trek film has been marketed (it is called "Into Darkness" after all), the score still has a lot of excitement and lightheartedness to it. While many composers rely too much on pounding percussion in these types of action movies, Giacchino doesn't go there. It seems he really believes that his themes can do the job - and he's right.

If you liked the last "Star Trek" soundtrack, the good news is that "Star Trek Into Darkness" builds off of that one. An example can be heard at the very opening of the soundtrack; fans will notice that the logo music is a variant of the logo music from the last "Star Trek". And there are many other themes from the previous score that are re-used in this score. This is a very good thing because the first soundtrack was fantastic - If you don't yet own that one, I highly recommend it: Star Trek. I like when there is a musical continuity in movie franchises; just as you want the characters and story to fit well with previous installments of a given franchise, you also want the music to pay homage and reference what has come before.

But "Into Darkness" isn't just a rehashing of old themes. There are some very original and unique tracks as well. An example is "The Kronos Wartet", which features some vocals. "London Calling" is another very nice track that seems to be a departure from anything we've heard in Star Trek before.

Overall, this is a highly recommended soundtrack and it's worthy of multiple listens. The score works very well on it's own, and it sounds great within the film too. I've listed a few of my favorite tracks below:

[3] Sub Prime Directive
[4] London Calling
[13] Kirk Enterprises

"Star Trek Into Darkness" is just the latest gift of Michael Giacchino's rich collaboration with producer/director J.J. Abrams - with his fantastic score for "Super 8", the last two "Mission Impossible" scores, and his work on the TV series "Lost", Giacchino is one of my favorite film composers working today.
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on 30 September 2013
Michael Giaccino's score for Into Darkness is awesome; end of story (almost). It's got some cracking tracks that are well up there with the best he's done. There is a depth and variety which is amazing, and he hasn't over-egged the score with his Start Trek theme again, as it has been used sparingly, mostly in the beginning and end pieces (which is understandable). There is some beautiful music which goes perfectly with the film, as well as living outside it (which doesn't happen in all score albums) and in the action cues there appears, to me at least, to be the faintest echo of both Jerry Goldsmith and James Horner, which shows its a stable mate to the earlier films. The score varies at one end from "London Calling" which is a beautiful haunting piece which brings out real sadness (you'll know instantly where it goes when you've seen the film) to the action of "The Kronos Wartet". I highly recommend this to anyone that loves good music.

The star taken off is not however for the music, its for the running time of only 47 minutes, which I find both disappointing and frustrating. I'm sure give it five or six months and...surprise, surprise, an extended "Deluxe" CD with another 15 or so minutes of music added.

It will be interesting to see what's going to happen when they do Star Trek 3 (or 13 if your an old trekker like me). With JJ Abrahms likely to be concentrating mainly on Star Wars V11, and down as producer only for Star Trek 3, will there be a change of musical direction? I hope not as Giacchino's doing a damn fine job. However, might Giacchino be earmarked also for Star Wars V11? Now that would be interesting! IF - and its a very, very big IF- Giacchino does do Star Wars V11, hopefully he'll be able to do Start Trek 3 as well. If not, then enjoy the sublime music he created for these two reboot Star Trek films - you certainly won't be disappointed !
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on 22 December 2013
[...] Opinions on how "Star Trek Into Darkness" compares to its predecessor will be divided. Personally, I believe it to be superior, because the composition, the performance and the recording are a little more precise. [...] This time the orchestration is focused much more on the strings; its players providing a very tight performance.

Having said that... for all its technical marvel, I find most of Giacchino's score to be a little too calculated (less so than the previous one, but still...). [...] So, this is only a minor gripe, but I believe that its meticulousness is holding back a greater potential. Because... When the shackles do come of in "The San Fran Hustle" we are treated to what may well become the best action cue of 2013!

A bigger issue is the presentation of the score on album. There is a lot of really great material missing. An extra ten or fifteen minutes, particularly of Harrison's music, would have been very welcome (and would've lifted my rating below by at least half a star, if not more). One can only hope that a deluxe edition might one day get released - as it did for "Star Trek" (2009).[...]

Read the full review at [...]
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on 3 July 2013
When JJ Abrams rebooted the Star Trek Franchise, it did split fandom. The soundtrack has however been mainly praised, an assessment I cannot disagree with.

Into Darkness continues this trend. The original Alexander Courage theme, apart from the end titles, is used sparingly so is not intrusive, allowing Giacchino free reign. The music used for Kronos honours that used for the Klingons by Goldsmith and Horner, but also finds it's own path, while Warp Core Values/Buying The Space Farm are emotive tracks, reminiscent of the first movie's "Labor of Love" track.

I recommend this to any fan of the movie
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on 30 May 2013
I loved every second of Into Darkness, I had heard the full soundtrack before but after watching the film i felt the need to buy the soudtrack. Now that i've listened to it over and over again it always makes me feel like I'm watching the film again.

If your a fan of Michael Giacchino or Star Trek this is a OST not to miss out on.

My favourite tracks are Buying the space farm, London Calling and Pranking the natives.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 5 September 2014
If you enjoyed the film, this soundtrack will help bring back the experience. The music does not, however, stand up quite as well without reference to the film: in my opinion, the hallmark of a great soundtrack is that it has a life of its own, beyond simply supporting the on-screen action. Also, the various tracks seem significantly less memorable than those of the Star Trek (2009) soundtrack (especially the magnificent closing music for that film).

Reommended for the serious soundtrack collector and Star Trek fan: maybe less so for the more casual listener.
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on 13 October 2013
Let's be clear ... Giacchino's Star Trek music is not Goldsmith, it's not Horner , it's not Eidelman but it is a worthy addition to these ranksthrough it's sheer gusto and energy. The main theme is, perhaps, a little overused although it's fun to hear it in different guises and it does capture the style of the new JJ-trek expertly. The best tracks, among a slightly uneven listen on the album at least, are probably London Calling, Kirk Enterprises and that Main theme. Track names are very entertaining (s with the last one) but could do without the 'Bonus track'.
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on 18 November 2013
This is the music for the Star Trek: Into Darkness. It borrows extensively in thematic terms from the music of the 2009 movie but with a darker, heavier turn. Fans will also recognise elements from the original series theme tune. Unlike the first movie soundtrack, the Erhu does not feature but highlights include a lovely piano riff in "London Calling" that stands out as well as the sweeping orchestral lines of "Warp Core Values".
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